Nursing Schools Near Me | How to Become an RN – Belleville IL

How to Choose a Nursing College near Belleville Illinois

Belleville IL surgical nurse assisting surgeonFinding the best nursing program near Belleville IL may feel like a difficult endeavor, especially if you have no idea what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already understand, to practice as a registered nurse, you need to obtain the appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is essential that you research and assess the qualifications of each school you are contemplating before enrolling in your final choice. Unfortunately, too many potential students base their determination exclusively on the cost of tuition and the distance of the school. Deciding on the least costly school or the one that is local to your house is undoubtedly not the best way to decide on a nursing program. There are a number of important additional factors to investigate before you decide where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first review what the function of a registered nurse is in our health system, along with the nursing degree alternatives that are available.

Registered Nurse Job Duties

Belleville IL Neonatal Nurse with babyRegistered nurses are the largest occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, namely Belleville IL hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general job is to assist doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the particular duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or area of expertise in addition to where they work. A few of the responsibilities 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
  • Maintaining 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 typically 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 several degree options 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 just two years, or advance to earn a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are available in the Belleville IL area.

  • Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a 2 year program offered by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards obtain a higher degree.
  • Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more in depth training than the ADN. It is commonly a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able 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 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 usually a two year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.

After a graduating student has acquired 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. Various other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so be sure to contact the Illinois board of nursing for any state requirements.

LVN and LPN Training

Belleville IL LPN assisting patientThere are basically two academic credentials available that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be finished in the shortest amount of time, normally about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma program. The other alternative is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and usually require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from providing a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you pursue, it needs to be Illinois approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the core curriculum properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.

CNA Training

Unlike other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA training can be received at Belleville IL area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The length of the training program 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 obtain at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal period of training directed and every state has its specific requirements. So it’s essential to make sure that the program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but likewise those for Illinois 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 course is state approved. In addition to the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be other prerequisites as well.

What to Ask Nursing Programs

geriatric nurse with elderly patient in Belleville ILNow that you have selected which nursing program to enroll in, and if to attend your classes on campus near Belleville IL or on the internet, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your options. As you probably realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Illinois and the United States. So it is essential to decrease the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a manageable list. As we previously pointed out, the site of the school and the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two points that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final selection, use the following questions to see how your pick compares 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 recognized accrediting agency. Besides helping make sure that you obtain an excellent education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not provided in Belleville IL for non-accredited schools.
  • Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria 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. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are attending not only provides an outstanding education, but also preps you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Illinois or the state where you will be practicing.
  • Reputation. Check internet rating companies to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Also, check with the Illinois school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Belleville IL healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their assessments are of the schools as well.
  • Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the RN programs 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 displeased 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 favorable reputation within the Belleville IL medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students attain a position.
  • Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing as well. Check if the schools have associations with Belleville IL hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.

Online Nursing Classes

woman attending nursing school online in Belleville ILEnrolling in nursing schools online is becoming a more preferred way to receive instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient approach to finding the free time to attend classes for some Belleville IL students. Regarding 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 may be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your work and household responsibilities have left you with limited 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 Belleville IL?

Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Belleville Illinois 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.

Belleville, Illinois

Belleville (French: Belle ville, meaning "Beautiful city") is a city in St. Clair County, Illinois, coterminous with the now defunct Belleville Township.[4] The population was 42,034 according to the Census Bureau's 2015 estimates.[5]

It is the eighth-most populated city in the state outside the Chicago Metropolitan Area, and the most-populated city in the state south of Springfield. It is the county seat of St. Clair County,[6] and the seat of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Belleville and the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows.

Belleville is the most-populated city in the Metro-East region of the St. Louis Metropolitan Area and in Southern Illinois. Due to its proximity to Scott Air Force Base, the population receives a boost from military and federal civilian personnel, defense contractors, and military retirees.[citation needed]

Enroll in the Right Nursing College near Belleville IL

Belleville IL nursing studentPicking the ideal registered nursing program is potentially the most crucial phase to beginning a new career in the healthcare industry. There are a number of variables that you must think about when selecting a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have emphasized within this content, it is critical that you select an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the medical community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to select 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 RN in Belleville IL.

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