How to Find the Right LPN College in Palmer Lake Colorado
Now that you have decided on a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it’s important that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) college in Palmer Lake CO that will furnish the proper education. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no difference, other than the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both undertake the same job functions and work in healthcare facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their duties do vary depending on the state they practice in, which we will look at in the next segment. When initiating their search for schools, many potential nursing students begin with the ones that are the nearest to their houses or that are the least costly. Although tuition and location are important factors, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. Other factors, for example if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important too. There are various other questions that you should ask prospective schools before enrolling in a LVN or LPN training program that we will discuss later in this article. But to start with, let’s take a look at the function of an LPN and what is involved in the instruction and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Activities
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have many different tasks that they carry out in the Palmer Lake CO health care facilities where they practice. As their titles signify, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Colorado. Even though 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 medical care facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, for instance hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can encounter patients in need of medical treatment is their domain. Every state not only regulates their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can’t perform. So depending on the state, their day-to-day work activities might include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Administering medicines
- Setting up IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Keeping patient records
- Supporting doctors or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their work functions being regulated by each state, the Palmer Lake CO medical 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 various specialties of nursing, for example long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN and LVN Programs
There are basically two academic accreditations available in Colorado that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest time frame, typically about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The other option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and normally require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides offering a higher credential and more extensive instruction, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you pursue, it should be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the core curriculum effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Palmer Lake CO, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees
There are several degree options offered to become a registered nurse. And 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 advance to obtain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are available in the Palmer Lake CO area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a two year program made available by Colorado community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and later obtain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more extensive training than the ADN. It is usually a 4 year program offered at Colorado colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible 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 usually a two year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has acquired 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. Other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so don’t forget to check with the Colorado board of nursing for any state mandates.
Unlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA education can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Palmer Lake CO area. The duration of the training can take anywhere from just 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 instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum period of training directed and each state has its specific requirements. So it’s important to make sure that the course you enroll in not only fulfills 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 Colorado to make sure that the training course is state approved. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be additional requirements as well.
Nursing Online Training
Enrolling in nursing programs online is emerging as a more in demand way to receive instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Many Palmer Lake CO area schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs require a certain amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating answer to finding the free time to attend college for some students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus options. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more easily affordable. And many 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 family commitments have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Schools
Now that you have selected which nursing program to enroll in, and whether to attend your classes on campus or online, you can use the following pointers to begin narrowing down your options. As you no doubt realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges within Colorado and the United States. So it is essential to decrease the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a manageable list. As we previously pointed out, the site of the school relative to Palmer Lake CO as well as the expense of tuition are probably going to be the first two points that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick measures up to the other programs.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program along with the Palmer Lake CO school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Aside from helping make sure that you obtain an excellent education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited Colorado schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN or NCLEX-RN) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Palmer Lake CO school you are enrolled in not only provides an exceptional education, but also prepares you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Colorado or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Look at internet rating services to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Additionally, get in touch with the Colorado school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some regional Palmer Lake CO 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 unhappy 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 superb reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships in the Palmer Lake CO area to assist students attain employment.
Internship Programs. The best way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs in Colorado require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing also. Find out if the schools have associations with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships in the Palmer Lake CO area.
Pick the Right LPN Training Palmer Lake 80133
Deciding on the right Licensed Practical Nurse college is arguably the most crucial first step to starting a new career in the healthcare field. There are many aspects that you should think about when choosing a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have pointed out in this article, it is essential that you pick an RN school 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 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 hard work and desire to succeed, you can become an LPN in Palmer Lake CO.
Why Did You Decide to Be a Nurse?When getting ready to interview for a nursing position, it's a good idea to consider questions you might be asked. Among the questions that recruiters typically ask nursing applicants is "What compelled you to pick nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to uncover is not only the personal reasons you might have for being a licensed practical nurse, but additionally what attributes and talents you possess that make you good at your profession. You will likely be asked questions relating primarily to nursing, along with a significant number of standard interview questions, so you should organize a number of approaches about how you want to respond to them. Because there are so many factors that go into choosing a career, you can answer this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When preparing an answer, attempt to include the reasons the work interests you as well as the abilities you have that make you an outstanding nurse and the ideal candidate for the position. Don't try to memorize an answer, but write down several ideas and topics that relate to your personal strengths and experiences. Reading through sample answers can help you to prepare your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to include to enthuse the interviewer.
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