Tag Archives: Top Associates Degrees in Nursing Calera AL 35040

Nursing School Degree Programs near Calera 35040

How to Choose a Nursing School in Calera Alabama

Calera AL Licensed Registered NurseLocating the right nursing program in Calera AL may feel like a difficult endeavor, especially if you aren’t sure what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and assess the qualifications of each college you are considering before enrolling in your final choice. Regrettably, too many prospective students base their determination entirely on the cost of tuition and the distance of the nursing school. Selecting the least expensive program or the one that is local to your house is undoubtedly not the most ideal way to decide on a nursing program. There are several key additional considerations to check out before you decide where to attend classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first discuss what the job of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, as well as the nursing degree options that are available.

Registered Nurse Job Functions

Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the medical care delivery system in Calera AL. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, namely hospitals, private 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 responsibilities of an RN may include:

  • Administering medications
  • Observing patients
  • Conducting physical examinations
  • Managing care
  • Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
  • Informing patients and their families
  • Keeping health records and charts

Nurses in Calera AL with a more advanced 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 provide primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.

Nursing Degree Options

There are several degree options to choose from to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in as little as two years, or advance to obtain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are offered in Calera AL.

  • Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a 2 year program offered by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in Calera AL healthcare centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently obtain a higher degree.
  • Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is generally a four year program offered at Calera AL colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible 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 progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
  • Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is normally a two year program after attaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner 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) in order to become licensed. Additional requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so be sure to contact the Calera AL board of nursing for any state mandates.

LPN and LVN Courses

There are essentially two scholastic credentials available that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest period of time, generally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The second option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and typically require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from providing a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you seek, it should be Calera AL approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the core curriculum adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.

CNA Programs

Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school. The length of the training can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to obtain 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 minimum amount of instruction mandated and that every state has its own prerequisites. So it’s essential to make certain 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 recommendation is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Calera AL to make sure that the education is state certified. In addition to the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be other requirements as well.

Online Nursing Programs

RN working in Calera AL nursing homeAttending nursing schools online is emerging as a more in demand way to get training and attain a nursing degree. Many schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs require a certain number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local Calera AL healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient solution to finding the time to attend classes for many students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even other 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. Therefore if your work and household commitments have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.

Questions to Ask Nurse Colleges

Once you have decided on which nursing program to enroll in, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or online, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Calera AL and the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier pointed out, the location of the school and the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two points that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate 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 organization. Besides helping make sure that you receive a premium education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available for non-accredited schools in Calera AL.
  • 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) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specific 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 exceptional education, but also readies you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing.
  • Reputation. Check 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. In addition, check with the Alabama school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some regional Calera AL healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their opinions 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 finish their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were displeased 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 Calera AL healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students attain a position.
  • Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a Calera AL clinical setting. Almost all Alabama nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing too. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.

Select the Right RN College in Calera AL

Picking the right registered nursing college is arguably the most important first step to starting a new career in the health care industry. There are various aspects that you should take into account when selecting a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have pointed out within this post, it is important that you choose an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Calera AL.

Why Did You Choose to Be an RN?

When prepping to interview for a nursing job, it's important to review questions you could be asked. Among the things that interviewers often ask nursing applicants is "What drove you to select nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to learn is not merely the private reasons you may have for being a RN, but also what characteristics and skills you have that make you outstanding at what you do. You will likely be asked questions relating exclusively to nursing, along with a certain number of typical interview questions, so you must ready a number of ideas about how you want to answer them. Considering there are so many factors that go into selecting a career, you can answer this primary question in a variety of ways. When formulating an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession appeals to you in addition to the abilities you possess that make you an exceptional nurse and the best choice for the job. Don't try to memorize a response, but take down a few concepts and talking points that pertain to your personal strengths and experiences. Going over sample answers can help you to formulate your own thoughts, and provide ideas of what to include to enthuse the recruiter.

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