How to Enroll In an LPN Program in Marana Arizona
Once you have chosen a fulfilling vocation in the field of nursing, it’s important that you choose a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program in Marana AZ that will deliver the right training. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, apart from the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both carry out the same job functions and work in medical facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their responsibilities do vary depending on the state they practice in, which we will look at in the following segment. When beginning their search for schools, many future nursing students start with the ones that are the closest to their homes or that are the least expensive. Even though cost and location are important considerations, they are not the only criteria that you should base your decision on. Other factors, for example if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important as well. There are even more 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 have a look at the role 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 different tasks that they carry out in the Marana AZ health care facilities where they are employed. As their titles indicate, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Arizona. While they may be responsible for managing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves generally work under the supervision of either an RN or a doctor. The medical care facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, for example hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can find patients in need of medical care is their domain. Each state not only oversees their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their everyday job activities may include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Providing medications
- Setting up IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Keeping patient records
- Helping doctors or RNs with procedures
In addition to their job duties being regulated by each state, the Marana AZ healthcare facilities or other healthcare providers where LPNs or LVNs work can additionally limit their job duties within those parameters. In addition, they can practice in numerous specialties of nursing, for instance long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are generally two academic credentials offered in Arizona that provide instruction to become either an LPN or an LVN. The one that can be concluded in the shortest amount of time, generally about one year, is the certificate or diploma course. The 2nd alternative is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and usually require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, aside from supplying 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 seek, 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 course of study effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses in Marana AZ, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Other Nursing Degree Options
There is more than one degree option 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 continue on to earn a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered in the Marana AZ area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is usually a two year program offered by Arizona community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical centers such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and subsequently earn a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers more in depth training than the ADN. It is generally a four year program offered at Arizona 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 might desire 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 2 year program after acquiring 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 received 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. Various other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to contact the Arizona board of nursing for any state mandates.
In contrast to other licensed nurses, certified nursing assistants do not have to obtain a college degree. CNA instruction can be received at a community college or at either a vocational or trade school in the Marana AZ area. The duration of the training can take anywhere from 1 to three months, resulting in either a certificate or a diploma. Under the 1987 Nursing Home Reform Act, students are mandated to have at least 75 hours of training, 16 of which have to be clinical or “hands-on” training hours. Keep in mind that this is the minimal amount of training directed and that each state has its specific prerequisites. So it’s important to make certain that the program you enroll in not only satisfies the federal requirements, but additionally those for the state where you will be practicing. One recommendation is to get in touch with the health or nursing board for Arizona to make certain that the education is state certified. As well as 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.
Nursing Online Classes
Enrolling in nursing programs online is growing into a more preferred way to obtain training and attain a nursing degree. Some Marana AZ area schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs require a specified number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient answer to finding the time to attend school for some students. Regarding tuition, many online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus options. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And a large number of 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 family responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online nursing training program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Questions to Ask Nurse Programs
Once you have decided on which nursing program to enroll in, along with if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges throughout Arizona and the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to select from so that you will have a manageable list. As we previously pointed out, the location of the school relative to Marana AZ along with the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two points that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your final decision, use the following questions to see how your selection compares to the other schools.
Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program in addition to the Marana AZ school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Aside from helping ensure that you receive an excellent education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited Arizona 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. Many states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the Marana AZ school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
Reputation. Look at internet rating services to see what the reviews are for each of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Additionally, contact the Arizona school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some nearby Marana AZ 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 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 substantiate that the school has a good reputation within the healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships in the Marana AZ area to help students gain employment.
Internship Programs. The best way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all nursing degree programs in Arizona require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with regional hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships in the Marana AZ area.
Select the Right LPN Degree Marana 85653
Selecting the best Licensed Practical Nurse school is arguably the most critical step to starting a new career in the healthcare field. There are various aspects that you need to take into account when picking a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career objectives, obligations, and economic status. As we have emphasized within this post, it is essential that you select an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding 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 right degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become an LVN in Marana AZ.
Why Did You Decide to Become a Nurse?When getting ready to interview for a nursing position, it's a good idea to consider questions you could be asked. One of the things that interviewers often ask nursing applicants is "What drove you to decide on nursing as a career?". What the interviewer is attempting to discover is not only the personal reasons you may have for becoming an LPN, but also what characteristics and talents you possess that make you outstanding at what you do. You will probably be asked questions pertaining primarily to nursing, along with a certain number of typical interview questions, so you need to ready some approaches about how you would like to answer them. Because there are several variables that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this primary question in a number of ways. When readying an answer, try to include the reasons the work appeals to you as well as the strengths you possess that make you an outstanding nurse and the best choice for the position. Don't try to memorize a response, but take down a few concepts and talking points that relate to your personal experiences and strengths. Going over sample answers can help you to prepare your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to enthuse the recruiter.
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