How to Choose a Nursing School near Lepanto Arkansas
Selecting the best nursing program near Lepanto AR may feel like a complicated undertaking, particularly if you don’t know what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you need to acquire the necessary education and training in order to become licensed. So it is essential that you study and determine the qualifications of each program you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate selection. The fact is, too many future students base their decision entirely on the price of tuition and the distance of the school. Picking the least expensive college or the one that is local to your residence is undoubtedly not the best way to choose a nursing program. There are a number of essential additional things to check into before you determine where to attend classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first go over what the function of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, along with the nursing degree options that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical environments, namely Lepanto AR hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary duty is to assist doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise as well as where they work. Some of the functions of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Monitoring patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more complex job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and commonly work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
There are several degree options 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 two years, or advance to earn a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Lepanto AR area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a 2 year program made available by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards obtain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is generally a four year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may want to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is normally a 2 year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has attained one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Other requirements for licensing change from state to state, so make sure to contact the Arkansas board of nursing for any state mandates.
There are basically two scholastic credentials available that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be concluded in the shortest period of time, typically about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma course. The 2nd choice is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and typically require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you seek, it needs to be Arkansas approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the syllabus properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA instruction can be received at Lepanto AR area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The length of the instruction can take anywhere from one to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to obtain at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction mandated and that every state has its specific requirements. So it’s essential to make certain that the program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but additionally those for Arkansas or the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the education is state certified. In addition to the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be other prerequisites as well.
Questions to Ask Nursing Colleges
Once you have chosen which nursing degree to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus near Lepanto AR or on the internet, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within Arkansas and the United States. So it is essential to decrease the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we already discussed, the site of the school and the cost of tuition are probably going to be the primary two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the other schools.
- 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 agency. In addition to helping ensure that you receive a quality education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available in Lepanto AR for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Many 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 excellent education, but also readies you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Arkansas or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Also, check with the Arkansas school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Lepanto AR healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their opinions 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 finish their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were displeased with the program and dropped out. It’s also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a good reputation within the Lepanto AR healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students attain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with Lepanto AR hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.
Online Nursing Degrees
Attending nursing programs online is becoming a more popular way to obtain instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Many schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specified amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more practical approach to finding the free time to attend classes for some Lepanto AR students. Regarding tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, helping to make education more economical. 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 work and family responsibilities have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Lepanto AR?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Lepanto Arkansas area. If that is the case, then the following information may prove to be both educational and useful regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Lepanto is a city in Poinsett County, Arkansas, United States. The population was 1,893 at the 2010 census. It is included in the Jonesboro, Arkansas Metropolitan Statistical Area. Lepanto was named for the Greek seaport of Lepanto, site of a great crusade sea battle in 1571. Lepanto was a site for the filming of the TV movie version of John Grisham's book A Painted House.
As of the 2010 census Lepanto had a population of 1,893. The ethnic and racial makeup of the population was 79.3% non-Hispanic white, 14.8% African-American, 0.1% Native American, 0.1 Asian, 1.7% reporting two or more races, including 1.2% reporting being white and African-American, and 4.3% Hispanic.
As of the census of 2000, there were 2,133 people, 851 households, and 595 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,459.4 people per square mile (564.1/km²). There were 891 housing units at an average density of 609.6/sq mi (235.6/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 82.37% White, 15.56% Black or African American, 0.05% Native American, 0.05% Asian, 0.98% from other races, and 0.98% from two or more races. 2.11% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
Pick the Right Nursing College near Lepanto AR
Selecting the right registered nursing school is arguably the most crucial step to launching a new career in the healthcare industry. There are a number of variables that you must think about when choosing a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have highlighted within this article, it is important that you select an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Lepanto AR.
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