Rock Valley College

Nursing Aide Certificate (CNA)

Certificate: 7 credits (Limited Transfer & Limited Enrollment)
Program Length: 8 weeks, or 16 weeks
Nursing Program Contact: (815) 921-3284

For more information please email Amanda Lonsway at

Program Overview

The Nursing Aide Certificate Program prepares students to enter the health care workforce and a pathway to allied health and nursing careers. A flexible program of schedule options includes morning, afternoon, or evening sessions. Mandatory health requirements must be met. Students who complete the program with a grade of “C” or better are eligible for the Nurse Training Competency Evaluation. The program has a mandatory requirement of 80 hours of theory in the classroom and 40 hours of clinical experience in a long-term care facility. Classroom, skill labs, and clinical attendance are required. This course is a prerequisite for the Nursing A.A.S. Degree in Nursing program.

NOTE Age Requirement: All students must be a minimum of 16 years of age at the beginning of the course.  This is a U.S. Department of Labor regulation. 

Application Process and Deadlines

  1. Apply to Rock Valley College
  2. Placement Testing
Reading Requirement: Students must have successfully completed RDG 096 with a “C” or higher or tested out according to ACT/SAT within the last 3 years, or completed Accuplacer® Testing:
  • ACT Score: Minimum of 19
  • SAT Score: Minimum of 510
  • Accuplacer® Score: (prior to Feb. 2019) 56 or higher
  • Accuplacer® Score: (Feb. 2019 or after) 237 or higher
Math Requirement: Students must have successfully completed MTH 088 with a “C” or higher or tested out according to ACT/SAT within the last 3 years, or completed Accuplacer® Testing:
  • ACT Score: Minimum of 18
  • SAT Score: Minimum of 470
  • Accuplacer® Elem. Algebra Score: (prior to Feb. 2019) 33 or higher
  • Accuplacer® Quantitative Reasoning Score: (Feb. 2019 or after) 227 or higher

If ACT/SAT scores are below the minimum score, Accuplacer Testing is required.
If ACT/SAT was taken more than three years ago, Accuplacer Testing is required.    

  • Accuplacer Testing can be taken at the Testing Center, (815) 921-2380

3. Attend a Tech Connect Session

4. Watch the MANDATORY information session powerpoint.

  • If you do not watch this, you will not be able to register for the course

5. Fingerprinting: Criminal Background Check

  • Information will be given at the MANDATORY Admission Prerequisite Session
  • Required a valid Social Security Number and photo ID
  • Cost: $33.70 (subject to change)
  • It is possible that a student's criminal background will prevent participation in clinical practice, thereby preventing program admission.

 6. Register for NAD-101

Nursing Aide Program

The nursing aide program provides clinical education at various long-term care facilities.  The nursing aide program must adhere to these facilities' requirements.  All admitted students will be required to provide the following at the expense of the student.
  • Physical exam with NO lifting restrictions
  • TB 2-Step
  • Seasonal flu vaccine

Number Title
  NAD-101 Nursing Aide

Time (subject to change)

8-WEEK Course: Spring, Summer, & Fall Semesters

  • Morning Classes:    7:30 – 11:15am, Monday – Friday

16-WEEK Course: Spring & Fall Semesters

  • Morning Classes:  9:00–11:45am, Mondays, Wednesdays, & Saturdays
  • Afternoon Classes: 12:00–2:30pm, Monday – Thursday or 3:00-5:30, Monday - Friday
  • Evening Classes: 5:30–9:45pm, Mondays & Wednesdays


Nursing Assistant classes are held at the Health Sciences Center, 3301 North Mulford Road, Rockford, IL 61114.

Program Attendance & Expectations

Students are required to attend all days of the Nursing Aide program. This is mandated by IDPH.  This includes attendance to orientation days, lectures, skills lab and clinical. All students are expected to provide their own transportation to clinical sites.

NOTE:  Students should plan for at least a 30 minute travel time between clinical site and the main campus if they have scheduled classes either before or after NAD 101.

This Nursing Aide requires a "C", which is 80% to pass.

Program Completion

Upon successful completion of the Nursing Aide program, students will sit for the Illinois Nurse Assistant/Aide Competency Examination to earn the credentials of CNA (Certified Nursing Assistant).  This process has additional fees.

  • Approximately $75

COSTS/FEES (subject to change)


View a detailed list of the CNA course tuition and fee costs.


Nursing Assistant Office
Health Sciences Center
Rock Valley College
3301 North Mulford Road
Rockford, IL 61114
Ph: (815) 921-3284

Gainful Employment Program Requirements

Choose the year to view Gainful Employment information for this program/certificate. Gainful Employment information includes program costs, length of time to complete the program, potential occupations tied to this program, as well as success rates and job placement rates where applicable.


Program Disclosure: 

The Certified Nursing Assistant Program at Rock Valley College meets the state education requirements for a certified nursing assistant in the State of Illinois. Rock Valley College has not determined if the CNA program at Rock Valley College meets the state education requirements in any other state, any U.S. Territory, or the District of Columbia.  Requirements for each state can be found on each states Department of Public Health websites.  

Potential Careers & Wages