CNA classes in Oregon | 8 Best Programs for Your New Career in Healthcare

Okay, so you’re considering getting your CNA license in Oregon. You’ve heard that there are lots of openings for CNA jobs in Oregon and want to take a chance at the new career. The question remains: Where can you take CNA classes in Oregon? Find out in this great guide!

You will learn about the Oregon CNA requirements, who administers the CNA certification in Oregon, how to get listed with the Oregon CNA registry, and which programs offer the best CNA classes in Oregon. Keep reading to discover whether this is the best decision you will ever make for yourself! 

Who is the regulatory body for CNAs in Oregon?

The Oregon State Board of Nursing is in charge of registering CNAs in Oregon. They handle the NCLEX exam, RN (Registered Nurse) and LPN (Licenses Practical Nurse) licenses, CNA certifications, CMA (Certified Medication Aide) certifications, and the CNA/CMA Advisory Groups that oversee facility certifications.

Who administers the CNA exam in Oregon?

The state of Oregon uses Headmaster to administer their CNA certification testing. You must pass the examination to get yourself added to Oregon’s list of registered and certified CNAs. Their test site offers practice exams, scheduling and rescheduling, test dates, necessary test day information, and more. It is an excellent resource as you study for licensing. 

Oregon State Requirements for CNAs

In Oregon, there are 2 levels of certification: CNA I and CNA II. To become a licensed CNA, you must undergo training and certification. To gain CNA II status, you must go through an additional training program.

To become certified at CNA I level, you have to finish a Board approved training program. Their website lists all of the approved programs. You must finish your program’s final exam with a 75% or higher to be allowed to take the state’s certification test. There must also be a minimum of 75 hours of training through your program.

If you have recently graduated from nursing school, you will also be eligible to take the CNA exam. If you were a medic in the military and your training met the OBRA requirements, then you can sit for the exams after 400 hours of nursing related employment in 2 years time.

The application process to sit for the exam is a bit more rigorous than other states, but still not too difficult. Many programs will include the application process and in-facility testing, but if not then you download the application from the Oregon State Board of Nursing’s website. 

Everyone must also complete fingerprint based background checks and submit to a criminal background check. They are provided a card and must take it to their choice of law enforcement agency to complete the fingerprinting. Their prints must be seasoned in a manila envelope at their fingerprinting site. You must also include a copy of your training certificate.

For your CNA II status, you must complete an approved CNA II program. There is a list of approved programs on the Board’s website. To apply for CNA II, you must be in good standing on the CNA I registry.

Out of state CNAs are eligible for reciprocal certification as a CNA I. You must have completed a program that qualifies under IBRA requirements and have 400 hours of nursing assistant employment experience under nurse supervision unless you received your credentials within the previous 2 years.

You will need to submit your training and certification verification. Most of the time, you fill out the top of the application and the state of certification does the rest. CNAs in California, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Missouri, Nebraska, and North Carolina will fill the top part out and send the rest to Oregon to verify their status. 

Oregon CNA Exam Details

If you have a qualified disability under the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act), then you may request special accommodations, but you must request them when applying to take the certification exam because Oregon must approve the accommodations before you scheduled exam. There is a form on the OSBN website that must be submitted with your application packet. 

Once your application is approved, you will get an email to schedule your exam date. First time candidates must take both the knowledge and skills tests on the same day. You can schedule your exam online or by phone with Headmaster at 800-393-8664. If your program arranges the examinations, your instructor will tell you when your exam has been scheduled. 

On the day of test, you should arrive early and bring your identification. You will need 2 forms of current, signed, original identification and one form must be a photo ID. The names on your ID must match the name on your application packet. Keep this ID with you all day because you will need to present it to each exam instructor once inside the testing room. Bring a standard watch with a second hand only. Smart watches will not be permitted on the premises. 

Wear comfortable clothing that is appropriate for your practical examination; non-skid shoes are mandatory. This means wear nursing attire because you will be scored and may not be allowed to sit for your practical exam if you are not properly dressed for a medical facility. 

You will be at the testing facility all day, so plan to stay 8 hours. If you arrive late, you will not be permitted to take your exam. No-shows and late attendees will not have their fees refunded or be allowed to reschedule their exam. You will have to pay the retesting fee to take your exams. 

Cell phones, smart appliances, fitness monitors, electronics, personal items (like briefcases, large bags, study materials, and papers) are not permitted to be on or near you in testing rooms. There will be a designated area o place these items during tests and you will be permitted access to them in your free time. , But be careful with what you bring because Headmaster is not responsible for lost or stolen things. 

You may not take anything into or out of the testing room. You may not eat, drink, or smoke during the exam. Snacks are permitted in your free time. You may not leave the testing room once the exam has begin, so use the restroom before you enter or hold it until you finish.

If you are physically unable to perform your duties, then you must reschedule at least 3 days before taking your exam t. A doctor’s order must be sent in within 5 business days of your scheduled exam to qualify for a free reschedule and avoid paying the fee.

Your knowledge test will happen first. Once you finish, you’ll be assigned a time to take your skills test.

The only exceptions to no shows having to pay the retesting fees are for car breakdowns, when you provide appropriate documentation within 2 business days after notifying them within 1; medical emergencies, when you contact within 1 business day and send in a doctor’s note within 5; or a death in the family, when you contact Headmaster and then send an obituary for an immediate family member only within 14 business days. (Immediate family is siblings, parents, grand ad great-grand parents, children, or a spouse.) If your test is cancelled due to inclement weather, you are not obligated to pay a fee to reschedule your exam.

