How to Choose a Nursing College near Tallassee Alabama
Finding the right nursing school near Tallassee AL may seem like a complicated project, especially if you aren’t sure what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the necessary education and training to become licensed. So it is essential that you research and evaluate the qualifications of each school you are thinking about before enrolling in your ultimate choice. The fact is, too many potential students base their determination exclusively on the cost of tuition and the distance of the school. Going with the least costly school or the one that is nearest to your residence is most likely not the best way to pick a nursing program. There are several crucial additional factors to look into before you determine where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first cover what the role of a registered nurse is in our health system, along with the nursing degree options that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical environments, namely Tallassee AL hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general job is to assist doctors in the care of their patients. However, the particular duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization as well as where they work. A portion of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing 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 advanced job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and normally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are multiple degrees available to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in as little as two years, or advance to earn a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Tallassee AL area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a two year program offered by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently attain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more in depth training than the ADN. It is typically a four year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible to complete an accelerated program based on their past 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 employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is generally a two year program after achieving 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) so as to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing change from state to state, so make sure to contact the Alabama board of nursing for any state requirements.
There are essentially two scholastic credentials available that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be finished in the shortest amount of time, usually about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The second choice is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and typically require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, besides providing a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you pursue, it should be Alabama approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the syllabus adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA education can be obtained at Tallassee AL area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to receive 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 minimal period of instruction mandated and every state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make certain that the course you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but likewise those for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to check with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain 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 can be other requirements as well.
Questions to Ask Nursing Colleges
Once you have determined which nursing program to enroll in, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus near Tallassee AL or on the web, you can use the following pointers to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Alabama and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we already mentioned, the site of the school and the price of tuition are probably going to be the primary two things that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the field.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program along with the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. In addition to helping confirm that you receive a quality education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available in Tallassee AL for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses vary 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. Certain states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the school you are enrolled in not only provides an outstanding education, but also prepares you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Check online rating services to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Also, get in touch with the Alabama school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Tallassee AL 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 dissatisfied 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 Tallassee AL medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with Tallassee AL hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Nursing Online Schools
Enrolling in nursing schools online is growing into a more popular way to obtain training and attain a nursing degree. Some schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and nearly 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 option may be a more practical approach to finding the free time to attend classes for some Tallassee AL students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more economical. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your job and family commitments 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 Tallassee AL?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Tallassee Alabama 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.
Tallassee (pronounced |ˈtæːləsi|) is a city on the Tallapoosa River, located in both Elmore and Tallapoosa counties in the U.S. state of Alabama. At the 2010 census the population was 4,819. It is home to a major hydroelectric power plant at Thurlow Dam operated by Alabama Power Company.
The historic Creek peoples in this area are believed to have descended from the Mississippian culture, which flourished throughout the Mississippi and Ohio river valleys and the Southeast from about 1000 to 1450. They were mound builders, who created massive earthwork mounds as structures for political and religious purposes. They relied greatly on fishing and riverway trading at their major sites (c.f. Moundville, Tuscaloosa).
Talisi was a town of the Coosa Province of the Mississippian culture; it was visited in 1540 by Hernando de Soto and his expedition through the Southeast. Later it was occupied by the historic Creek people. The Tallassee area was the location of the Creek capital city, Tuckabatchee, as well as the location of the seven sacred plates.
Select the Right Nursing Program near Tallassee AL
Selecting the ideal registered nursing program is potentially the most critical phase to beginning a new career in the healthcare industry. There are a number of aspects that you must consider 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 post, it is critical that you select an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce 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 hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a licensed RN in Tallassee AL.
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