How to Choose the Right Nursing School near Bell CA
Choosing the right nursing college near Bell CA may feel like a complicated undertaking, particularly if you have no idea what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must 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 program you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Unfortunately, too many future students base their determination exclusively on the cost of tuition and the distance of the school. Choosing the least expensive school or the one that is local to your home is probably not the best way to pick a nursing program. There are various essential additional factors to look into before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let's first review the nursing degree options that are available as well as what the jobs of nurses are in our health system.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, including Bell CA hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic job is to help doctors in the care of their patients. However, the particular duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization in addition to where they work. Some of the duties of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Overseeing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more high level job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master's Degree and often work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can provide primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degrees Available
There is more than one degree option available 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 earn a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered to aspiring students in the Bell 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 use the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently attain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor's Degree. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more extensive training than the ADN. It is typically 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 want 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 typically a 2 year program after attaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
When 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) in order to become licensed. Additional requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to contact the California board of nursing for any state mandates.
Nursing Online Degrees
Attending nursing colleges online is becoming a more popular way to obtain instruction and attain a nursing degree. Some schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs require a specific number of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more practical answer to finding the time to attend college for some Bell CA students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, helping to make education more affordable. And a large number of 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 commitments have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing training program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Why Choose Nursing as a Career?Nurses are an important component of a Bell CA medical team, and for a large number of patients, their primary care providers. A nursing career can lead to many opportunities, including research, health care education and specialty areas of practice. Nurses go into the profession for many reasons, among the most meaningful are its practical and personal rewards. Nurses provide direct, one-on-one care to patients. Many patients in a hospital or home care environment spend more time with nurses than with physicians. Nurses frequently choose the profession due to a passion to tend to the needs of patients, including in situations of short-term treatment of illness and prolonged care of chronic ailments. This human aspect of the health profession, as opposed to the analytical or research related elements, is attractive to many who elect to enter into a career in nursing. Nurses have a wide range of applicable skills and can choose from a number of work environments, such as home care facilities, physician's offices, medical clinics, community centers and hospitals. Also, nurses can advance into a number of specialties, including substance addictions, critical care, neonatology and genetics. While most nurses deliver primary patient care, others elect to be educators, policy advisers or pharmaceutical representatives.
Things to Ask Nursing Degree Programs
Now that you have determined which nursing program to pursue, along with whether to attend your classes on campus near Bell CA or online, you can utilize the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your options. As you probably realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges within California and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we earlier pointed out, the site of the school and the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the initial two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the field.
- Accreditation. It's a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program in addition to the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to helping verify that you receive an excellent education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not provided in California for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses are different 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. Many states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's important that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an excellent education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for California or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating companies to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. In addition, get in touch with the California school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Bell CA 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 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the Bell CA medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing also. Check if the schools have a working relationship with Bell CA area hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Choose the Right Bell CA Nursing Program
Choosing the right nursing degree program is potentially the most crucial phase to beginning a new career in the medical care field. There are a number of aspects that you need to take into account when picking a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have emphasized within this post, it is critical that you select a nursing school and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the medical community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Bell CA.