How to Enroll In a Nursing School in Edgewater New Jersey
Locating the right nursing program near Edgewater NJ may seem like a complex endeavor, particularly if you aren’t sure what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already know, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the necessary education and training to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you research and measure the qualifications of each program you are thinking about before enrolling in your final choice. The fact is, too many prospective students base their selection entirely on the price of tuition and the proximity of the school. Selecting the least expensive school or the one that is local to your house is probably not the best way to decide on a nursing program. There are a number of crucial additional considerations to look into before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first look at what the function of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, as well as the nursing degree choices that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the Edgewater NJ medical delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical environments, including hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary job is to assist doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or area of expertise as well as where they work. A portion of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Observing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing 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 example, must hold a Master’s Degree and typically work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services in Edgewater NJ, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are multiple degrees to choose from to become a registered nurse in Edgewater NJ. And to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or continue on to earn a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are offered.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program made available by New Jersey community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards earn a higher 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 New Jersey colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified 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 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 usually a 2 year program after acquiring the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner in Edgewater NJ or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has earned one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) in order to become licensed. Additional requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so be sure to contact the New Jersey board of nursing for any state mandates.
There are basically two academic credentials available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN in Edgewater NJ. The one that may be concluded in the shortest time frame, commonly about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The next alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, besides providing a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you pursue, it should be New Jersey approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the core curriculum properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most 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 training can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Edgewater NJ area. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from just one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required 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 minimal period of training directed and each state has its own requirements. So it’s necessary to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but likewise those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to contact the health or nursing board for New Jersey 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 can be other prerequisites as well.
Nursing Online Schools
Attending nursing programs online is emerging as a more popular way to receive instruction and attain a nursing degree in New Jersey. Many schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online in your Edgewater NJ home, this method may be a more accommodating solution to finding the time to attend school for many students. Concerning tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even other 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 like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your work and household responsibilities have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Degree Programs
Now that you have selected which nursing degree to pursue, along with whether to attend your classes on campus or online, you can use the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you no doubt are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within New Jersey and the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier discussed, the site of the school relative to Edgewater NJ and the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares 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. Aside from helping ensure that you obtain a premium education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided for non-accredited schools near Edgewater NJ.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) as well as 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 important that the Edgewater NJ area school you are enrolled in not only provides an exceptional education, but also preps you to meet the minimum licensing standards for New Jersey or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Check internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. In addition, get in touch with the New Jersey school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some regional Edgewater NJ 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 superb reputation within the Edgewater NJ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students attain employment.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all Edgewater NJ area nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with local hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Choose the Right RN Degree near Edgewater NJ
Choosing the ideal registered nursing program is perhaps the most critical phase to starting a new career in the health care industry. There are many aspects that you must consider when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, obligations, and financial situation. As we have emphasized within this content, it is critical that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to choose 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 RN in Edgewater NJ.
Why Did You Want to Become a Nurse?When prepping to interview for a nursing job, it's helpful to review questions you might be asked. One of the questions that interviewers frequently ask nursing prospects is "What compelled you to select nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to uncover is not merely the private reasons you might have for being a registered nurse, but additionally what characteristics and talents you possess that make you good at what you do. You will probably be asked questions relating specifically to nursing, as well as a significant number of typical interview questions, so you need to ready several approaches about how you want to answer them. Because there are numerous factors that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this primary question in a number of ways. When readying an answer, aim to include the reasons the work appeals to you in addition to the abilities you have that make you an exceptional nurse and the best choice for the job. Don't attempt to memorize a response, but write down several ideas and anecdotes that pertain to your personal experiences and strengths. Reading through sample answers can help you to develop your own concepts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to wow the interviewer.
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