How to Select a Nursing School in Lewisville North Carolina
Selecting the best nursing program near Lewisville NC may feel like a complicated endeavor, especially if you don’t know what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you need to receive the appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you research and measure the qualifications of each college you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Unfortunately, too many prospective students base their determination exclusively on the price of tuition and the distance of the school. Going with the least costly college or the one that is local to your house is probably not the most reliable way to choose a nursing program. There are several key additional factors to check out before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first review what the job of a registered nurse is in our health system, as well as the nursing degree options that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the Lewisville NC medical delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, namely hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary function is to support doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization in addition to where they work. Some of the functions of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Overseeing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Managing 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 typically work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services in Lewisville NC, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There is more than one degree option to choose from to become a registered nurse in Lewisville NC. And in order to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can earn a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or advance to earn a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a 2 year program made available by North Carolina community colleges. It prepares 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 achieve a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is normally a 4 year program offered at North Carolina colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may desire to advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is usually a 2 year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner in Lewisville NC or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has obtained one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so be sure to contact the North Carolina board of nursing for any state requirements.
There are essentially two scholastic credentials available that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN in Lewisville NC. The one that may be finished in the shortest amount of time, usually about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The other alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and typically require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, aside from providing a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you pursue, it needs to be North Carolina approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the syllabus 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 need to earn a college degree. CNA training can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Lewisville NC area. The duration of the training can take anywhere from one to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to have at least 75 hours of training, 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 that every state has its own prerequisites. So it’s crucial to make certain that the 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 get in touch with the health or nursing board for North Carolina to make sure that the education is state approved. In addition to the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be additional requirements as well.
Online Nursing Programs
Attending nursing schools online is growing into a more favored way to receive training and attain a nursing degree in North Carolina. Many schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online in your Lewisville NC home, this option may be a more accommodating answer to finding the free time to attend classes for some students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even supplemental 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 such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your work and family commitments have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Colleges
Once you have chosen which nursing degree to enroll in, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus or online, you can use the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within North Carolina 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 earlier discussed, the location of the school relative to Lewisville NC as well as the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two factors that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final selection, 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 agency. Besides helping confirm that you obtain an excellent education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited schools near Lewisville NC.
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. Some states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the Lewisville NC area school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for North Carolina or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Visit internet rating services to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. In addition, get in touch with the North Carolina school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some regional Lewisville NC 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 considering 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a good reputation within the Lewisville NC medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain a position.
Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all Lewisville NC area nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing also. Check if the schools have a working relationship with community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Pick the Right RN Degree near Lewisville NC
Deciding on the right registered nursing degree program is potentially the most important step to starting a new career in the medical care field. There are numerous factors that you should consider when picking a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have stressed in this content, it is critical that you pick an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to pick from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a licensed RN in Lewisville NC.
Why Did You Desire to Become a Registered Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing job, it's a good idea to consider questions you could be asked. Among the questions that interviewers typically ask nursing candidates is "What compelled you to pick nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to learn is not only the personal reasons you might have for becoming a registered nurse, but additionally what characteristics and skills you have that make you exceptional at what you do. You will likely be asked questions pertaining primarily to nursing, as well as a certain number of routine interview questions, so you should prepare a number of approaches about how you want to address them. Given that there are several variables that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When readying an answer, try to include the reasons the work appeals to you in addition to the abilities you have that make you an excellent nurse and the ideal choice for the job. Don't try to memorize an answer, but write down a few ideas and anecdotes that pertain to your own experiences and strengths. Reading through sample responses can assist you to develop your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to include to impress the recruiter.
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