How to Find the Right Nursing College in West Dennis Massachusetts
Searching for the right nursing school in West Dennis MA may feel like a formidable project, particularly if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already understand, to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you research and measure the qualifications of each school you are contemplating before enrolling in your final selection. Regrettably, too many prospective students base their decision entirely on the price of tuition and the nearness of the nursing school. Going with the least expensive school or the one that is closest to your home is probably not the most ideal way to choose a nursing program. There are a number of crucial additional things to check into before you make a decision where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first discuss what the function of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, along with the nursing degree options that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the medical delivery system in West Dennis MA. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, including hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general role is to assist doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization in addition to where they work. A portion of the duties of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Overseeing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses in West Dennis MA with a higher degree may have more complex job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and often work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer 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 enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can obtain a qualifying degree in just two years, or advance to obtain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in West Dennis MA.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a 2 year program made available by community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in West Dennis MA healthcare centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and later obtain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more in depth training than the ADN. It is commonly a four year program offered at West Dennis MA 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 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 usually a two 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.
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) so as to become licensed. Other requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so don’t forget to get in touch with the West Dennis MA board of nursing for any state mandates.
LVN and LPN Courses
There are basically two academic accreditations available that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest time frame, typically about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma course. The other alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with 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 pursue, it needs to be West Dennis MA approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the core curriculum 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 need to earn a college degree. CNA education can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school. The duration of the instruction 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 required to have 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 each state has its own prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make certain that the course you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for West Dennis MA 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 can be additional requirements as well.
Nursing Online Programs
Attending nursing programs online is growing into a more preferred way to receive training and earn a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local West Dennis MA healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more practical approach to finding the time to attend classes for some students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more easily affordable. 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 family responsibilities have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Colleges
Now that you have decided on which nursing degree to pursue, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges throughout West Dennis MA and the United States. So it is necessary to lower the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we already pointed out, the site of the school along with the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two factors that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection compares to the other schools.
- 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 agency. Aside from helping make sure that you obtain a premium education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited schools in West Dennis MA.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed 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 completed, 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 prepares you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Massachusetts or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Also, check with the Massachusetts school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some nearby West Dennis MA 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 complete their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were displeased with the program and dropped out. It’s also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a superb reputation within the West Dennis MA 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 West Dennis MA clinical environment. Almost all Massachusetts nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing also. Ask if the schools have associations with local hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Choose the Right RN Course in West Dennis MA
Choosing the right registered nursing degree program is probably the most crucial step to beginning a new career in the medical care field. There are various factors that you should consider when deciding on a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have emphasized within this article, it is important that you select an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the medical community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in West Dennis MA.
Why Did You Decide to Become a Registered Nurse?When getting ready to interview for a nursing job, it's important to reflect on questions you may be asked. One of the things that interviewers typically ask nursing applicants is "What compelled you to select nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is attempting to discover is not only the personal reasons you may have for being a RN, but additionally what qualities and talents you have that make you outstanding at your profession. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining exclusively to nursing, along with a significant number of typical interview questions, so you need to ready a number of approaches about how you would like to answer them. Given that there are numerous factors that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When preparing an answer, attempt to include the reasons the work appeals to you as well as the strengths you have that make you an outstanding nurse and the best candidate for the position. Don't try to memorize a response, but take down several ideas and topics that relate to your own strengths and experiences. Going over sample answers can assist you to prepare your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to include to impress the recruiter.
Some Cities in Massachusetts You May be Interested In