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Health Science | Nurse Assisting

4 Best CNA Textbooks for CTE Health Science in 2023 (Reviews)

December 1st, 2022 | 8 min. read

Brad Hummel

Brad Hummel

Coming from a family of educators, Brad knows both the joys and challenges of teaching well. Through his own teaching background, he’s experienced both firsthand. As a writer for iCEV, Brad’s goal is to help teachers empower their students by listening to educators’ concerns and creating content that answers their most pressing questions about career and technical education.

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Did your health science program just add a new certified nursing assistant course? Or are you looking to update your current CNA curriculum?

If so, you need materials to help cover your standards, prepare students for CNA certification, and get them set for nursing assistant careers.

While we provide a health science curriculum that hundreds of teachers use to teach CNA courses, our solution isn’t right for everyone.

Some health science instructors prefer to use a traditional textbook as their primary curriculum resource, and there’s nothing wrong with that!

There are dozens of nursing assistant textbooks to choose from, but how do you know which one is right for your program?

The top CNA textbooks recommended by CTE health science teachers are:

  1. Nursing Assistant Care: The Basics
  2. Nursing Assisting: A Foundation in Caregiving
  3. Mosby’s Textbook for Nursing Assistants
  4. The Nursing Assistant: Essentials of Holistic Care

In this article, you’ll find an overview of each textbook to help you decide which one is right for you and your students.

1. Nursing Assistant Care: The Basicshartman-nursing-assistant-care

  • Authors: Hartman Publishing, Inc. with Jetta Fuzy
  • Copyright: 2022
  • Retail Price: $36.00 Textbook, $16.00 Workbook, $39.90 Instructor's Guide

Nursing Assistant Care: The Basics is a textbook covering the essential information required for working in long-term care facilities. 

This book is the shortest one on our list, and is organized into ten chapters:

  1. The Nursing Assistant In Long-Term Care
  2. Foundations of Resident Care
  3. Understanding Residents
  4. Body Systems and Related Conditions
  5. Confusion, Dementia, and Alzheimer’s Disease
  6. Personal Care Skills
  7. Basic Nursing Skills
  8. Nutrition and Hydration
  9. Rehabilitation and Restorative Care
  10. Caring for Yourself

You’ll find more than 60 procedures your students need to know to be successful CNAs throughout the chapters.

Overall, this recently updated textbook is easy for students to follow, with straightforward language, clear organization, and procedural guidelines highlighted throughout the content.

However, the main drawback of this CNA book is its brevity. It may lack the in-depth teaching required to help your students pass their certified nursing assistant exam unless partnered with a more comprehensive teaching system. 

Nursing Assistant Care: The Basics is an excellent option for teachers focused on the basics of nursing assisting and would be a great supplementary text if you have an existing curriculum.

2. Nursing Assisting: A Foundation in Caregiving

  • nursing-assistant-foundation-caregiving

    Authors: Diana L. Dugan
  • Copyright: 2019
  • Retail Price: $60.00 Textbook, $65.00 Hardback Textbook, $18.60 Workbook, $39.90 Instructor's Guide

Nursing Assistant: A Foundation in Caregiving is a comprehensive text on becoming a nursing assistant, with 28 chapters:

  1. The Nursing Assistant in Long Term
  2. Ethical and Legal Issues
  3. Communication Skills
  4. Communication Challenges
  5. Diversity and Human Needs and Development
  6. Infection Prevention and Control
  7. Safety and Body Mechanics
  8. Emergency Care, First Aid, and Disasters
  9. Admission, Transfer, Discharge, and Physical Exams
  10. Bedmaking and Unit Care
  11. Positioning, Moving, and Lifting
  12. Personal Care
  13. Vital Signs
  14. Nutrition and Fluid Balance
  15. The Gastrointestinal System
  16. The Urinary System
  17. The Reproductive System
  18. The Integumentary System
  19. The Circulatory or Cardiovascular System
  20. The Respiratory System
  21. The Musculoskeletal System
  22. The Nervous System
  23. The Endocrine System
  24. The Immune and Lymphatic Systems and Cancer
  25. Rehabilitation and Restorative Care
  26. Subacute Care
  27. End-of-Life Care
  28. Your New Position

The chapters that focus on each body system help your students better understand the disease processes and related care they will be responsible for as CNAs.

Like the first book on our list, this text provides more than 60 procedures for students to learn and review.

Overall, it provides an in-depth foundation for students to learn concepts and skills, along with chapter tests to assess student understanding throughout the semester.

This CNA book is a good choice for teachers who need a comprehensive resource to act as the main piece of their CNA curriculum.

3. Mosby's Textbook for Nursing Assistants

  • mosbys-textbook-for-nursing-assistantsAuthors: Sheila A. Sorrentino, Ph.D., RN and Leighann Remmert
  • Copyright: 2021
  • Retail Price: $80.95 Textbook

Mosby’s Textbook for Nursing Assistants is designed to help prepare your students for work in long-term, acute, or subacute care settings. 

