How to Select an LPN College in Dunlap Tennessee
Once you have decided on a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it’s imperative that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school in Dunlap TN that will provide 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, aside from the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both perform the same job functions and work in healthcare facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their duties do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the following segment. When starting their search for schools, many potential nursing students start with those that are the closest to their houses or that are the least costly. While tuition and location are significant points to consider, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. Other concerns, for example 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 potential schools before enrolling in a LVN or LPN training program that we will talk about later in this article. But first, let’s have a look at the role of an LPN and what is involved in the instruction and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Duties
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have numerous duties that they perform in the Dunlap TN health care facilities where they are employed. As their titles imply, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Tennessee. Even though 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 health care facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, for example hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anyplace that you can encounter patients in need of medical treatment is their domain. Every state not only regulates their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their everyday work functions may include:
- Taking vital signs
- Giving medicines
- Starting IV drips
- Observing patients
- Taking blood or urine samples
- Managing patient records
- Assisting doctors or RNs with procedures
Along with their job duties being governed by each state, the Dunlap TN medical facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can additionally limit their job duties within those parameters. Additionally, they can work in different specialties of nursing, such as long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
There are principally two scholastic credentials offered in Tennessee that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be finished in the shortest period of time, typically about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The next choice is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, along with providing 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 some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the syllabus adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Dunlap TN, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees
There is more than one degree option 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 attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Dunlap TN area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a 2 year program offered by Tennessee community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and later attain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more extensive training than the ADN. It is typically a four year program offered at Tennessee colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified to complete an accelerated program based on their prior training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might 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 typically a two year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate 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) so as to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so don’t forget to get in touch with the Tennessee board of nursing for any state requirements.
Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to obtain a college degree. CNA education can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Dunlap TN area. The length of the training can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to receive at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum period of training directed and every state has its own requirements. So it’s necessary to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Tennessee to make sure that the training course is state approved. As well as 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 Schools
Attending nursing colleges online is emerging as a more popular way to get training and earn a nursing degree. Some Dunlap TN area schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating solution to finding the time to attend college for some students. Regarding tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your job and family commitments have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Degree Programs
Now that you have selected which nursing degree to enroll in, and if to attend your classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you probably are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Tennessee and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously pointed out, the location of the school relative to Dunlap TN as well as the cost of tuition are probably going to be the first two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the other programs.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program along with the Dunlap TN school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. In addition to helping verify that you receive a premium education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited Tennessee schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required 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 performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Dunlap TN school you are attending not only delivers an exceptional education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Tennessee or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Check online rating companies to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Additionally, check with the Tennessee school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some local Dunlap TN healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their opinions are of the schools as well.
Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the LPN programs 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 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 Dunlap TN area to assist students gain a position.
Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all nursing degree programs in Tennessee require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing as well. Check if the schools have associations with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships in the Dunlap TN area.
Pick the Right LPN School Dunlap 37327
Choosing the best Licensed Practical Nurse school is probably the most important first step to launching a new career in the healthcare field. There are various variables that you must think about when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, obligations, and economic situation. As we have pointed out in this post, it is essential that you pick an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a Licensed Vocational Nurse in Dunlap TN.
Why Did You Choose to Be a Licensed Practical Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing position, it's important to reflect on questions you may be asked. Among the questions that interviewers frequently ask nursing candidates is "What made you select nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is hoping to uncover is not only the private reasons you may have for becoming a licensed practical nurse, but additionally what attributes and abilities you possess that make you good at your profession. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining specifically to nursing, along with a certain number of standard interview questions, so you must organize some ideas about how you want to address them. Considering there are several variables that go into selecting a career, you can answer this primary question in a multitude of ways. When readying an answer, try to include the reasons the profession interests you in addition to the talents you possess that make you an excellent nurse and the best choice for the job. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but write down a few concepts and anecdotes that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Reading through sample responses can assist you to prepare your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to wow the recruiter.
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