How to Enroll In a Nursing Program in Allendale New Jersey
Choosing the best nursing college in Allendale NJ may feel like a complex project, especially if you have no idea what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the appropriate education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and assess the qualifications of each school you are thinking about before enrolling in your final selection. Having said that, too many prospective students base their determination entirely on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the nursing school. Choosing the least costly college or the one that is local to your home is undoubtedly not the most reliable way to select a nursing program. There are a number of essential additional considerations to check out before you determine where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first look at what the role of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, together with the nursing degree alternatives that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the healthcare delivery system in Allendale NJ. RNs practice in many different medical environments, such as hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary duty is to aid doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the particular duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or area of expertise along with where they work. Some of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Monitoring patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses in Allendale NJ with a more advanced degree may have more high level job duties and responsibilities. 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 basic illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There are multiple degrees to choose from to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can earn a qualifying degree in as little as two years, or continue on to obtain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered in Allendale NJ.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a two year program offered by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in Allendale NJ healthcare centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately achieve a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is generally a four year program offered at Allendale NJ colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their previous 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 job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is generally a 2 year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has earned 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 change from state to state, so don’t forget to check with the Allendale NJ board of nursing for any state mandates.
There are essentially two academic credentials offered that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be completed in the shortest amount of time, typically about twelve months, 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 generally require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, besides offering a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, 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 Allendale NJ approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the course of study adequately 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 obtain a college degree. CNA instruction can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school. The length of the training program can take anywhere from just one to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum amount of training directed and that each state has its own prerequisites. So it’s important to make sure that the course you enroll in not only fulfills 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 Allendale NJ to make certain that the training course 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 might be additional prerequisites as well.
Nursing Online Classes
Attending nursing colleges online is growing into a more preferred way to obtain training and earn a nursing degree. Many schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local Allendale NJ healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient answer to finding the time to attend school for many students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even other 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 like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and household commitments have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Programs
Once you have decided on which nursing degree to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges within Allendale NJ and the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a workable list. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school as well as the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two things that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final choice, use the following questions to see how your pick compares 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 acknowledged accrediting agency. In addition to helping confirm that you receive an excellent education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not provided for non-accredited schools in Allendale NJ.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specific 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 provides an outstanding education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for New Jersey or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit online rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Also, check with the New Jersey school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some local Allendale NJ 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 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 favorable reputation within the Allendale NJ healthcare 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 Allendale NJ clinical environment. Essentially all New Jersey nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing also. Find out if the schools have associations with local hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Choose the Right RN College in Allendale NJ
Deciding on the right registered nursing program is perhaps the most important first step to beginning a new career in the health care industry. There are numerous variables that you must think about when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, obligations, and economic situation. As we have highlighted in this post, it is important that you select an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a licensed RN in Allendale NJ.
Why Did You Want to Be a Registered Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing position, it's helpful to reflect on questions you may be asked. One of the things that hiring managers often ask nursing applicants is "What made you select nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to learn is not just the personal reasons you might have for being a registered nurse, but also what characteristics and skills you have that make you exceptional at your profession. You will likely be asked questions pertaining specifically to nursing, along with a certain number of standard interview questions, so you must ready several approaches about how you want to address them. Given that there are several variables that go into choosing a career, you can address this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the work appeals to you along with the abilities you possess that make you an exceptional nurse and the leading candidate for the job. Don't attempt to memorize a response, but take down several concepts and talking points that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Going over sample responses can help you to develop your own concepts, and inspire ideas of what to include to enthuse the recruiter.
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