How to Select a Nursing Program near Clio Alabama
Choosing the best nursing school near Clio AL may seem like a difficult undertaking, especially if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already know, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the necessary education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and evaluate the qualifications of each school you are thinking about before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Regrettably, too many potential students base their decision entirely on the price of tuition and the distance of the school. Choosing the least costly college or the one that is closest to your home is most likely not the best way to decide on a nursing program. There are several key additional factors to investigate before you determine where to attend classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first cover what the function of a registered nurse is in our medical system, together with the nursing degree alternatives that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, such as Clio AL hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic duty is to help doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization as well as where they work. A portion of the functions of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Observing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more complex job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and commonly work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There are multiple degrees 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 as little as 2 years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Clio AL area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a 2 year program offered by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately earn a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more extensive training than the ADN. It is normally a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their prior training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may desire 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 receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When 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. Other requirements for licensing change from state to state, so don’t forget to contact the Alabama board of nursing for any state mandates.
LVN and LPN Programs
There are basically two scholastic accreditations offered that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest period of time, generally about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The other option is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and normally require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides supplying a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be Alabama approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the core curriculum adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA training can be received at Clio AL area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training can take anywhere from 1 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 training, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of training mandated and that each state has its own prerequisites. So it’s essential to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but additionally those for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to check with the health or nursing board for your state to make sure that the education is state approved. As well as the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be other requirements as well.
Questions to Ask Nursing Programs
Once you have selected which nursing program to pursue, along with whether to attend your classes on campus near Clio AL or online, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Alabama and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we previously discussed, the location of the school and the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two things that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final decision, use the following questions to see how your selection 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 acknowledged accrediting organization. Besides helping make sure that you get a premium education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered in Clio AL for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Many 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 enrolled in not only provides an outstanding education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check online rating services to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. In addition, contact the Alabama school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Clio AL 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 programs you are considering 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 unhappy with the program and dropped out. It’s also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the Clio AL healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing also. Find out if the schools have associations with Clio AL hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.
Online Nursing Programs
Attending nursing colleges online is emerging as a more in demand way to obtain instruction and attain a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient approach to finding the time to attend classes for some Clio AL students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus options. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, 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. Therefore if your job and household responsibilities have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Clio AL?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Clio Alabama 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.
Clio is a city in Barbour County, Alabama, United States. The population was 1,399 at the 2010 census, down from 2,206 in 2000, at which time it was a town. It is the birthplace of former Alabama governor George C. Wallace, as well as Baseball Hall of Famer and current Atlanta Braves broadcaster Don Sutton.
As of the census of 2010, there were 1,399 people, 514 households, and 321 families residing in the town. The population density was 139 people per square mile (53.7/km2). There were 634 housing units at an average density of 62.7 per square mile (24.3/km2). The racial makeup of the town was 36.5% Black or African American, 32.0% White, 0.4% Native American, 0.5% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 30.2% from other races, and .4% from two or more races. 36.0% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 514 households out of which 28.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 35.4% were married couples living together, 19.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.5% were non-families. 30.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.72 and the average family size was 3.37.
Select the Right Nursing Program near Clio AL
Picking the ideal registered nursing degree program is potentially the most critical phase to beginning a new career in the medical care industry. There are many aspects that you need to think about when picking a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have emphasized in this content, it is essential that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a licensed RN in Clio AL.
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