How to Pick a Nursing Program near Valliant Oklahoma
Locating the right nursing program near Valliant OK may feel like a challenging undertaking, especially if you aren’t sure what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already understand, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you need to acquire the proper education and training to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and evaluate the qualifications of each college you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Regrettably, too many potential students base their decision exclusively on the price of tuition and the nearness of the school. Picking the least costly program or the one that is local to your residence is undoubtedly not the most reliable way to pick a nursing program. There are various crucial additional things to check out before you make a decision where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first discuss what the job of a registered nurse is in our medical system, as well as the nursing degree alternatives that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical environments, namely Valliant OK hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general job 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 along with where they work. A portion of the functions of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Monitoring patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Maintaining health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more high level job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and generally 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 Degree Options
There are multiple degrees offered to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in as little as two years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Valliant OK area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a two year program made available by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and later attain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more expansive training than the ADN. It is usually a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may want 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 typically a two year program after attaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has attained one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Additional requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so don’t forget to check with the Oklahoma board of nursing for any state requirements.
LPN and LVN Courses
There are generally two scholastic accreditations available that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest time frame, usually about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The second alternative is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and typically require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, aside from offering a higher credential and more extensive instruction, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be Oklahoma approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the syllabus adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to earn a college degree. CNA training can be obtained at Valliant OK area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training can take anywhere from one to 3 months, leading to 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 need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction directed and that every state has its specific requirements. So it’s necessary to make sure that the course you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but likewise those for Oklahoma or the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training course is state approved. Along with the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be additional prerequisites as well.
What 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 Valliant OK or on the internet, you can use the following pointers to start narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout Oklahoma and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we already pointed out, the site of the school as well as the price of tuition are most likely going to be the first two points that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate 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. In addition to helping ensure that you receive a premium education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided in Valliant OK for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses vary 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 certain 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 preps you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Oklahoma or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Check internet rating services to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Additionally, contact the Oklahoma school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Valliant OK 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 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 displeased with the program and dropped out. It’s also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a favorable reputation within the Valliant OK healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students attain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with Valliant OK hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Online Nursing Classes
Attending nursing programs online is becoming a more preferred way to get training and acquire a nursing degree. Some schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs require a specified amount of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more practical solution to finding the free time to attend classes for many Valliant OK students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, 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. Therefore if your work and family obligations 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 Valliant OK?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Valliant Oklahoma 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.
Valliant was founded June 2, 1902, and named for Frank W. Valliant, a chief divisional engineer for the Arkansas & Choctaw Railroad being constructed in the area at that time. The primary employer in town is International Paper, which operates a containerboard mill.
The town is located in southwest McCurtin County on US Route 70 three miles from the Choctaw - McCurtin county line. It is six miles north of the Red River and the Oklahoma-Texas state line. Idabel is fifteen miles to the southeast on Route 70.
According to the census of 2000, Valliant residents included 771 people, 315 households, and 194 families residing in the town. The population density was 1,023.8 people per square mile (396.9/km²). There were 351 housing units at an average density of 466.1 per square mile (180.7/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 75.49% White, 9.21% African American, 10.77% Native American, 0.52% from other races, and 4.02% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.91% of the population.
Enroll in the Right Nursing Program near Valliant OK
Enrolling in the right registered nursing degree program is perhaps the most crucial first step to launching a new career in the medical care field. There are various factors that you must think about when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic status. As we have emphasized in this article, it is important that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the healthcare community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to pick 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 Valliant OK.
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