Join the healthcare industry with a certificate as a Nurse Assistant. The Nurse Assistant Certificate program prepares you for a certification as a nurse assistant. Learn the skills necessary to care for patients in a variety of settings such as hospitals, extended care facilities, and community health agencies.

Program Overview

What Will You Learn?


The Nurse Assistant Direct Entry certificate program qualifies you for certification as a nurse assistant and entry into the workforce upon program completion. The program provides classroom, practice lab and clinical practice experiences for optimal preparation in a career as a Certified Nurse Assistant.


In-State Tuition: $223/credit

Out-of-State / International Tuition: $429/credit

Some programs have additional program fees


1 Semesters

7 credits

Learn Online

This program may be completed less than 50% online.


  • High School Diploma or GED/HiSET.
  • Must show evidence of being compliant with the immunization requirements specified by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Additional immunization requirements will be required for clinical experiences.


  • This program may be completed at QCC at the Healthcare and Workforce Development Center in downtown Worcester.
  • Certain courses (ALH 131 and ALH 132) in this program are offered at QCC at the Healthcare and Workforce Development Center in downtown Worcester.
  • This program will require students to travel to clinical sites within the Worcester County area.

Career Stats

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More Info
Course TitleCourse #Semester OfferedCreditsPrerequisites

Semester 1

  • Apply and get accepted to this program (Program Code: NAWF), in order to take ALH 131.
  • Register for and successfully complete all courses to graduate in one semester.
  • Take ALH 132 after ALH 131 in same semester (note that Clinical Affiliate Health/Immunization requirements needed for ALH 131).
  • If seeking employment, meet with Career Services for career readiness preparation and to learn more about QCC’s job board.
  • Submit an Intent to Graduate Form, located on The Q.
Introductory Nursing AssistantALH 131F/S/SU5Placement into college level English
Advanced Nursing AssistantALH 132F/S/SU2ALH 131, Certificate of Completion from a state-approved nursing assistant training program or current C.N.A. Certificate
Total Credits Required:  7 

Program Goals:

The Nursing Assistant - Direct Entry Certificate educates individuals to work in various aspects of healthcare, including hospitals and other healthcare facilities.

Student Learning Outcomes:

Upon completion of the program, graduates will be able to:

  • Function effectively as an entry-level nursing assistant.
  • Follow safety and infection control procedures for protection of patients/residents, self, and others.
  • Apply specialized job skills and abilities that may be required in the sub-acute care, long-term care, individual’s home, and hospital settings.
  • Recognize and report changes and abnormalities to the licensed healthcare providers.
  • Provide respectful care to patients/residents by complying with patient rights and respecting diversity.
  • Utilize effective communication techniques with patients and members of the interdisciplinary healthcare team.
  • Follow HIPAA guidelines for the protection of patient confidentiality.

Admissions Process:

Admissions inquiries should be directed to Prospective students may apply to the program of their choice by following the enrollment steps at

Program Admissions Requirements:

Students should note that some first semester courses carry minimum prerequisites. Refer to the program grid.

  • High School Diploma or GED/HiSET.
  • Must show evidence of being compliant with the immunization requirements specified by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Additional immunization requirements will be required for clinical experiences.

CORI, SORI, Finger Printing & Drug Testing:

Criminal Offender Record Information (CORI), Sex Offender Registry Information (SORI), and National Background checks are required in the program, either annually or every semester. Fingerprinting and drug testing may be required. Fingerprinting and drug testing results must meet clinical requirements. An issue with CORI/SORI, National Background, fingerprinting and/or drug testing could prevent a student from participating in a clinical/field rotation, which could result in dismissal from the program.

Additional Cost:

See the Program Fees page.

  • Students should anticipate additional expenses for clinical uniforms, clinical parking fees, and materials required in the program.

Technical Performance Standards:

See the Technical Performance Standards page. (Note: Not all programs have technical performance standards).

Credit for Prior Learning:

Credit for Prior Learning (CPL) allows students to use skills they already have towards a college degree or certificate. Work, life, volunteer and military experience may be translated into credit, allowing students to take fewer classes and earn their degree faster. CPL eliminates redundancies for students who have already earned credentials or mastered skills required for their program of study. Email for more information and eligibility.

Career Outlook:

Please consult the Massachusetts Career Information System at or the Occupational Outlook Handbook at for specific occupational information. The CIP code for this program is 51.3902.

Transfer Articulations & Opportunities:

Prospective students may learn more about transfer articulation agreements at More information regarding transfer opportunities is available at

Additional Information:

  • Students accepted into the Nursing Assistant - Direct Entry Certificate must:
    • Meet the health requirements as identified on the QCC Health Form; these documents must be submitted by first day of semester enrolled in ALH 131. Students who have not been cleared will not be allowed to participate in the clinical externship, and may necessitate withdrawal or course failure.
    • Take the College Placement Test to determine mathematics and English levels, if no college level courses were previously completed.
  • This is a great opportunity for students to gain entry-level employment in the healthcare field prior to matriculating into a selective program.
  • Students should be aware that clinical hours may be scheduled on weekday evenings or on Saturdays, based on facility availability.
Program Page

The purpose of Quinsigamond Community College, Nurse Education unit, is congruent with the Mission Statement of the College. The Nurse Education Unit provides a high quality education that is accessible and affordable to a diverse student population. The program in nursing serves the learner, the community and the nursing profession. At the completion of each program, the graduate is prepared to write the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses, (NCLEX-RN) [NUL, NUP, NUR] and the National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN) [LP, LPE] and to assume an entry level nursing position.


