How to Find the Right Nursing School in Middlebury Connecticut
Searching for the right nursing program in Middlebury CT may feel like a difficult endeavor, especially if you have no idea what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, to practice as a registered nurse, you need to receive the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and evaluate the qualifications of each program you are thinking about before enrolling in your final selection. Having said that, too many future students base their determination exclusively on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the nursing school. Choosing the least expensive program or the one that is local to your house is probably not the best way to choose a nursing program. There are various crucial additional aspects to look into before you determine where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first cover what the function of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, as well as the nursing degree alternatives that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the healthcare delivery system in Middlebury CT. RNs practice in a large number of different medical environments, such as hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary role is to support doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or area of expertise as well as where they work. A portion of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Observing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses in Middlebury CT with a higher degree may have more high level job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and commonly work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are multiple degrees available to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in just two years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are offered in Middlebury CT.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program made available by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in Middlebury CT healthcare centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently earn a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more extensive training than the ADN. It is typically a 4 year program offered at Middlebury CT colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their prior training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may want 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 normally a two year program after attaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has attained 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 make sure to get in touch with the Middlebury CT board of nursing for any state requirements.
LVN and LPN Programs
There are essentially two academic accreditations available that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be completed in the shortest time period, normally about one year, 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 commonly require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides offering a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be Middlebury CT approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the course of study 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 need to obtain a college degree. CNA education can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school. The duration of the training can take anywhere from 1 to three 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 training, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum amount of instruction directed and each state has its own requirements. So it’s essential to make certain that the program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Middlebury CT to make sure that the education 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.
Nursing Online Programs
Attending nursing schools online is emerging as a more preferred way to receive instruction and earn a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specified amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local Middlebury CT healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more practical solution to finding the free time to attend school for many students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even supplementary 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. And so if your work and household obligations have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Degree Programs
Now that you have decided on which nursing degree to enroll in, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout Middlebury CT and the United States. So it is necessary to decrease the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we earlier pointed out, the site of the school along with the cost of tuition are probably 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 decision, use the following questions to see how your pick compares to the other schools.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program along with the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Aside from helping make sure that you get a premium education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not provided for non-accredited schools in Middlebury CT.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria 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) as well as 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 important that the school you are enrolled in not only provides an excellent education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Connecticut or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. In addition, get in touch with the Connecticut school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some local Middlebury CT 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 schools you are looking at 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 dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It’s also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a favorable reputation within the Middlebury CT medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students attain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a Middlebury CT clinical setting. Almost all Connecticut nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Check if the schools have associations with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Pick the Right RN School in Middlebury CT
Picking the right registered nursing degree program is potentially the most crucial step to launching a new career in the medical care industry. There are a number of variables that you should consider when selecting a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic status. As we have highlighted within this content, it is important that you choose an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist 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 drive to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Middlebury CT.
Why Did You Choose to Be an RN?When prepping to interview for a nursing position, it's a good idea to consider questions you may be asked. One of the things that interviewers often ask nursing prospects is "What compelled you to select nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is attempting to uncover is not just the private reasons you might have for being a nurse, but additionally what attributes and talents you possess that make you outstanding at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions relating exclusively to nursing, in addition to a certain number of typical interview questions, so you need to ready some approaches about how you would like to address them. Since there are several variables that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this primary question in a multitude of ways. When readying 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 leading candidate for the position. Don't try to memorize a response, but write down some concepts and talking points that relate to your personal experiences and strengths. Reading through sample responses can help you to formulate your own thoughts, and provide ideas of what to include to impress the recruiter.
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