How to Find the Right LPN College in Cicero Illinois
Now that you have decided on a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it’s imperative that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program in Cicero IL that will furnish the proper training. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be looking for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no difference, apart from the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both perform the same job functions and work in healthcare facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their responsibilities do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will talk about in the next section. When beginning their search for schools, many potential nursing students start with those that are the closest to their houses or that are the least costly. While price and location are important factors, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. Other variables, for example if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important as well. There are additional questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LVN or LPN training program that we will cover later in this article. But to start with, let’s have a look at the function of an LPN and what is involved in the training and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Duties
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have many duties that they complete in the Cicero IL health facilities where they practice. As their titles imply, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Illinois. Although they may be responsible for monitoring Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves usually work under the guidance of either an RN or a doctor. The medical care facilities where they work are numerous and varied, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can encounter patients seeking medical attention is their domain. Each state not only controls their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can’t perform. So depending on the state, their routine work activities may include:
- Taking vital signs
- Providing medications
- Starting IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Getting blood or urine samples
- Maintaining patient records
- Supporting physicians or Registered nurses with procedures
In addition to their job duties being mandated by each state, the Cicero IL medical facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can additionally limit their job duties within those parameters. Additionally, they can work in different specialties of nursing, which include long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LVN and LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are principally two scholastic accreditations available in Illinois that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be concluded in the shortest time frame, commonly about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma program. The other choice is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and typically require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, besides supplying a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you seek, it should be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the syllabus adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Cicero IL, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees Available
There is more than one degree option available to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can obtain a qualifying degree in just two years, or advance to earn a graduate degree for a total of 6 years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Cicero IL area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program offered by Illinois community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently obtain a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more extensive training than the ADN. It is generally a 4 year program offered at Illinois colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be allowed to complete an accelerated program based on their prior training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may desire to advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is normally a two year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has obtained 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 fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to check with the Illinois board of nursing for any state requirements.
In contrast to some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA training can be obtained at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Cicero IL area. The duration of the training can take anywhere from 1 to three months, leading to either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to receive at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum amount of instruction directed and each state has its own requirements. So it’s necessary to make certain that the course you enroll in not only complies with the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Illinois to make certain that the training is state certified. In addition to 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.
Online Nursing Schools
Enrolling in nursing programs online is growing into a more preferred way to get instruction and attain a nursing degree. Certain Cicero IL area schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs require a specific amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more practical approach to finding the time to attend school for some students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, 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. Therefore if your job and household commitments have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
What to Ask Nurse Schools
Now that you have selected which nursing program to pursue, and whether to attend your classes on campus or online, you can use the following pointers to begin narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges throughout Illinois and the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a manageable list. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school relative to Cicero IL and the cost of tuition are probably going to be the first two things that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares to the field.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program as well as the Cicero IL school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides helping confirm that you receive a premium education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered for non-accredited Illinois schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN or NCLEX-RN) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Cicero IL school you are enrolled in not only provides an exceptional education, but also prepares you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Illinois or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Check online rating companies to see what the reviews are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Also, contact the Illinois school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some local Cicero IL 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 LPN 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 important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts in the Cicero IL area to assist students gain employment.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs in Illinois require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Check if the schools have associations with community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships in the Cicero IL area.
Enroll in the Right LPN School Cicero 60804
Choosing the best Licensed Practical Nurse college is perhaps the most crucial step to starting a new career in the health care industry. There are various variables that you must consider when selecting a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, obligations, and economic status. As we have emphasized within this post, it is critical that you select an RN 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 pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become an LVN in Cicero IL.
Why Did You Desire to Become a Nurse?When getting ready to interview for a nursing position, it's advantageous to reflect on questions you may be asked. Among the questions that interviewers typically ask nursing applicants is "What drove you to choose nursing as a profession?". What the interviewer is attempting to uncover is not merely the personal reasons you might have for becoming a licensed practical nurse, but also what qualities and skills you have that make you outstanding at what you do. You will likely be asked questions pertaining specifically to nursing, in addition to a certain number of routine interview questions, so you must organize several strategies about how you want to address them. Given that there are so many variables that go into selecting a career, you can address this primary question in a number of ways. When readying an answer, aim to include the reasons the work appeals to you along with the talents you have that make you an exceptional nurse and the perfiect candidate for the position. Don't attempt to memorize a response, but take down several concepts and anecdotes that pertain to your own experiences and strengths. Going over sample responses can assist you to develop your own concepts, and inspire ideas of what to include to wow the recruiter.
Some Cities in Illinois That You Might Be Interested In