Licensed Practical or Vocational Nursing Training
How to Pick the Right One Near Auburn Alabama
Now that you have decided on a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it's essential that you find a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program near Auburn AL that will furnish the proper education. Texas or California residents will alternatively enroll in an LVN school to learn to become a Licensed Vocational Nurse. Other than the names, there is no difference between an LPN and LVN. They both undertake the same job functions and work in healthcare facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their responsibilities do vary depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the following section. Most new students begin by searching for schools that are within driving distance of their homes and of those target the one that has the lowest tuition. But there are other credentials that a school should have and a decision should not be made based on cost and location alone. Such as do the schools offer job placement assistance and do they have high placement rates, which are both extremely important as well. There are even more questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN training program that we will cover later in this article. But first, let's look at what is involved in the education and licensing process.
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LVN and LPN Degree and Certificate Programs
There are basically two scholastic credentials offered that provide education to become an LPN near Auburn AL. The one that can be completed in the shortest time period, typically about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The 2nd choice is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and usually require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from supplying a higher credential and more comprehensive training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor's Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you pursue, it should be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the core curriculum adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that the majority of graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
LPN and LVN Online Programs
Attending LPN or LVN programs online is becoming a more in demand way to obtain instruction and attain a nursing certificate or degree in Auburn AL. Many schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specified amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating answer to finding the free time to attend college for some students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more easily affordable. And many online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. So if your work and household responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online LPN school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Things to Ask LPN and LVN Schools
Once you have decided on obtaining your LPN or LVN certificate or degree, and if you will attend classes on campus or online, you can utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges near Auburn AL as well as within Alabama and throughout the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we already pointed out, the location of the school and the price of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two things that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection measures up to the other programs.
- Accreditation. It's a good idea to make sure that the certificate or degree program as well as the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Besides helping confirm that you obtain an excellent education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited schools near Auburn AL.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for LPNs and LVNs are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's important that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating companies to see what the evaluations are for each of the LPN or LVN schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Also, contact the Alabama school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some nearby Auburn AL 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 or LVN 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 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 verify that the school has a good reputation within the Auburn AL medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with local Auburn AL community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Enroll in the Best Auburn LPN or LVN School
Choosing the right Licensed Practical Nurse program is potentially the most important phase to beginning a new career in the medical care industry. There are various aspects that you must think about when choosing a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, obligations, and economic status. As we have pointed out in this post, it is essential that you enroll in an LPN school and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create 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 ambition to succeed, you can become an LPN or LVN in Auburn Alabama.