How to Pick a Nursing School in Sunshine Louisiana
Searching for the best nursing program near Sunshine LA may seem like a formidable undertaking, particularly if you have no idea what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you need to receive the necessary education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and determine the qualifications of each program you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate choice. The fact is, too many potential students base their selection solely on the price of tuition and the nearness of the school. Choosing the least costly college or the one that is closest to your residence is most likely not the best way to select a nursing program. There are various essential additional aspects to investigate before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first review what the job of a registered nurse is in our medical system, as well as the nursing degree alternatives that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the Sunshine LA medical delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical environments, including hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary job 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 specialization as well as where they work. Some of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more complex job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and typically work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services in Sunshine LA, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are several degree options available to become a registered nurse in Sunshine LA. And 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 achieve a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a 2 year program offered by Louisiana community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately attain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is typically a 4 year program offered at Louisiana 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 may 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 typically a 2 year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner in Sunshine LA or focus on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has obtained one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) in order to become licensed. Other requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so make sure to contact the Louisiana board of nursing for any state mandates.
LPN and LVN Courses
There are basically two scholastic accreditations offered that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN in Sunshine LA. The one that can be concluded in the shortest period of time, normally about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The next option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and usually require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, besides providing a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be Louisiana approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the core curriculum effectively 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 need to attain a college degree. CNA instruction can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Sunshine LA area. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to obtain at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum amount of instruction mandated and that every state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s crucial to make sure that the program 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 Louisiana to make sure that the training is state certified. As well as 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.
Online Nursing Classes
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is emerging as a more in demand way to receive instruction and earn a nursing degree in Louisiana. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs require a certain number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online in your Sunshine LA home, this alternative may be a more convenient solution to finding the time to attend college for some students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus options. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more easily affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your work and family obligations have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Colleges
Now that you have chosen which nursing degree to pursue, and if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you no doubt are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges throughout Louisiana and the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a manageable list. As we already pointed out, the location of the school relative to Sunshine LA and the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two things that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final selection, use the following questions to see how your pick compares to the other schools.
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 organization. Besides helping verify that you receive an excellent education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available for non-accredited schools near Sunshine LA.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Sunshine LA area school you are enrolled in not only delivers an excellent education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Louisiana or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Check internet rating companies to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Also, contact the Louisiana school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some local Sunshine LA 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 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 important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a superb reputation within the Sunshine LA medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students attain a position.
Internship Programs. The best way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all Sunshine LA area nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Check if the schools have a working relationship with community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.
Enroll in the Right RN Course near Sunshine LA
Selecting the right registered nursing program is potentially the most critical phase to launching a new career in the healthcare field. There are numerous variables that you should consider when deciding on a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, obligations, and economic situation. As we have stressed within this article, it is critical that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care 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 appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a licensed RN in Sunshine LA.
Why Did You Want to Become a Registered Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing position, it's a good idea to consider questions you could be asked. One of the questions that recruiters often ask nursing prospects is "What drove you to select nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is attempting to uncover is not just the personal reasons you may have for becoming a registered nurse, but additionally what qualities and abilities you have that make you outstanding at what you do. You will likely be asked questions pertaining exclusively to nursing, as well as a significant number of routine interview questions, so you must ready a number of approaches about how you would like to respond to them. Given that there are numerous factors that go into choosing a career, you can respond to this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When readying an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession appeals to you as well as the abilities you have that make you an exceptional nurse and the leading candidate for the position. Don't try to memorize an answer, but jot down a few ideas and topics that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample responses can assist you to develop your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to impress the recruiter.
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