It is organized into a whopping 60 different chapters:

  1. Health Care Agencies
  2. The Person’s Rights
  3. The Nursing Assistant 
  4. Delegation
  5. Ethics And Laws
  6. Student And Work Ethics 
  7. Communicating with the Person 
  8. Health Team Communications 
  9. Medical Terminology 
  10. Body Structure And Function
  11. Growth And Development 
  12. The Older Person 
  13. Safety 
  14. Preventing Falls 
  15. Restraint Alternatives And Restraints 
  16. Preventing Infection 
  17. Isolation Precautions 
  18. Body Mechanics 
  19. Moving The Person 
  20. Transferring The Person 
  21. The Person’s Unit 
  22. Bedmaking 
  23. Oral Hygiene
  24. Daily Hygiene and Bathing 
  25. Grooming
  26. Dressing And Undressing
  27. Urinary Needs
  28. Urinary Catheters
  29. Bowel Needs 
  30. Nutrition Needs 
  31. Fluid Needs 
  32. Nutritional Support And IV Therapy
  33. Vital Signs 
  34. Exercise And Activity 
  35. Comfort, Rest, And Sleep 
  36. Admissions, Transfers, And Discharges 
  37. Assisting With The Physical Examination 
  38. Collecting And Testing Specimens 
  39. The Person Having Surgery 
  40. Wound Care 
  41. Pressure Injuries 
  42. Heat And Cold Applications 
  43. Oxygen Needs 
  44. Respiratory Support And Therapies 
  45. Rehabilitation Needs 
  46. Hearing, Speech, And Vision Problems 
  47. Cancer, Immune System, And Skin Disorders 
  48. Nervous System And Musculo-Skeletal Disorders 
  49. Cardiovascular, Respiratory, And Lymphatic Disorders
  50. Digestive And Endocrine Disorders 
  51. Urinary And Reproductive Disorders 
  52. Mental Health Disorders 
  53. Confusion And Dementia 
  54. Intellectual And Developmental Disabilities 
  55. Sexuality 
  56. Caring For Mothers And Babies 
  57. Assisted Living 
  58. Emergency Care 
  59. End-Of-Life Care 
  60. Getting A Job

With so many chapters, Mosby’s Textbook for Nursing Assistants is the most built-out text for CNA programs.

It includes more than 100 procedures with step-by-step instructions and is perfect for programs that are 80 hours or longer. 

Overall, this CNA text is a good fit for a program looking for a nursing assistant curriculum heavily focused on teaching hands-on skills.

4. The Nursing Assistant: Essentials of Holistic Care

  • nursing-assistant-essentials-holistic-healthcareAuthors: Dr. Sue C. Roe
  • Copyright: 2020
  • Retail Price: $66.00 Textbook, $26.00 Study Guide

The Nursing Assistant: Essentials of Holistic Care teaches the knowledge and skills needed to become a nursing assistant, focusing on holistic care. 

The textbook contains 28 chapters, organized into 11 parts:

  1. The Nursing Assistant—Roles and Responsibilities
  2. Health and Well-Being—Self-Care and Disease
  3. Holistic Communication and Cultural Humility
  4. Observing, Reporting, and Documenting
  5. Infections and Infection Prevention
  6. Safety and Mobility
  7. Obtaining Health Information
  8. Providing Personal Care
  9. Nutrition, Fluid Balance, and Elimination
  10. Special Issues, Populations, and Emergency Care
  11. Taking the Next Steps

Throughout the chapters, you’ll find 80 step-by-step procedures, which illustrate the techniques required to work in various healthcare settings. 

It also highlights common healthcare scenarios CNAs encounter and “culture cues” to help students understand the impact of cultural, social, and ethnic diversity.

The Nursing Assistant: Essentials of Holistic Care is a great CNA book for teachers who wish to teach their students a holistic approach to their patients’ bodies, minds, and spirits. 

Which Nursing Assisting Textbook is Right for Your Students?

Though it’s impossible to review every CNA book out there, this article can give you some direction based on textbooks we hear about from teachers like you. 

As you learn more about each resource, keep in mind that many teachers use more than just a traditional textbook to teach their CNA students. 

Many health science teachers have found that using a comprehensive curriculum system like iCEV in conjunction with their CNA textbooks is the perfect way to help their students prepare for their careers.

iCEV includes prebuilt lesson plans, fully customizable courses, media-rich presentations, and engaging activities to prepare students for industry certifications.

Wondering how a digital curriculum like iCEV could fit into your CNA classes? Check out the Health Science curriculum page to learn more and see if it's right for your needs:

Visit the iCEV Health Science Curriculum Page