How to Choose an LPN School in Cave City Arkansas
Now that you have decided on a fulfilling vocation in the field of nursing, it’s important that you choose a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school in Cave City AR that will deliver the appropriate training. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be looking for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, other than the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both undertake the same job functions and work in healthcare facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their responsibilities do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will look at in the next segment. When starting their search for schools, many potential nursing students begin with those that are the nearest to their residences or that are the least costly. Even though cost and location are significant considerations, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your decision on. Other factors, for instance if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely important too. There are even more questions that you should ask prospective schools before enrolling in a LVN or LPN training program that we will cover later in this article. But to start with, let’s look at the function of an LPN and what is involved in the education and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Duties
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have a number of tasks that they complete in the Cave City AR health facilities where they are employed. As their titles signify, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Arkansas. While they may be accountable for supervising Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves typically work under the direction of either an RN or a doctor. The healthcare facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, for example hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anyplace that you can encounter patients in need of medical assistance is their domain. Each state not only oversees their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their everyday work activities can include:
- Taking vital signs
- Administering medicines
- Setting up IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Taking blood or urine samples
- Maintaining patient records
- Assisting doctors or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their job functions being governed by each state, the Cave City AR medical facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. Also, they can work in numerous specialties of nursing, such as long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LVN and LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are generally two scholastic credentials offered in Arkansas that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be completed in the shortest amount of time, typically about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The second 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 finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to supplying a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you seek, it should be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the course of study adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Cave City AR, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees Available
There are multiple degrees available to become a registered nurse. And in order 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 continue on to obtain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief explanations of the nursing degrees that are available in the Cave City AR area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program made available by Arkansas community colleges. It readies 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 later achieve a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more expansive training than the ADN. It is generally a 4 year program offered at Arkansas 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 may 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 usually a 2 year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has received one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) in order to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so be sure to get in touch with the Arkansas board of nursing for any state mandates.
In contrast to other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA training can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Cave City AR area. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from just one to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to receive 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 period of instruction required and each state has its specific requirements. So it’s crucial to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to contact the health or nursing board for Arkansas to make certain that the training course is state approved. As well as the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be additional requirements as well.
Online Nursing Classes
Attending nursing programs online is emerging as a more favored way to receive training and earn a nursing degree. Some Cave City AR area schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient answer to finding the time to attend school for some students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more easily 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. So if your work and family commitments have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Colleges
Once you have selected which nursing degree to pursue, as well as 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 a large number of nursing schools and colleges throughout Arkansas 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 earlier discussed, the site of the school relative to Cave City AR and the cost of tuition are probably going to be the first two things that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection compares to the other schools.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program in addition to the Cave City AR school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. In addition to helping ensure that you get a quality education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited Arkansas schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN or NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Many states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Cave City AR school you are enrolled in not only delivers an outstanding education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Arkansas or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Look at online rating services 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, check with the Arkansas school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some regional Cave City AR 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 LPN colleges 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 imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a favorable reputation within the medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships in the Cave City AR area to help students gain a position.
Internship Programs. The most effective way to obtain experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs in Arkansas require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships in the Cave City AR area.
Pick the Right LPN Course Cave City 72521
Deciding on the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse training program is probably the most important first step to beginning a new career in the medical care field. There are many variables that you must consider when deciding on a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, obligations, and economic status. As we have pointed out in this article, it is important that you select an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become an LVN in Cave City AR.
Why Did You Decide to Become a Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing job, it's a good idea to review questions you could be asked. Among the questions that recruiters frequently ask nursing applicants is "What drove you to decide on nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not only the private reasons you might have for being a licensed practical nurse, but also what qualities and skills you possess that make you outstanding at your profession. You will undoubtedly be asked questions relating exclusively to nursing, along with a significant number of typical interview questions, so you should prepare a number of strategies about how you would like to address them. Since there are so many variables that go into choosing a career, you can respond to 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 best choice for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but take down several concepts and anecdotes that relate to your own strengths and experiences. Reviewing sample answers can assist you to prepare your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the interviewer.
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