How to Select an LPN College in Huntland Tennessee
Once you have decided on a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it’s imperative that you choose a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school in Huntland TN that will provide the appropriate instruction. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be looking for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no difference, aside from the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both perform the same job functions and work in healthcare facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their duties do differ depending on the state they practice in, which we will cover in the following segment. When initiating their search for schools, many potential nursing students start with the ones that are the nearest to their houses or that are the least costly. Although cost and location are relevant points to consider, they are not the only criteria that you should base your selection on. Other variables, for instance if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important too. There are various other 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 look at the job of an LPN and what is involved in the training and licensing process.
LPN and LVN Job Responsibilities
Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses have a number of functions that they complete in the Huntland TN medical facilities where they are employed. As their titles signify, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Tennessee. Even though they may be responsible for managing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves normally work under the guidance of either an RN or a doctor. The medical facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, such as hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can encounter patients seeking medical treatment is their dominion. Each state not only controls their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their daily job activities might include:
- Checking vital signs
- Providing medications
- Setting up IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Maintaining patient records
- Helping doctors or Registered nurses with procedures
In addition to their work duties being mandated by each state, the Huntland TN health care facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can further limit their job roles within those parameters. Additionally, they can work in different specialties of nursing, for example long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
There are basically two academic credentials available in Tennessee that provide education to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be finished in the shortest time frame, typically about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The next alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and generally require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from providing 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 type of credential you pursue, it needs to 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 effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Huntland TN, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees Available
There are several degree options offered to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must enroll in an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or advance to achieve a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the Huntland TN area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is generally a 2 year program offered by Tennessee community colleges. It preps graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many use the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently achieve a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is commonly a four year program offered at Tennessee 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 wish to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is usually a two year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has earned 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. Other requirements for licensing vary from state to state, so don’t forget to check with the Tennessee board of nursing for any state requirements.
Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to attain a college degree. CNA education can be acquired at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Huntland TN area. The length of the instruction can take anywhere from just one to 3 months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Within the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are required to obtain at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which must be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimum period of instruction required and each state has its own requirements. So it’s important to make certain that the training program you enroll in not only meets the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One tip is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Tennessee to make sure that the education is state approved. In addition to the training, each state mandates a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there might be additional requirements as well.
Nursing Online Programs
Attending nursing colleges online is emerging as a more preferred way to receive instruction and acquire a nursing degree. Some Huntland TN area schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more practical approach to finding the free time to attend school for many students. Regarding tuition, many online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more easily 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. And so if your work and household commitments have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Programs
Now that you have decided on which nursing program to enroll in, and whether to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges throughout Tennessee and the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we already pointed out, the location of the school relative to Huntland TN as well as the expense of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two things that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your final choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick measures up to the other programs.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program in addition to the Huntland TN school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Aside from helping confirm that you obtain a premium education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited Tennessee 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) together with graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the Huntland TN school you are attending not only provides an excellent education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Tennessee or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. In addition, contact the Tennessee school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some regional Huntland TN healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their judgements are of the schools as well.
Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the LPN programs 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 displeased with the program and dropped out. It’s also essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a favorable reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts in the Huntland TN area to assist students gain employment.
Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs in Tennessee require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships in the Huntland TN area.
Select the Right LPN Degree Huntland 37345
Choosing the best Licensed Practical Nurse school is potentially the most crucial step to starting a new career in the health care industry. There are numerous variables that you need to consider when picking a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have stressed in this article, it is important that you select an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have excellent reputations within the health care community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce 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 ambition to succeed, you can become an LPN in Huntland TN.
Why Did You Decide to Be a Licensed Practical Nurse?When prepping to interview for a nursing job, it's important to consider questions you may be asked. Among the things that hiring managers typically ask nursing applicants is "What compelled you to choose nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to discover is not merely the personal reasons you might have for becoming a nurse, but also what qualities and skills you have that make you exceptional at your profession. You will undoubtedly be asked questions relating exclusively to nursing, as well as a certain number of general interview questions, so you must prepare some approaches about how you want to answer them. Since there are so many variables that go into selecting a career, you can address this primary question in a number of ways. When preparing an answer, aim to include the reasons the work interests you in addition to the strengths you possess that make you an excellent nurse and the perfiect candidate for the position. Don't try to memorize an answer, but write down several ideas and topics that pertain to your own experiences and strengths. Reading through sample answers can assist you to prepare your own concepts, and provide ideas of what to discuss to wow the recruiter.
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