How to Choose a Nursing School in South Paris Maine
Locating the best nursing school in South Paris ME may feel like a formidable endeavor, especially if you aren’t sure what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already understand, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you need to acquire the proper education and training to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you research and assess the qualifications of each college you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate choice. The fact is, too many prospective students base their determination exclusively on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the nursing school. Going with the least expensive college or the one that is local to your house is probably not the most ideal way to select a nursing program. There are several important additional factors to explore before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first discuss what the function of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, as well as the nursing degree choices that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the healthcare delivery system in South Paris ME. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, namely hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general duty is to assist doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise as well as where they work. A portion of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Overseeing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Maintaining health records and charts
Nurses in South Paris ME with a higher degree may have more advanced job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and typically 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 obtain a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or advance to earn a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are available in South Paris ME.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a two year program offered by community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level position in nursing in South Paris ME medical facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and later achieve a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more extensive training than the ADN. It is commonly a 4 year program offered at South Paris ME colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might want 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 generally a 2 year program after attaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After 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 fluctuate from state to state, so don’t forget to get in touch with the South Paris ME board of nursing for any state requirements.
LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are principally two academic credentials offered that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be concluded in the shortest period of time, normally about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The other choice is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, in addition to offering a higher credential and more in-depth instruction, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you seek, it should be South Paris ME approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the course of study adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA training can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school. The duration of the training can take anywhere from just one to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to receive at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum period of instruction required and each state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make certain that the 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 check with the health or nursing board for South Paris ME to make certain that the education is state approved. 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 Schools
Attending nursing colleges online is emerging as a more popular way to get training and acquire a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specified amount of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local South Paris ME healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more practical approach to finding the free time to attend college for some students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus alternatives. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, 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. Therefore if your work and household responsibilities have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Courses
Once you have determined which nursing degree to pursue, along with if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your options. As you probably realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges within South Paris ME and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we already mentioned, the site of the school as well as the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two things that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the other schools.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program as well as the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. In addition to helping ensure that you receive a quality education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided for non-accredited schools in South Paris ME.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses differ 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. Many states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are attending not only delivers an exceptional education, but also preps you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Maine or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit online rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. In addition, get in touch with the Maine school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some nearby South Paris ME 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 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 unhappy with the program and dropped out. It’s also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the South Paris ME medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a South Paris ME clinical setting. Almost all Maine nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Pick the Right RN School in South Paris ME
Choosing the ideal registered nursing degree program is arguably the most important first step to starting a new career in the healthcare field. There are various variables that you must think about when deciding on a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have stressed in this article, it is important that you pick an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By using our list 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 appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in South Paris ME.
Why Did You Decide to Be a Registered Nurse?When prepping to interview for a nursing position, it's important to review questions you might be asked. One of the things that recruiters typically ask nursing prospects is "What drove you to choose nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to uncover is not merely the personal reasons you might have for becoming a registered nurse, but also what characteristics and skills you possess that make you outstanding at your profession. You will probably be asked questions relating specifically to nursing, along with a certain number of standard interview questions, so you must organize several strategies about how you would like to answer them. Since there are numerous factors that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this fundamental question in a number 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 choice for the job. Don't make an effort to memorize a response, but write down several ideas and talking points that pertain to your personal strengths and experiences. Going over sample answers can assist you to develop your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to wow the interviewer.
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