It is now possible to study American Heart Association CPR online but you cannot get your full CPR certification without attending a physical class. Why does this differ from other CPR training offered online? We get a lot of questions about this at the CPRCertificationGuide especially given the increase in the number of standalone online CPR training courses on offer.
The fact that the AHA doesn’t offer stand alone online CPR training is a good thing!
There is a reason why the AHA training is so highly regarded. They do their best to ensure that their training schemes are as flexible as possible while maintaining the integrity and quality of the information being taught. There are different AHA courses available tailored to meet the different needs of certain sections of the community. Their Heart saver courses are designed for laypeople and office workers who want to know how to give CPR in case of emergency. Some people want to add first aid certification to their training so the AHA has developed a course to meet that need. The AHA ACLS course is designed for members of the medical profession who need advanced life support training as they will deal with resuscitations on almost a daily basis. They require a deeper level of knowledge than the average layperson would ever need.
While the AHA are committed to making training accessible to as many people as possible, they are not prepared to jeopardize the quality of their CPR training by offering a standalone online CPR class. The American Heart Association believes that it is imperative that students practice the CPR knowledge they have studied before they need to use it in an emergency. If, the student has misinterpreted any of the information their error can be corrected in the safety of a class thus limiting the damage they could potentially do at the scene of a real life cardiac arrest. We, at the CPRCertificationGuide.com completely endorse this belief.
So how does an AHA CPR online training course work?
The AHA has divided their basic life support, AED training and heart saver courses into three parts. The first section of most courses can be studied either via a classroom or via a computer depending on the preferences of the student. You can learn the theory on how to give basic first aid and the techniques involved in cardiac resuscitation via a book or a computer. But understanding the theory behind the approach and being able to do CPR correctly are two completely different things. You can learn the correct technique for applying a bandage but you need to practice your skills to make sure you would be able to do it in an emergency situation. Just as you can learn the theory of playing the piano from a video, you won’t be any good at actually playing unless you practice on a real piano. You need to practice converting the theory into knowledge and this cannot be offered online.
When you pass your CPR online training, you will get a certificate proving you have completed the course. You will need this certificate to book an American Heart Association skills practice and skills testing session. This will take place at your local center or at your place of work if your employer has arranged for the AHA to come in to train members of the workforce.
What happens at the AHA skills session?
The teacher who will be a member of the American Heart Association instructor network will supervise your skills practice session. You can practice either individually or in a group situation. You will have access to the same equipment that will be used in your skills evaluation test. You can either watch the DVD showing you how to use the equipment or the instructor will show you how. You will then practice using the equipment and the instructor will review how you put the knowledge into practice. If you make a mistake, the instructor will show you where you have gone wrong and show you the correct way. The ability to practice means that you should avoid making any mistake in your skills testing section. Your instructor is not allowed to coach you during the skills testing session and if you make mistakes you will not pass your CPR certification. You may be offered remediation depending on the severity of the errors and the discretion of the instructor. Only when you have passed the skills testing section can you qualify for your American Heart Association CPR Certification.
How do you book American Heart Association Online CPR training?
You will need to first pay for the American Heart Association online CPR training and complete the course. Once you have your certificate to prove you have taken this initial step, then you can contact your local AHA center to book part two and three of the course. The skills practice and skills assessment elements are charged separately to the charge incurred for the AHA online CPR training.