Nursing Assistant - Certified

The Nursing Assistant-Certified program at North Seattle Community College is a one quarter (11 week) program that provides graduates with the opportunity for immediate employment in long-term care and/or home health agencies as well as hospitals.  Learn more...


Prepared by Maria Paz, Librarian


Consider the Source: Evaluating Websites

Searching the Internet

Internet Links: Associations, Health/Medical & Practice Exams

Library Resources: Searching for Books & Articles

the Library @ NSCC


The Internet: Just because it's on the Internet, doesn't make it true

  • Anyone can put up a Web page about anything

  • Many pages not kept up-to-date.

  • No quality control
    most sites not “peer-reviewed”
    less trustworthy than scholarly publications

  • search engines do not evaluate content of the webpage, just because it comes up on Google or Yahoo doesn't make it a good resource


 Consider the Source: Evaluating Websites

Can you tell who wrote it?

URL (Uniform Resource Locator), or, the Internet Address (like a phone number, be accurate or you get the wrong webpage).

  • http:// - hypertext, it's a  webpage

  • https:// - secured hypertext, it's webpage that's harder to hack

  • Parts of the URL

    www - The World Wide Web

    lib.berkeley - Name of the server (big computer) or host name you are accessing. Sounds like it's owned by the Library of the University of California at Berkeley.

    .edu - Domain name designating that an educational institution owns the server.

    /TEACHINGLIB/Guides/Internet - The "path" of subfiles in this server.

    Google.html - the actual document or file or document you are looking at.

    Credentials for the subject matter?

    • Look for links to: “About us” “Philosophy” “Background” “Biography” "Mission"

    Is it recent or current enough?

    • Look for “last updated” date - usually at bottom.

    • Check the copyright date, especially for online books.

    • How old are their references?

    What is their purpose? 

    What is it's domain?

  • .com - commercial businesses; this is the most common

  • .gov - U.S. government agencies (federal, state, local)

  • .edu - Educational institutions such as universities

  • .org - Organizations (mostly nonprofit)

  • .mil - Military (not used much)

  • .net - Network organizations

  • .ca - Canada (country code)

  • .th - Thailand (country code)

  • An Informational Web Page is one whose purpose is to present factual information. The URL Address frequently ends in .edu (educational institution) or .gov (state, federal or city government agencies).


    A Business/Marketing Web Page is one sponsored by a commercial enterprise (usually it is a page trying to promote or sell products). Just because a site sells things doesn't automatically discount their information but it is a point to consider. Check the links to other web sites they provide. This can give you an indication of how they value the information aspect of their web site. The URL address of the page frequently ends in .com (commercial).


    An Advocacy Web Page is one sponsored by an .org (organization) or .net (network) attempting to influence public opinion (that is, one trying to sell ideas). The URL address of the page frequently ends in .org (organization) such as the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League, the National Right to Life Committee, the Democratic Party, the Republican Party.


    A News Web Page is one whose primary purpose is to provide extremely current information. The URL address of the page usually ends in .com (commercial) such as USA Today, MSNBC, CNN


    A Personal Web Page is one published by an individual who may or may not be affiliated with a larger institution. Although the URL address of the page may have a variety of endings (e.g. .com, .edu, .net, etc.).

    Can the factual claims be verified Accuracy?

    • Verify factual information in another source

    • Is it clear who has the ultimate responsibility for the accuracy of the content of the material?

    • Check out the facts and rumors using sites like or

    Does the site look good, like someone cares?

    • Is the information free of grammatical, spelling, and typographical errors? (These kinds of errors not only indicate a lack of quality control, but can actually produce inaccuracies in information.)

    • Are the charts and/or graphs clearly labeled and easy to read?

    If no links or other clues...truncate back the URL to the domain



     Searching the Internet


    Search engines - programs used to surf (search) the Internet/Web

    Recommended Search Engines (UC Berkeley Library)

    If you ever wondered which search engine is best or what's the difference between them, here is a very helpful site comparing the features of the search engines they recommend and their common search techniques.

    RELEVANCY RANKING of search results

    The order of the websites listed is most commonly determined by:

    1. How often your terms occur in documents, whether they occur together as a phrase, and whether they are in title or how near the top of the text.

    1. The popularity factor by how many other sites link to each page (a kind of popularity vote based on the assumption that other pages would create a link to the "best" pages).

    Research Tips
    If you get too much, not enough, or the list isn't relevant to what you need?  Try these search tips.

    • Phrase search results
      enclosing words in double quotes
      Try Example: washington state vs. "washington state"

    • Reject a term or phrase
      use the -minus sign in front of the word, no space
      Try Example: Paris Hilton vs. Paris -Hilton

    • Search exactly
      use the +plus sign in front of the word, no space
      Try Example: child care vs. +childcare

    • Truncation or wildcard
      use *asterix sign at the end of a word to get all variations of how the word ends
      Try Example: nurses vs. nurs* 

    • Field searching (most commonly used)
      allows the searcher to limit where a specific search term must appear, rather than searching for the words anywhere on a Web page.

    intitle: must show up in the title of the webpage
    Try Example: h1n1 vs. h1n1 intitle:shots

    inurl: word(s) must show up somewhere in the URL (host name, path, or filename)
    Try Example: diseases vs. diseases inurl:symptoms

    site:  when looking for sites with a specific domain name
    Try Example:  drugs site:gov vs. drugs site:com vs. drugs site:edu

    • Image Searching (or as I call, searching through the back door)
      do an image search on Google or Yahoo to find a relevant website. 
      Try an image search for cell structure, organelle, mitochondia, etc.



