Home >> Arizona >> Prescott Valley >> Rn Programs


Nursing School Degree Programs Prescott Valley Arizona

How to Pick the Right RN Training Program near Prescott Valley AZ

Prescott Valley AZ RN with Doctor and PatientSelecting the best nursing college near Prescott Valley AZ may seem like a formidable project, especially if you have no idea what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, to practice as a registered nurse, you need to receive the necessary education and training in order to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you research and measure the qualifications of each school you are contemplating before enrolling in your final choice. Unfortunately, too many prospective students base their selection entirely on the price of tuition and the proximity of the school. Deciding on the least costly program or the one that is closest to your residence is no doubt not the most ideal way to select a nursing program. There are several crucial additional factors to investigate before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we explore that checklist, let's first go over the nursing degree alternatives that are available as well as what the roles of nurses are in our healthcare system.

Registered Nurse Job Duties

Prescott Valley AZ RN taking vital signs of patient

Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical environments, including Prescott Valley AZ hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general role is to help doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the specific duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or area of expertise along with where they work. Some of the duties of an RN may include:

  • Administering medications
  • Monitoring patients
  • Conducting physical examinations
  • Coordinating care
  • Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
  • Educating patients and their families
  • Maintaining health records and charts

Nurses with a higher degree may have more advanced job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master's Degree and commonly work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.

Nursing Degrees Available

Prescott Valley Arizona Registered Nurse assisting surgeon

There is more than one degree option to choose from to become a nurse. And to become a Registered Nurse (RN), a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A nursing student can receive a qualifying degree in just two years, or continue on to obtain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief explanations of the nursing degrees that are available to aspiring students in the Prescott Valley Arizona area.

  • Associates Degree. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a 2 year program offered by Arizona community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and later obtain a more advanced degree.
  • Bachelor's Degree. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is typically a 4 year program offered at Arizona 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 may want to advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
  • Master's Degree. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is usually a 2 year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.

After a graduating student has acquired 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. Various other requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so don't forget to contact the Arizona board of nursing for any state requirements.

Online Nursing Programs

Prescott Valley AZ woman attending nursing college onlineAttending nursing programs online is becoming a more in demand way to obtain instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Some schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more accommodating approach to finding the free time to attend classes for some Prescott Valley AZ students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, 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. And so if your job and family obligations have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.

Why Choose Nursing as a Career?

Nurses are an important component of a Prescott Valley AZ medical team, and for a number of patients, their primary care providers. A nursing career can lead to many opportunities, including healthcare education, research and specialty areas of practice. Nurses go into the profession for several reasons, the most notable are its personal and practical rewards. Nurses provide direct, one-on-one care to patients. Many individuals in a hospital or home care setting have more contact with nurses than with physicians. Nurses often choose the profession out of a desire to tend to the needs of patients, including in situations of short-term treatment of illness and prolonged care of chronic conditions. This human aspect of the medical profession, as opposed to the research or analytical related elements, is appealing to many who decide to enter into a nursing career. Nurses have extensive applicable skills and can choose from a variety of work environments, such as home care facilities, doctor's offices, medical clinics, community centers and hospitals. Also, nurses can advance into a variety of specializations, including substance addictions, critical care, genetics and neonatology. Although most nurses deliver primary patient care, others opt to be educators, policy consultants or pharmaceutical representatives.

Things to Ask Nursing Degree Programs

what to ask Prescott Valley AZ nursing degree schoolsOnce you have chosen which nursing degree to enroll in, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus near Prescott Valley AZ or on the web, you can use the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Arizona 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 previously pointed out, the location of the school as well as the cost of tuition are probably going to be the first two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up to the field.

  • 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 acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to helping confirm that you get a premium education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available in Arizona for non-accredited schools.
  • Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Many states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's essential that the school you are enrolled in not only provides an exceptional education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
  • Reputation. Look at online rating companies to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Additionally, check with the Arizona school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Prescott Valley 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 schools you are considering 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a good reputation within the Prescott Valley AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students obtain employment.
  • Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing also. Check if the schools have associations with Prescott Valley AZ area hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.

Choose the Best Prescott Valley AZ RN Program

Prescott Valley AZ pediatric nurse holding newbornEnrolling in the right nursing college is arguably the most important phase to launching a new career in the medical care field. There are many variables that you need to consider when deciding on a nursing college. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, obligations, and financial status. As we have pointed out within this post, it is critical that you pick a nursing school and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community.  By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Prescott Valley AZ.