How to Select the Right Nursing Training Program near Adelanto CA
Selecting the right nursing college near Adelanto CA may feel like a difficult project, especially if you have no idea what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must receive the proper education and training to become licensed. So it is essential that you study and measure the qualifications of each college you are thinking about before enrolling in your ultimate selection. The fact is, too many prospective students base their selection exclusively on the cost of tuition and the distance of the school. Selecting the least costly school or the one that is local to your house is undoubtedly not the most reliable way to select a nursing program. There are a number of important additional aspects to check out before you decide where to attend classes. But before we examine that checklist, let's first review the nursing degree choices that are available as well as what the functions of nurses are in our health system.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical settings, such as Adelanto CA hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic function is to support 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 as well as where they work. A few of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Maintaining health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more complex job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master's Degree and commonly work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat basic illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There is more than one degree option offered to become a nurse. And to become a Registered Nurse (RN), a student must attend an accredited school and program. A nursing student can receive a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or advance to attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are available to aspiring students in the Adelanto California area.
- Associates Degree. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program offered by California community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and later earn a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor's Degree. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more in depth training than the ADN. It is commonly a 4 year program offered at California colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might desire to advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
- Master's Degree. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is generally a 2 year program after acquiring the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has received 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 vary from state to state, so make sure to contact the California board of nursing for any state requirements.
Online Nursing Programs
Enrolling in nursing schools online is becoming a more popular way to receive training and acquire a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs require a certain amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating answer to finding the free time to attend classes for many Adelanto CA students. Concerning tuition, many online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more affordable. And many online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your job and household responsibilities have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Why Enter the Nursing Profession?Nurses are an essential component of a Adelanto CA medical team, and for many patients, their primary care providers. A career in nursing opens doors to many opportunities, including healthcare education, research and specialty areas of practice. Nurses enter the profession for various reasons, the most meaningful are its practical and personal advantages. Nurses provide direct, one-on-one care to patients. Many individuals in a medical facility or home care environment have more contact with nurses than with doctors. Nurses commonly go into the profession due to a desire to tend to the needs of patients, including in instances of short-term treatment of illness and long-term care of chronic conditions. This humanistic aspect of the medical profession, rather than the research or analytical related elements, is attractive to many who decide to pursue a nursing career. Nurses have a wide range of applicable skills and can choose from an assortment of work settings, such as home care facilities, doctor's offices, health clinics, community centers and hospitals. Also, nurses can progress into a number of specialties, including addictions, critical care, neonatology and genetics. Although most nurses provide direct patient care, others opt to be educators, policy consultants or pharmaceutical representatives.
What to Ask Nursing Programs
Once you have selected which nursing degree to pursue, as well as if to attend your classes on campus near Adelanto CA or on the web, you can use the following pointers to start narrowing down your choices. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within California and the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a manageable list. As we already discussed, the site of the school along with the price of tuition are probably going to be the initial two factors that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares 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 recognized accrediting agency. In addition to helping make sure that you receive a premium education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered in California for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses are different 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. Certain states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's imperative that the school you are enrolled in not only provides an exceptional education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for California or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Also, contact the California school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Adelanto CA 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 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 dissatisfied 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 good reputation within the Adelanto CA medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students attain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing also. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with Adelanto CA area hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Enroll in the Best Adelanto CA RN Program
Picking the ideal nursing college is probably the most critical phase to beginning a new career in the health care industry. There are many factors that you must consider when choosing a nursing program. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, obligations, and economic status. As we have stressed in this post, it is critical that you choose a nursing college and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create 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 ambition to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Adelanto CA.