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How to Find the Right RN School near Daleville Alabama

Daleville Alabama RN examining patient with stethoscopeSelecting the best nursing college near Daleville AL may seem like a difficult endeavor, particularly if you have no idea what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already understand, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you must obtain the necessary education and training to become licensed. So it is critically important that you research and assess the qualifications of each program you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Unfortunately, too many prospective students base their selection solely on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Selecting the least costly college or the one that is closest to your house is no doubt not the most reliable way to decide on a nursing program. There are several key additional considerations to look into before you make a decision where to enroll in classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let's first look at the nursing degree choices that are available along with what the jobs of nurses are in our healthcare system.

Registered Nurse Job Responsibilities

Daleville Alabama RN taking blodd pressure of elderly woman

Registered nurses are the most significant occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in numerous different medical environments, including Daleville AL hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general role is to help doctors in the care of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or area of expertise as well as where they work. Some of the responsibilities of an RN may include:

  • Administering medications
  • Overseeing patients
  • Conducting physical examinations
  • Managing care
  • Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
  • Informing patients and their families
  • Taking care of health records and charts

Nurses with a higher 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 deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.

Nursing School Degree Options

There are multiple degrees 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 receive a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or advance to achieve a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered to aspiring students in the Daleville AL area.

  • Associates Degree. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a 2 year program made available by community colleges. It prepares 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 afterwards attain a more advanced degree.
  • Bachelor's Degree. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more extensive 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 may wish to progress 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 usually a 2 year program after obtaining 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 attained one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to get in touch with the Alabama board of nursing for any state requirements.

Online Nursing Classes

Daleville Alabama RN holding health fileEnrolling in nursing colleges online is growing into a more preferred way to receive instruction and earn a nursing degree. Many schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs require a specified amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more convenient answer to finding the time to attend classes for many Daleville AL students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more 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. Therefore if your job and household commitments have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing training program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.

Why Enter the Nursing Profession?

Nurses are an indispensable part of a Daleville AL medical team, and for many patients, their primary care providers. A nursing career opens doors to a number of opportunities, including research, health care education and specialty areas of practice. Nurses go into the profession for several reasons, among the most notable are its practical and personal rewards. Nurses provide direct, one-on-one care to patients. Most individuals in a medical facility or home care environment have more contact with nurses than with doctors. Nurses often go into the profession out of a desire to tend to the needs of patients, including in cases of short-term treatment of illness and long-term care of chronic ailments. This humanistic side of the health profession, as opposed to the analytical or research related facets, is appealing to many who choose to enter into a nursing career. Nurses have extensive applicable skills and can choose from a number of work environments, such as nursing homes, physician's offices, health clinics, community centers and hospitals. Also, nurses can progress into a number of specializations, such as addictions, critical care, genetics and neonatology. Although most nurses provide direct patient care, others choose to be educators, policy advisers and pharmaceutical representatives.

What to Ask Nursing Courses

RN interacting with Daleville Alabama nursing home patientNow that you have determined which nursing program to enroll in, along with if to attend your classes on campus near Daleville AL or online, you can utilize the following checklist to start narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges throughout Alabama and the United States. So it is necessary to lower the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously discussed, the location of the school as well as the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final selection, 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 recognized accrediting agency. Besides helping confirm that you receive an excellent education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools.  Also, many Daleville AL area healthcare employers require that new hires have graduated from an accredited school.
  • Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria 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) in addition to 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 essential that the school you are attending not only delivers an excellent education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working.
  • Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Also, check with the Alabama school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Daleville AL 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 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 substantiate that the school has a good reputation within the Daleville AL healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students attain employment.
  • Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing also. Check if the schools have a working relationship with Daleville AL hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.

Learn More About Enrolling in Nursing Degree Programs in Daleville

Choose the Right Alabama RN College

Selecting the right nursing college is potentially the most important step to starting a new career in the healthcare field. There are various aspects that you should take into account when picking a nursing program. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, obligations, and economic status. As we have pointed out in this article, it is important that you pick a nursing college and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Daleville Alabama.


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