We believe that:

Nursing is a caring, theory-based discipline focused on assisting the patient and significant support person(s) to achieve an optimal level of self-care, while protecting and promoting patient dignity. The science of nursing is a distinct, constantly evolving body of knowledge that encompasses rational and scientific principles upon which nursing interventions are based. Plan of care is flexible, patient centered, cost effective, attentive to patient diversity, and occurs within the context of the patient’s family and environment. Nurses utilize the nursing process, open, civil and therapeutic communication, critical thinking, and evidence-based information while working collaboratively with members of the health-care team. Nurses function within the standards of practice, demonstrating safe, competent, and legal-ethical practice.

The individual (Healthcare Consumer) is a valued, complex and unique being that has a dynamic capacity for self-care. The individual is understood as an integrated and whole being who functions biologically, psychologically, socially, spiritually and developmentally. The individual has the potential to make choices that will meet his/her own needs for self-care and lead to ongoing growth as human beings.

Environment – Individuals are best understood in the context of their environment. The environment consists of evolving, dynamic, culturally diverse conditions, which are influenced by family, specific living conditions, political, social, demographic, and economic factors.

Health is a state of physical, social, and spiritual well-being and not merely the absence of illness. Health status exists on a continuum and varies because of interactions between the patient and the environment.

Teaching/Learning is an active, dynamic, continuous and creative process of attaining and sharing knowledge, involving the patient, significant support person(s) and the health care team. As educators, nurses assist the patient/families by supporting self-care activities, while facilitating informed decision and achievement of positive outcomes.

Nursing education/scholarship occurs within a system of higher education and is a planned approach to the acquisition of knowledge. Nursing education progresses from the simple to the complex, facilitates the development of cognitive, psychomotor and affective knowledge and provides for multiple points of entry into the profession. The outcome of nursing education, at all levels, is to prepare a graduate who accepts professional responsibility and accountability. Nursing education supports participation in professional organizations. Cultural diversity within the classroom is valued and promotes appreciation and respect for differences within the college and beyond. The role of the faculty is to guide, support, facilitate learning, and model professional practice, while instilling commitment to lifelong learning. Faculty also strive to instill a sense of professional empowerment including commitment to social justice and community service. The role of the student is to translate classroom learning into nursing practice through the spirit of inquiry, evidence-based and reflective nursing practice.

The Licensed Practical Nurse provides quality patient-centered, evidenced-based care to vulnerable multicultural/diverse groups across the health care continuum, particularly among older adults and other population clusters that need long-term, community-based chronic care. The Practical Nurse cooperates and collaborates with health team members, patients and families and delegates the nursing care provided by unlicensed personnel. The Licensed Practical Nurse uses scientific knowledge and technical skills to continually assess the physical, emotional, and social status of their clients and they work with patients and their families to devise care plans for each situation in accordance with best nursing practice. 

The Associate Degree Nurse advances the nursing process to implement nursing actions in varied complex settings, and assist patients in meeting or maintaining self-care needs. The associate degree nurse cooperates and collaborates with other members of the health care team to give direct care to patients, families, and community groups. The associate degree nurse is also responsible for the delegation of nursing action.

Program Outcomes

Program outcomes are defined as performance indicators that reflect the extent to which the purposes of the nursing education unit are achieved and by which program effectiveness is documented. Program outcomes are measurable, consumer-oriented indexes designed to evaluate the degree to which the program is achieving its mission and goals. Example include, but are not limited to, NCLEX examination pass rate, program completion rate, and job placement rates. 

Graduates from either the QCC Associate Degree or Practical Nursing Program are qualified to work in the state of Massachusetts upon the successful attainment of the appropriate licensure. Not all states accept a Massachusetts license. If you intend to practice outside of Massachusetts and obtain a license in another state, you are encouraged to review the NCSBN website for eligibility. As an applicant to the QCC Nursing Programs, you are encouraged to discuss your eligibility for licensure and work in another state other than Massachusetts with the Program Chair of the Associate Degree or Program Chair of the Practical Nursing program.

QCC Health Requirements

  • Physical Exam - Performed and signed by PCP/NP/ PA within 12 months of the start of the program
  • Tetanus -(Tdap) documentation of receiving Tetanus injection within the last 10 years
  • Flu vaccination - Documentation of receiving flu vaccination for the current Influenza season.
  • Tuberculosis Screening - documentation of two negative Tuberculin Skin Tests (2 step) and annual testing thereafter. If result is positive, students must provide documentation of a Chest x-ray showing no active disease within 12 months of program start date. A serum TB test may be used instead of a 2- step Tuberculin Skin Test
  • Varicella - Varicella titer demonstrating immunity to Varicella
  • Measles, Mumps, and Rubella - immunity titers for each disease demonstrating immunity to each disease
  • Hepatitis B Antibody titer - Positive Hepatitis B Surface Antibody titer which demonstrated immunity to the Hepatitis B Virus. If titer result is negative, students must provide documentation of having a complete Hepatitis B vaccination series, receive Hepatitis B boosters, and recheck Hepatitis B antibody titers as ordered by their PCP
  • Copy of current health insurance card on file
  • Healthcare Provider Level CPR Certification

Please contact our Healthcare Compliance Officer at