How to Choose a Nursing Program in Albion Indiana
Choosing the right nursing college near Albion IN may seem like a difficult project, especially if you aren’t sure what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is essential that you study and assess the qualifications of each college you are contemplating before enrolling in your final selection. Regrettably, too many prospective students base their selection solely on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Going with the least costly college or the one that is closest to your home is undoubtedly not the most ideal way to choose a nursing program. There are various key additional considerations to investigate before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first discuss what the role of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, together with the nursing degree alternatives that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the Albion IN medical care delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, such as hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary job is to aid doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization along with where they work. A few of the duties of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Monitoring patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more complex job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and commonly work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services in Albion IN, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There is more than one degree option available to become a registered nurse in Albion IN. 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 two years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief explanations of the nursing degrees that are available.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program made available by Indiana community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards achieve a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more extensive training than the ADN. It is normally a four year program offered at Indiana 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 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 two year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner in Albion IN or concentrate 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) to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so be sure to contact the Indiana board of nursing for any state mandates.
LPN and LVN Programs
There are principally two scholastic accreditations available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN in Albion IN. The one that can be concluded in the shortest period of time, usually about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The second option is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to supplying a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be Indiana approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the syllabus properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA instruction can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Albion IN area. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from just one to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to have at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum amount of instruction mandated and each state has its own prerequisites. So it’s essential to make certain 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 tip is to contact the health or nursing board for Indiana to make sure that the training course is state approved. Along with the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be other requirements as well.
Nursing Online Degrees
Enrolling in nursing programs online is becoming a more in demand way to obtain training and earn a nursing degree in Indiana. Many schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specified amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online in your Albion IN home, this method may be a more practical solution to finding the time to attend classes for many students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, 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. So if your job and family responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Programs
Once you have decided on which nursing program to pursue, and if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Indiana and the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier pointed out, the location of the school relative to Albion IN along with the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares 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. Besides helping make sure that you get a premium education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided for non-accredited schools near Albion IN.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Albion IN area school you are attending not only delivers an excellent education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Indiana or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Visit online rating services 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 Indiana school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some regional Albion IN 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 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 unhappy 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 favorable reputation within the Albion IN medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students attain a position.
Internship Programs. The best way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all Albion IN area nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Choose the Right RN Program near Albion IN
Deciding on the right registered nursing program is potentially the most critical first step to launching a new career in the health care industry. There are a number of factors that you should take into account when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have emphasized in this content, it is essential that you select an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Albion IN.
Why Did You Decide to Become a Registered Nurse?When prepping to interview for a nursing job, it's important to consider questions you might be asked. Among the questions that interviewers often ask nursing applicants is "What compelled you to choose nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to learn is not merely the personal reasons you might have for becoming a RN, but additionally what qualities and abilities you have that make you exceptional at your profession. You will likely be asked questions pertaining specifically to nursing, in addition to a significant number of general interview questions, so you need to organize a number of approaches about how you want to answer them. Since there are numerous variables that go into choosing a career, you can respond to this primary question in a number of ways. When preparing an answer, try to include the reasons the work interests you along with the abilities you possess that make you an outstanding nurse and the leading candidate for the job. Don't try to memorize an answer, but write down several concepts and talking points that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Going over sample answers can help you to develop your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to include to wow the interviewer.
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