How to Select a Nursing Program in Dorchester Wisconsin
Searching for the right nursing college near Dorchester WI may feel like a complicated endeavor, particularly if you don’t know what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already understand, to practice as a registered nurse, you must receive the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and assess the qualifications of each school you are thinking about before enrolling in your final selection. Unfortunately, too many future students base their selection entirely on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Deciding on the least expensive program or the one that is local to your house is probably not the best way to select a nursing program. There are various important additional things to explore before you make a decision where to attend classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first discuss what the role of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, together with the nursing degree alternatives that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the Dorchester WI medical care delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, namely hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general role is to assist doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the specific duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization along with where they work. A portion of the duties of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Monitoring patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more complex 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 Dorchester WI, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are multiple degrees to choose from to become a registered nurse in Dorchester WI. And 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 achieve a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are available.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a 2 year program offered by Wisconsin community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately attain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more expansive training than the ADN. It is commonly a four year program offered at Wisconsin 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 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 achieving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner in Dorchester WI or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After 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) in order to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing change from state to state, so be sure to check with the Wisconsin board of nursing for any state mandates.
LVN and LPN Courses
There are principally two scholastic accreditations available that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN in Dorchester WI. The one that may be finished in the shortest amount of time, generally about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The next option is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and typically require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with offering a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be Wisconsin approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the core curriculum effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA education can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Dorchester WI area. The length of the training can take anywhere from one to three 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 instruction, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal amount of training required and that each state has its own prerequisites. So it’s crucial to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to check with the health or nursing board for Wisconsin to make certain that the training is state approved. In addition to the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be additional requirements as well.
Nursing Online Programs
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is growing into a more favored way to receive training and acquire a nursing degree in Wisconsin. Some schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online in your Dorchester WI home, this option may be a more practical answer to finding the time to attend school for some students. Pertaining to tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more easily 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 commitments have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Programs
Now that you have chosen which nursing degree to pursue, and whether to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Wisconsin and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously pointed out, the site of the school relative to Dorchester WI and the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two things that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final choice, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up to the field.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program as well as the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to helping confirm that you obtain a quality education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools near Dorchester WI.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Dorchester WI area school you are attending not only provides an excellent education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Wisconsin or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Look at internet rating services to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Also, get in touch with the Wisconsin school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some nearby Dorchester WI 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 programs 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 dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It’s also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a superb reputation within the Dorchester WI medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students gain a position.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all Dorchester WI area nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing also. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with local hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Select the Right RN School near Dorchester WI
Choosing the ideal registered nursing degree program is potentially the most important step to launching a new career in the healthcare industry. There are various factors that you need to think about when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have emphasized within this content, it is critical that you select an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Dorchester WI.
Why Did You Decide to Be a Nurse?When getting ready to interview for a nursing job, it's advantageous to review questions you may be asked. Among the things that hiring managers typically ask nursing candidates is "What drove you to pick nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to learn is not merely the private reasons you may have for becoming a nurse, but additionally what attributes and skills you possess that make you exceptional at what you do. You will probably be asked questions relating specifically to nursing, in addition to a significant number of general interview questions, so you should organize several approaches about how you would like to address them. Because there are so many variables that go into selecting a career, you can answer this fundamental question in a variety of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the profession appeals to you as well as the abilities you have that make you an exceptional nurse and the leading choice for the position. Don't try to memorize a response, but jot down some ideas and talking points that relate to your personal strengths and experiences. Reading through sample responses can assist you to prepare your own thoughts, and provide ideas of what to discuss to wow the recruiter.
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