Personal Care Assistant Certificate Program

Personal Care Assistant Online Training Program

The Personal Care Assistant Profession

Personal Care Assistants provide assistance to elderly, disabled, ill, and mentally disabled persons who live in their own homes or in a residential care facility. Some Personal Care Assistants work with families in which a parent is incapacitated and small children need care. Others help discharged hospital patients who have relatively short-term needs. The Bureau of Labor states that the Personal Care Assistant is projected to be the fastest growing occupation through 2018. Numerous job openings with excellent opportunities are expected. Job opportunities will be prevalent in hospitals, clinics, rehabilitation centers, home care, long-term care facilities, hospice and assisted living facilities. Personal Care Assistants can be in the form of paid employees who come into the home for a few hours a day or who live in the home fulltime or can be family members or friends of the resident.


This comprehensive program prepares students for a position as a Personal Care Assistant. Emphasis is on giving personal care in a client's home, communications, working with ill persons, basic human needs, eldercare, nutrition, special diets, and home management. Many different types of individuals require assistance in daily tasks, assistance with minor medical tasks, and companionship because they are ill, elderly, or disabled in some way, may be of any age, and must live at home or in a home-like residential facility. Personal Care Assistants provide this assistance or provide some of the care to allow family caregivers a respite.


Online, Self-paced

Approximately 750 hours of online instruction.

This is a work-at-your-own-pace program. Participants have 6 months to complete this program from the student's initial program start date.

Textbooks are included

Payment Plan & Registration

Payment plans are available with 30% down. If you are interested in setting up a payment plan, please contact:

Full Payment & Registration


Program Objectives

  • Describe long-term care in terms of the target populations, environment and care options
  • Describe the physiological, psychological, and sociological changes related to aging
  • Describe physical, cognitive, and social growth and development characteristics
  • Describe memory care needs and options
  • Explain proper procedures for infection control in a home or residential environment
  • Perform basic housekeeping procedures and safety for residents, staff, and visitors
  • Explain procedures and strategies for planning, purchasing, and serving food
  • Explain the proper procedures for safely assisting an individual in activities of daily living
  • Explain procedures for preventing fluid overload and dehydration
  • Explain proper procedures for applying a variety of warm and cold applications
  • Explain procedures involved in caring for individuals with special needs
  • Describe effective and appropriate care of an individual who is dying
  • Explain proper care for infants and children in the home or residential setting
  • Explain how to assist individuals in a home or residential environment
  • Explain common preoperative and postoperative care procedures
  • Use Microsoft Office


Course Topics

Module 1 - The Residential Care Environment

  • Define long-term care
  • Describe the type of individual who might require long-term care solutions
  • Distinguish between the various types of long-term care options and environments
  • Identify common tasks performed by and responsibilities of the caretakers in long-term care environments
  • Describe typical costs and payment solutions for long-term care
  • List individual rights and expectations of those for whom care is given
  • Identify the roles and responsibilities of various health care professionals
  • Describe current role of ethics in medicine
  • Examine ethical issues including privacy and confidentiality
  • Describe characteristics of professional behavior in the long-term care environment
  • Describe aging and characteristics of an aging population
  • Describe the physical changes of the older adult
  • Identify common disease conditions of older adults
  • Describe the social and psychological concerns related to aging
  • Identify common behavioral health disorders of older adults
  • Discuss the safety issues and guidelines for the older adult resident
  • Explain how to meet the older adult's social and psychological needs
  • Distinguish between growth and development
  • Discuss the growth characteristics of distinct age groups
  • Recognize key developmental milestones
  • Explain the impact that illness and injury have on growth and development
  • Identify the developmental tasks at various chronological ages
  • Identify appropriate care behaviors for various age groups
  • Explain the different types of dementia including risk factors, signs and symptoms, causes, diagnosis, and treatment
  • Compare dementia with normal, age-related memory changes
  • Describe the type of options available for memory care
  • Discuss best practices in memory-care facilities
  • Explain effective strategies for caring for patients with dementia and their families

Module 2 – Homemaking And Safety Skills

  • Explain the importance of and procedure for proper hand washing
  • Describe the procedures for ensuring infection control in the home health or residential environment
  • Explain the proper care for individuals with transmittable diseases
  • Identify Standard Precautions of the CDC
  • Describe how to put on and remove nonsterile gloves
  • Describe the basic isolation techniques that can be used in a residential environment
  • Discuss how to manage medical waste
  • Discuss how and when to use a mask and gown
  • Identify the homemaking tasks of the caregiver in a residential environment
  • Explain basic procedures involved in housekeeping
  • Explain how to make a bed that is occupied and not occupied
  • Describe safety rules that should be applied to the home
  • Discuss fire-prevention strategies and steps for putting out a fire after it starts
  • Discuss specific guidelines related to poisons
  • Discuss specific guidelines related to oxygen safety
  • Explain restraints and positioning devices
  • Explain body mechanics and how these concepts are applied
  • Identify the basic anatomy and functions of the digestive system
  • Explain the standards for a healthy diet
  • Describe important considerations associated with planning and shopping for meals
  • Describe important considerations associated with storing food
  • Describe important considerations and guidelines associated with preparing a meal
  • Discuss the steps for serving a meal to an individual
  • Identify the purpose of common therapeutic diets
  • Explain the effects of chemotherapy and radiation on an individual's diet

