How to Pick a Nursing Program in Galena Missouri
Selecting the best nursing college near Galena MO may feel like a complex project, especially if you have no idea what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already know, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you need to obtain the necessary education and training to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you research and evaluate the qualifications of each school you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate selection. The fact is, too many potential students base their selection exclusively on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Selecting the least expensive program or the one that is nearest to your house is probably not the most ideal way to choose a nursing program. There are many crucial additional things to investigate before you decide where to attend classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first review what the function of a registered nurse is in our medical system, together with the nursing degree options that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the Galena MO medical care delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, such as hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general duty 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 along with where they work. A few of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Observing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Maintaining health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more high level job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an 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 Galena MO, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
There are multiple degrees offered to become a registered nurse in Galena MO. 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 advance to achieve a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are offered.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a two year program offered by Missouri community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards attain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more extensive training than the ADN. It is normally a 4 year program offered at Missouri colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their prior 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 employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is normally a 2 year program after acquiring the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner in Galena MO or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has acquired one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to contact the Missouri board of nursing for any state mandates.
LVN and LPN Courses
There are basically two scholastic credentials offered that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN in Galena MO. The one that may be concluded in the shortest amount of time, commonly about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The second choice is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and normally require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, along with offering a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you seek, it needs to be Missouri approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the syllabus effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to earn a college degree. CNA training can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Galena MO area. The length of the instruction can take anywhere from just one to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to receive at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal period of training required and that every state has its own requirements. So it’s crucial to make certain that the course you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Missouri to make certain that the education is state certified. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be additional requirements as well.
Nursing Online Degrees
Attending nursing programs online is becoming a more preferred way to get training and attain a nursing degree in Missouri. Many schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs require a specified number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online in your Galena MO home, this method may be a more convenient solution to finding the free time to attend classes for many students. Concerning tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your work and household responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Schools
Now that you have decided on which nursing program to pursue, and whether to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Missouri and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to select from so that you will have a workable list. As we previously mentioned, the site of the school relative to Galena MO along with the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before 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 agency. Besides helping confirm that you obtain a quality education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided for non-accredited schools near Galena MO.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses are different 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 completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Galena MO area school you are enrolled in not only provides an excellent education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Missouri 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. Also, check with the Missouri school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some nearby Galena MO 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 schools 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 imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the Galena MO healthcare 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 environment. Almost all Galena MO area nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have associations with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Enroll in the Right RN College near Galena MO
Selecting the right registered nursing program is potentially the most critical first step to launching a new career in the health care field. There are numerous aspects that you must consider when picking a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have emphasized within this article, it is critical that you select an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent 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 ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Galena MO.
Why Did You Choose to Become an RN?When getting ready to interview for a nursing position, it's helpful to consider questions you may be asked. One of the things that interviewers frequently ask nursing candidates is "What made you select nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is attempting to learn is not only the private reasons you might have for becoming a registered nurse, but additionally what characteristics and abilities you possess that make you outstanding at what you do. You will likely be asked questions pertaining primarily to nursing, as well as a significant number of general interview questions, so you must ready some approaches about how you want to address them. Because there are several factors that go into selecting a career, you can address this primary question in a multitude of ways. When preparing an answer, aim to include the reasons the work interests you along with the strengths you have that make you an exceptional nurse and the perfiect choice for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but jot down several concepts and anecdotes that pertain to your personal experiences and strengths. Going over sample answers can help you to prepare your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to include to impress the interviewer.
Some Other Cities in Missouri