How to Enroll In a Nursing School near Wheatland Iowa
Searching for the right nursing school near Wheatland IA may feel like a complicated project, particularly 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 must receive the necessary education and training to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and assess the qualifications of each school you are considering before enrolling in your final choice. The fact is, too many potential students base their decision entirely on the price of tuition and the distance of the school. Picking the least costly program or the one that is local to your residence is probably not the most ideal way to select a nursing program. There are a number of key additional considerations to investigate before you determine where to attend classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first discuss what the job of a registered nurse is in our health system, together with the nursing degree choices that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, including Wheatland IA hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general job is to help doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the specific duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization along with where they work. Some of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Monitoring patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and generally 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 Degree Options
There are several degree options offered to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can earn a qualifying degree in just two years, or advance to earn a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Wheatland IA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a two 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 employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards attain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more expansive training than the ADN. It is typically a four year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible 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 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 normally a 2 year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has received 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 vary from state to state, so make sure to get in touch with the Iowa board of nursing for any state requirements.
There are principally two academic credentials offered that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest period of time, commonly about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The next alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and usually require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, along with supplying a higher credential and more extensive training, 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 Iowa approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the core curriculum 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 attain a college degree. CNA education can be obtained at Wheatland IA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to receive at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal amount of instruction required and each state has its own requirements. So it’s necessary to make certain that the program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but additionally those for Iowa 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 course is state certified. Along with the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be other prerequisites as well.
Things to Ask Nursing Degree Programs
Now that you have decided on which nursing program to pursue, and whether to attend your classes on campus near Wheatland IA or on the internet, you can utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within Iowa and the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a manageable list. As we already discussed, the site of the school along with the price of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two points that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection compares to the field.
- 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. Besides helping make sure that you get an excellent education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not provided in Wheatland IA for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Many states require a certain 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 provides an excellent education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Iowa or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating services to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Additionally, contact the Iowa school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Wheatland IA 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 colleges 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 dissatisfied 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 Wheatland IA medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire 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. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing too. Check if the schools have associations with Wheatland IA hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.
Online Nursing Programs
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is becoming a more preferred way to receive training and acquire a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specific number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating solution to finding the free time to attend school for some Wheatland IA students. Regarding tuition, many online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your work and family commitments have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Wheatland IA?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Wheatland Iowa 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.
Wheatland was platted in 1858 under the leadership of John Bennett. The town was named for President James Buchanan's estate Wheatland in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. The entire township (Spring Rock) had a white population of only 101 in 1850, but that number rose to 756 in 1860. A significant body of early settlers all came from the village of Wunderthausen in central Germany. The Germans founded the first church in town in 1857 with a Presbyterian affiliation. This relationship was dissolved in 1861 with the incorporation of St. Paul's German Reformed Church (now St. Paul's United Church of Christ). The First Presbyterian Church was organized in 1858, though no longer functions. Wheatland was legally incorporated on July 13, 1869.
As of the census of 2010, there were 764 people, 294 households, and 197 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,252.5 inhabitants per square mile (483.6/km2). There were 317 housing units at an average density of 519.7 per square mile (200.7/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 98.7% White, 0.3% African American, 0.7% Native American, 0.1% Asian, and 0.3% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.7% of the population.
There were 294 households of which 34.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 48.0% were married couples living together, 12.2% had a female householder with no husband present, 6.8% had a male householder with no wife present, and 33.0% were non-families. 27.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 14% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.47 and the average family size was 2.98.
Choose the Right Nursing College near Wheatland IA
Picking the ideal registered nursing school is probably the most crucial first step to starting a new career in the medical care field. There are a number of aspects that you must consider when selecting a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have pointed out within this content, it is important that you select an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the medical community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Wheatland IA.
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