How to Choose a Nursing College near Rocklin California
Locating the right nursing program near Rocklin CA may feel like a complex undertaking, particularly if you aren’t sure what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the proper education and training to become licensed. So it is essential that you study and assess the qualifications of each program you are thinking about before enrolling in your final selection. Regrettably, too many prospective students base their selection entirely on the cost of tuition and the distance of the school. Going with the least expensive program or the one that is closest to your home is no doubt not the best way to select a nursing program. There are many key additional factors to investigate before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first look at what the function of a registered nurse is in our healthcare system, together with the nursing degree options that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical settings, such as Rocklin CA hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary function is to support doctors in the care of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization along with where they work. Some of the functions of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Observing patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and typically work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
There are several degree options to choose from to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can receive a qualifying degree in just two years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are available in the Rocklin CA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a 2 year program made available by community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare facilities including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently attain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is generally a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible to complete an accelerated program based on their prior training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might wish to advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is commonly a two year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has attained one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so be sure to check with the California board of nursing for any state mandates.
There are essentially two academic credentials offered that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be completed in the shortest period of time, commonly about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The next alternative is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and commonly require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to providing a higher credential and more extensive training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you pursue, it needs to be California 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.
Unlike other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA training can be received at Rocklin CA area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from just one to 3 months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which need to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal amount of training required and that every state has its own prerequisites. So it’s essential to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but likewise those for California or the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training is state certified. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there can be other requirements as well.
Online Nursing Classes
Enrolling in nursing schools online is emerging as a more in demand way to get instruction and earn a nursing degree. Some schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more practical approach to finding the time to attend school for some Rocklin CA students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus alternatives. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more economical. And many online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and household obligations have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Questions to Ask Nursing Schools
Now that you have chosen which nursing program to pursue, as well as whether to attend your classes on campus near Rocklin CA or on the web, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you probably realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout California and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a workable list. As we earlier discussed, the location of the school as well as the cost of tuition are probably going to be the initial two things that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick measures up to the other programs.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program as well as the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Besides helping make sure that you obtain a quality education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered in Rocklin CA for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements 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. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are attending not only delivers an excellent education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for California or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating services to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Also, check with the California school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Rocklin 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 colleges you are looking at what their graduation rates are as well as how long on average it takes students to complete 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 verify that the school has a good reputation within the Rocklin CA healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students attain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing also. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with Rocklin CA hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Enrolling in a Nursing School near Rocklin CA?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Rocklin California 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.
Rocklin is a city in Placer County, California located approximately 22 miles (35 km) from Sacramento, California, and about 6.1 miles (9.8 km) northeast of Roseville in the Sacramento metropolitan area. Besides Roseville, it shares borders with Granite Bay, Loomis and Lincoln. As of the 2010 census, Rocklin's population was 56,974.
Prior to the California Gold Rush the Nisenan Maidu occupied both permanent villages and temporary summer shelters along the rivers and streams which miners sifted, sluiced, dredged and dammed to remove the gold. Explorer Jedediah Smith and a large party of American fur trappers crossed the Sacramento Valley in late April, 1827. The group saw many Maidu villages along the river banks. Deprived of traditional foodstuffs, homesites and hunting grounds by the emigrants, the Nisenan were among the earliest California Indian tribes to disappear.
During the 1850s, miners sluiced streams and rivers including Secret Ravine which runs through Rocklin. The piles of dredger tailings is still obvious today, between Roseville and Loomis southeast of Interstate 80. Secret Ravine at the area now at the intersection of Ruhkala Road and Pacific Street was later mined for granite, some of which was used as the base course of the California Capitol Building in Sacramento, although the earliest recorded use of the rock was for Fort Mason at San Francisco in 1855. The granite was hauled out by ox carts before the arrival of the railroad many years later.
Enroll in the Right Nursing School near Rocklin CA
Selecting the ideal nursing college is arguably the most important first step to launching a new career in the medical care industry. There are a number of variables that you should consider when selecting a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have pointed out within this content, it is critical that you choose a nursing school and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in Rocklin CA.
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