How to Find the Right LPN College in Decatur Michigan
Once you have decided on a fulfilling career in the field of nursing, it’s essential that you find a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program in Decatur MI that will provide the proper instruction. 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 perform the same job functions and work in medical facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their functions do vary depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the next segment. When starting their search for schools, many future nursing students begin with the ones that are the closest to their houses or that are the least expensive. While price and location are relevant considerations, they are not the only criteria that you should base your decision on. Other variables, such as 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 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 role of an LPN and what is involved in the education and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Responsibilities
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have numerous functions that they carry out in the Decatur MI health care facilities where they are employed. As their titles indicate, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Michigan. Even though they may be accountable for overseeing 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 varied, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can find patients in need of medical attention is their dominion. Every state not only regulates their licensing, but also what duties an LPN can and can’t perform. So depending on the state, their everyday job activities can include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Providing medicines
- Initiating IV drips
- Observing patients
- Taking blood or urine samples
- Maintaining patient records
- Helping doctors or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their occupational duties being controlled by each state, the Decatur MI healthcare facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. Additionally, they can practice in various specialties of nursing, such as long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN and LVN Courses
There are generally two academic credentials available in Michigan that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be concluded in the shortest amount of time, generally about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The 2nd choice is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and typically require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, 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 Decatur MI, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degree Options
There are several degree options available to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or advance to achieve a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Decatur MI area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program offered by Michigan community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and later attain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more in depth training than the ADN. It is generally a 4 year program offered at Michigan colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may wish to advance 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 acquiring the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has received one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) so as to become licensed. Other requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so don’t forget to get in touch with the Michigan board of nursing for any state requirements.
In contrast to some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to earn a college degree. CNA education can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Decatur MI area. The length of the training can take anywhere from 1 to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required 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 amount of training directed and each state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s essential to make certain that the course you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to check with the health or nursing board for Michigan to make sure that the training is state certified. Along with the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be other prerequisites as well.
Nursing Online Classes
Enrolling in nursing schools online is emerging as a more popular way to obtain instruction and earn a nursing degree. Some Decatur MI area schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs require a certain amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating solution to finding the time to attend classes for some students. Concerning tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. 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 job and household responsibilities have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Colleges
Now that you have decided on which nursing degree to enroll in, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following checklist to begin narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges throughout Michigan 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 earlier pointed out, the site of the school relative to Decatur MI along with the cost of tuition are most likely 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 prior to making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection compares to the other programs.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program as well as the Decatur MI school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Aside from helping verify that you receive a premium education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited Michigan schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites 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) along with graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Decatur MI school you are enrolled in not only provides a top-notch education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Michigan or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Check internet rating companies to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. In addition, get in touch with the Michigan school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some local Decatur MI 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 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 important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships in the Decatur MI area to assist students attain employment.
Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs in Michigan require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Check if the schools have a working relationship with nearby hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships in the Decatur MI area.
Choose the Right LPN College Decatur 49045
Choosing the best Licensed Practical Nurse degree program is potentially the most important phase to starting a new career in the health care industry. There are a number of aspects that you need to consider when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, obligations, and financial status. As we have pointed out 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 health care community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become an LVN in Decatur MI.
Why Did You Want to Become a Licensed Practical Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing job, it's important to reflect on questions you may be asked. One of the questions that recruiters frequently ask nursing applicants is "What made you select nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to uncover is not just the private reasons you might have for becoming an LPN, but additionally what qualities and abilities you possess that make you outstanding at what you do. You will likely be asked questions relating specifically to nursing, in addition to a certain number of standard interview questions, so you need to prepare some approaches about how you would like to answer them. Because there are several variables that go into selecting a career, you can address this fundamental question in a variety of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the profession interests you in addition to the strengths you have that make you an excellent nurse and the leading candidate for the job. Don't try to memorize an answer, but jot down some ideas and anecdotes that relate to your personal strengths and experiences. Reviewing sample responses can help you to formulate your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to include to enthuse the interviewer.
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