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CNA programs in Arkansas are filling up quick! The reason for this is the screaming demand for qualified nursing assistants across the state and country! It is important to know that those who are interested in advancing into the nurse aide profession, this has become a popular entry-level position since its training requirements are comparatively low and the job itself provides good opportunities for interaction with other medical field jobs.

How to become a CNA in Arkansas

The Arkanas Department of Human Services’ Office of Long-Term Care (OLTC) is responsible for regulating Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs) in the state. In order to become eligible to work as a nurse assistant in the state, it is mandatory that the CNA’s name is listed on the Arkansas Nurse Aide Registry.

Steps to becoming certified in Arkansas

There are five primary steps you will need to complete in order to earn your certification as a nursing assistant in the state.

Step 1 – Finish high school or earn your G.E.D.

Regardless of the profession you choose to pursue, earning a high school diploma should be considered the first step. This is true when it comes to working in medicine and health. Even in the few cases where it is feasible to gain a position without finishing high school, the jobs normally do not offer much in terms of salary or chances for growth.

On top of that, most CNA training programs require applicants to be high school graduates or have a G.E.D. in their admissions prerequisites. And so, whatever your professional career goal, make sure that you complete this first step.

Step 2 – Enroll in an OLTC-approved CNA training program

Nurse assisting programs in Arkansas are required by state law to be accredited by the OTLC. Only those students who complete their classes at a program approved by this organization are able to challenge for certification in the state.

Picking out the best training for your specific circumstances always involves a few considerations. You should think about the following as you compare training programs:

  • Choose a program approved by the OTLC
  • Ensure that at least 70% of program graduates passed the Arkansas Nurse Aide Exam
  • See if available courses fit your schedule
  • Find out what the course costs, and be sure you can afford it

Recommended CNA Programs in Arkansas

Select From Approved Arkansas Nurse Aide Schools

The following list below reflects all CNA programs in Arkansas currently recognized by the OTLC. See the link above to get information on training and regulations from the state of Arkansas.

