How to Pick a Nursing School in Jeffersonville Indiana
Finding the best nursing school near Jeffersonville IN may seem like a challenging undertaking, especially if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you need to acquire the proper education and training to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and measure the qualifications of each program you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Regrettably, too many potential students base their selection exclusively on the price of tuition and the distance of the school. Going with the least costly program or the one that is closest to your house is undoubtedly not the best way to pick a nursing program. There are several important additional aspects to explore before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first go over what the function of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, together with the nursing degree options that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the Jeffersonville IN healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical settings, such as hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general function is to support doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or area of expertise along with where they work. Some of the functions of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Overseeing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Overseeing 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 accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and generally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services in Jeffersonville IN, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
There are multiple degrees available to become a registered nurse in Jeffersonville IN. And 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 advance to achieve a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are offered.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a 2 year program made available by Indiana community colleges. It prepares 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 subsequently attain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more in depth training than the ADN. It is commonly a 4 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 wish 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 2 year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner in Jeffersonville IN or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has attained 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 fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to contact the Indiana board of nursing for any state mandates.
LPN and LVN Courses
There are essentially two scholastic accreditations available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN in Jeffersonville IN. The one that may be completed in the shortest period of time, generally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The next 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 advantage of Associate Degrees, along with supplying a higher credential and more extensive instruction, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you seek, it should be Indiana approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the core curriculum properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA education can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Jeffersonville IN area. The length of the training can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within 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. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction mandated and that each state has its own prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make certain that the course you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but likewise 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 is state certified. Along with the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be additional prerequisites as well.
Nursing Online Degrees
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is growing into a more preferred way to obtain training and earn a nursing degree in Indiana. Certain schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs require 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 Jeffersonville IN home, this method may be a more accommodating approach to finding the free time to attend classes for many students. Concerning tuition, many online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even supplementary 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 such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your work and household commitments have left you with very little time to pursue 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 Colleges
Once you have decided on which nursing degree to enroll in, along with if to attend your classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your options. As you probably realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Indiana and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to select from so that you will have a workable list. As we already mentioned, the site of the school relative to Jeffersonville IN as well as the price of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two points that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection 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 recognized accrediting agency. Aside from helping make sure that you get a premium education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools near Jeffersonville IN.
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) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the Jeffersonville IN area school you are enrolled in not only provides a top-notch education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Indiana or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Check online rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Also, contact the Indiana school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some regional Jeffersonville IN 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 colleges you are considering 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 unhappy with the program and dropped out. It’s also essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the Jeffersonville IN medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain employment.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all Jeffersonville IN area nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Select the Right RN Degree near Jeffersonville IN
Deciding on the ideal registered nursing program is probably the most important step to launching a new career in the healthcare field. There are a number of variables that you need to take into account when choosing a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, obligations, and financial status. As we have pointed out within this content, it is critical that you choose an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the medical community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Jeffersonville IN.
Why Did You Want to Be an RN?When prepping to interview for a nursing position, it's a good idea to reflect on questions you might be asked. One of the questions that interviewers frequently ask nursing candidates is "What made you select nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to learn is not just the personal reasons you might have for becoming a nurse, but also what qualities and skills you possess that make you outstanding at your profession. You will likely be asked questions relating specifically to nursing, as well as a significant number of general interview questions, so you should organize a number of approaches about how you would like to address them. Because there are so many factors that go into choosing a career, you can address this fundamental question in a variety of ways. When readying an answer, aim to include the reasons the work appeals to you along with the abilities you possess that make you an excellent nurse and the best candidate for the position. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but take down a few concepts and topics that pertain to your personal strengths and experiences. Reading through sample responses can assist you to develop your own concepts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to impress the recruiter.
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