Top 20 Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) Interview Questions & Answers 2024

Editorial Team

Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) Interview Questions & Answers

In this article, we have a list of frequently asked Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) job interview questions, along with sample answers to help you prepare for your coming interview.

1. Why Are You Interested In This Role?

The employer will ask you this question to seek whether you understand the rigors of a CNA’S role. In your response, indicate your passion for the role to serve for the long term in a hospital.

Sample Answer

“I am passionate about helping patients and their families for a long time. I ensure that patients receive quality care so that they can feel prioritized even in a fast-paced and hectic environment. I like making a connection with patients as well as making their difficult times pleasant. I also have all the skills you are looking for from a candidate to serve in the role of a CNA.”

2. What Are The Roles Of A Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)?

The employer asks this question to gauge whether you are aware of the duties done by CNA. In your response, state the responsibilities of a CNA as you connect to the job description.

Sample Answer

“A Certified Nursing Assistant supports medical staff to administer care to the patient with illness, disabilities, and injuries. They also help patients bathe as well as maintain proper hygiene; helps in feeding patients  and ensure that they take their medication; assessing patients important signs to notify staff in charge of them.”

3. What Are The Qualities That A Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) Need To Be Successful?

The interviewer asks this question to find out whether you are aware of the qualities that you should have as a good CNA. State the qualities that a CNA should have as you connect to the job at hand.

Sample Answer

“A good CNA must have excellent interpersonal skills, patience, compassion, and empathy. He or she must also have solid communication skills including writing, active listening, reading comprehension, and speaking. It is also important to have a problem- solving, teamwork, and good collaboration skills. Other qualities include Physical stamina and strength; attention to detail; understanding of patient care, regulations, and policies; familiarity  with symptoms and signs of improvement for many medical conditions; comfortable working with a wide range of populations of patients including patients with special needs and elderly.”

4. What Major Challenges Did You Face During Your Last Role? How Did You Manage Them?

This is a common question asked by many employers to gauge your ability to handle challenges. In your answer, demonstrate that you are willing to stay focused and calm once a challenge arises and that you can stick to clear nutrition goals.

Sample Answer

“When I was newly employed, it was difficult dealing with patients of all kinds. Some were difficult to handle because of their temperament, age, and medical conditions. This was giving me an emotional toll. However, I worked hard to gain the trust of many patients. After I established a good rapport with them, caring for them became easy and fun.”

5. Describe Your Daily Routine As A Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA)?

The hiring manager will ask this question to evaluate how you perform your duties as well as prioritize your work. It is a great opportunity to project your organizational and time management skills.

Sample Answer

“Once I have checked my emails and voicemail messages, I get into tasks such as

  • Assist patients to take medications and eat their food
  • Helping patients do their exercise
  • Helping patients with low mobility to bath and groom
  • Preparing patients’ rooms
  • Monitoring important patients’ behaviors and reporting to the staff in charge
  • Helping patients with mobility needs, transferring them to their bed using a wheelchair.
  • Adjusting or turning patients in bed to prevent bedsores or other discomforts.”

6. Describe Briefly About Your Experience

The hiring manager will ask this question to assess whether your background matches the needs of the hospital. The best strategy is to summarize your work history as you connect to the job at hand.

Sample Answer

“I have been a CNA for the last three years. During this time, I have gained a lot of experience in administering care to patients with illness, disabilities, and injuries including maintaining proper hygiene; helping in feeding patients, and ensuring that they take their medication; assessing patients’ important signs to notify staff in charge of them. Given a chance, I will utilize all my skills and experience to contribute to the success of this role.”

7. What Kind Of Strategies And Mindset Is Required For This Role?

This is a common question asked by the hiring manager to know the attitude you have toward this role. In your response, demonstrate that you are ready for the task and you have the right strategies and mindset for performing the role.

