How to Enroll In an LPN College in Gail Texas
Once you have decided on a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it’s imperative that you choose a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) college in Gail TX that will provide the right instruction. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be looking for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no difference, other than the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both carry out the same job functions and work in health care facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their duties do differ depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the next section. When beginning their search for schools, many prospective nursing students begin with the ones that are the closest to their residences or that are the least expensive. Although cost and location are relevant factors, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. Other factors, for instance 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 prospective schools before enrolling in a LVN or LPN training program that we will discuss later in this article. But first, let’s take 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 numerous tasks that they carry out in the Gail TX health care facilities where they practice. As their titles indicate, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Texas. Even though they may be accountable for managing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves typically work under the supervision of either an RN or a doctor. The healthcare facilities where they work are numerous and varied, for example hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can find patients in need of medical attention is their domain. Every state not only controls their licensing, but also what duties an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their routine job functions may include:
- Taking vital signs
- Administering medications
- Initiating IV drips
- Observing patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Keeping patient records
- Helping doctors or Registered nurses with procedures
Along with their job duties being mandated by each state, the Gail TX health care facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. Also, they can work in different specialties of nursing, including long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
There are principally two academic credentials offered in Texas that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be completed in the shortest amount of time, generally about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma program. The second option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and commonly require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides supplying a higher credential and more comprehensive instruction, are that they furnish 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 any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the core curriculum effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Gail TX, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degrees Available
There is more than one degree option offered to become a registered nurse. And to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in just two years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief explanations of the nursing degrees that are available in the Gail TX area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a 2 year program offered by Texas community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently achieve a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more expansive training than the ADN. It is generally a four year program offered at Texas colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be eligible to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may desire 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 commonly a 2 year program after obtaining the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for example to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has acquired one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) in order to become licensed. Further requirements for licensing can vary from state to state, so make sure to get in touch with the Texas board of nursing for any state mandates.
Unlike many other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not need to attain a college degree. CNA instruction can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Gail TX area. The duration of the training can take anywhere from 1 to 3 months, resulting in 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 minimal period of training mandated and each state has its own requirements. So it’s important to make certain that the program you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but likewise those for the state where you will be practicing. One suggestion is to contact the health or nursing board for Texas to make certain that the training course is state certified. In addition to the training, each state requires a passing score on a competency test for certification. Depending on the state, there may be additional prerequisites as well.
Online Nursing Degrees
Enrolling in nursing schools online is growing into a more popular way to obtain instruction and attain a nursing degree. Certain Gail TX area schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare center. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient answer to finding the time to attend classes for some students. Regarding tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. And so if your work and family commitments have left you with limited time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Things to Ask Nurse Programs
Now that you have selected which nursing degree to enroll in, and whether to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges throughout Texas and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to choose from so that you will have a workable list. As we already discussed, the site of the school relative to Gail TX along with the price of tuition are most likely going to be the first two points that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to see how your pick compares to the other schools.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program in addition to the Gail TX school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Besides helping make sure that you get a quality education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited Texas schools.
Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for nurses, both LPNs and RNs, vary 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 specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the Gail TX school you are enrolled in not only provides an outstanding education, but also preps you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Texas 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 too. In addition, get in touch with the Texas school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some regional Gail TX 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 schools 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 important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships in the Gail TX area to help students gain employment.
Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs in Texas require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have associations with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships in the Gail TX area.
Select the Right LPN Degree Gail 79738
Enrolling in the right Licensed Practical Nurse college is probably the most crucial step to beginning a new career in the healthcare industry. There are a number of variables that you must think about when selecting a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, obligations, and financial situation. As we have pointed out within this article, it is essential that you select an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical Nurse in Gail TX.
Why Did You Decide to Be a Nurse?When preparing to interview for a nursing job, it's advantageous to reflect on questions you might be asked. Among the things that recruiters often ask nursing applicants is "What compelled you to choose nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to learn is not just the private reasons you may have for being a nurse, but also what attributes and talents you have that make you exceptional at your profession. You will likely be asked questions pertaining primarily to nursing, along with a significant number of routine interview questions, so you should prepare some strategies about how you would like to address them. Given that there are so many factors that go into choosing a career, you can address this primary question in a variety of ways. When preparing an answer, aim to include the reasons the work appeals to you as well as the talents you possess that make you an exceptional nurse and the ideal choice for the position. Don't try to memorize a response, but take down some ideas and talking points that pertain to your own strengths and experiences. Reading through sample responses can help you to formulate your own concepts, and give you ideas of what to include to impress the interviewer.
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