It Takes Just a Minute to Start Your Nursing Career in Alabama!
What to Ask Nursing Degree Programs
Once you have decided on which nursing degree to pursue, along with if to attend your classes on campus near Dothan AL or on the web, you can utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your choices. As you probably realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges throughout Alabama and the United States. So it is necessary to lower the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier mentioned, the site of the school and the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the first two points that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see how your pick measures up to the other programs.
- 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 recognized accrediting organization. Besides helping confirm that you get a quality education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not provided in Dothan AL for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's important that the school you are enrolled in not only provides a top-notch education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check online rating companies to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Also, check with the Alabama school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Dothan AL 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 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a favorable reputation within the Dothan AL healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students obtain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Check if the schools have associations with Dothan AL hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.