How to Choose an LPN College in Beale Afb California
Once you have chosen a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it’s essential that you locate a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) college in Beale Afb CA that will furnish the appropriate training. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no difference, apart from the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both undertake the same job functions and work in health care facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their functions do vary depending on the state they practice in, which we will talk about in the following section. When initiating their search for schools, many prospective nursing students begin with those that are the nearest to their residences or that are the least expensive. Even though price and location are significant factors, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your decision on. Other variables, such as if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely important also. There are various other questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LVN or LPN training program that we will address later in this article. But first, let’s take a look at the role 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 functions that they perform in the Beale Afb CA healthcare facilities where they are employed. As their titles imply, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including California. While they may be responsible for managing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves normally work under the guidance of either an RN or a doctor. The healthcare facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, for instance hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can find patients in need of medical assistance is their dominion. Every state not only oversees their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can’t perform. So depending on the state, their daily job functions may include:
- Checking vital signs
- Providing medicines
- Setting up IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Managing patient records
- Assisting doctors or RNs with procedures
Along with their work duties being controlled by each state, the Beale Afb CA health care facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. In addition, they can work in different specialties of nursing, including long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
There are generally two scholastic accreditations offered in California that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest time frame, usually about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The second option is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, aside from providing a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, 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 state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the core curriculum properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Beale Afb CA, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees
There are several degree options to choose from to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can earn a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or advance to obtain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Beale Afb CA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program made available by California community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently obtain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more expansive training than the ADN. It is usually a 4 year program offered at California colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may desire to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is commonly a 2 year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After 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) so as to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so be sure to check with the California board of nursing for any state requirements.
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 Beale Afb CA area. The duration of the training program can take anywhere from 1 to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to have 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 minimal period of instruction mandated and that each state has its own requirements. So it’s necessary to make sure that the course you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for California to make sure that the training 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 can be other requirements as well.
Online Nursing Programs
Enrolling in nursing schools online is becoming a more popular way to obtain instruction and attain a nursing degree. Certain Beale Afb CA area schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specified amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient answer to finding the time to attend classes for many students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can 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 household obligations have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Programs
Once you have decided on which nursing degree to pursue, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following pointers to start narrowing down your choices. As you probably are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges within California and the United States. So it is necessary to decrease the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a workable list. As we previously pointed out, the site of the school relative to Beale Afb CA and the cost 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 ultimate selection, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up to the other schools.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program along with the Beale Afb CA school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides helping confirm that you obtain a quality education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited California schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN or NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Beale Afb CA school you are attending not only delivers an excellent education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for California or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Check online rating services to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Additionally, get in touch with the California school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some regional Beale Afb CA 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 schools 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 dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It’s also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a favorable reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships in the Beale Afb CA area to help students attain employment.
Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs in California require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing too. Find out if the schools have associations with local hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships in the Beale Afb CA area.
Select the Right LPN School Beale Afb 95903
Selecting the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse school is perhaps the most important first step to launching a new career in the health care industry. There are numerous factors that you should take into account when picking a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic status. As we have stressed in this article, it is important that you choose an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care 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 proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a Licensed Vocational Nurse in Beale Afb CA.
Why Did You Want to Become an LPN?When prepping to interview for a nursing job, it's advantageous to review 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 trying to learn is not just the personal reasons you might have for being an LPN, but also what attributes and talents you have that make you exceptional at what you do. You will probably be asked questions pertaining primarily to nursing, in addition to a certain number of standard interview questions, so you need to prepare some ideas about how you would like to respond to them. Since there are numerous variables that go into choosing a career, you can respond to this fundamental question in a variety of ways. When preparing an answer, try to include the reasons the work interests you in addition to the strengths you have that make you an outstanding nurse and the best choice for the job. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but jot down several concepts and anecdotes that relate to your own experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample responses can assist you to formulate your own concepts, and provide ideas of what to include to impress the recruiter.
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