    Internet Links


    Health/Medical Reference Links
    Compiled by M. Paz.


    The National Nurse Aide Assessment Program (NNAAP)

    Largest nurse aide certification examination program in the United States. Links to practice exams for several states including Washington.


    NNAAP Nurse Aid Practice Written Exam Packet
    13 pages in PDF. 


    NNAAP Nurse Aide Written (Or Oral) Examination & Skills Evaluation Candidate Handbook
    45 pages in PDF.



    American Health Care Association  <>
    A non-profit federation of affiliated state health organizations, together representing more than 10,000 non-profit and for-profit assisted living, nursing facility, developmentally-disabled, and subacute care providers AHCA represents the long term care community to the nation at large – to government, business leaders, and the general public. It also serves as a force for change within the long term care field, providing information, education, and administrative tools that enhance quality at every level.

    Direct Care Alliance  <>
    A nationwide and state-based alliance of direct-care workers, employers, and people of all ages and disabilities who use long term services, care and supports. They advocate for better training, working conditions and pay for the direct care workforce.

    NAHCA - National Association of Health Care Assistants  <>
    A non-profit association of CNAs and Health care assistants providing experience-based, peer-driven solutions to long term care.

    The National Clearinghouse on the Direct Care Workforce  <>
    A national on-line library for people in search of solutions to the direct-care staffing crisis in long-term care. The National Clearinghouse collects, analyzes, and disseminates information concerning the health care paraprofessional workforce. The site includes information on state initiatives to improve staffing in long term care.

    National Network of Career Nursing Assistants  <>
    Career Nurse Assistants’ Programs, Inc is also known as  the National Network of Career Nursing Assistants,  a non-profit, tax exempt, educational organization promoting recognition, education, research, advocacy and peer support development for nursing assistants in nursing homes and other long term care settings. This site contains useful information for CNAs, including information on career development, workshops, how CNAs can submit ideas and experience for publication, and a listing of what CNAs say they need to provide quality care. Check this site for information on National Nursing Assistants' Week.  

    Nursing Assistants Resources on the Web <>
    This website is a BLOG for CNA's to share the latest news and articles.

    Nursing Assistant Central <>
    Includes frequently asked questions, tips on taking the exam, sample exam questions, informational and encouraging articles, poetry and prose, message board, internet links.

    PHI (Paraprofessional Healthcare Institute) <>
    Non-profit organization advocate for the long-term care direct-care workforce, which includes nearly 3 million home health aides, certified nurse aides, and personal care attendants.

    Washington State, Dept. of Health <>

    Washington, State Dept. of  Social & Health Services <>



     Library Resources 


    Search for Books, E-Books, AV

    The Library Catalog is accessed through the NSCC Library home page <> under Books & Videos. The catalog lists books, videos, films, etc. available within the Seattle Community College District Libraries – North, South and Central campuses.  The Circulating Books are located on the second level of the library and  may be checked out using your NSCC Student ID with a current registration sticker. The Reference Books are located on the first level of the library and are for Library Use Only.


    Click on List of Select Medical Reference Books for a list of reference books in the NSCC Library.  The Reference Collection is located on the first level of the Library.


    Net Library (eBooks)
    Search your campus library's eContent collection. eBooks are digital full-text versions of books such as reference works, scholarly monographs, literature and fiction, and 3,400 publicly-accessible titles. You can access eContent 24 hours a day, seven days a week.


    Search for Articles to Magazines, Journals & Newspapers 

    Use a Periodical Database to find full-text articles. This is most efficient and "free" way to find an article online. Here are the databases our Library subscribes to that contain many medical and health magazines and journals in full text.  They can be found on the library's home page, in the section for Articles & Reference Databases.  Then click on Alphabetical.

    Academic Search Complete (has most full text nursing journals)
    A very large, multi-disciplinary database, which includes scholarly journals as well as newspapers and popular magazines. Indexes over 8,000 journal titles, including more than 4,600 full-text journals.


    eLibrary Academic
    Articles and multimedia from more than 2,000 full-text magazines, newspapers, reference books, and radio/tv broadcasts. Benefits multiple research skill levels.


    Health and Wellness Resource Center
    The Health and Wellness Resource Center contains reference articles on health and nutrition from magazines and journals, including alternative-health publications.


    Health Reference Center Academic
    Search here for peer-reviewed articles on health and medicine.


    Provides full-text articles and indexing to thousands of different journals, periodicals, dissertations, newspapers, and magazines.


    SCCD Student ID number required for off-campus use.

    Be sure to check for additional subscription databases such as Expanded Academic Index, CINAHL, ABI/Inform, etc. that are available through the Seattle Public Library, The King County Public Library System, or Sno-Isle Libraries. You will need a library card number for the library to remotely access these databases.