Complete List of all the Approved Arkansas Nurse Aide Schools

County/Program Name/City/Phone Number

Arkansas County Phillips Community College of the U of A Dewitt (870) 946-3506
Arkansas County M & M Education, Inc Stuttgart (870) 673-1657
Arkansas County AANA (501) 658-1446
Baxter County Arkansas State University Mountain Home (870) 508-6154
Baxter County Pine Lane Therapy and Living Mountain Home (870) 425-6316
Benton County Northwest Arkansas Community College Bentonville (479) 986-6790
Benton County AR Career Training of the Ozarks Fort Smith (479) 831-2221
Benton County Pea Ridge Manufacturing and Business Academy Pea Ridge (479) 451-8182
Boone County AHEC – Northwest Harrison (870) 391-3140
Bradley County Chapel Woods Health & Rehab Warren (870) 226-6766
Clark County PHCTA Arkadelphia (501) 304-1909
Clark County Clark County CNA School Arkadelphia (870) 245-6693
Clay County RSB NATP – Northeast (870) 926-9496
Cleburne County PHCTA (501) 304-1909
Conway County River Chase Rehabilitation and Care Center Morrilton (501) 354-4647
Conway County UACCM Nursing Assistant Training Program Morrilton (501) 354-7583
Craighead County Schmieding Jonesboro (870) 207-7600
Craighead County Arkansas State University Newport Jonesboro (870) 512-7833
Craighead County Northeast Arkansas Career & Tech Center Jonesboro (870) 933-5891
Craighead County RSB Nursing Assistant Training Program Jonesboro (870) 926-9496
Crawford County PHCTA (501) 304-1909
Crittenden County Arkansas State University Mid-South West Memphis (870) 733-6062
Desha County UAM College of Technology McGehee (870) 222-5360
Desha County New Educational Beginnings McGehee (870) 222-6442
Deshay County Renaissance Healthcare (870) 536-2300
Drew County Monticello Occupational Education Center Monticello (870) 367-4060
Faulkner County Conway High School Conway (501) 450-4888
Faulkner County PHCTA Conway (501) 304-1909
Franklin County Arkansas Tech University Ozark (479) 508-3327
Fulton County Ozarka College Mammoth Springs (870) 368-2079
Fulton County Southfork River Therapy and Living Salem (870) 895-3817
Garland County PHCTA Hot Springs (501) 304-1909
Garland County Petra Allied Health Hot Springs (501) 627-1906
Garland County Schmieding Hot Springs (501) 276-3520
Greene County Arkansas Northeastern College Paragould (870) 239-3200
Hempstead County UA Hope Texarkana Hope (870) 722-8224
Hot Spring County PHCTA Malvern (501) 304-1909
Hot Spring County College of the Ouachitas Malvern (501) 332-0304
Independence County UAMS – North Central Batesville (870) 698-1023
Independence County University of Arkansas Community College Batesville (870) 612-2141
Izard County Ozarka Technical College Melbourne (870) 368-2079
Izard County AANA Melbourne (501) 658-1446
Jackson County Arkansas State University Newport (870) 512-7833
Jackson County Lindley Healthcare & Rehab Center Newport (870) 523-6539
Jackson County Newport High School NATP Newport (870) 523-1311
Jackson County Tuckerman High School Tuckerman (870) 349-2657
Jefferson County Schmieding Pine Bluff (870) 879-1440
Jefferson County Renaissance Healthcare Pine Bluff (870) 536-2300
Jefferson County Southeast Arkansas College Pine Bluff (870) 543-5917
Jefferson County PHCTA (501) 304-1909
Lincoln County Central Arkansas NA Training (501) 940-1914
Logan County PRN Medical Services (479) 785-9222
Lonoke County Arkansas Career Training Ozarks (479) 616-6138
Lonoke County Central Arkansas NA Training (501) 940-1914
Miller County Texarkana Nursing Academy Texarkana (870) 772-6860
Miller County Schmieding Texarkana (870) 773-2030
Miller County Texarkana Arkansas Career & Tech Center Texarkana (870) 772-3662
Mississippi County Arkansas Northeastern College Blytheville (870) 762-1020
Mississippi County Arkansas Northeastern College Burdette (870) 780-1200
Monroe County M & M Education, Inc Clarendon (870) 673-1657
Ouachita County Southern Arkansas University Tech Camden (870) 574-4585
Ouachita County PHCTA (501) 304-1909
Ouachita County SAU Tech Career Academy (870) 904-0517
Ouachita County RSB NATP – Central (870) 926-9496
Perry County Perry County CNA Training Center Perryville (501) 889-2400
Phillips County VYDAINC Helena (870) 816-0157
Poinsett County Arkansas State University Newport Marked Tree (870) 512-7833
Polk County Rich Mountain Community College Mena (479) 394-7622
Pope County River Valley NATP Russellville (479) 858-2290
Pope County Arkansas Career Training Ozarks (479) 616-6138
Prairie County Central Arkansas NA Training (501) 940-1914
Pulaski County PHCTA Little Rock (501) 304-1909
Pulaski County Dr. Emma Kelly Rhodes Education Center Little Rock (501) 372-0281
Pulaski County Schmieding Little Rock (501) 526-6500
Pulaski County AR Nursing Assistant Academy LLC Little Rock (501) 666-1825
Pulaski County Medlinc, Inc Little Rock (501) 492-7200
Pulaski County Capstone Elite Medical Training Maumelle (501) 954-0322
Pulaski County North Little Rock High School-West NATP North Little Rock (501) 771-8100
Pulaski County Central Arkansas NA Training (501) 940-1914
Randolph County Black River Technical College Pocahontas (870) 248-4000
Saline County PAL CNA Training Academy Benton (501) 776-8422
Saline County Arkansas State Hospital Benton (501) 860-0675
Saline County PHCTA (501) 304-1909
Scott County University of Arkansas Fort Smith – Waldron High School Waldron (479) 788-7715
Sebastian County Petra Allied Health Fort Smith (479) 750-9876
Sebastian County University of Arkansas Fort Smith (479) 788-7715
Sebastian County Schmieding Fort Smith (479) 424-0053
Sebastian County PRN Medical Services Fort Smith (479) 785-9222
Sharp County Ash Flat Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center Ash Flat (870) 994-2341
Sharp County Ozarka College Ash Flat (870) 368-2079
St. Francis County Crowley’s Ridge Technical Institute Forrest City (870) 633-5411
St. Francis County Golden Years Training Program Forrest City (870) 633-4260
St. Francis County St. Cross Health Care Education LLC (870) 588-5772
Stone County Ozarka Tech College Mountain View (870) 368-2079
Stone County RSB NATP – North Central Paragould (870) 926-9496
Union County Schmieding El Dorado (870) 639-1744
Van Buren County OZARK CNA Clinton (501) 745-5322
Van Buren County Central Arkansas NA Training (501) 940-1914
Washington County Petra Allied Health Springdale (479) 750-9876
Washington County Schmieding Springdale (479) 751-3043
Washington County NWACC Early College Experience Springdale (479) 725-4680
Washington County Northwest Technical Institute CNAP Springdale (479) 751-8824
Washington County PRN Medical Services Springdale (479) 785-9222
Washington County PHCTA (501) 304-1909
White County Arkansas State University Searcy (501) 278-3189
Woodruff County AANA McCrory (479) 365-7228

Step 3 – Complete the state’s required training hours

Finishing an authorized course is required to become a CNA. Training courses in Arkansas require you to finish the state’s required minimum of 16 hours in a hands-on clinical environment, as well as 90 hours in class.

