How to Find the Right Nursing College near Springfield Kentucky
Searching for the best nursing school near Springfield KY may seem like a complex 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 obtain the necessary education and training in order to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and assess the qualifications of each school you are thinking about before enrolling in your final selection. Regrettably, too many potential students base their determination exclusively on the price of tuition and the proximity of the school. Going with the least costly program or the one that is nearest to your house is probably not the best way to select a nursing program. There are several key additional considerations to explore before you make a decision where to attend classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first look at what the function of a registered nurse is in our medical system, along with the nursing degree alternatives that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, namely Springfield KY hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general function is to aid doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization in addition to where they work. A portion of the functions of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Overseeing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Maintaining health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more high level job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and typically 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.
There is more than one degree option to choose from 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 acquire a qualifying degree in just two years, or advance to achieve a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Springfield KY area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a two year program offered by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards obtain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more in depth 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 past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may desire 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 commonly a two year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program provides 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, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) in order to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so don’t forget to check with the Kentucky board of nursing for any state requirements.
LVN and LPN Programs
There are basically two academic accreditations offered that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be completed in the shortest period of time, typically about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The next alternative is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and commonly require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, along with supplying a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you pursue, it needs to be Kentucky approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the course of study effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at Springfield KY area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The length of the training program can take anywhere from 1 to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to obtain 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 instruction mandated and that each state has its own requirements. So it’s important to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but also those for Kentucky or the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for your state to make certain 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 can be other prerequisites as well.
What to Ask Nursing Programs
Now that you have determined which nursing degree to enroll in, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus near Springfield KY or on the web, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you no doubt are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within Kentucky and the United States. So it is important 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 along with the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two factors that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate selection, 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 acknowledged accrediting organization. Aside from helping confirm that you obtain a premium education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided in Springfield KY for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are attending not only delivers an outstanding education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Kentucky or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check internet rating services to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Also, check with the Kentucky school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Springfield KY 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 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 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 confirm that the school has a favorable reputation within the Springfield KY medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships 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 environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing as well. Ask if the schools have associations with Springfield KY hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.
Nursing Online Classes
Attending nursing programs online is emerging as a more preferred way to get training and acquire a nursing degree. Some schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs require a certain amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient answer to finding the time to attend school for many Springfield KY students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, 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. Therefore if your work and family commitments have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Springfield KY?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Springfield Kentucky 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.
Springfield, noted by filmmakers as Hollywood South, is the site of Kentucky’s first and only movie sound stage. The Springfield Bonded Film Complex came about as a part of the burgeoning film industry in Kentucky, ushered in by the state’s film tax credit. This tax credit has the distinction as the most generous in the nation.
Springfield is located at 37°41′11″N 85°13′19″W / 37.68639°N 85.22194°W / 37.68639; -85.22194 (37.686328, -85.221955). Springfield is located approximately 15 miles east of Bardstown, 10 miles north of Lebanon, and 17 miles west of Danville.
As of the census of 2000, there were 2,634 people, 1,166 households, and 711 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,048.5 per square mile (404.8/km2). There were 1,239 housing units at an average density of 493.2/sq mi (190.4/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 74.68% White, 22.40% African American, 0.53% Asian, 0.80% from other races, and 1.59% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.25% of the population.
Select the Right Nursing College near Springfield KY
Deciding on the ideal registered nursing school is probably the most crucial step to beginning a new career in the health care industry. There are many 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 financial status. As we have pointed out in this content, it is critical that you pick an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the medical community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Springfield KY.
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Doctor of Nursing Practice | College of Nursing - University of Kentucky
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Kentucky Programs of Nursing - Kentucky Board of Nursing
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Northern Kentucky University Online
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