How to Find the Right Nursing School in Fountain Hills Arizona
Selecting the right nursing program in Fountain Hills AZ may feel like a difficult project, especially if you have no idea what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must receive the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is essential that you study and evaluate the qualifications of each school you are thinking about before enrolling in your final selection. Having said that, too many future students base their decision exclusively on the cost of tuition and the distance of the nursing school. Deciding on the least costly program or the one that is closest to your house is most likely not the best way to select a nursing program. There are many important additional factors to investigate before you determine where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first cover what the role of a registered nurse is in our medical system, together with the nursing degree options that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the medical care delivery system in Fountain Hills AZ. RNs practice in many different medical settings, including hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic duty is to support doctors in the care of their patients. However, the particular duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization in addition to where they work. Some of the duties of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses in Fountain Hills AZ with a more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and normally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
There are several degree options to choose from to become a registered nurse. And in order 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 two years, or continue on to earn a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered in Fountain Hills AZ.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program offered by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in Fountain Hills AZ healthcare facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards attain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more extensive training than the ADN. It is usually a four year program offered at Fountain Hills AZ colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible to complete an accelerated program based on their prior training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might desire to advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is usually a 2 year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has earned one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so be sure to check with the Fountain Hills AZ board of nursing for any state requirements.
LVN and LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are principally two scholastic credentials offered that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be finished in the shortest time period, normally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The other alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and usually require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with supplying a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you seek, it needs to be Fountain Hills AZ approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the core curriculum effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA instruction can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from just one to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to have at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum amount of training mandated and each state has its own requirements. So it’s essential to make sure 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 contact the health or nursing board for Fountain Hills AZ to make sure that the training is state approved. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be additional requirements as well.
Online Nursing Degrees
Attending nursing colleges online is emerging as a more in demand way to obtain training and acquire a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specified amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local Fountain Hills AZ healthcare center. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more practical approach to finding the time to attend college for some students. Concerning tuition, many online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more economical. And many 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 family commitments have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Degree Programs
Now that you have selected which nursing program to pursue, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges within Fountain Hills AZ and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we earlier mentioned, the location of the school as well as the cost of tuition are probably going to be the primary two points that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares to the other programs.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program as well as the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to helping verify that you obtain a premium education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited schools in Fountain Hills AZ.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are attending not only provides an exceptional education, but also preps you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check online rating services to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. In addition, get in touch with the Arizona school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some local Fountain Hills AZ healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their assessments are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the RN programs you are looking at 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 unhappy with the program and dropped out. It’s also essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the Fountain Hills AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a Fountain Hills AZ clinical setting. Almost all Arizona nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing also. Check if the schools have associations with local hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Select the Right RN College in Fountain Hills AZ
Choosing the ideal registered nursing program is potentially the most important first step to starting a new career in the medical care field. There are a number of aspects that you need to consider when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and economic status. As we have pointed out in this article, it is essential that you choose an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Fountain Hills AZ.
Why Did You Decide to Be an RN?When getting ready to interview for a nursing position, it's advantageous to review questions you could be asked. Among the questions that hiring managers frequently ask nursing prospects is "What drove you to choose nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to uncover is not just the private reasons you may have for becoming a registered nurse, but additionally what characteristics and abilities you have that make you outstanding at your profession. You will probably be asked questions pertaining exclusively to nursing, along with a certain number of typical interview questions, so you need to prepare several strategies about how you want to answer them. Because there are numerous factors that go into choosing a career, you can address this primary question in a number of ways. When formulating an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession appeals to you in addition to the abilities you possess that make you an excellent nurse and the perfiect choice for the position. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but take down some concepts and topics that relate to your personal experiences and strengths. Going over sample answers can help you to prepare your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the interviewer.
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