How to Enroll In a Nursing Program near Jasper Arkansas
Locating the right nursing college near Jasper AR may seem like a formidable undertaking, especially if you don’t know what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already understand, to practice as a registered nurse, you need to receive the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is essential that you research and evaluate the qualifications of each college you are considering before enrolling in your final choice. Regrettably, too many future students base their decision entirely on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Selecting the least costly program or the one that is nearest to your residence is probably not the most ideal way to choose a nursing program. There are many key additional aspects to investigate before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first review what the role of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, together with the nursing degree alternatives that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical environments, including Jasper AR hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary function is to assist doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the particular duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization along with where they work. A portion of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more advanced job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and normally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
There are multiple degrees available to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in just 2 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 offered in the Jasper AR area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program made available by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately attain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is commonly a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might wish to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is normally 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 earned one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so make sure to check with the Arkansas board of nursing for any state requirements.
LVN and LPN Training
There are generally two academic credentials offered that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest amount of time, normally about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma course. The 2nd choice is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and typically require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, besides providing a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you seek, it should be Arkansas approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the course of study effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA training can be obtained at Jasper AR area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The length of the training program can take anywhere from one to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to receive at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal period of training directed and that each state has its own prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make sure that the course you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but also those for Arkansas 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 sure that the training is state certified. In addition to the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be other requirements as well.
What to Ask Nursing Colleges
Once you have decided on which nursing degree to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus near Jasper AR or on the internet, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges within Arkansas and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to select from so that you will have a workable list. As we previously pointed out, the location of the school as well as the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the first two things that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final decision, 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 along with the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Aside from helping confirm that you obtain a premium education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available in Jasper AR for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites 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 performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are enrolled in not only provides an outstanding education, but also preps you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Arkansas 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 also. In addition, check with the Arkansas school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Jasper AR 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 looking at what their graduation rates are as well as how long on average it takes students to complete their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were dissatisfied 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 superb reputation within the Jasper AR healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The best way to get 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 mandates for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with Jasper AR hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Nursing Online Programs
Enrolling in nursing schools online is emerging as a more favored way to receive instruction and earn a nursing degree. Many schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs require a specified number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more accommodating solution to finding the time to attend classes for some Jasper AR students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more economical. 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 work and family commitments have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Jasper AR?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Jasper 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.
As of the census of 2000, there were 498 people, 231 households, and 115 families residing in the city. The population density was 940.4 people per square mile (362.8/km²). There were 261 housing units at an average density of 492.9/sq mi (190.1/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 99.98% White, 0.01% Native American, 0.01% from other races, and 0.00% from two or more races. 0.00% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 233 households out of which 24.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 32.5% were married couples living together, 15.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 49.8% were non-families. 48.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 27.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 1.95 and the average family size was 2.82.
In the city, the population was spread out with 21.3% under the age of 18, 6.4% from 18 to 24, 18.7% from 25 to 44, 22.5% from 45 to 64, and 31.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 49 years. For every 100 females, there were 71.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 63.7 males.
Pick the Right Nursing College near Jasper AR
Choosing the ideal registered nursing degree program is probably the most critical step to launching a new career in the health care field. There are many aspects that you must think about when selecting a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, obligations, and economic situation. As we have emphasized within this article, it is critical that you choose an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a licensed RN in Jasper AR.
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