How to Enroll In a Nursing School near Mountainburg Arkansas
Finding the best nursing college near Mountainburg AR may feel like a complicated undertaking, especially 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 must obtain the necessary education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and assess the qualifications of each college you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Unfortunately, too many potential students base their selection entirely on the cost of tuition and the distance of the school. Selecting the least expensive program or the one that is closest to your residence is undoubtedly not the most ideal way to choose a nursing program. There are many crucial additional aspects to check into before you decide 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 health system, together with the nursing degree alternatives that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, such as Mountainburg AR hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary job is to aid doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the particular duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization in addition to where they work. A few of the functions of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Overseeing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more high level 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 deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There are multiple degrees offered to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can obtain a qualifying degree in just two years, or advance to obtain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are available in the Mountainburg AR area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a two year program made available by community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently achieve a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more in depth training than the ADN. It is normally a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified 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 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 typically a two year program after attaining 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 earned one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) in order to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so make sure to contact the Arkansas board of nursing for any state requirements.
LPN and LVN Training
There are basically two scholastic accreditations offered that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest time frame, generally about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The second choice is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides supplying a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be Arkansas approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the core curriculum 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 earn a college degree. CNA instruction can be received at Mountainburg AR area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training can take anywhere from just one to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to obtain at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum period of training directed and every state has its specific requirements. So it’s essential to make certain that the course you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but additionally those for Arkansas or the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to check with the health or nursing board for your state to make sure that the training is state approved. As well as 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 Programs
Now that you have selected which nursing degree to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus near Mountainburg AR or online, you can utilize the following checklist to start narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Arkansas and the United States. So it is necessary to lower the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously pointed out, the location of the school and the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the first two things that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final decision, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up to the field.
- 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 recognized accrediting agency. In addition to helping confirm that you get an excellent education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered in Mountainburg AR for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an outstanding education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Arkansas or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Check internet rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. In addition, check with the Arkansas school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Mountainburg 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 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 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 verify that the school has a good reputation within the Mountainburg AR medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students attain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with Mountainburg AR hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Nursing Online Classes
Enrolling in nursing programs online is becoming a more preferred way to receive instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs require a certain amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient approach to finding the time to attend college for many Mountainburg AR students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of 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 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 work and household commitments have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Mountainburg AR?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Mountainburg 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.
Mountainburg is located at 35°38′18″N 94°10′2″W / 35.63833°N 94.16722°W / 35.63833; -94.16722 (35.638432, -94.167219), along U.S. Route 71, and thrived when this road was the main route in northwest Arkansas. Since the construction of Interstate 540 (now Interstate 49) to the west, it has been a more sleepy community. The city park in downtown Mountainburg has since 1980 hosted two large dinosaur models.
As of the census of 2000, there were 682 people, 271 households, and 179 families residing in the city. The population density was 478.1 people per square mile (184.1/km²). There were 298 housing units at an average density of 208.9 per square mile (80.5/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 95.45% White, 0.15% Black or African American, 3.08% Native American, 0.15% Pacific Islander, 0.59% from other races, and 0.59% from two or more races. 0.59% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 271 households out of which 35.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.0% were married couples living together, 10.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.6% were non-families. 30.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.52 and the average family size was 3.15.
Select the Right Nursing College near Mountainburg AR
Picking the right registered nursing degree program is probably the most critical step to starting a new career in the medical care industry. There are numerous aspects that you need to think about when picking a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have stressed within this content, it is critical that you pick an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Mountainburg AR.
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