How to Pick an LPN Program in Auburn University Alabama
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) program in Auburn University AL that will provide the necessary education. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, apart from the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both undertake the same job functions and work in medical facilities under the guidance 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 segment. When beginning their search for schools, many potential nursing students start with the ones that are the closest to their homes or that are the least expensive. Even though tuition and location are important considerations, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your decision on. Other concerns, such as if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very 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 cover later in this article. But first, let’s have 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 duties that they complete in the Auburn University AL health facilities where they practice. As their titles indicate, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Alabama. While they may be responsible for managing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves generally work under the supervision 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. Anyplace that you can encounter patients seeking medical assistance is their dominion. Every state not only regulates their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can’t perform. So depending on the state, their daily work functions can include:
- Taking vital signs
- Providing medicines
- Setting up IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Getting blood or urine samples
- Keeping patient records
- Supporting doctors or RNs with procedures
In addition to their work duties being controlled by each state, the Auburn University AL healthcare facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can additionally limit their job roles within those parameters. In addition, they can practice in various specialties of nursing, which include long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
There are basically two scholastic accreditations offered in Alabama that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest time period, commonly about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The next alternative is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from 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 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 course of study adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Auburn University AL, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees
There are several degree options available to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or continue on to earn a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are available in the Auburn University AL area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a two year program offered by Alabama community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards attain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more expansive training than the ADN. It is typically a four year program offered at Alabama colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed 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 receiving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has earned 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. Various other requirements for licensing change from state to state, so make sure to check with the Alabama board of nursing for any state mandates.
In contrast to some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to earn a college degree. CNA training can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Auburn University AL area. The length of the training can take anywhere from one to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to receive at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of training directed and that each state has its own requirements. So it’s important to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to check with the health or nursing board for Alabama to make sure that the training is state approved. As well as the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be other requirements as well.
Online Nursing Degrees
Enrolling in nursing schools online is becoming a more favored way to get instruction and earn a nursing degree. Some Auburn University AL area schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specific number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient solution to finding the free time to attend school for some students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more economical. 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. Therefore if your work and household responsibilities have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Programs
Once you have chosen which nursing program to enroll in, along with 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 no doubt are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Alabama 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 mentioned, the location of the school relative to Auburn University AL and the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two factors that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares to the other programs.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program along with the Auburn University AL school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. In addition to helping make sure that you receive a premium education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited Alabama 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. Certain states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Auburn University AL school you are attending not only delivers an outstanding education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Also, contact the Alabama school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some local Auburn University AL 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 schools you are looking at 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 displeased 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 contacts in the Auburn University AL area to help students gain employment.
Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs in Alabama require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Find out if the schools have associations with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships in the Auburn University AL area.
Select the Right LPN School Auburn University 36849
Selecting the right Licensed Practical Nurse degree program is arguably the most critical first step to launching a new career in the healthcare industry. There are many aspects that you must consider when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, obligations, and financial status. As we have emphasized within this post, it is important that you pick an RN college and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist 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 an LVN in Auburn University AL.
Why Did You Choose to Become an LPN?When preparing to interview for a nursing job, it's helpful to review questions you may be asked. Among the questions that interviewers frequently ask nursing applicants is "What made you decide on nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to learn is not only the personal reasons you may have for becoming a licensed practical nurse, but also what characteristics and talents you have that make you good at your profession. You will likely be asked questions pertaining specifically to nursing, as well as a certain number of routine interview questions, so you should prepare a number of strategies about how you would like to answer them. Since there are so many factors that go into choosing a career, you can address this fundamental question in a number of ways. When preparing an answer, attempt to include the reasons the profession interests you as well as the abilities you possess that make you an excellent nurse and the best choice for the position. Don't attempt to memorize an answer, but take down some ideas and topics that pertain to your own experiences and strengths. Going over sample answers can assist you to develop your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to include to impress the interviewer.
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