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Best Online CNA Classes in Missouri

The best online CNA classes in Missouri can start your journey into allied health. This guide tells you what you need to know.

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Author: Shannon Lee
Editor: Kari Scare

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If you want to move into the allied health field and work hands-on with a wide variety of patients in a variety of settings, online CNA classes in Missouri are a great way to get your foot in the door. The training to become a certified nursing assistant (CNA) begins with the best online CNA classes Missouri offers, and there are more than a few options for aspiring CNAs that are all approved by the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. Completing this training, which takes as little as four weeks, prepares you to sit for the state examination. Upon passing this test, you have the credentials necessary to work as a CNA in the Show Me State.

Getting into the allied health field in a matter of months is a boon to those who want to begin their careers right away and start pulling in a good income. Read on to discover more about the online CNA classes Missouri offers as well as what you need to know to become certified and begin work in the state.

Those who want to earn their certification to work in nursing homes and other healthcare facilities can turn to the many online CNA classes Missouri offers. Online classes are excellent options for those dealing with family and work obligations and who might not have time to attend school in a traditional classroom. To get you started on making the right choices for taking online CNA classes in Missouri, this guide highlights a few schools that stand out in terms of learning outcomes, time to completion, admissions requirements, and more to help you make an informed decision on which schools might be right for you.

State Fair Community College

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State Fair Community College offers unique options for its Nurse Aide program. The skills portion earns 16.5 credit hours, while the professional certificate earns 31.5 hours. Those credits can then be applied to an Associate of Science degree as a health care specialist with a nurse aide focus. These stackable certificates are offered both on campus and online. The initial certificate takes only a few months to complete and opens the door to others like those in phlebotomy or as a medical assistant.

Application requirements include providing an essay and pertinent information as well as any transcripts, and there are financial aid options for those on government benefits. Each class is limited to 15 students to ensure everyone has the attention they need from professors and peers to complete the program to the best of their abilities. Students need a high school diploma or GED, to pass a drug test and background check, have full immunizations, and obtain proper clothing for clinical work.

St. Charles Community College

The Certified Nurse Assistant program at St. Charles Community College requires about two months of classroom time, all of which is online. Students must score at least 80% on all exams to pass the course and do well in their clinical work. The $600 tuition covers everything except the necessary clothing for the clinical portion and the classroom workbooks.

Potential students must be at least 18 years old, pass a background check, and apply to the college first before applying to the program upon general acceptance as a student at St. Charles. The clinical internship costs $350 and allows students to choose the facility where they want to complete their required 100 hours. Upon graduation, students are ready to take the examination to become certified. Information on the exam, as well as practice tests and other assistance, are provided during the classroom portion of the program.

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How to Become a CNA in Missouri Online

Becoming a CNA in Missouri has similar requirements to those in other states, but there could be nuances that you must pay attention to get your credentials. Perhaps the most important factor is finding the online CNA classes Missouri offers that are approved through the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. Here’s what to expect from the best programs in Missouri.

Step 1: Meet Basic Background Requirements

To take online CNA classes in Missouri, students must be at least 18 years old or at least 16 if taking classes as part of a high school program. Unlike in some other states, students don’t need a GED or high school diploma. They must be able to pass a background check, though, and also pass a physical examination and show proof of full immunizations as required by the state.

Step 2: Graduate from an Approved CNA Program

When taking any of the online CNA classes Missouri offers, there are stricter guidelines than the federal standard. While Missouri meets the federal law standard of at least 75 hours of classroom time, the state goes further by requiring 100 hours of on-the-job training before you can take the examination to become a licensed CNA.

Also, remember that the program you choose must be approved by the state; if not, all your hard work might be for naught since you won’t be able to sit for the examination. However, if you already have previous training that qualifies you for the examination, such as several basic nursing courses in your recent educational history, you might be able to take the exam without taking courses.

Step 3: Pass the State Examination

Since Missouri is not part of the 18 jurisdictions that accept the NNAAP exam for nurse aides, the state requires prospective students to pass their CNA exam. This exam is 2 parts, the knowledge exam and the skills exam. For both exams, students can expect to pay $125 total.

Step 4: Start Working as a CNA

Missouri offers the CNA program for those who intend to work in nursing homes or long-term care facilities. Licensed individuals provide hands-on care to residents under the supervision of a nurse or other healthcare professional. However, those who are certified nursing assistants might find work in other places, such as hospitals and home health care.