Module 3 – Basic Care Skills

  • Identify areas in which patients or residents may need assistance in personal care
  • Describe procedures for ensuring oral hygiene
  • Describe procedures for dressing and undressing
  • Describe procedures for assisting with bathing
  • Describe procedures for giving a backrub
  • Describe procedures for hair care
  • Describe procedures for shaving a beard
  • Describe procedures for assisting with toileting
  • Describe procedures for performing nail and foot care
  • Describe procedures for performing skin care
  • Describe procedures for taking vital signs
  • Explain the concept of fluid balance in the body
  • Describe how to properly record fluid intake and output
  • Explain how to care for individuals who require fluid monitoring
  • Explain the procedure for straining urine
  • Differentiate the purpose of warm and cold applications
  • Describe different methods of warm and cold applications using moist and dry techniques
  • Describe how to keep the individuals comfortable and safe during warm and cold applications

Module 4 – Skills For Special Populations

  • Explain common care of patients with cancer
  • Explain common care of individuals with immunosuppression disorders
  • Explain common care of residents with mental health issues
  • Explain common care of those with substance abuse disorders
  • Explain how to how to care for those with other common diseases
  • Explain the grieving process, including the stages of grieving
  • Identify possible emotional needs of the dying person
  • Explain the role of the caregiver with a dying individual
  • Explain advance directives for health care
  • Identify potential tasks involved in the physical care of the dying
  • Explain the role of the caregiver during the moment of death
  • Discuss various options for postmortem care in the home
  • Define the developmental age groupings most commonly used for neonatal and pediatric patients
  • Explain the procedures involved in neonatal care, including feeding, diapering, and bathing
  • Discuss the considerations for a circumcised infant
  • Discuss the considerations related to the umbilical cord
  • Discuss infant and pediatric safety
  • Discuss the nursing care of pediatric patients
  • Explain strategies for communicating with pediatric patients

Module 5 – Advanced Care Skills

  • Distinguish between rehabilitation and restorative care
  • Explain the holistic approach to patient care
  • Identify examples of a rehabilitation program
  • Discuss OBRA requirements for nursing facilities
  • Identify roles and responsibilities of the professional rehabilitation team
  • Discuss the psychological and psychosocial aspects of rehabilitative care
  • Explain procedures involved in the personal care of the rehabilitative patient
  • Define subacute care
  • Explain ventilator care
  • Describe the different types of surgery
  • Describe the procedures for preoperative care
  • Describe the procedures for postoperative care
  • Discuss anesthesia and postoperative complications
  • Describe how to how to assist a person in taking his or her medication
  • Explain safety precautions related to oxygen therapy
  • Describe the procedure for changing a nonsterile dressing
  • Explain procedures related to catheter care
  • Describe how to assist a person who is on intravenous therapy
  • Describe procedures appropriate to cast care
  • Explain procedures related to ostomy care
  • Describe how to create a seizure-safe environment
  • Describe blood and urine testing procedures for diabetic individuals
  • Explain how to assist individuals in performing deep-breathing exercises
  • Explain the uses of saline solution
  • Describe how to assist with total parenteral nutrition
  • Describe how to take a urine sample


National Certification

Upon successful completion of this program, students would be eligible to sit for the National Healthcareer Association (NHA) Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA) exam and the Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) exam. Although there are no state approvals, state registration or other state requirements for this program, students who complete this program will be prepared and are eligible to sit for the NHA CCMA certification exam and the MOS national certification exam and are qualified, eligible and prepared to do so.


Clinical Externship / Hands-on Training / Practicum

Although not a requirement, once students complete the program, they have the ability to participate in a clinical externship and/or hands-on practicum so as to practice the skills necessary to perform the job requirements of a professional in this field. Students will be assisted with completing a resume and/or other requirements necessary to work in this field. All students who complete this program are eligible to participate in an externship and placed with a participating organization near their location.

Condensed Curriculum International
Offered through our partnership with
Condensed Curriculum International
American Allied Health Approved Testing Site
American Allied Health Approved Testing Site