Sample Answer

“A good CNA must be ready to juggle between different responsibilities of patient care. He or she will need to check and record important patients’ signs, moods, emotions, food intake. Another strategy is to know when to clean up patients as well as helping them carry out basic day-to-day duties. To have all these done in good time, a CAN must be extremely organized and calm to avoid things getting out of hand.”

8. What Is The Biggest Challenge That You Foresee In This Job?

The response you give to this question will help the interviewer know whether you are ready for challenges and if you can take new responsibilities. In your answer, showcase your ability to deal with unexpected challenges.

Sample Answer

“There is a likelihood that this field will be short-staffed. Due to constantly working while short-staffed and dealing with abusive patients, burnout is likely to be experienced among many CNAs. This may make most of the CNA to forget taking care of themselves. However, being able to deal with pressure may help one to carry out the role effectively.”

9. How Do You Stay Motivated In Your Work?

The interviewer wants to know the interests and values that keep you motivated. Explain the strong values that you follow while doing your job.

Sample Answer

“Most of the time, my boss always recognizes the work that I do. This is an uplifting thing to me. Also seeing patients dealing with the hard situation being able to take things easy due to the assistance that I give them makes me feel good about this career.”

10. Describe A Time When You Failed In This Role And The Lesson You Learnt?

This is a common question asked by many hiring managers to gauge your ability to own mistakes. The employer wants to know whether you are the kind of employee who blames others for their mistakes. In your response, describe the situation, how you failed, and the lessons you learned.

Sample Answer

“The worst experience I have had as a CNA is when one of my patients died. This traumatized me so much until I hated being a CNA. I wrote a letter of resignation to my boss because I took the blame on myself. However, the boss was very understanding. He asked me the reasons why I wanted to quit and I explained. After discussing at length with him, he made me know that death that comes without my negligence is natural. Today, I am a bit stronger than before to accept when my patients lose their lives. I have learned to overcome a lot of fears to work effectively as a CNA.”

11. Why Do You Feel You Are The Most Suited For This Role?

The interviewer asks this question to find out whether your qualifications fit the needs of the company. The best way of responding to this question is to project your skills, traits, experience, education, and achievements.

Sample Answer

“Besides holding a bachelor of nursing, I have an in-depth understanding of the policies, cares, and regulations about caring for the patients. Previously, I have been a CNA in a hospital setting and as a result, I am familiar with the signs and symptoms of many medical conditions. Additionally, I can work with all populations of patients including patients with special needs and the elderly. Given a chance, I will utilize my skills, education, experience to make a success in this role.”

12. Share With Us Your Greatest Achievement.

The employer asks this question to know what you consider as success. In your response, share your proudest achievement.

Sample Answer

“My greatest achievement is when I was able to build a rapport with an elderly patient who was always abusive. She trusted me and I was able to offer my care without struggling. Serving her and interacting with her became fun and interesting. I helped her eat her food and take medication. After three weeks she was well and was discharged from the facility. Whenever she visited the facility, she always gifted me and this was a great honor.”

13. Describe Your Typical Process When Entering A Patient’s Room.

This is a common question asked by the hiring manager to test how you conduct yourself at work. In your response, demonstrate a friendly and patient attitude towards patients as well as empathetic and observational skills. This will show your employer that you can identify the needs of your patients and be able to interact with them well.

Sample Answer

“I first knock on the door to ensure the patient is ready for me to enter their room. If this is our first time meeting, I greet the patient and introduce myself. When I have already been working with them, I greet the patient then ask how their day has been so far. Next, I ask them if they need anything before I begin my list of tasks. Performing these steps is essential because it shows my patients that I respect their privacy and needs. I find that engaging in small talk can help me build a rapport with them and make them feel more at ease in my presence. And of course, I always conduct this process with a smile to ensure that I create a friendly and positive care environment.”

14.  Explain How To Stay Updated With The Nursing Profession?

The response you give for this question will show your interviewer whether you are at par with the latest development in this field. The best strategy for responding to this question is to share your latest professional development in your career.

