How to Pick a Nursing School in Charlotte Hall Maryland
Selecting the right nursing program near Charlotte Hall MD may feel like a difficult project, particularly if you have no idea what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the necessary education and training to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and evaluate the qualifications of each school you are thinking about before enrolling in your final choice. Regrettably, too many prospective students base their determination entirely on the price of tuition and the nearness of the school. Deciding on the least expensive program or the one that is nearest to your residence is most likely not the most ideal way to select a nursing program. There are a number of essential additional things to check out before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first go over what the role of a registered nurse is in our medical system, as well as the nursing degree options that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the Charlotte Hall MD healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, namely hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic function is to aid doctors in the care of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise along with where they work. A few of the duties of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Observing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Managing health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more advanced job duties and responsibilities. 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 in Charlotte Hall MD, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There are multiple degrees offered to become a registered nurse in Charlotte Hall MD. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can earn 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 descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a 2 year program offered by Maryland community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently achieve a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more extensive training than the ADN. It is generally a 4 year program offered at Maryland colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their prior 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 achieving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner in Charlotte Hall MD or concentrate 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. Further requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to contact the Maryland board of nursing for any state requirements.
LPN and LVN Certificates and Degrees
There are principally two academic credentials available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN in Charlotte Hall MD. The one that can be finished in the shortest time period, usually about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The 2nd option 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 advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from offering a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you seek, it needs to be Maryland approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the core curriculum properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to many 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 Charlotte Hall MD area. The duration of the training can take anywhere from one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to receive at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum amount of training required and each state has its own requirements. So it’s necessary to make certain that the program you enroll in not only meets 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 Maryland to make certain that the education 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 might be other prerequisites as well.
Nursing Online Programs
Enrolling in nursing programs online is emerging as a more favored way to receive training and acquire a nursing degree in Maryland. Many schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs call for a specific number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online in your Charlotte Hall MD home, this method may be a more convenient approach to finding the free time to attend classes for some students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your job and household obligations have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Degree Programs
Now that you have chosen which nursing program to enroll in, and whether to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following pointers to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Maryland and the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a workable list. As we previously discussed, the location of the school relative to Charlotte Hall MD and the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two things that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up 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 recognized accrediting agency. In addition to helping make sure that you receive an excellent education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available for non-accredited schools near Charlotte Hall MD.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites 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 certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Charlotte Hall MD area school you are enrolled in not only delivers a top-notch education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Maryland or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Visit online rating services to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Additionally, check with the Maryland school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some regional Charlotte Hall MD 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 programs you are looking at 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 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 verify that the school has a good reputation within the Charlotte Hall MD healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students obtain employment.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all Charlotte Hall MD area nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing also. Ask if the schools have associations with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Choose the Right RN Degree near Charlotte Hall MD
Enrolling in the right registered nursing school is perhaps the most crucial phase to beginning a new career in the health care field. There are many factors that you must take into account when selecting a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, obligations, and financial status. As we have pointed out within this post, it is important that you pick an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to pick 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 Charlotte Hall MD.
Why Did You Decide to Become a Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing job, it's advantageous to consider questions you might be asked. Among the questions that recruiters often ask nursing prospects is "What compelled you to choose nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to uncover is not just the private reasons you might have for becoming a nurse, but additionally what qualities and talents you have that make you good at what you do. You will probably be asked questions pertaining primarily to nursing, as well as a certain number of general interview questions, so you must prepare several strategies about how you would like to address them. Considering there are numerous variables that go into selecting a career, you can address this primary question in a variety of ways. When readying an answer, try to include the reasons the work interests you in addition to the talents you possess that make you an excellent nurse and the best candidate for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but jot down several ideas and topics that relate to your personal experiences and strengths. Reading through sample answers can help you to develop your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to impress the recruiter.
Some Other Cities in Maryland