How to Pick a Nursing Program in Indian Wells California
Finding the best nursing school near Indian Wells CA may feel like a complex project, 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 receive the appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you research and measure the qualifications of each college you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Unfortunately, too many future students base their determination entirely on the price of tuition and the proximity of the school. Going with the least costly school or the one that is closest to your house is undoubtedly not the best way to decide on a nursing program. There are various crucial additional aspects to explore before you determine where to enroll in classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first discuss what the function of a registered nurse is in our medical system, together with the nursing degree options that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the Indian Wells CA healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical settings, including hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general role 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 as well as where they work. A portion of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Monitoring patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more complex job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and often work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services in Indian Wells CA, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are multiple degrees to choose from to become a registered nurse in Indian Wells CA. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can obtain a qualifying degree in as little as two years, or continue on to obtain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are available.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a two year program offered by California community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and later achieve a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more extensive training than the ADN. It is normally a 4 year program offered at California colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might wish 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 usually a two year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner in Indian Wells CA 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) in order to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so be sure to contact the California board of nursing for any state mandates.
There are generally two academic accreditations available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN in Indian Wells CA. The one that may be completed in the shortest time frame, commonly about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The other alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to offering a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you pursue, it should be California approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants 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 many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to earn a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Indian Wells CA area. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from just one 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 have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction required and every state has its specific requirements. So it’s necessary to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to check with the health or nursing board for California to make certain that the training course is state approved. As well as 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.
Online Nursing Classes
Attending nursing colleges online is growing into a more preferred way to obtain instruction and attain a nursing degree in California. Many schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online in your Indian Wells CA home, this option may be a more accommodating answer to finding the free time to attend college for some students. Pertaining to tuition, some online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your job and family obligations have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Courses
Once you have determined which nursing degree to pursue, along with whether to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you probably realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges throughout California and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we earlier mentioned, the site of the school relative to Indian Wells CA and the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the first two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick 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 confirm that you obtain a premium education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited schools near Indian Wells CA.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria 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 specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Indian Wells CA area school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also preps you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for California or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Look at online rating companies to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Also, contact the California school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some local Indian Wells CA healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgements are of the schools as well.
Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the RN programs you are looking at 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 important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the Indian Wells CA medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students gain a position.
Internship Programs. The best way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all Indian Wells CA area nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Choose the Right RN School near Indian Wells CA
Choosing the ideal registered nursing program is arguably the most important phase to beginning a new career in the health care industry. There are a number of variables that you need to consider when deciding on a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, obligations, and economic situation. As we have stressed within this content, it is critical that you select an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to pick 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 practicing nurse in Indian Wells CA.
Why Did You Desire to Become an RN?When prepping to interview for a nursing position, it's advantageous to consider questions you could be asked. Among the things that recruiters typically ask nursing applicants is "What compelled you to choose nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to learn is not only the personal reasons you may have for being a registered nurse, but also what characteristics and skills you have that make you exceptional at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining primarily to nursing, along with a certain number of general interview questions, so you must prepare several strategies about how you would like to answer them. Given that there are so many factors that go into selecting a career, you can answer this fundamental question in a number of ways. When readying an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession interests you along with the strengths you possess that make you an outstanding nurse and the best choice for the position. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but write down a few concepts and anecdotes that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Going over sample answers can assist you to develop your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the interviewer.
Some Other Cities in California