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Continuing Education and Workforce Development

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Customize It!

Our courses can be tailored to your organization's needs and delivered at your site or ours. One of our popular basic project management courses is outlined below. Contact us today to discuss customized training for your team!

Customized Training and Workforce Development

Accessibility Resources

MCTC is committed to providing equal access to education for all students.

Accessibility FAQ

Nursing Test Out

For Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA) and Home Health Aide candidates.

Nursing Test Out for Nursing Assistants at MCTC

MCTC’s Continuing Education & Workforce Development department is pleased to offer the Nursing Assistant Test Out (NATO) for Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA) and Home Health Aide candidates. In partnership with our Nursing department, we hold this exam on a regular basis to fit your busy schedule.

This exam is required to evaluate your competency and eligibility for the Minnesota Department of Health’s Nursing Assistant Registry if you are a:

  1. Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) candidate, or 
  2. Nursing Assistant/Home Health Aide candidate who has successfully completed a state-approved 75-hour training program in Minnesota.

Our NATO evaluators are approved by the Minnesota Department of Health and are experienced registered nurses with diverse nursing backgrounds. They strive to make candidates feel welcome and comfortable, knowing that the skills portion of the exam can be stressful. You will be given a tour of our state-of-the-art lab before testing begins and have the opportunity to ask questions of the evaluator.

The NATO exam consists of a written portion and a hands-on skills demonstration. 

  • Written portion: Consists of 60 multiple choice questions, plus 10 questions (non-scored) to collect statistical information. You will have up to 2 hours to complete the written portion of the exam, using a test booklet and answer sheet (see Preparing for the Exam below for a sample test).
    • Oral administration of the written portion: You may choose to listen to a recording of the exam questions if you wish, by notifying an evaluator when you check-in on the morning of the exam. 
  • Skills portion: Consists of 5 skill demonstrations. One skill will be proper hand-washing technique; the remaining 4 will be randomly chosen from a pool of 21 skills (see Preparing for the Exam below for the candidate handbook which contains the list of skills).

To take the exam, you must register in person at the Continuing Education & Workforce Development office during business hours. Registration is on a first-come, first-served basis; be aware that some test dates may fill up quickly.

To register, you must bring the following items:

  • Two forms of signature-bearing identification, one of which must be a photo ID
  • Payment or payment authorization for $195 (see NATO Retakes below for retake pricing)
  • Signed application and course completion form, if you completed training within the last 2 years
  • Original test scores, if you are retaking a test


We understand that testing can be stressful! To ease your nerves, we recommend that you take some time to prepare in advance by: 

  • Reviewing the candidate handbook that we provide you at registration, especially the list of 22 skills. 
  • Take the practice written exam.
  • If you’ve completed an approved NA/HHA training program, you are eligible to take our NATO Skills Review class. You’ll practice the 21 skills tested on the exam in our lab, under the supervision of our nursing lab coordinator. Find upcoming class dates.
  • Make sure you know where you’re going on the day of the exam and allow yourself plenty of time to get there. The exam is held in the Technical Building, in room T.5800 (5th floor).

If you do not receive a passing grade, you may retake either or both sections of the Nursing Assistant Test Out on any of the regularly scheduled test dates. You may make a total of three attempts at the test within two years from the date you completed training or first attempted the test.

Please note: If you are retaking a test, you must bring your paperwork from your previous test in order to register.

  • Fee for retake of the written test only: $84
  • Fee for retake of the skills test only: $141
  • Fee for retake of both sections (full test): $195

View course schedule and register