How to Enroll In a Nursing College near Rayville Louisiana
Searching for the best nursing school near Rayville LA may seem like a complex undertaking, especially if you aren’t sure what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, to practice as a registered nurse, you need to acquire the appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and evaluate the qualifications of each college you are thinking about before enrolling in your ultimate choice. The fact is, too many prospective students base their decision solely on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Selecting the least costly school or the one that is local to your home is most likely not the most reliable way to decide on a nursing program. There are several important additional considerations to explore before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first discuss what the role of a registered nurse is in our medical system, along with the nursing degree alternatives that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, such as Rayville LA hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic duty is to aid doctors in the care of their patients. However, the particular duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise as well as where they work. A portion of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Monitoring patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for 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 routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There are several degree options available 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 obtain a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or advance to attain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Rayville LA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a two year program made available by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards obtain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more in depth training than the ADN. It is normally 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 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 2 year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has obtained one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) so as to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing change from state to state, so make sure to contact the Louisiana board of nursing for any state mandates.
There are principally two academic accreditations offered that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be concluded in the shortest amount of time, usually about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma program. The 2nd choice is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you pursue, it should be Louisiana approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the syllabus effectively 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 need to earn a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at Rayville LA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training can take anywhere from one to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to receive at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum amount of training required and each state has its specific requirements. So it’s important to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but likewise those for Louisiana or the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for your state to make sure that the education is state certified. In addition to the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be additional prerequisites as well.
Questions to Ask Nursing Schools
Now that you have selected which nursing degree to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus near Rayville LA or on the web, you can use the following pointers to begin narrowing down your options. As you no doubt realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Louisiana and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we already mentioned, the location of the school as well as the cost of tuition are probably going to be the primary two factors that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final selection, use the following questions to see how your pick 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. In addition to helping confirm that you obtain a quality education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not provided in Rayville LA for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses are different 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. Certain states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are enrolled in not only provides an excellent education, but also readies you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Louisiana or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Additionally, check with the Louisiana school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Rayville LA 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 complete 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 verify that the school has a good reputation within the Rayville LA medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students attain a position.
- Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing also. Check if the schools have associations with Rayville LA hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Nursing Online Classes
Attending nursing schools online is becoming a more popular way to obtain instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more practical answer to finding the free time to attend classes for many Rayville LA students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus options. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may 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. And so if your work and family responsibilities have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Rayville LA?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Rayville Louisiana 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.
Rayville is a town in and the parish seat of Richland Parish in northeastern Louisiana, United States. The population, which is 69 percent African American, was 4,234 at the 2000 census, but it had declined by nearly 13 percent in 2010 to 3,695.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 2.3 square miles (5.9 km²), of which 2.2 square miles (5.8 km²) is land and 0.04 square mile (0.1 km²) (1.32%) is water.
As of the census of 2000, there were 4,234 people, 1,504 households, and 1,004 families residing in the town. The population density was 1,880.1 people per square mile (726.6/km²). There were 1,629 housing units at an average density of 723.4 per square mile (279.5/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 31.44% White, 67.26% African American, 0.28% Native American, 0.17% Asian, 0.12% from other races, and 0.73% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.50% of the population.
Select the Right Nursing Program near Rayville LA
Deciding on the right registered nursing degree program is probably the most crucial first step to beginning a new career in the healthcare industry. There are various factors that you need to take into account when choosing a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have stressed within this article, it is important that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Rayville LA.
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