How to Pick an LPN College in Wethersfield Connecticut
Now that you have chosen a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it’s imperative that you choose a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) college in Wethersfield CT that will furnish the proper education. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be looking for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no difference, except for the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both undertake the same job functions and work in medical facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their responsibilities do vary depending on the state they practice in, which we will look at in the following section. When starting their search for schools, many potential nursing students start with those that are the closest to their homes or that are the least expensive. Although tuition and location are relevant factors, they are not the only criteria that you should base your decision on. Other variables, for example if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely important as well. There are additional questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LVN or LPN training program that we will discuss later in this article. But first, let’s take a look at the job of an LPN and what is involved in the instruction and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Functions
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have a number of tasks that they complete in the Wethersfield CT healthcare facilities where they practice. As their titles signify, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Connecticut. Although they may be accountable for monitoring Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves generally work under the supervision of either an RN or a doctor. The medical facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, for example hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can find patients requiring medical care is their domain. Each state not only regulates their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their daily job activities may include:
- Checking vital signs
- Providing medicines
- Starting IV drips
- Observing patients
- Getting blood or urine samples
- Managing patient records
- Supporting physicians or RNs with procedures
In addition to their job responsibilities being regulated by each state, the Wethersfield CT health facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can additionally limit their job duties within those parameters. Additionally, they can practice in various specialties of nursing, for example long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN and LVN Courses
There are generally two scholastic accreditations available in Connecticut that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be concluded in the shortest period of time, usually about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The other option is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from offering a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you seek, it needs to be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the syllabus properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Wethersfield CT, 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 obtain a qualifying degree in as little as two years, or advance to earn a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Wethersfield CT area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a 2 year program offered by Connecticut community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently achieve a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is typically a 4 year program offered at Connecticut 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 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 normally a two year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has attained one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to contact the Connecticut board of nursing for any state requirements.
Unlike other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA instruction can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Wethersfield CT area. The length of the training can take anywhere from one to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to have at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum amount of training required and every state has its own prerequisites. So it’s necessary to make certain that the program you enroll in not only complies with 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 Connecticut to make sure that the education is state approved. In addition to the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be additional requirements as well.
Nursing Online Classes
Enrolling in nursing schools online is growing into a more favored way to get instruction and attain a nursing degree. Certain Wethersfield CT area schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs require a specific amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient solution to finding the free time to attend classes for some students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, 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 work and household commitments have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Colleges
Now that you have decided on which nursing degree to enroll in, and if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following pointers to begin narrowing down your options. As you no doubt realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Connecticut and the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we already pointed out, the site of the school relative to Wethersfield CT and the price of tuition are most likely going to be the first two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final selection, use the following questions to see how your pick measures up to the other schools.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program as well as the Wethersfield CT school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Besides helping ensure that you receive an excellent education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited Connecticut schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements 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) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Wethersfield CT school you are attending not only delivers an excellent education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Connecticut or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Look at online rating companies to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. In addition, check with the Connecticut school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some regional Wethersfield CT healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their assessments are of the schools as well.
Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the LPN colleges 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a good reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships in the Wethersfield CT area to assist students attain a position.
Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs in Connecticut require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing also. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships in the Wethersfield CT area.
Enroll in the Right LPN Program Wethersfield 06109
Picking the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse program is potentially the most critical step to launching a new career in the health care industry. There are a number of aspects that you must take into account when choosing a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, obligations, and financial status. As we have highlighted in this post, it is critical 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 list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become an LVN in Wethersfield CT.
Why Did You Decide to Be an LPN?When prepping to interview for a nursing job, it's important to review questions you could be asked. One of the questions that interviewers typically ask nursing applicants is "What made you decide on nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to discover is not merely the private reasons you may have for being an LPN, but also what characteristics and skills you possess that make you good at your profession. You will undoubtedly be asked questions relating specifically to nursing, along with a certain number of routine interview questions, so you must prepare some ideas about how you want to respond to them. Since there are so many variables that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this primary question in a number of ways. When preparing an answer, try to include the reasons the work appeals to you as well as the abilities you possess that make you an excellent nurse and the leading candidate for the job. Don't try to memorize an answer, but take down a few concepts and talking points that relate to your personal experiences and strengths. Reading through sample responses can help you to formulate your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to wow the interviewer.
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