How to Choose a Nursing Program in Cobb California
Selecting the right nursing school near Cobb CA may seem like a difficult endeavor, particularly if you have no idea what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you need to receive the necessary education and training to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and determine the qualifications of each school you are thinking about before enrolling in your final selection. Unfortunately, too many future students base their determination exclusively on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Selecting the least expensive program or the one that is local to your home is probably not the best way to select a nursing program. There are various key additional aspects to look into before you determine where to attend classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first review what the role of a registered nurse is in our health system, as well as the nursing degree options that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the Cobb CA medical delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, namely hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic job is to help doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization along with where they work. Some of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Maintaining health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more high level job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and normally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services in Cobb CA, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There is more than one degree option available to become a registered nurse in Cobb CA. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can obtain a qualifying degree in just two years, or continue on to achieve a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program made available by California community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards earn a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more in depth training than the ADN. It is typically a four year program offered at California colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified 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 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 commonly a 2 year program after attaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner in Cobb CA or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
After 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) to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing change from state to state, so make sure to contact the California board of nursing for any state requirements.
There are principally two academic accreditations available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN in Cobb CA. The one that can be finished in the shortest period of time, typically about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The second alternative is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and normally 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 kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be California approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the syllabus properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA education can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Cobb CA area. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from just one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to have at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum amount of instruction mandated and that each state has its own requirements. So it’s important to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but likewise those for the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for California to make sure that the training course 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 might be other prerequisites as well.
Nursing Online Degrees
Attending nursing schools online is growing into a more preferred way to obtain instruction and attain a nursing degree in California. Some schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online in your Cobb CA home, this option may be a more practical solution to finding the free time to attend classes for many students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus alternatives. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, helping to make education more affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations such as 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 pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing training program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Programs
Once you have decided on which nursing program to enroll in, and if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges throughout California and the United States. So it is essential to decrease the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we already discussed, the site of the school relative to Cobb CA as well as the price 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 evaluate how your pick compares to the other programs.
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 agency. Besides helping make sure that you get a premium education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered for non-accredited schools near Cobb CA.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses vary 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 specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the Cobb CA area school you are enrolled in not only provides an outstanding education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for California or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Look at internet rating companies to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Also, contact the California school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some regional Cobb CA healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their opinions are of the schools as well.
Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the RN programs 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a superb reputation within the Cobb CA healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students obtain employment.
Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all Cobb CA area nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Pick the Right RN College near Cobb CA
Selecting the ideal registered nursing school is perhaps the most crucial first step to beginning a new career in the health care industry. There are various factors that you should consider when choosing a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have pointed out in this post, it is important that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to pick from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in Cobb CA.
Why Did You Desire to Become a Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing position, it's helpful to consider questions you might be asked. One of the questions that recruiters typically ask nursing applicants is "What drove you to select nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to uncover is not just the personal reasons you might have for being a registered nurse, but additionally what attributes and abilities you have that make you outstanding at what you do. You will likely be asked questions relating specifically to nursing, along with a certain number of standard interview questions, so you must ready several strategies about how you would like to address them. Considering there are numerous variables that go into choosing a career, you can answer this primary question in a multitude of ways. When readying an answer, try to include the reasons the work appeals to you along with the abilities you possess that make you an excellent nurse and the leading choice for the job. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but take down several concepts and topics that pertain to your own experiences and strengths. Reading through sample responses can help you to formulate your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to wow the interviewer.
Some Other Cities in California