How to Choose an LPN School in Hometown Illinois
Once you have chosen a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it’s essential that you find a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program in Hometown IL that will furnish the appropriate 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, except for the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both perform the same job functions and work in health care facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their functions do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will look at in the following section. When beginning their search for schools, many potential nursing students begin with those that are the closest to their homes or that are the least expensive. While price and location are significant points to consider, they are not the only criteria that you should base your selection 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 discuss later in this article. But to start with, let’s look at the role of an LPN and what is involved in the instruction and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Responsibilities
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have many different duties that they complete in the Hometown IL health care facilities where they are employed. As their titles signify, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Illinois. While they may be accountable for overseeing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves usually work under the direction of either an RN or a doctor. The medical care facilities where they work are numerous and varied, 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. Every state not only oversees their licensing, but also what duties an LPN can and can’t perform. So depending on the state, their everyday work activities might include:
- Checking vital signs
- Giving medicines
- Initiating IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Getting blood or urine samples
- Keeping patient records
- Helping doctors or Registered nurses with procedures
In addition to their work functions being governed by each state, the Hometown IL healthcare 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 instance long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LVN and LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are generally two academic credentials available in Illinois that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest time frame, typically about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma course. The second choice is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, aside from supplying a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you pursue, it should be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the syllabus adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Hometown IL, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees
There are multiple degrees offered to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can earn a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Hometown IL area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a 2 year program made available by Illinois community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and later attain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more expansive training than the ADN. It is usually a 4 year program offered at Illinois colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able 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 normally a 2 year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When 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) to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing change from state to state, so make sure to contact the Illinois board of nursing for any state mandates.
Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA training can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Hometown IL area. The duration of the training program 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 mandated to obtain 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 directed and that each state has its own prerequisites. So it’s important to make certain that the course you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to contact the health or nursing board for Illinois 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 might be additional prerequisites as well.
Nursing Online Programs
Attending nursing programs online is growing into a more favored way to get training and acquire a nursing degree. Many Hometown IL area schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient answer to finding the free time to attend college for many students. Pertaining to tuition, some online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may 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. And so if your job and household responsibilities have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing training program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Programs
Once you have chosen which nursing program to enroll in, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following pointers to begin narrowing down your choices. As you probably realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges within Illinois and the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to select from so that you will have a workable list. As we earlier pointed out, the location of the school relative to Hometown IL as well as the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the first two points that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the field.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program as well as the Hometown IL school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. In addition to helping verify that you get a quality education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited Illinois schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, are different 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. Many states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Hometown IL school you are attending not only provides an outstanding education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Illinois or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Look at internet rating services to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Additionally, get in touch with the Illinois school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some local Hometown IL 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 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 unhappy with the program and dropped out. It’s also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a superb reputation within the medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts in the Hometown IL area to help students gain a position.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs in Illinois require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing also. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships in the Hometown IL area.
Enroll in the Right LPN Training Hometown 60456
Deciding on the best Licensed Practical Nurse training program is probably the most critical phase to launching a new career in the healthcare field. There are numerous aspects that you should think about when choosing a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have emphasized in this content, it is critical that you pick an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become an LPN in Hometown IL.
Why Did You Want to Be a Licensed Practical Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing job, it's advantageous to reflect on questions you might be asked. Among the things that hiring managers often ask nursing applicants is "What drove you to decide on nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to learn is not only the personal reasons you might have for becoming a nurse, but additionally what characteristics and skills you possess that make you good at your profession. You will likely be asked questions relating exclusively to nursing, as well as a significant number of general interview questions, so you must ready a number of ideas about how you want to address them. Because there are numerous factors that go into choosing a career, you can answer this fundamental question in a multitude of ways. When formulating an answer, aim to include the reasons the work appeals to you in addition to the strengths you have that make you an outstanding nurse and the best choice for the position. Don't attempt to memorize a response, but write down several ideas and topics that pertain to your personal experiences and strengths. Reading through sample responses can assist you to prepare your own concepts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to impress the recruiter.
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