How to Enroll In a Nursing School in Lehigh Iowa
Searching for the best nursing college in Lehigh IA may feel like a complex undertaking, 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 must receive the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and measure the qualifications of each program you are thinking about before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Regrettably, too many future students base their decision exclusively on the price of tuition and the proximity of the nursing school. Choosing the least costly college or the one that is closest to your home is most likely not the most reliable way to pick a nursing program. There are many important additional factors to look into before you make a decision where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first look at what the function of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, together with the nursing degree choices that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the healthcare delivery system in Lehigh IA. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, such as hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic role is to assist doctors in the care of their patients. However, the specific duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise in addition to where they work. A portion of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Observing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses in Lehigh IA with a more advanced degree may have more complex job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and commonly work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There are several degree options available to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in just two years, or advance to earn a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in Lehigh IA.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a 2 year program offered by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in Lehigh IA medical facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently attain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more expansive training than the ADN. It is typically a four year program offered at Lehigh IA colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their prior 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 job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is generally a two year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
Once 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) so as to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so make sure to get in touch with the Lehigh IA board of nursing for any state mandates.
LVN and LPN Programs
There are essentially two academic credentials available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be concluded in the shortest time frame, normally about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma program. The other choice is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and usually require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, in addition to supplying a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you seek, it should be Lehigh IA approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the course of study effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA training can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school. The length of the instruction can take anywhere from 1 to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum period of training directed and each state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s essential to make sure that the course you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but likewise those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to contact the health or nursing board for Lehigh IA to make certain that the training is state certified. As well as the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be other requirements as well.
Online Nursing Schools
Attending nursing schools online is growing into a more in demand way to obtain instruction and attain a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs require a certain amount of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local Lehigh IA healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating solution to finding the time to attend classes for some students. Concerning tuition, some online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more easily affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and family obligations have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Colleges
Now that you have selected which nursing degree to enroll in, along with if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following pointers to start narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Lehigh IA and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we already pointed out, the site of the school and the expense of tuition are probably going to be the initial two things that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick 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 acknowledged accrediting organization. Aside from helping confirm that you get a premium education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not provided for non-accredited schools in Lehigh IA.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses differ 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. Many states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers a top-notch education, but also prepares you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Iowa or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check internet rating services to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Additionally, get in touch with the Iowa school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some local Lehigh IA 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 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 displeased 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 superb reputation within the Lehigh IA healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a Lehigh IA clinical environment. Virtually all Iowa nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Choose the Right RN College in Lehigh IA
Selecting the ideal registered nursing college is probably the most important step to launching a new career in the healthcare industry. There are many aspects that you need to take into account when deciding on a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, obligations, and financial situation. As we have emphasized in this content, it is important that you pick an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have excellent reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in Lehigh IA.
Why Did You Desire to Become a Registered Nurse?When prepping to interview for a nursing job, it's advantageous to consider questions you could be asked. Among the questions that interviewers typically ask nursing prospects is "What drove you to decide on nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to learn is not just the private reasons you might have for becoming a registered nurse, but additionally what qualities and talents you have that make you outstanding at what you do. You will likely be asked questions pertaining exclusively to nursing, as well as a certain number of routine interview questions, so you must prepare a number of ideas about how you want to address them. Given that there are so many variables that go into selecting a career, you can address this fundamental question in a variety of ways. When readying an answer, aim to include the reasons the work appeals to you in addition to the strengths you have that make you an outstanding nurse and the ideal candidate for the position. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but jot down several ideas and anecdotes that relate to your own strengths and experiences. Reading through sample responses can help you to prepare your own concepts, and provide ideas of what to include to impress the interviewer.
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