How to Find the Right Nursing School in Churchville Maryland
Finding the best nursing program near Churchville MD may feel like a complicated undertaking, particularly 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 must acquire the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is essential that you study and measure the qualifications of each program you are contemplating before enrolling in your final choice. Unfortunately, too many future students base their decision solely on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Picking the least expensive college or the one that is nearest to your home is most likely not the best way to decide on a nursing program. There are various key additional things to check out before you determine where to enroll in classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first review what the function of a registered nurse is in our health system, together with the nursing degree choices that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the Churchville MD medical delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, such as hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary role is to assist doctors in the care of their patients. However, the specific duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization as well as where they work. A portion of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Monitoring patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and normally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services in Churchville MD, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
There are multiple degrees offered to become a registered nurse in Churchville MD. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can obtain a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or continue on to obtain 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 normally a two year program made available by Maryland community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards earn a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more expansive training than the ADN. It is usually a 4 year program offered at Maryland colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their past 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 receiving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner in Churchville MD or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has received 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. Other requirements for licensing change from state to state, so be sure to check with the Maryland board of nursing for any state mandates.
LPN and LVN Training
There are essentially two academic credentials offered that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN in Churchville MD. The one that may be completed in the shortest period of time, generally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The second alternative is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, aside from providing a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you pursue, it needs to be Maryland 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 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 have to earn a college degree. CNA education can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Churchville MD area. The duration of the training can take anywhere from one to three months, leading to 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 have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum period of instruction mandated and every state has its own requirements. So it’s important to make sure 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 contact the health or nursing board for Maryland to make certain that the training is state certified. In addition to the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be additional requirements as well.
Nursing Online Schools
Attending nursing colleges online is growing into a more popular way to receive instruction and acquire a nursing degree in Maryland. Some schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online in your Churchville MD home, this alternative may be a more practical solution to finding the time to attend school for some students. Regarding tuition, many online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, helping to make education more affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your job and household responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Degree Programs
Once you have determined which nursing degree to enroll in, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you probably realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout Maryland and the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we previously pointed out, the location of the school relative to Churchville MD along with the cost of tuition are probably going to be the primary two points that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to see how your pick measures up to the other schools.
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. Besides helping confirm that you obtain a premium education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools near Churchville MD.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Churchville MD area school you are attending not only provides a top-notch education, but also prepares you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Maryland or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Check internet rating services to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Also, check with the Maryland school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some local Churchville MD 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 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 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 Churchville MD healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students attain employment.
Internship Programs. The best way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all Churchville MD area nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing too. Check if the schools have associations with local hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Enroll in the Right RN Degree near Churchville MD
Enrolling in the right registered nursing school is arguably the most crucial first step to launching a new career in the medical care field. There are a number of aspects that you must think about when choosing a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have emphasized within this content, it is important that you choose an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a licensed RN in Churchville MD.
Why Did You Want to Be an RN?When getting ready to interview for a nursing job, it's a good idea to reflect on questions you might be asked. One of the things that recruiters frequently ask nursing candidates is "What compelled you to choose nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to learn is not merely the personal reasons you may have for becoming a registered nurse, but additionally what characteristics and abilities you possess that make you good at what you do. You will probably be asked questions pertaining exclusively to nursing, as well as a significant number of standard interview questions, so you should ready several ideas about how you would like to address them. Because there are numerous factors that go into choosing a career, you can answer this primary question in a variety of ways. When readying an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession appeals to you along with the strengths you possess that make you an exceptional nurse and the best candidate for the job. Don't try to memorize a response, but jot down a few concepts and anecdotes that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Going over sample responses can help you to develop your own thoughts, and provide ideas of what to include to wow the recruiter.
Some Other Cities in Maryland