How to Select a Nursing School near Little Compton Rhode Island
Finding the best nursing school near Little Compton RI may seem like a difficult endeavor, especially if you aren’t sure what to search 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 essential that you study and determine the qualifications of each program you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Unfortunately, too many prospective students base their decision entirely on the price of tuition and the proximity of the school. Going with the least costly school or the one that is local to your house is no doubt not the most reliable way to choose a nursing program. There are many key additional factors to check out before you decide where to attend classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first review what the role of a registered nurse is in our health system, together with the nursing degree choices that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, including Little Compton RI hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic function is to aid doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the particular duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or area of expertise in addition to where they work. A portion of the duties of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Monitoring patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and normally 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 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 acquire a qualifying degree in just two years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Little Compton RI area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a 2 year program offered by community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize 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 eligible 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 advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is normally a 2 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.
When a graduating student has earned one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing change from state to state, so make sure to check with the Rhode Island board of nursing for any state requirements.
LPN and LVN Certificates and Degrees
There are generally two scholastic credentials available that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be concluded in the shortest amount of time, typically about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The next choice is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, along with offering 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 type of credential you seek, it needs to be Rhode Island approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the course of study properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to earn a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at Little Compton RI area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training can take anywhere from 1 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 instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of training required and that every state has its own prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make sure that the program you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but also those for Rhode Island 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 certified. As well as the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be additional requirements as well.
Things to Ask Nursing Colleges
Once you have decided on which nursing program to enroll in, as well as if to attend your classes on campus near Little Compton RI or on the internet, you can use the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Rhode Island and the United States. So it is essential to decrease the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier discussed, the site of the school and the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two things that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate selection, 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 along with the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Aside from helping ensure that you get a premium education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered in Little Compton RI for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an excellent education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Rhode Island or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Also, contact the Rhode Island school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Little Compton RI healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their assessments 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 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 substantiate that the school has a favorable reputation within the Little Compton RI medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Check if the schools have associations with Little Compton RI hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.
Online Nursing Schools
Attending nursing colleges online is becoming a more popular way to get instruction and earn a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specific number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more accommodating solution to finding the free time to attend college for many Little Compton RI students. Pertaining to tuition, some online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more easily affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and family responsibilities have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Attending a Nursing School near Little Compton RI?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Little Compton Rhode Island 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.
Little Compton, Rhode Island
Little Compton was originally inhabited by the Sakonnet Indians. The name has been interpreted in a variety of ways including "where the water pours forth". The first Colonial settlers in Little Compton were from Duxbury, Massachusetts in the Plymouth Colony, which granted them their charter. They divided the land into lots of standard sizes and began settling there. Among these 32 original proprietors was Colonel Benjamin Church, who was well known for his role in the late 17th-century conflicts with surrounding Indian tribes, notably the Narragansetts and Wampanoags. In 1675, Church built his homestead in Little Compton, just prior to King Philip's War. Today, a plaque on the side of West Main Road gives the location of his original homestead.
In 1682, Sakonnet was incorporated by the Plymouth Colony and renamed Little Compton, possibly in reference to Little Compton, Warwickshire, England. By 1747, Little Compton secured its own royal decree and was annexed to Newport County as a part of Rhode Island along with Tiverton and Bristol. All probate and land records prior to 1746 can be found in Taunton and New Bedford, Massachusetts because Little Compton was once part of the Plymouth Colony.
Sites of historic interest in Little Compton include the Wilbor House, built in 1692 by Samuel Wilbore and now the home of the Little Compton Historical Society. The entire town commons is also on the National Register of Historic Places. There are about 57 historic cemeteries in the town. Benjamin Church and his family are buried in the Little Compton Commons cemetery, as is Elizabeth Pabodie, the eldest daughter of John Alden and Priscilla Mullins of Mayflower fame. The stones in the cemetery reflect a style of carving similar to that found both in Newport and in Boston during the same time period.
Select the Right Nursing School near Little Compton RI
Picking the right registered nursing program is perhaps the most crucial first step to launching a new career in the healthcare industry. There are numerous factors that you need to take into account when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and economic status. As we have emphasized within this content, it is essential that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have excellent reputations within the health care community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Little Compton RI.
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