How to Select a Nursing Program in Arab Alabama
Searching for the right nursing school in Arab AL may seem like a challenging project, particularly if you have no idea what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you need to receive the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and measure the qualifications of each school you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Regrettably, too many potential students base their decision exclusively on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the nursing school. Deciding on the least expensive college or the one that is nearest to your home is most likely not the best way to select a nursing program. There are a number of key additional things to look into before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first review what the job of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, along with the nursing degree choices that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the medical care delivery system in Arab AL. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, including hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general role is to aid doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise in addition to where they work. A portion of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Monitoring patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Maintaining health records and charts
Nurses in Arab AL with a higher degree may have more high level job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and often work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There is more than one degree option available to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or continue on to achieve a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are offered in Arab AL.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program made available by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in Arab AL medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently obtain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more expansive training than the ADN. It is usually a 4 year program offered at Arab AL colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might desire to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is generally a 2 year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has received one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) so as to become licensed. Other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to contact the Arab AL board of nursing for any state requirements.
LPN and LVN Certificates and Degrees
There are generally two scholastic credentials available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be concluded in the shortest time frame, typically about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The next option is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and normally require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to supplying a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be Arab AL approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the core curriculum effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to earn a college degree. CNA instruction can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school. The length of the training can take anywhere from just one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to have at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum period of training required and that each state has its specific requirements. So it’s crucial to make certain that the program you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Arab AL to make certain that the training course is state certified. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be other requirements as well.
Nursing Online Programs
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is growing into a more in demand way to receive training and earn a nursing degree. Many schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs require a specific number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local Arab AL healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more practical answer to finding the time to attend school for many students. Concerning tuition, many online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus options. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and household commitments have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Schools
Once you have chosen which nursing degree to pursue, along with if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you probably realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Arab AL and the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we previously pointed out, the site of the school along with the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection compares to the field.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program in addition to the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. In addition to helping ensure that you receive a quality education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided for non-accredited schools in Arab AL.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Many states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are attending not only delivers a top-notch education, but also readies you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Visit online rating services to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. In addition, check with the Alabama school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some regional Arab AL healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgements are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the RN colleges you are considering what their graduation rates are as well as how long on average it takes students to complete their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It’s also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a superb reputation within the Arab AL medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a Arab AL clinical environment. Virtually all Alabama nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing also. Find out if the schools have associations with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Choose the Right RN Program in Arab AL
Picking the ideal registered nursing school is potentially the most important step to starting a new career in the medical care field. There are a number of aspects that you must consider when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, obligations, and financial situation. As we have stressed within this post, it is critical that you pick an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a licensed RN in Arab AL.
Why Did You Desire to Be an RN?When preparing to interview for a nursing position, it's important to review questions you may be asked. Among the questions that hiring managers frequently ask nursing prospects is "What compelled you to pick nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to learn is not merely the private reasons you might have for being a nurse, but also what attributes and talents you have that make you good at your profession. You will likely be asked questions relating specifically to nursing, along with a certain number of routine interview questions, so you must ready some strategies about how you would like to answer them. Since there are numerous factors that go into selecting a career, you can answer this primary question in a multitude of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the profession interests you as well as the strengths you possess that make you an outstanding nurse and the leading candidate for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but write down several concepts and talking points that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Reading through sample answers can assist you to formulate your own thoughts, and provide ideas of what to include to enthuse the recruiter.
Some Cities in Alabama You May be Interested In