How to Enroll In a Nursing School in Glen Carbon Illinois
Locating the right nursing program in Glen Carbon IL may seem like a difficult endeavor, particularly if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you need to acquire the necessary education and training in order to become licensed. So it is essential that you research and measure the qualifications of each college you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate selection. The fact is, too many potential students base their decision entirely on the price of tuition and the proximity of the nursing school. Deciding on the least costly program or the one that is nearest to your house is most likely not the most ideal way to choose a nursing program. There are several essential additional things to check out before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first go over what the role of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, together with the nursing degree choices that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the healthcare delivery system in Glen Carbon IL. RNs practice in many different medical environments, such as hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary duty is to aid doctors in the care of their patients. However, the specific duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization along with where they work. A few of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Observing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses in Glen Carbon IL with a more advanced degree may have more complex job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and normally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
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 2 years, or advance to obtain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in Glen Carbon IL.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program offered by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in Glen Carbon IL medical facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately attain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more in depth training than the ADN. It is commonly a 4 year program offered at Glen Carbon IL 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 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 typically a 2 year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has received 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 can vary from state to state, so don’t forget to get in touch with the Glen Carbon IL board of nursing for any state mandates.
LPN and LVN Programs
There are generally two academic accreditations offered that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be concluded in the shortest time frame, typically about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The 2nd alternative is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides providing a higher credential and more extensive instruction, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you seek, it needs to be Glen Carbon IL approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the core curriculum properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA instruction can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school. The length of the training program can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under 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. Bear in mind that this is the minimal amount of training directed and every state has its own requirements. So it’s important to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but likewise those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to check with the health or nursing board for Glen Carbon IL to make sure that the training course is state approved. As well as the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be additional requirements as well.
Online Nursing Schools
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is becoming a more popular way to obtain training and earn a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local Glen Carbon IL healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating approach to finding the free time to attend school for some students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus options. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more affordable. And numerous 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 obligations 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 Schools
Now that you have selected which nursing degree to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout Glen Carbon IL and the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we already pointed out, the site of the school along with the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two factors that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final 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 along with the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Besides helping confirm that you get a premium education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited schools in Glen Carbon IL.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites 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. Many states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the school you are attending not only delivers an outstanding education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Illinois or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating services to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. In addition, get in touch with the Illinois school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some regional Glen Carbon IL 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 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the Glen Carbon IL medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a Glen Carbon IL clinical environment. Essentially all Illinois nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing also. Ask if the schools have associations with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Pick the Right RN Degree in Glen Carbon IL
Picking the ideal registered nursing program is arguably the most important first step to starting a new career in the medical care industry. There are many factors that you must take into account when selecting a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, obligations, and financial situation. As we have emphasized in this article, it is important that you select an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to choose 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 RN in Glen Carbon IL.
Why Did You Decide to Become a Registered Nurse?When prepping to interview for a nursing position, it's a good idea to review questions you may be asked. One of the questions that interviewers typically ask nursing prospects is "What drove you to pick nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is attempting to learn is not just the private reasons you might have for becoming a nurse, but additionally what characteristics and skills you possess that make you outstanding at your profession. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining specifically to nursing, as well as a significant number of routine interview questions, so you must prepare several strategies about how you would like to answer them. Considering there are several factors that go into selecting a career, you can address this primary question in a multitude of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the profession interests you in addition to the abilities you possess that make you an exceptional nurse and the best candidate for the job. Don't try to memorize an answer, but jot down some concepts and anecdotes that relate to your own strengths and experiences. Reading through sample responses can help you to develop your own concepts, and provide ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the interviewer.
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