How to Enroll In the Right Nursing Program near Beaumont CA
Choosing the right nursing program near Beaumont CA may seem like a complicated undertaking, especially if you aren't sure what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must acquire the appropriate education and training to become licensed. So it is essential that you research and determine the qualifications of each college you are thinking about before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Unfortunately, too many potential students base their determination exclusively on the price of tuition and the proximity of the school. Picking the least expensive college or the one that is closest to your house is probably not the most reliable way to select a nursing program. There are many important additional things to check into before you decide where to attend classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let's first go over the nursing degree choices that are available together with what the roles of nurses are in our medical system.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical settings, such as Beaumont CA hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic function is to assist doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the particular duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization as well as where they work. A few of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Observing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more complex job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master's Degree and normally 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
There are several degree options available to become a nurse. And in order to become a Registered Nurse (RN), a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A nursing student can acquire a qualifying degree in as little as two years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered to aspiring students in the Beaumont California area.
- Associates Degree. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program made available by California community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and later obtain a higher degree.
- Bachelor's Degree. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more in depth training than the ADN. It is generally a four year program offered at California 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 wish to progress 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 example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has obtained 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. Additional requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so make sure to get in touch with the California board of nursing for any state mandates.
Nursing Online Schools
Enrolling in nursing schools online is emerging as a more favored way to obtain training and earn a nursing degree. Some schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs require a specific amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more convenient answer to finding the time to attend college for some Beaumont CA students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, 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. And so if your work and family obligations have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing training program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
What to Ask Nursing Degree Programs
Once you have selected which nursing program to enroll in, along with if to attend your classes on campus near Beaumont CA or on the web, you can use the following checklist to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges within California and the United States. So it is necessary to lower the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we already pointed out, the location of the school along with the price of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two points that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final selection, use the following questions to see how your pick 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. Besides helping verify that you obtain an excellent 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 requirements for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) together 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 school you are attending not only provides an excellent education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for California or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check online rating companies to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. In addition, contact the California school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Beaumont CA healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their assessments are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the RN colleges 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 imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the Beaumont CA medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specified 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 Beaumont CA area hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Enroll in the Right Beaumont CA Nursing School
Picking the ideal nursing college is arguably the most critical first step to starting a new career in the medical care field. There are various aspects that you should take into account when deciding on a nursing program. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, obligations, and economic status. As we have stressed in this content, it is important that you pick a nursing school and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the medical community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Beaumont CA.