RN Nursing Programs in Palos Hills IL 60465

How to Select a Nursing School in Palos Hills Illinois

Palos Hills IL Registered NurseFinding the right nursing program near Palos Hills IL may seem like a challenging project, especially if you aren’t sure what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already know, to practice as a registered nurse, you need to obtain the proper education and training to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and determine the qualifications of each college you are thinking about before enrolling in your final choice. The fact is, too many prospective students base their decision entirely on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Choosing the least expensive program or the one that is local to your house is probably not the best way to pick a nursing program. There are several crucial additional things to explore before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first go over what the role of a registered nurse is in our medical system, along with the nursing degree alternatives that are available.

Registered Nurse Job Functions

Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the Palos Hills IL healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, namely hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic job is to help doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the specific duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise as well as where they work. A few of the functions of an RN may include:

  • Administering medications
  • Observing patients
  • Performing physical examinations
  • Coordinating care
  • Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
  • Educating patients and their families
  • Taking care of health records and charts

Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more high level job duties and responsibilities. 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 in Palos Hills IL, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.

Nursing Degrees

There is more than one degree option available to become a registered nurse in Palos Hills IL. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can earn a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or advance to achieve a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered.

  • Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a two year program offered by Illinois community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare facilities such as 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 comprehensive training than the ADN. It is typically a four year program offered at Illinois colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed 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 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 typically a two year program after acquiring the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner in Palos Hills IL or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.

After a graduating student has acquired one of the above degrees, he or she 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 make sure to check with the Illinois board of nursing for any state mandates.

LPN and LVN Programs

RN assisting surgeon in Palos Hills ILThere are basically two academic credentials available that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN in Palos Hills IL. The one that can be completed in the shortest time frame, generally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The next alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and usually require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, besides offering a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be Illinois approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the course of study properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.

CNA Diplomas

In contrast to many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA training can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Palos Hills IL area. The length of the training program can take anywhere from just one to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to obtain at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum period of training required and each state has its own prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Illinois to make sure that the education is state approved. In addition to the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be other prerequisites as well.

Nursing Online Programs

attending nursing school online in Palos Hills ILAttending nursing programs online is becoming a more popular way to obtain instruction and earn a nursing degree in Illinois. Certain schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs require a certain number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online in your Palos Hills IL home, this method may be a more accommodating approach to finding the time to attend classes for many students. Regarding tuition, many online degree programs are cheaper 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 numerous online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your work and family responsibilities have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing training program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.

What to Ask Nurse Degree Programs

Now that you have determined which nursing program to enroll in, and whether to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within Illinois and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we earlier pointed out, the location of the school relative to Palos Hills IL and the expense of tuition are probably 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 before making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares to the other programs.

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 organization. In addition to helping verify that you get a premium education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered for non-accredited schools near Palos Hills IL.

Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) in addition to 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 imperative that the Palos Hills IL area school you are attending not only provides an outstanding education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Illinois or the state where you will be practicing.

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 also. Also, get in touch with the Illinois school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some local Palos Hills IL 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 schools 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 substantiate that the school has a good reputation within the Palos Hills IL medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students obtain employment.

Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all Palos Hills IL area nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing too. Check if the schools have a working relationship with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.

Pick the Right RN Degree near Palos Hills IL

Picking the right registered nursing school is arguably the most crucial phase to beginning a new career in the health care field. There are a number of aspects that you should consider when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, obligations, and financial status. As we have highlighted within this post, it is essential that you pick an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to pick from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in Palos Hills IL.

Why Did You Choose to Become a Registered Nurse?

When prepping to interview for a nursing job, it's important to review questions you might be asked. Among the questions that recruiters frequently ask nursing applicants is "What made you decide on nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is attempting to discover is not merely the personal reasons you may have for becoming a registered nurse, but additionally what attributes and skills you possess that make you outstanding at your profession. You will probably be asked questions relating specifically to nursing, as well as a significant number of general interview questions, so you must prepare some approaches about how you would like to respond to them. Considering there are so many factors that go into choosing a career, you can answer this fundamental question in a variety of ways. When preparing an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession interests you in addition to the strengths you possess that make you an outstanding nurse and the best choice for the job. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but write down some concepts and topics that relate to your personal strengths and experiences. Reviewing sample responses can help you to prepare your own thoughts, and provide ideas of what to include to wow the recruiter.

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