How to Select a Nursing School in Strawberry Point Iowa
Locating the best nursing program near Strawberry Point IA may seem like a difficult undertaking, especially if you have no idea what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must acquire the proper education and training to become licensed. So it is essential that you study and determine the qualifications of each school you are contemplating before enrolling in your final selection. Unfortunately, too many potential students base their decision solely on the price of tuition and the distance of the school. Picking the least costly college or the one that is local to your residence is undoubtedly not the best way to select a nursing program. There are several crucial additional aspects to investigate before you determine where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first go over what the job of a registered nurse is in our health system, along with the nursing degree options that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the Strawberry Point IA medical care delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, namely hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary duty 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 in addition to where they work. A few of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Overseeing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and commonly work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services in Strawberry Point IA, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There are several degree options offered to become a registered nurse in Strawberry Point IA. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can obtain a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or advance to obtain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program offered by Iowa community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards obtain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is generally a four year program offered at Iowa colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified 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 progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is commonly a two year program after attaining the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner in Strawberry Point IA or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has attained one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) so as to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so be sure to check with the Iowa board of nursing for any state requirements.
LVN and LPN Programs
There are basically two academic credentials offered that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN in Strawberry Point IA. The one that may be finished in the shortest time period, typically about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The next option is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and usually require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, aside from offering a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you pursue, it should be Iowa approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the course of study effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Strawberry Point IA area. The length 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 obtain at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of training directed and that every state has its specific requirements. So it’s crucial to make certain that the program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to check with the health or nursing board for Iowa to make sure that the training is state certified. In addition to the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be other prerequisites as well.
Online Nursing Schools
Enrolling in nursing programs online is growing into a more in demand way to obtain training and acquire a nursing degree in Iowa. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online in your Strawberry Point IA home, this alternative may be a more accommodating approach to finding the time to attend school for many students. Pertaining to tuition, some online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus options. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can 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. Therefore if your job and family obligations have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Schools
Once you have selected which nursing program to enroll in, along with if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within Iowa and the United States. So it is important 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 Strawberry Point IA as well as the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the first two things that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick measures up 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 ensure that you obtain a premium education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools near Strawberry Point IA.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Strawberry Point IA area school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Iowa or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Check internet rating companies to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Additionally, check with the Iowa school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some regional Strawberry Point IA 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 dissatisfied 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 good reputation within the Strawberry Point IA medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students gain employment.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all Strawberry Point IA area nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing as well. Check if the schools have associations with community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Pick the Right RN Course near Strawberry Point IA
Picking the right registered nursing college is potentially the most critical first step to beginning a new career in the medical care field. There are numerous aspects that you must think about when picking a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have highlighted within this content, it is critical that you select an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the medical 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 ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Strawberry Point IA.
Why Did You Choose to Be a Registered Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing position, it's helpful to consider questions you may be asked. Among the things that hiring managers typically ask nursing applicants is "What made you pick nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to uncover is not only the private reasons you might have for being a registered nurse, but also what characteristics and talents you have that make you exceptional at what you do. You will likely be asked questions relating specifically to nursing, as well as a significant number of standard interview questions, so you should organize a number of ideas about how you would like to respond to them. Given that there are so many factors that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this fundamental question in a number of ways. When formulating an answer, attempt to include the reasons the profession interests you as well as the strengths you possess that make you an exceptional nurse and the ideal choice for the job. Don't try to memorize a response, but jot down several concepts and anecdotes that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Reading through sample responses can assist you to formulate your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the recruiter.
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