Sample Answer

 “Recently, I have completed CEUs including ‘Talking to Dementia Residents’ and ‘Care of patients with Alzheimer’s ‘ training which is relevant to this role of CAN for your Alzheimer’s facility. Additionally, I have completed ten hours of online continuing education units  accredited by Florida board of Nursing and California board of registered nursing.”

15. Describe How You Can Handle A Situation Where A Patient Refused Care.

This is a technical question asked by many interviewers to determine whether you can handle conflict calmly and think through the patients’ perspectives. The best strategy for responding to this question is to demonstrate strong listening, communication, and interpersonal skills.

Sample Answer

“I approach patients who refuse care calmly to find out why. I listen to them calmly without interrupting them as they describe their concerns. Showing them this respect makes them cooperate and they feel comfortable with me. This helps in building trust between patients and myself. I then take them through the steps I will take for their treatment including how they will benefit from it”

16. How Would You Handle A Situation Where You Witnessed Abuse Toward A Patient Or One Of Your Patients Reported Abuse?

The hiring team may ask this question to assess whether you are comfortable addressing and reporting incidents. As you respond to this question,  demonstrate your ability to uphold quality levels of patient care.

Sample Answer

“If I witness a patient being abused or disrespected by a colleague, I can try to stop the abusive behavior and calm the situation. After the situation has calmed down, I would report the matter to my supervisor and fill out the incident report. Regularly, I will ensure to check in with the patient to help them become comfortable. My patients are my priority, and I always want to maintain their health and safety.”

17. Nursing Assistants Commonly Interact With Patients Who Have Progressive Memory Diseases Like Alzheimer And Dementia, Which Could Result In Confusing Interactions And Conversations. How Would You Respond If A Patient With Late-Stage Alzheimer’s Disease Thought You Were One Of Their Loved Ones While You Were Administering Care?

The employer asks this question to find out if you are empathetic and thoughtful when interacting with patients. In your response, demonstrate your knowledge of best practices for memory care and that you can show empathy and kindness to patients.

Sample Answer

“When interacting with patients that deal with extreme memory loss and confusion, I try to keep in mind that it isn’t necessarily important that they are fully aware of their surroundings as long as they are in good spirits. I’d feel honored that the patient had a good enough impression of me to mistake me for a loved one. I’d interact with them in a friendly way without contradicting them while still maintaining a professional demeanor. I would record the interaction in their records so that other members of the care team were aware of how their condition was progressing.”

18. What Is Your  Personal Connection To Health Care?

This question helps your interviewer to know what draws you into this field. Demonstrate that you are the best candidate for the job by conveying your Sense of service and the desire to help others.

Sample Answer

“My mother died of cancer, and I took care of her until when she passed on. From that time, I have desired to do no other job but caring for the sick.”

19. Describe To Me About Your Greatest Strength?

The hiring manager wants to identify whether your strengths match the hospital’s needs and the CNA’s responsibilities. As you respond to this question, describe the experience and strong skills you possess that directly correlate with the post of a Certified Nursing Assistant.

Sample Answer

 “I have strong interpersonal and communication skills that enable me to interact well with patients and other staff. This helps me build a good rapport with my patients that makes serving them become fun and interesting. In addition, my ability to organize enables me to meet deadlines ahead of the scheduled time.”

20. What Is Your Salary Expectation For This Position?

The hiring manager will ask you this question to examine whether your salary expectation is within their range. The best way to answer this question is by providing a salary range.

Sample Answer

“A certified nursing assistant who possesses the education, skills, and experience similar to mine earn a salary of $80000 – $ 100000 in this district. I would be happy to receive a salary similar to this range for this given role”


The employer will ask you a couple of questions to learn more about you and your qualifications to assess how you would fit within their team. These questions and answers will help you respond correctly. Also, you can research more from the hospital’s website to help you answer related questions.