How to Find the Right Nursing Degree Program near Sulphur Oklahoma
Selecting the best nursing school near Sulphur OK may seem like a formidable endeavor, especially if you aren’t sure what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, to practice as a registered nurse, you need to acquire the necessary education and training in order to become licensed. So it is essential that you research and evaluate the qualifications of each program you are contemplating before enrolling in your final selection. The fact is, too many future students base their selection solely on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Picking the least costly college or the one that is local to your residence is probably not the most reliable way to decide on a nursing program. There are many important additional considerations to investigate before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first discuss what the job of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, together with the nursing degree alternatives that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the medical care delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical settings, namely Sulphur OK hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary job is to assist doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the particular duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization along with where they work. A portion of the duties of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Instructing patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more advanced job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), as an example, must hold a Master’s Degree and typically 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 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 earn a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or advance to achieve a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Sulphur OK area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a 2 year program made available by community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and later earn a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more in depth training than the ADN. It is generally a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program might desire to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is normally a 2 year program after receiving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once 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. Further requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so don’t forget to get in touch with the Oklahoma board of nursing for any state requirements.
LPN and LVN Certificates and Degrees
There are essentially two academic accreditations available that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be concluded in the shortest period of time, usually about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The second 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 finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to offering a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you pursue, it should be Oklahoma approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the syllabus properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Unlike some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA training can be received at Sulphur OK area community colleges or at vocational or trade schools. The duration of the training can take anywhere from 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 have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum period of instruction mandated and every state has its own prerequisites. So it’s important to make certain that the course you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but likewise those for Oklahoma or the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to contact the health or nursing board for your state to make certain that the training course is state approved. Along with the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be other prerequisites as well.
Nursing Online Classes
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is emerging as a more popular way to receive training and attain a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specific amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more convenient solution to finding the free time to attend classes for many Sulphur OK students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more economical. 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 work and family responsibilities have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online nursing training program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Things to Ask Nursing Schools
Once you have decided on which nursing program to pursue, and whether to attend your classes on campus near Sulphur OK or on the web, you can utilize the following guidelines to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt realize, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges within Oklahoma and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to select from so that you will have a workable list. As we already pointed out, the location of the school along with the cost of tuition are probably going to be the initial two points that you will consider. 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 compares to the other schools.
- 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. Aside from helping make sure that you get an excellent education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered in Sulphur OK 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) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the school you are attending not only delivers an outstanding education, but also preps you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Oklahoma or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Check 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. Additionally, check with the Oklahoma school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Sulphur OK 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 colleges 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 verify that the school has a favorable reputation within the Sulphur OK medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Check if the schools have a working relationship with Sulphur OK hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Enrolling in a Nursing School near Sulphur OK?
Perhaps you have already made your decision to attend a Nursing Program in the greater Sulphur Oklahoma 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.
Sulphur is a city in and county seat of Murray County, Oklahoma, United States. The population was 4,929 at the 2010 census, a 3.4 percent gain from 4,794 at the 2000 census. The area around Sulphur has been noted for its mineral springs, since well before the city was founded late in the 19th Century. The city received its name from the presence of sulfur in the water.[a]
This area was part of the Chickasaw Nation in Indian Territory during the late 19th Century. The first known settler was Noah Lael, son-in-law of former Chickasaw Governor Cyrus Harris, who built a ranch south of Pavilion Springs in 1878. In 1882, Harris sold the ranch to Perry Froman, a part Chickasaw rancher. The Encyclopedia of Oklahoma History and Culture says the ranch house was the first residence in Sulphur.
About 1890, a group of fisherman built a clubhouse at the Sulphur site. Conventions and other gatherings began meeting in the vicinity during the early 1890s. The clubhouse owners enlarged the building and sold it for use as a hotel. Richard A. Sneed, a lawyer who visited the area about 1890 and soon after organized the Sulphur Springs Company. The company bought 600 acres (2.4 km2) of land from Froman Ranch and platted a townsite. A post office named Sulphur was established October 2, 1895. The Sulphur Headlight, the first newspaper in town, began publication in 1899, and the first telephone exchange in town went into service in 1900.
Enroll in the Right Nursing College near Sulphur OK
Picking the right nursing program is arguably the most important first step to starting a new career in the medical care field. There are many variables that you must take into account when selecting a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, obligations, and financial status. As we have highlighted within this article, it is critical that you pick a nursing school and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create 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 hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Sulphur OK.
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