The extent of the CNA’s work depends upon the facility where they are employed, the number of staff and patients, and the expectations of their particular unit. It’s always a good idea to ask for a detailed job description during the interview process and request clarification if you are unsure of what tasks you will be asked to perform in your work.

Step 5: Renew Your CNA License Periodically

Missouri requires annual renewal of your CNA license. This renewal includes proof of employment and a fee paid to the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. Those who are in good standing with their employer will have no problem renewing their license each year. If you didn’t perform any CNA duties for 24 months, your license is considered inactive, and you must go through other procedures to reinstate it.

Salary and Career Prospects for CNAs in Missouri

Graduating from one of the online CNA classes Missouri offers can provide you with a wealth of opportunities to find a job that suits your financial needs. Unfortunately, the growth of CNAs is stagnant in the state with expected job openings to number less than 4,500 per year. That’s an increase of 4% each year but is less than the average for all occupations, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. However, that number will go up in the coming years as the population ages and individuals live longer, necessitating more medical care.

The income for CNAs in Missouri is slightly lower than that of the median in the U.S. The median income for a CNA in the U.S. is $35,760, while the median in Missouri is $31,480. However, the cost of living in Missouri is among the lowest in the nation, and the median income for CNAs in the U.S. includes some of the high-dollar areas (e.g., Los Angeles and New York City) where you expect much higher wages. In Missouri, those who work in the largest cities – such as Kansas City and St. Louis – will see higher median wages of $35,370 and $34,670, respectively.

The tables below show income expectations from work as a CNA in Missouri. Keep in mind that those living in rural areas might make less than those in metro areas, and those who are just starting out will likely be making closer to the 10th percentile than the 90th percentile.

Area10th PercentileMedian90th Percentile
US$28,030$35,760$45,940
Missouri$25,500$31,480$38,880
Cape Girardeau, MO-IL$24,060$29,620$35,450
Columbia, MO$28,530$32,540$38,520
Jefferson City, MO$24,240$29,680$37,860
Joplin, MO$24,670$30,520$36,510
Kansas City, MO-KS$29,620$35,370$44,180
St. Joseph, MO-KS$28,530$33,670$41,260
St. Louis, MO-IL$28,630$34,670$38,450
Springfield, MO$24,300$30,800$35,520

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

AreaNew Jobs (2020-2030)Growth RateAvg. Annual Openings
United States115,3008.3%187,000
Missouri1,4104%4,450

Source: Projections Central

Answering Your Questions About Online CNA Classes in Missouri

You might still have questions about the online CNA classes Missouri offers to aspiring certified nursing aides. Below are answers to some of the most common ones.

Are there 4-week CNA classes offered online in Missouri?

Missouri does offer some 4-week CNA online classes. Accelerated courses plunge students into full-time education but get the work done within that roughly 30-day period, after which they can take the exam and become fully licensed. These accelerated courses are not available everywhere, however, so check with your local schools to see if there is an opportunity for these courses in your area.

Are there Missouri CNA programs that allow me to earn and transfer credits?

Some schools do provide college credit for taking a CNA course, and many schools allow you to transfer that credit to cover basic education if you move into a different program. Most commonly, this means moving from a certified nursing aide to a licensed practical nurse.

How long does it take to become a CNA in Missouri?

In most schools, CNA programs last from four weeks to one semester. The typical time frame is about two months to earn the classroom education and the hands-on training. These programs are provided by community colleges, trade schools, high schools, and even the Red Cross. The time it takes to complete courses depends upon the school. For instance, students at the Franklin Technology Center in Joplin take 12 weeks to complete all requirements, while St. Charles Community College requires eight weeks of study.

How much does a CNA course cost in Missouri?

How much you will pay for the online CNA classes Missouri offers depends upon the school, how many credits and hours are required, any tuition assistance you might receive, financial aid you might be eligible for, scholarships, and more. Since this is such a short program, there is no federal financial aid available; however, local help through the school is possible. You might also be eligible for reimbursement plans through the state.

What if my CNA license is inactive in Missouri?

Your CNA license becomes inactive if you haven’t worked in an aide capacity in two years. If you want to reinstate your license, you do so by providing your social security card, proof of employment, and appropriate contact information. Once it is verified that you are working as a CNA, reinstatement occurs in as little as a week.

Where can I find free CNA classes in Missouri?

There are numerous free CNA classes in Missouri, and some of them are online. Expect to find these through nursing homes, medical centers, and employment training centers. A few examples of these types of facilities in the state include the Jefferson City Manor Care Center and the Oakdale Care Center.