How to Enroll In a Nursing School near Lincolnton Georgia
Choosing the right nursing college near Lincolnton GA may seem like a complicated undertaking, especially if you aren’t sure what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, to practice as a registered nurse, you need to obtain the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you research and evaluate the qualifications of each college you are contemplating before enrolling in your final choice. The fact is, too many prospective students base their decision solely on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Deciding on the least expensive school or the one that is local to your residence is most likely not the most ideal way to select a nursing program. There are several essential additional factors to check into before you make a decision where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first review what the job of a registered nurse is in our medical system, as well as the nursing degree alternatives that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, including Lincolnton GA hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general duty is to assist doctors in the care of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization along with where they work. Some of the functions of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Monitoring patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and often work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are several degree options to choose from 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 2 years, or advance to achieve a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Lincolnton GA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program offered by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare centers such as 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) provides more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is commonly a four year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified 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 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 achieving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has obtained one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) in order to become licensed. Other requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so be sure to check with the Georgia board of nursing for any state mandates.
LVN and LPN Courses
There are basically two academic accreditations available that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest amount of time, commonly about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The other alternative is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and generally 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 seek, it needs to be Georgia approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the course of study effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA training can be acquired at Lincolnton GA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to obtain at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum period of training required and that every state has its specific requirements. So it’s essential to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but also those for Georgia or the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the education is state certified. 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 Schools
Now that you have determined which nursing program to pursue, and if to attend your classes on campus near Lincolnton GA or on the web, you can use the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your choices. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Georgia and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we already pointed out, the site of the school as well as the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two factors that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see how your pick compares to the other programs.
- 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 organization. Besides helping verify that you get an excellent education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered in Lincolnton GA for non-accredited schools.
- 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) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are enrolled in not only provides an excellent education, but also prepares you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Georgia or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Check internet rating companies to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Also, check with the Georgia school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Lincolnton GA 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 colleges you are considering 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 important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a good reputation within the Lincolnton GA medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students attain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with Lincolnton GA hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Nursing Online Degrees
Attending nursing schools online is growing into a more favored way to receive training and earn a nursing degree. Some schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more practical solution to finding the time to attend school for some Lincolnton GA students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more easily affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your job and family responsibilities have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Lincolnton GA?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Lincolnton Georgia 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.
The city of Lincolnton is the county seat of Lincoln County, Georgia, United States. The population was 1,566 at the 2010 census. It is the location for the historical site, Elijah Clark State Park, and contains numerous houses and historic districts listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Both the city and the county were named for General Benjamin Lincoln, who served in the Continental Army during the American Revolution.
As of the census of 2000, there were 1,595 people, 657 households, and 428 families residing in the city. The population density was 498.6 people per square mile (192.4/km²). There were 657 housing units at an average density of 205.4 per square mile (79.3/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 56.80% White, 42.19% Black, 0.06% American Indian, 0.38% Asian, 0.13% from other races, and 0.44% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.13% of the population.
There were 610 households out of which 32.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.8% were married couples living together, 22.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.8% were non-families. 27.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 15.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.50 and the average family size was 3.05.
Choose the Right Nursing School near Lincolnton GA
Selecting the ideal registered nursing program is perhaps the most crucial step to starting a new career in the health care field. There are a number of factors that you should think about when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic situation. As we have highlighted within this article, it is critical that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist 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 Lincolnton GA.
More Awesome Locations in Georgia