How to Find the Right Nursing School in Stockbridge Wisconsin
Finding the right nursing college near Stockbridge WI may seem like a formidable 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 need to acquire the proper education and training to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and determine the qualifications of each school you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate selection. The fact is, too many potential students base their determination exclusively on the price of tuition and the nearness of the school. Deciding on the least costly program or the one that is local to your home is undoubtedly not the best way to select a nursing program. There are various key additional considerations to explore before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first discuss what the job of a registered nurse is in our medical system, together with the nursing degree options that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the Stockbridge WI medical delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical environments, including hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary job is to aid doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the specific duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or area of expertise as well as where they work. A portion of the duties of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Observing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Maintaining health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more complex job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and generally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services in Stockbridge WI, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There are several degree options to choose from to become a registered nurse in Stockbridge WI. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or advance to achieve a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a 2 year program offered by Wisconsin community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately obtain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more expansive training than the ADN. It is commonly a 4 year program offered at Wisconsin colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their prior training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might wish 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 typically a two year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner in Stockbridge WI or focus on administration, management or teaching.
When 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. Other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so be sure to get in touch with the Wisconsin board of nursing for any state mandates.
LVN and LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are essentially two academic credentials available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN in Stockbridge WI. The one that may be completed in the shortest time frame, generally about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The 2nd alternative is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, besides providing a higher credential and more extensive instruction, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you seek, it needs to be Wisconsin approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the course of study effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to earn a college degree. CNA training can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Stockbridge WI area. The duration of the training can take anywhere from one to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to obtain at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal amount of instruction mandated and that every state has its own prerequisites. So it’s crucial to make sure that the course you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Wisconsin 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 may be other prerequisites as well.
Online Nursing Programs
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is becoming a more favored way to obtain training and acquire a nursing degree in Wisconsin. Some schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online in your Stockbridge WI home, this alternative may be a more practical solution to finding the free time to attend school for many students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more easily 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. So if your job and household responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Degree Programs
Once you have chosen which nursing program to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges within Wisconsin and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a workable list. As we already pointed out, the location of the school relative to Stockbridge WI and the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two things that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection compares to the field.
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. Aside from helping confirm that you get a quality education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided for non-accredited schools near Stockbridge WI.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses differ 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. Some states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Stockbridge WI area school you are attending not only provides a top-notch education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Wisconsin 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 as well. Also, contact the Wisconsin school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some nearby Stockbridge WI 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 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 superb reputation within the Stockbridge WI medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain employment.
Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all Stockbridge WI area nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing as well. Ask if the schools have associations with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Choose the Right RN College near Stockbridge WI
Selecting the ideal registered nursing school is potentially the most critical first step to starting a new career in the health care industry. There are many variables that you must consider when choosing a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have pointed out in this content, it is essential that you select an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have excellent 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 appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a licensed RN in Stockbridge WI.
Why Did You Desire to Be a Registered Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing job, it's a good idea to reflect on questions you may be asked. One of the questions that interviewers typically ask nursing candidates is "What compelled you to select nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to learn is not only the personal reasons you may have for being a registered nurse, but also what characteristics and talents you possess that make you good at your profession. You will probably be asked questions pertaining exclusively to nursing, along with a certain number of typical interview questions, so you should organize some strategies about how you would like to address them. Given that there are several variables that go into choosing a career, you can address this primary question in a number of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the profession appeals to you along with the abilities you have that make you an outstanding nurse and the ideal candidate for the job. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but take down a few ideas and topics that pertain to your personal strengths and experiences. Going over sample responses can assist you to prepare your own concepts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to wow the interviewer.
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