How to Find the Right Nursing Program in West Kingston Rhode Island
Selecting the right nursing program near West Kingston RI may feel like a challenging undertaking, especially if you aren’t sure 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 obtain the appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and assess the qualifications of each school you are thinking about before enrolling in your final selection. Unfortunately, too many potential students base their selection solely on the price of tuition and the nearness of the school. Picking the least expensive college or the one that is nearest to your home is no doubt not the most reliable way to pick a nursing program. There are various essential additional aspects to investigate before you determine where to attend classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first review what the function of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, along with the nursing degree choices that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the West Kingston RI medical delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, namely hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary role is to support doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization as well as where they work. Some of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Observing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing 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), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and commonly work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services in West Kingston RI, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There are several degree options available to become a registered nurse in West Kingston RI. And in order to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in just two years, or advance to attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are available.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a 2 year program offered by Rhode Island community colleges. It prepares 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 later achieve a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more extensive training than the ADN. It is typically a 4 year program offered at Rhode Island colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed 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 commonly a 2 year program after acquiring the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner in West Kingston RI 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) to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to contact the Rhode Island board of nursing for any state requirements.
There are basically two scholastic credentials offered that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN in West Kingston RI. The one that can be completed in the shortest amount of time, typically about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The second alternative is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to complete. 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. No matter the type of credential you seek, it should be Rhode Island approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests 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.
Unlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA education can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the West Kingston RI area. The length of the instruction can take anywhere from one 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 instruction, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal amount of instruction directed and that each state has its specific prerequisites. 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 suggestion is to check with the health or nursing board for Rhode Island to make sure 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 Classes
Attending nursing schools online is emerging as a more favored way to get training and earn a nursing degree in Rhode Island. Some schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and nearly 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 West Kingston RI home, this alternative may be a more practical approach to finding the free time to attend college for many students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus alternatives. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more economical. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your job and household commitments have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Degree Programs
Now that you have decided on which nursing degree to pursue, and if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Rhode Island and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier discussed, the site of the school relative to West Kingston RI along with the price of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final decision, use the following questions to see how your selection 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 agency. In addition to helping make sure that you get an excellent education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools near West Kingston RI.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses are different 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. Many states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the West Kingston RI area school you are attending not only provides an outstanding education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Rhode Island or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Visit online rating companies to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Also, check with the Rhode Island school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some regional West Kingston RI 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 considering 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 unhappy with the program and dropped out. It’s also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the West Kingston RI medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students attain a position.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all West Kingston RI area nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing also. Check if the schools have a working relationship with local hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Select the Right RN Degree near West Kingston RI
Picking the ideal registered nursing program is probably the most crucial first step to starting a new career in the medical care industry. There are a number of aspects that you need to take into account when selecting a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, obligations, and economic situation. As we have emphasized in this content, it is critical that you choose an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our list 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 proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in West Kingston RI.
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. Among the things that hiring managers often ask nursing candidates is "What drove you to select nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to learn is not merely the personal reasons you might have for becoming a registered nurse, but additionally what characteristics and talents you have that make you good at what you do. You will probably be asked questions relating primarily to nursing, as well as a certain number of routine interview questions, so you must ready several approaches about how you would like to respond to them. Since there are several factors that go into selecting a career, you can answer this fundamental question in a variety of ways. When preparing an answer, aim to include the reasons the profession interests you in addition to the strengths you have that make you an exceptional nurse and the best choice for the job. Don't attempt to memorize a response, but write down a few ideas and talking points that pertain to your personal experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample answers can help you to formulate your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to include to enthuse the recruiter.
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