How to Find the Right Nursing Program near Mount Ida Arkansas
Locating the right nursing school near Mount Ida AR may seem like a complicated project, particularly if you aren’t sure what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already know, to practice as a registered nurse, you need to receive the appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and determine the qualifications of each school you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Unfortunately, too many future students base their determination exclusively on the cost of tuition and the distance of the school. Deciding on the least expensive school or the one that is local to your home is no doubt not the best way to decide on a nursing program. There are many important additional aspects to look into before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first review what the function of a registered nurse is in our health system, together with the nursing degree choices that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, namely Mount Ida AR hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary function is to help doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the particular duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or area of expertise as well as where they work. A portion of the functions of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Observing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more high level job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, 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 common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There are multiple degrees to choose from to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or advance to obtain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Mount Ida AR area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a 2 year program offered by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently earn a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is normally a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may 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 two year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate 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. Additional requirements for licensing change from state to state, so make sure to check with the Arkansas board of nursing for any state mandates.
LVN and LPN Courses
There are principally two scholastic credentials offered that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be concluded in the shortest amount of time, commonly about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The second option is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and normally require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, along with supplying a higher credential and more in-depth instruction, 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 another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the course of study adequately 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 training can be acquired at Mount Ida AR area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The length of the training can take anywhere from one to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to receive at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum amount of training directed and that every state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s essential to make sure that the program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but likewise those for Arkansas or the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the education is state certified. As well as the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be additional prerequisites as well.
Questions to Ask Nursing Colleges
Once you have determined which nursing program to enroll in, along with if to attend your classes on campus near Mount Ida AR or on the web, you can use the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout Arkansas and the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a workable list. As we already pointed out, the location of the school along with the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up to the other schools.
- 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 recognized accrediting organization. Besides helping ensure that you get a quality education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available in Mount Ida AR for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses differ 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 specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the school you are attending not only provides a top-notch education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Arkansas or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Visit online rating companies to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Also, contact the Arkansas school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Mount Ida AR healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgments are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the RN schools 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 verify that the school has a superb reputation within the Mount Ida AR medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have associations with Mount Ida AR hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Nursing Online Degrees
Enrolling in nursing schools online is becoming a more popular way to receive training and acquire a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs require a specific number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient approach to finding the time to attend classes for some Mount Ida AR students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more easily affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and family responsibilities have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Mount Ida AR?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Mount Ida 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.
Mount Ida, Arkansas
Mount Ida is a city in and county seat of Montgomery County, Arkansas, United States. Founded in 1842, the city saw a silver boom in the 1880s bring early prosperity and economic development to the area.
A slowly growing small town ever since, today, the economy is largely ranching, poultry farming, silviculture, and tourism around Lake Ouachita. It is officially known as the quartz crystal capital of the U.S. and is known worldwide for its quartz deposits. The population had grown to 1,076 by the 2010 census.
Mount Ida is located on the south bank of the South Fork Ouachita River. US Route 270 and Arkansas Highway 27 pass through the town. Mount Ida, the mountain, is about five miles southwest of the town along Route 27.
Enroll in the Right Nursing Degree near Mount Ida AR
Enrolling in the right registered nursing degree program is perhaps the most critical first step to starting a new career in the health care industry. There are a number of variables that you should consider when deciding on a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, obligations, and economic situation. As we have pointed out within this content, it is critical that you choose an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Mount Ida AR.
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