How to Select an LPN Training in Taunton Massachusetts
Now that you have chosen a fulfilling career in the field of nursing, it’s important that you find a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program in Taunton MA that will provide the appropriate education. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no difference, aside from the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both carry out the same job functions and work in health care facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their responsibilities do differ depending on the state they practice in, which we will talk about in the next section. When starting their search for schools, many prospective nursing students start with those that are the closest to their houses or that are the least expensive. While price and location are important points to consider, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your decision on. Other variables, for instance if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely important also. There are even more questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LVN or LPN training program that we will address later in this article. But to start with, let’s look at the role of an LPN and what is involved in the instruction and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Functions
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have numerous functions that they complete in the Taunton MA healthcare facilities where they work. As their titles signify, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Massachusetts. Even though they may be accountable for overseeing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves generally work under the direction of either an RN or a doctor. The health care facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, for example hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can encounter patients seeking medical assistance 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 everyday work activities might include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Providing medicines
- Setting up IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Taking care of patient records
- Helping doctors or RNs with procedures
In addition to their occupational responsibilities being controlled by each state, the Taunton MA health 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, including long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
There are essentially two academic accreditations available in Massachusetts that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that may be completed in the shortest amount of time, generally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The other choice is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and usually require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, besides offering a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they furnish more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you pursue, it should be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the core curriculum adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Taunton MA, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees Available
There are multiple degrees to choose from 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 attain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short summaries of the nursing degrees that are available in the Taunton MA area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program offered by Massachusetts community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in healthcare centers including hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards earn a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more expansive training than the ADN. It is normally a four year program offered at Massachusetts 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 might wish 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 commonly a two year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
After a graduating student has earned one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) so as to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to get in touch with the Massachusetts board of nursing for any state requirements.
In contrast to some other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to earn a college degree. CNA training can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Taunton MA area. The duration of the training program 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 obtain at least 75 hours of instruction, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Bear in mind that this is the minimum period of instruction mandated and that every state has its specific requirements. So it’s crucial to make sure that the training program you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but also those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Massachusetts to make sure that the training course is state approved. Along with the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be additional requirements as well.
Nursing Online Degrees
Enrolling in nursing colleges online is becoming a more in demand way to get training and earn a nursing degree. Certain Taunton MA area schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs require a specific number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more convenient solution to finding the free time to attend college for some students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, helping to make education more affordable. 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. Therefore if your work and family obligations have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing training program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Courses
Once you have selected which nursing program to pursue, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or online, you can use the following pointers to start narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout Massachusetts and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier mentioned, the site of the school relative to Taunton MA along with the price of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two factors that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final selection, use the following questions to see how your pick measures up to the field.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program along with the Taunton MA school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. In addition to helping ensure that you obtain an excellent education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available for non-accredited Massachusetts schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN or NCLEX-RN) along with graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the Taunton MA school you are enrolled in not only provides an outstanding education, but also preps you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Massachusetts or the state where you will be working.
Reputation. Check online rating companies to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Also, check with the Massachusetts school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some local Taunton MA 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 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 unhappy 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 superb reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts in the Taunton MA area to help students attain employment.
Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs in Massachusetts require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing as well. Check if the schools have associations with local hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships in the Taunton MA area.
Enroll in the Right LPN Program Taunton 02780
Choosing the best Licensed Practical Nurse degree program is perhaps the most crucial step to beginning a new career in the healthcare industry. There are many aspects that you need to consider when selecting a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and economic status. As we have highlighted within this content, it is important that you pick an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the health care community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical Nurse in Taunton MA.
Why Did You Decide to Become an LPN?When preparing to interview for a nursing job, it's helpful to consider questions you may be asked. One of the questions that recruiters typically ask nursing candidates is "What drove you to decide on nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is trying to uncover is not only the personal reasons you may have for being a licensed practical nurse, but also what qualities and skills you possess that make you exceptional at your profession. You will likely be asked questions pertaining exclusively to nursing, along with a significant number of routine interview questions, so you should organize several strategies about how you want to address them. Since there are so many factors that go into selecting a career, you can answer this primary question in a number of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the profession appeals to you along with the talents you have that make you an exceptional nurse and the best choice for the job. Don't attempt to memorize a response, but write down a few concepts and topics that relate to your personal experiences and strengths. Reading through sample responses can assist you to develop your own thoughts, and give you ideas of what to discuss to impress the interviewer.
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