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Things to Ask Nursing Degree Programs
Once you have determined which nursing degree to pursue, as well as if to attend your classes on campus near Catalina Foothills AZ or on the internet, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your options. As you probably realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges throughout Arizona and the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a workable list. As we earlier pointed out, the site of the school as well as the expense of tuition are probably going to be the first two factors that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares to the other schools.
- Accreditation. It's a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program along with the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Besides helping confirm that you get a premium education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered in Arizona for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) in addition to 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 essential that the school you are attending not only provides an exceptional education, but also preps you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check online rating services 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, check with the Arizona school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Catalina Foothills AZ healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgments are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the RN programs 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 dissatisfied with the program and dropped out. It's also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a favorable reputation within the Catalina Foothills AZ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students gain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with Catalina Foothills AZ area hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.