How to Pick a Nursing School in Dagsboro Delaware
Finding the best nursing school near Dagsboro DE may seem like a challenging project, especially if you don’t know what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you must acquire the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is essential that you research and determine the qualifications of each college you are contemplating before enrolling in your final choice. The fact is, too many prospective students base their determination entirely on the cost of tuition and the distance of the school. Going with the least costly program or the one that is nearest to your home is most likely not the most reliable way to pick a nursing program. There are a number of key additional factors to check out before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first cover what the role of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, along with the nursing degree choices that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the Dagsboro DE medical care delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, such as hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general duty is to assist doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise in addition to where they work. A few of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Observing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more advanced job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and generally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services in Dagsboro DE, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There are several degree options to choose from to become a registered nurse in Dagsboro DE. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can earn a qualifying degree in just two years, or advance to obtain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a 2 year program made available by Delaware community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards attain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more extensive training than the ADN. It is generally a four year program offered at Delaware colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might want 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 generally a two year program after acquiring the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner in Dagsboro DE or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once 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. Other requirements for licensing change from state to state, so don’t forget to get in touch with the Delaware board of nursing for any state requirements.
LPN and LVN Training
There are essentially two academic credentials available that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN in Dagsboro DE. The one that may be completed in the shortest time frame, generally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The other choice is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and typically require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you seek, it should be Delaware approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some 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.
Unlike other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Dagsboro DE area. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have 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 minimum period of instruction mandated and each state has its own requirements. So it’s necessary to make certain that the course you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Delaware to make certain that the training 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 may be other requirements as well.
Online Nursing Programs
Attending nursing programs online is becoming a more popular way to receive instruction and acquire a nursing degree in Delaware. Certain schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online in your Dagsboro DE home, this option may be a more convenient solution to finding the time to attend school for some students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus alternatives. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more easily 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 job and family obligations have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Colleges
Now that you have selected which nursing degree to pursue, along with if to attend your classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following checklist to start narrowing down your choices. As you probably are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Delaware and the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we already discussed, the site of the school relative to Dagsboro DE along with the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the first 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 pick measures up 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 acknowledged accrediting agency. In addition to helping confirm that you obtain an excellent education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered for non-accredited schools near Dagsboro DE.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria 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. Many states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the Dagsboro DE area school you are attending not only provides an excellent education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Delaware or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Look at internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. In addition, get in touch with the Delaware school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some local Dagsboro DE 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 looking at 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 confirm that the school has a favorable reputation within the Dagsboro DE healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students attain a position.
Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all Dagsboro DE area nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Find out if the schools have associations with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Select the Right RN Program near Dagsboro DE
Enrolling in the right registered nursing school is arguably the most critical first step to beginning a new career in the medical care industry. There are various factors that you need to consider when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, obligations, and financial situation. 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 medical community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in Dagsboro DE.
Why Did You Want to Be an RN?When prepping to interview for a nursing job, it's helpful to consider questions you might be asked. One of the things that interviewers frequently ask nursing prospects is "What compelled you to select nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to learn is not just the personal reasons you might have for being a nurse, but also what qualities and abilities you possess that make you outstanding at your profession. You will likely be asked questions pertaining primarily to nursing, as well as a certain number of general interview questions, so you should prepare several strategies about how you want to address them. Since there are several variables that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this primary question in a multitude of ways. When readying an answer, attempt to include the reasons the profession appeals to you in addition to the strengths you possess that make you an excellent nurse and the ideal choice for the position. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but write down some ideas and anecdotes that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample responses can assist you to prepare your own concepts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the interviewer.
Some Other Cities in Delaware