How to Select a Nursing School near Trumann Arkansas
Searching for the best nursing program near Trumann AR may feel like a challenging endeavor, particularly if you don’t know what to search for in a good degree program. As you may presently understand, to practice as a registered nurse, you need to receive the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and measure the qualifications of each school you are considering before enrolling in your ultimate choice. Regretably, too many potential students base their decision exclusively on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Choosing the least expensive program or the one that is closest to your house is no doubt not the best way to select a nursing program. There are several essential additional aspects to look into before you make a decision where to attend classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first discuss what the role of a registered nurse is in our medical system, along with the nursing degree choices that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the primary occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in a large number of different Trumann AR medical settings, namely hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their basic function is to support doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the specific duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization along with where they work. A portion of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Overseeing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more high level job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, 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 routine illnesses or injuries.
There are multiple degrees 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 earn a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or continue on to earn a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief explanations of the nursing degrees that are available in the Trumann AR area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a 2 year program offered by Arkansas community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical facilities including 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) supplies more extensive training than the ADN. It is usually a 4 year program offered at Arkansas 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 want 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 generally a two year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has attained 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. Various other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so be sure to get in touch with the Arkansas board of nursing for any state mandates.
Nursing Online Degrees
Attending nursing schools online is growing into a more popular way to obtain training and earn a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs require a certain number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more practical solution to finding the free time to attend school for some Trumann AR students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even supplementary 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 like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your job and household responsibilities have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
What to Ask Nursing Colleges
Now that you have chosen which nursing program to enroll in, along with if to attend your classes on campus or online, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges in the Trumann AR area and throughout Arkansas and the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to select from so that you will have a workable list. As we already discussed, the site of the school and the expense of tuition are probably going to be the first two things that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final choice, use the following questions to see how your selection 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 recognized accrediting organization. Aside from helping confirm that you obtain a quality education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans in Trumann AR, which are often not available for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are attending not only provides an exceptional education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Arkansas or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check online rating companies to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. In addition, check with the Arkansas school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Trumann AR healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their assessments 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 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 confirm that the school has a good reputation within the Trumann AR healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students attain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially 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 Trumann AR hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Looking at Nursing Schools near Trumann AR?
As of the census of 2010, there were 7,243 people, 2,616 households, and 1,890 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,439.7 people per square mile (555.3/km²). There were 2,998 housing units at an average density of 626.5 per square mile (241.7/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 94.30% White, 4.04% Black or African American, 0.28% Native American, 0.20% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.45% from other races, and 0.73% from two or more races. 0.81% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 2,734 households out of which 32.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.7% were married couples living together, 15.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.0% were non-families. 26.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 12.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.49 and the average family size was 3.00.
In the city, the population was spread out with 26.8% under the age of 18, 8.8% from 18 to 24, 26.9% from 25 to 44, 22.3% from 45 to 64, and 15.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 90.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 84.1 males.
Select the Right RN Degree near Trumann AR
Deciding on the right registered nursing program is arguably the most important phase to starting a new career in the healthcare field. There are various aspects that you must take into account when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, obligations, and economic situation. As we have pointed out in this post, it is important that you pick an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By using 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 final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and ambition to succeed, you can become a licensed registered nurse in Trumann AR.
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