How to Pick a Nursing Program near Valley City North Dakota
Selecting the best nursing college near Valley City ND may feel like a complex project, particularly if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, to practice as a registered nurse, you must acquire the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and assess the qualifications of each school you are thinking about before enrolling in your ultimate choice. The fact is, too many prospective students base their selection entirely on the price of tuition and the proximity of the school. Choosing the least costly school or the one that is local to your residence is most likely not the best way to choose a nursing program. There are a number of essential additional things to check out before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first cover what the job of a registered nurse is in our medical system, together with the nursing degree choices that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Activities
Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different medical settings, namely Valley City ND hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general duty is to aid doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization as well as where they work. Some of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Monitoring patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more high level job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and normally 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.
Nursing Degrees Available
There are multiple degrees offered to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can obtain a qualifying degree in just two years, or continue on to achieve a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief summaries of the nursing degrees that are available in the Valley City ND area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program made available by community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level position in nursing in healthcare centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and ultimately achieve a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more expansive training than the ADN. It is commonly a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may want to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is usually a two year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After 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) to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing change from state to state, so don’t forget to check with the North Dakota board of nursing for any state mandates.
LPN and LVN Courses
There are generally two scholastic credentials available that provide training to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be finished in the shortest period of time, usually about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma course. The second alternative is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and usually require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, besides providing a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you seek, it needs to be North Dakota approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the core curriculum adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
In contrast to many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to earn a college degree. CNA instruction can be acquired at Valley City ND area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the instruction can take anywhere from just one to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimal period of training mandated and each state has its own prerequisites. So it’s essential to make certain that the course you enroll in not only fulfills the federal requirements, but likewise those for North Dakota or the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make sure that the education is state approved. As well as the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be additional prerequisites as well.
Online Nursing Programs
Attending nursing colleges online is growing into a more popular way to obtain training and acquire a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs require a specific amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more accommodating approach to finding the time to attend college for many Valley City ND students. Regarding tuition, many 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 economical. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your work and household responsibilities have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.
What to Ask Nursing Schools
Now that you have decided on which nursing program to enroll in, and if to attend your classes on campus near Valley City ND or on the web, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges within North Dakota and the United States. So it is essential to decrease the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we already discussed, the site of the school along with the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two things that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares to the other programs.
- 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 agency. In addition to helping ensure that you obtain an excellent education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available in Valley City ND for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Many states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are attending not only delivers a top-notch education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing standards for North Dakota or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at online rating companies to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. In addition, check with the North Dakota school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Valley City ND 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 complete 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 Valley City ND medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have associations with Valley City ND hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Enrolling in a Nursing School near Valley City ND?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Valley City North Dakota 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.
Valley City, North Dakota
Valley City is a city in Barnes County, North Dakota, United States. It is the county seat of Barnes County. The population was 6,585 during the 2010 census, making it the thirteenth largest city in North Dakota. Valley City was founded in 1874.
The city is known for its many bridges over the Sheyenne River including the Hi-Line Railroad Bridge. These bridges have earned it the distinction of being called the "City of Bridges". The city is also the home of Valley City State University and the home for the North Dakota High School Activities Association (NDHSAA).
Valley City was originally called Worthington, and under the latter name was laid out in 1874 when the railroad was extended to that point. The present name is for the city's location in the valley of the Sheyenne River. A post office was established under the name Worthington in 1874, and has continued to operate under the name Valley City since 1878. A Carnegie Library opened in 1903, through the efforts of the "Tuesday Club," a local women's organization.
Pick the Right Nursing Program near Valley City ND
Choosing the ideal nursing program is probably the most important phase to starting a new career in the medical care industry. There are numerous aspects that you should consider when deciding on a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have stressed within this content, it is critical that you select 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 develop a short list 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 drive to succeed, you can become a practicing RN in Valley City ND.
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