How to Find the Right Nursing School near Gravette Arkansas
Locating the right nursing program near Gravette AR may seem like a challenging undertaking, especially if you have no idea what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already know, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you need to obtain the appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and determine the qualifications of each college you are contemplating before enrolling in your final choice. Regrettably, too many future students base their selection entirely on the price of tuition and the nearness of the school. Going with the least expensive college or the one that is nearest to your home is undoubtedly not the most ideal way to choose a nursing program. There are a number of essential additional things to investigate before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first look at what the role of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, together with the nursing degree options that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical environments, namely Gravette AR hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general duty is to assist doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise as well as where they work. Some of the duties of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Keeping 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 Degrees Available
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 earn a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Gravette AR area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program made available by community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards attain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more expansive training than the ADN. It is generally a four 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 might wish 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 usually a two year program after attaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus 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) to become licensed. Additional requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so don’t forget to get in touch with the Arkansas board of nursing for any state mandates.
LVN and LPN Courses
There are essentially two scholastic credentials offered that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be completed in the shortest time frame, usually about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma course. The 2nd option is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and generally require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with providing a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you pursue, it needs to be Arkansas approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the course of study adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA education can be acquired at Gravette AR area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from just one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to have at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal amount 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 complies with the federal requirements, but likewise 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 certain that the training is state approved. Along with the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be other requirements as well.
Questions to Ask Nursing Degree Programs
Once you have selected which nursing degree to pursue, and whether to attend your classes on campus near Gravette AR or online, you can use the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Arkansas and the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we earlier mentioned, the site of the school as well as the expense 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 prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the other programs.
- 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 acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides helping make sure that you receive an excellent education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available in Gravette AR for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements 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. Some states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the school you are attending not only delivers an excellent education, but also readies you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Arkansas or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Also, contact the Arkansas school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Gravette 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 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 verify that the school has a good reputation within the Gravette AR medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students attain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to acquire 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. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing also. Check if the schools have associations with Gravette AR hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.
Nursing Online Programs
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is emerging as a more favored way to obtain instruction and earn a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating approach to finding the free time to attend college for many Gravette AR students. Pertaining to tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more affordable. 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. 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 training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Gravette AR?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Gravette 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.
Gravette is a city in Benton County, Arkansas, United States. The population was 2,325 at the 2010 census. It is part of the Fayetteville–Springdale–Rogers, AR-MO Metropolitan Statistical Area.
The original name of the first European-American settlement at this location was Nebo. The Nebo area is now referred to as Old Town in Chalk Valley and was the earliest pioneer settlement of the community. The settlement was platted in the 1870s by Joseph P. Covey, who relocated to Southwest City, Missouri, in 1881. Ellis Tillman Gravett opened the Chalk Valley Distillery in Nebo and was also the proprietor of a general merchandise store. In 1891, he moved that store west out of the valley to what is now downtown Gravette. Gravette was incorporated on January 27, 1899. By 1910 the population of Gravette amounted to 569.
As of 2010 Gravette had a population of 2,325. The racial and ethnic composition of the population was 87.8% non-Hispanic white, 0.6% black or African American, 3.5% Native American, 0.7% Asian, 4.1% from two or more races and 4.0% Hispanic or Latino.
Choose the Right Nursing School near Gravette AR
Choosing the ideal registered nursing program is perhaps the most important first step to starting a new career in the medical care industry. There are various aspects that you need to think about when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, obligations, and financial status. As we have emphasized in this content, it is critical that you select an RN school and a degree program that are both 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 pick from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Gravette AR.
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