How to Pick a Nursing Program near Brookwood Alabama
Locating the right nursing program near Brookwood AL may seem like a difficult undertaking, particularly if you aren’t sure what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, to practice as a registered nurse, you need to acquire the proper education and training to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and measure the qualifications of each college you are contemplating before enrolling in your ultimate selection. Regrettably, too many future students base their determination entirely on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Going with the least expensive program or the one that is closest to your home is most likely not the best way to select a nursing program. There are a number of important additional factors to check out before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we examine that checklist, let’s first go over what the function of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, as well as the nursing degree choices that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical environments, including Brookwood AL hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic function is to help doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the specific duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization in addition to where they work. A few of the functions of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Observing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Managing care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Maintaining health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and normally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Nursing Degree Options
There is more than one degree option to choose from to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in as little as two years, or advance to obtain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Brookwood AL area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a 2 year program offered by community colleges. It readies graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards achieve a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is generally a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified to complete an accelerated program based on their prior training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may desire to advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is normally a two year program after acquiring the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has received 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. Other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so be sure to contact the Alabama board of nursing for any state requirements.
There are essentially two academic accreditations available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be concluded in the shortest amount of time, commonly about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The next choice is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and commonly require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you pursue, it needs to be Alabama approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the course of study effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to earn a college degree. CNA instruction can be acquired at Brookwood AL area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training can take anywhere from one to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to receive at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum period of training mandated and that each state has its own prerequisites. So it’s important to make sure that the program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but also those for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for your state to make sure that the training is state approved. In addition to the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be additional requirements as well.
Nursing Online Degrees
Enrolling in nursing schools online is becoming a more favored way to receive instruction and earn a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and virtually 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 option may be a more accommodating answer to finding the free time to attend school for many Brookwood AL students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more easily affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your work and family responsibilities have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing training program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Things to Ask Nursing Degree Programs
Now that you have decided on which nursing program to enroll in, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus near Brookwood AL or on the internet, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you no doubt are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within Alabama and the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we already pointed out, the location of the school as well as the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the first two things that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to see how your pick compares to the other programs.
- 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. Aside from helping ensure that you get a premium education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not provided in Brookwood AL for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Many 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 attending not only delivers an exceptional education, but also prepares you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Alabama or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Check internet rating companies to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. In addition, check with the Alabama school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Brookwood AL 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 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 displeased with the program and dropped out. It’s also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a superb reputation within the Brookwood AL medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with Brookwood AL hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Enrolling in a Nursing School near Brookwood AL?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Brookwood Alabama area. If that is the case, then the following information may prove to be both educational and useful regarding the location of your future Alma Mater.
Brookwood Cemetery, also known as the London Necropolis, is a burial ground in Brookwood, Surrey, England. It is the largest cemetery in the United Kingdom and one of the largest in Europe. The cemetery is listed a Grade I site in the Register of Historic Parks and Gardens.
Brookwood Cemetery was conceived by the London Necropolis Company (LNC) in 1849 to house London's deceased, at a time when the capital was finding it difficult to accommodate its increasing population, of living and dead. The cemetery is said to have been landscaped by architect William Tite, but this is disputed.
In 1854, Brookwood was the largest cemetery in the world (it is no longer). Its initial owner incorporated by Act of Parliament in 1852, Brookwood Cemetery (apart from its northern section, reserved for Nonconformists) was consecrated by Charles Sumner, Bishop of Winchester, on 7 November 1854 and opened to the public on 13 November 1854 when its first burials took place.
Select the Right Nursing Program near Brookwood AL
Selecting the right nursing program is probably the most important first step to beginning a new career in the medical care field. There are many variables that you must consider when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, obligations, and financial situation. As we have highlighted in this article, it is important that you pick a nursing school and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a licensed RN in Brookwood AL.
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