How to Choose the Right RN School Online in Casas Adobes Arizona
Selecting the right nursing college near Casas Adobes AZ may feel like a formidable endeavor, particularly if you have no idea what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already understand, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you need to acquire the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you research and determine the qualifications of each school you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Regrettably, too many potential students base their decision solely on the cost of tuition and the distance of the school. Choosing the least costly college or the one that is local to your home is most likely not the best way to pick a nursing program. There are a number of key additional factors to look into before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we examine that checklist, let's first look at what the role of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, together with the nursing degree choices that are offered.
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Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, including Casas Adobes AZ hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary duty is to assist doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or area of expertise along with where they work. Some of the duties of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Observing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Overseeing 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 high level job duties and accountabilities. 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, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There is more than one degree option offered to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can earn a qualifying degree in just two years, or continue on to obtain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Casas Adobes AZ area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a two year program offered by Arizona community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and later attain a higher degree.
- Bachelor's. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more extensive training than the ADN. It is normally a four year program offered at Arizona 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 might wish 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 two year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has obtained 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 change from state to state, so don't forget to check with the Arizona board of nursing for any state mandates.
Nursing Online Colleges
Enrolling in nursing programs online is becoming a more in demand way to receive training and attain a nursing degree. Some schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more accommodating answer to finding the time to attend college for some Casas Adobes AZ students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your job and family responsibilities have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Questions to Ask Nursing Degree Programs
Once you have selected which nursing program to pursue, along with if to attend your classes on campus near Casas Adobes AZ or online, you can utilize the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges within Arizona and the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to select from so that you will have a workable list. As we already pointed out, the site of the school as well as the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two points that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate 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 agency. Aside from helping ensure that you obtain a quality education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered in Casas Adobes AZ for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's imperative that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an excellent education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Check internet rating companies to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Also, get in touch with the Arizona school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Casas Adobes AZ healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgments are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the RN programs 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 dissatisfied 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 favorable reputation within the Casas Adobes AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with Casas Adobes AZ hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Pick the Right Casas Adobes Nursing Program
Picking the ideal nursing college is probably the most critical step to starting a new career in the healthcare field. There are numerous aspects that you must consider when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, lifestyle, and economic status. As we have pointed out in this content, it is important that you select a nursing school and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Casas Adobes Arizona.