Your test results will be available online after 6 p.m. Mountain Standard Time (MST) the day your test is scored. If you took your test with a paper and pencil it will usually take 3 to 5 business days to score. Electronic exams will be available within 1 business day of your exam date. 

How much does the Oregon CNA exam cost?

Oregon requires a fingerprint background check of your criminal history for eligibility. This costs $56. Once that is finished, the CNA Certification Examination costs $106. 
Recertification exams after lapsed certifications cost the same. 

If you need an oral exam from a tape-recording, that costs an additional $35. Retests of both tests cost $70. The knowledge test is $25 to retake and the skill test is $45 to retake.

The Oregon State Board of Nursing does not accept personal checks. The paid fees are non-refundable. First time applicants must take both tests on the same day. You must apply for and take your certification examinations within 1 year of completing a state approved training program. 

Where can you take the CNA exam in Oregon?

Most CNA programs in Oregon will schedule an in-facility examination at the end of the program. They will handle the applications and registrations for their students.

If your program doesn’t do this, then you can register online with Headmaster. They have several facilities throughout the state and there are examinations happening every day of the week.

Some of their facilities include Central Point Pacific healthcare, Salem Salem Hospital, Eugene LCC Downtown Center, Gresham Mt. Hood Community College, Hermiston Regency, Portland West Hills, Albany Mennonite Village, Portland Caregiver Training Institute, McMinnville Chemeketa Community College, Grants Pass Highland House, Ontario Treasure Valley Community College, Portland Marquis at Piedmont, Bend Pilot Butte Rehabilitation Center, Lebanon Samaritan Community Hospital, Coos bay South Coast Healthcare, Roseburg Umpqua Community College, Springfield EMT Association, The Dalles Oregon Veteran’s Home, Eugene Dare 2 Care training Center, Hillsboro Moore Nursing Consulting, Dallas Retirement Village, Klamath Falls Klamath Community College, and Happy Valley Clackamas. 

How much does a CNA get paid in Oregon?

This is the big question. Is the CNA salary in Oregon worth the work of training, certifying, and starting over in a brand new career? Here’s a peek at your salary prospects for this job.

The average salary is just over $27,000 a year. The pay ranges from $21,000 to $36,000 on average across the state. The average hourly wage is $16.38 per hour, which is 30% above the national average for this job. Nurses often end up with around $5250 each year in overtime pay. 

A recent search for open Nursing Assistant positions across Oregon shows that they are hiring for anywhere from $16.09 per hour to $21.45 per hour, so there is a wide range and the beginner’s pay is pretty good.

The lowest wages are paid in the eastern part of the state, outside of the major cities. The highest wages are paid in the nonmetropolitan areas of central and north coast Oregon and in the major cities of Portland, Vancouver, and Hillsboro. 

CNA Schools in Oregon

Now that you’ve learned about the requirements to becoming a CNA in Oregon and how much you can expect to make once you’ve started that career, here are the best places to get started. 

Portland Community College

The program at Portland Community College is fully approved. Their CNA1 training program teaches skills in lecture and lab settings then trains you in real world settings for clinicals. After completing the program, you can take your exam and certify to work. Their program offers 75 hours of real world experience in several local care facilities. 

Lane Community College

At Lane, the CNA course is offered every term. They offer informational meetings ahead of each registration. Their coursework includes classroom and clinical work that is split up into CNA parts I and II. Once you finish part 1 classes, you can take part 2. Once you finish both, you can take the certification exam. They offer morning and evening classes. 

Clackamas Community College

In order to register for CNA classes at Clackamas you must attend their mandatory orientation session. Their classes last 11 weeks and offer 155 hours of training, including 75 hours of clinical experience and 80 hours of labs and lectures. The cost of their course includes criminal background checks, CPR training for healthcare professionals, immunization and UA drug screening, and all other pre-registration requirements. It does not cover textbook and equipment costs. 

Chemeketa Community College

Chemeketa offers another great certification program. Their course is a non-credit course offered once per term on both the Salem and Yamhill Valley campuses. Their courses are offered weekdays. Their tuition costs include classes, textbooks, and clinical scrubs and equipment. They’re ineligible for financial aid, but they are grant funded. Their fees don’t cover background checks, drug testing, immunizations, CPR training, or parking. They also don’t cover testing fees and fingerprinting.

Mt. Hood Community College

The Mt. Hood program includes the option for CNA certification under ESL. Their course is only 150 hours, so it’s a great option for a fast track that is still Board certified You can become a CNA I or II with their training.

Umpqua Community College

Umpqua offers a really strong comprehensive training program, offering over 164 hours of training with most of it being spent garnering real world experience. A great thing is that residents of Washington, Idaho, Nevada, and California are all eligible for in-state tuition rates for this program.

Central Oregon Community College

Central Oregon’s program runs for 3 terms. By the time you graduate, you’ll be ready to certify with the state boards. Some of their credits can be transferred towards other degrees, like LPN and RN programs and CNA II coursework.

Blue Mountain Community College, Pendleton

Blue Mountain has a fantastic nursing program. Start with a CNA certification and if you love what you do and want to keep going in this new career path, continue on to an AAN (Associates in Applied nursing) or even RN and LPN programs. 

Clatsop Community College

The Clatsop program offers the standard 155-hour state certified coursework, with 75 hours of clinical experience after 80 classroom and lab instructional hours. They help you find job placement to pursue your CNA career.