RN Nursing Programs in Stafford TX 77477

How to Select a Nursing School in Stafford Texas

Stafford TX Registered NurseSelecting the right nursing school near Stafford TX may seem like a complex undertaking, particularly if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you need to obtain the proper education and training to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you research and assess the qualifications of each program you are contemplating before enrolling in your final selection. Regrettably, too many potential students base their selection solely on the cost of tuition and the distance of the school. Choosing the least costly school or the one that is nearest to your house is no doubt not the best way to decide on a nursing program. There are many crucial additional aspects to check into before you make a decision where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first cover what the role of a registered nurse is in our medical system, along with the nursing degree options that are available.

Registered Nurse Job Duties

Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the Stafford TX healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, including hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary role is to assist doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the specific duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization along with where they work. A few of the functions of an RN may include:

  • Administering medications
  • Observing patients
  • Conducting physical examinations
  • Coordinating care
  • Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
  • Instructing patients and their families
  • Managing health records and charts

Nurses with a higher degree may have more complex job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and often work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services in Stafford TX, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.

Nursing Degrees Available

There is more than one degree option to choose from to become a registered nurse in Stafford TX. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or continue on to achieve a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are offered.

  • Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program offered by Texas community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards obtain a more advanced degree.
  • Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more expansive training than the ADN. It is normally a four year program offered at Texas colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may wish 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 2 year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner in Stafford TX 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) to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so be sure to get in touch with the Texas board of nursing for any state mandates.

LVN and LPN Programs

RN assisting surgeon in Stafford TXThere are basically two scholastic credentials offered that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN in Stafford TX. The one that may be completed in the shortest amount of time, commonly about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma program. The next alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with offering a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you seek, it needs to be Texas approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the core curriculum adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.

CNA Training

Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA training can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Stafford TX area. The length of the training program can take anywhere from just 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 instruction, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal period of training directed and that each state has its own prerequisites. So it’s important to make sure that the training program 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 Texas to make sure that the training course is state certified. In addition to the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be other prerequisites as well.

Online Nursing Degrees

attending nursing school online in Stafford TXEnrolling in nursing programs online is growing into a more popular way to receive instruction and earn a nursing degree in Texas. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specific number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online in your Stafford TX home, this alternative may be a more practical answer to finding the time to attend school for some students. Concerning tuition, some online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus alternatives. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more easily affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations like 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 work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.

Questions to Ask Nurse Degree Programs

Now that you have determined which nursing degree to enroll in, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following checklist to start narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within Texas and the United States. So it is essential to decrease the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a manageable list. As we previously pointed out, the site of the school relative to Stafford TX as well as the cost 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 before making your final selection, use the following questions to see how your pick measures up to the field.

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 agency. Besides helping confirm that you obtain a premium education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided for non-accredited schools near Stafford TX.

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 certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the Stafford TX area school you are attending not only delivers an excellent education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Texas or the state where you will be practicing.

Reputation. Visit internet rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Additionally, get in touch with the Texas school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some local Stafford TX healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgements 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 complete their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were unhappy 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 Stafford TX medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students attain a position.

Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all Stafford TX area nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.

Select the Right RN Program near Stafford TX

Enrolling in the right registered nursing degree program is perhaps the most important first step to launching a new career in the health care industry. There are numerous variables that you should consider when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have stressed within this content, it is critical that you pick an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By utilizing 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 dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a licensed RN in Stafford TX.

Why Did You Desire to Become an RN?

When getting ready to interview for a nursing job, it's advantageous to consider questions you could be asked. One of the questions that recruiters frequently ask nursing candidates is "What drove you to decide on nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to uncover is not just the personal reasons you might have for becoming a nurse, but also what attributes and skills you have that make you exceptional at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining exclusively to nursing, in addition to a significant number of typical interview questions, so you should ready a number of strategies about how you would like to address them. Since there are several factors that go into choosing a career, you can respond to this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the work interests you as well as the strengths you possess that make you an exceptional nurse and the perfiect candidate for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize a response, but jot down some concepts and talking points that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Going over sample responses can help you to develop your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to wow the interviewer.

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