The mandated hours have to be satisfied before you are permitted to sit for the Arkansas Nurse Aide Exam.

Step 4 – Pass the Arkansas Nurse Aide Exam

The state nurse aide certification exam used in Arkansas is the Arkansas Nurse Aide Exam. The assessment contains a written part and a clinical part.

On the written portion of the test, you’ll be asked to answer multiple-choice problems about what you learned in your classes. A test giver will direct you through the clinical portion of the test, during which you’ll have to show the patient competencies you will need while on the job. Completing your certification will require a passing score on both sections of the exam.

The company that administers the exam is a national assessment service called Prometric. The towns and cities in Arkansas where the test is normally administered have been listed below. To learn when the upcoming test times are at each location, you need to talk to the service directly.


  • Batesville
  • Blytheville
  • Fort Smith
  • Harrison
  • Little Rock
  • Malvern
  • Mena
  • Monticello
  • Pine Bluff
  • Texarkana

The state of Arkansas will in fact actually pay the testing fees for all candidates that are employed or or offered employment in nursing homes.

It is important to know that the state of Arkansas does not pay any rescheduling fees.

Candidates not covered by the state for their testing fees have to pay $10 for initial eligibility screening and $79 for the full assessment. It will cost $45 to take the clinical skills exam and the fee is $34 to take the written or oral exams. Fees may be paid by either a money order, a certified check, or by debit/ credit card. Cash is not accepted.

Step 5 – Get listed on the Arkansas Nurse Aide Registry

After passing the certification exam, the final step you will need to take to begin working as a nursing assistant in Arkansas is getting your name added on the Arkansas Nurse Aide Registry. The registry is a list maintained by the OTLC which shows the names of all of the certified nursing assistants in the state. State regulations mandate that you need to be on this list before becoming employed. Fortunately, you generally will not need to do anything at all for this to happen.

The registry is usually notified by the exam company right after you have passed the Arkansas Nurse Aide Exam. The typical waiting time to have your name included on the list is 10 days or less in Arkansas.

For solutions to all other questions you have, we suggest that you get in touch with the registry using the information provided.

Arkansas Nurse Aide Registry
Arkansas Department of Human Services
Office of Long Term Care
Donaghey Plaza, 7th and Main Streets
Little Rock, Arkansas 72203-1437

CNA salary and jobs in Arkansas

There’s a high demand for CNAs across the nation and in Arkansas. Through the year 2024, the Bureau of Labor Statistics expects a 15% increase in new jobs for nursing assistants across the state. Popular workplaces are: hospitals, nursing homes and general care facilities. There will also be limited need at state and federal government agencies and facilities.

Regardless of the job environment, these positions are going to allow for significant time working under the supervision of LPNs, RNs and other positions the CNA might like to ultimately move into.

The following listing reflects specifics on CNA wages in Arkansas by region.

LocationPay TypeLowMedianHigh
United StatesHourly$9.64$12.78$18.22
Yearly$20,040 $26,590 $37,900
Yearly$18,030 $22,310 $28,670
Memphis, TN-MS-AR MSAHourly$9.18$12.26$15.83
Yearly$19,090 $25,500 $32,940
Little Rock-North Little Rock-Conway, AR MSAHourly$9.71$11.43$14.92
Yearly$20,200 $23,780 $31,030
Hot Springs, AR MSAHourly$8.91$10.79$13.12
Yearly$18,530 $22,440 $27,290
Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers, AR-MO MSAHourly$8.79$10.77$13.75
Yearly$18,290 $22,400 $28,600
Central Arkansas BOSHourly$8.89$10.72$12.83
Yearly$18,490 $22,290 $26,690
Fort Smith, AR-OK MSAHourly$8.68$10.69$13.08
Yearly$18,050 $22,240 $27,200
Jonesboro, AR MSAHourly$8.60$10.51$12.44
Yearly$17,890 $21,870 $25,880
Texarkana, TX-Texarkana, AR MSAHourly$8.30$10.46$13.37
Yearly$17,260 $21,750 $27,810
Pine Bluff, AR MSAHourly$8.49$10.30$12.31
Yearly$17,660 $21,410 $25,600
East Arkansas BOSHourly$8.41$10.17$14.66
Yearly$17,500 $21,150 $30,490
West Arkansas BOSHourly$8.37$10.07$12.20
Yearly$17,410 $20,950 $25,370
South Arkansas BOSHourly$8.36$9.78$12.40
Yearly$17,380 $20,340 $25,790