How to Select a Nursing Program in Highlands New Jersey
Choosing the right nursing college near Highlands NJ may feel like a difficult undertaking, especially if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, to practice as a registered nurse, you need to acquire the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and measure the qualifications of each program you are thinking about before enrolling in your final selection. The fact is, too many future students base their determination exclusively on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Picking the least costly school or the one that is local to your residence is probably not the most reliable way to pick a nursing program. There are many important additional factors to check into before you decide 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 available.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the Highlands NJ medical care delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, including hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic job is to help doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise in addition to where they work. Some of the functions of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Monitoring patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more advanced job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and commonly work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services in Highlands NJ, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
There is more than one degree option available to become a registered nurse in Highlands NJ. And in order to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are available.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program offered by New Jersey community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently obtain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is generally a four year program offered at New Jersey colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may 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 generally a 2 year program after acquiring the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner in Highlands NJ or focus on administration, management or teaching.
When 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) so as to become licensed. Other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to get in touch with the New Jersey board of nursing for any state requirements.
LPN and LVN Programs
There are basically two scholastic credentials available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN in Highlands NJ. The one that may be completed in the shortest time frame, commonly about one 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 alternative and typically require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, along with providing a higher credential and more extensive instruction, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you seek, 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 syllabus adequately 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 attain a college degree. CNA instruction can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Highlands NJ area. The length of the instruction 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 required to receive at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of instruction required and each state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s essential to make certain that the course you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for New Jersey to make certain that the education is state certified. As well as the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be additional prerequisites as well.
Nursing Online Classes
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is growing into a more popular way to obtain training and attain a nursing degree in New Jersey. Many schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs require a certain number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online in your Highlands NJ home, this alternative may be a more practical answer to finding the free time to attend classes for some students. Concerning tuition, some online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and household obligations have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Courses
Now that you have determined which nursing degree to pursue, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges within New Jersey and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a workable list. As we already pointed out, the site of the school relative to Highlands NJ as well as the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two things that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection 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 recognized accrediting organization. Besides helping ensure that you obtain a quality education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools near Highlands NJ.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites 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 specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Highlands NJ area school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for New Jersey or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Look at internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Also, check with the New Jersey school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some local Highlands 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 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 displeased 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 Highlands NJ medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain employment.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all Highlands NJ area nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Enroll in the Right RN Course near Highlands NJ
Picking the right registered nursing college is probably the most important step to starting a new career in the health care field. There are a number of aspects that you must consider when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have emphasized within this article, it is important that you pick 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 create 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 ambition to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in Highlands NJ.
Why Did You Desire to Become a Registered Nurse?When getting ready to interview for a nursing position, it's important to review questions you could be asked. Among the questions that recruiters frequently ask nursing applicants is "What drove you to decide on nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to discover is not only the personal reasons you might have for being 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, along with a certain number of routine interview questions, so you need to organize some ideas about how you want to address them. Since there are numerous factors that go into choosing a career, you can respond to this fundamental question in a number of ways. When formulating an answer, attempt to include the reasons the work interests you in addition to the talents you have that make you an outstanding nurse and the leading candidate for the position. Don't attempt to memorize a response, but take down several concepts and anecdotes that pertain to your personal experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample responses can help you to prepare your own concepts, and provide ideas of what to include to impress the recruiter.
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