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What to Ask LPN and LVN Schools
Now that you have decided on obtaining your LPN or LVN certificate or degree, and if you will attend classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges near Pelham AL as well as within Alabama and throughout the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we previously discussed, the location of the school and the cost of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two factors that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to see how your pick measures up to the other schools.
- 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 agency. In addition to helping confirm that you get an excellent education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not provided for non-accredited schools near Pelham AL.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for LPNs and LVNs vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's important that the school you are attending not only provides an exceptional education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the evaluations are for each of the LPN or LVN schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Also, check with the Alabama school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some nearby Pelham AL 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 or LVN 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 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 confirm that the school has a superb reputation within the Pelham AL healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students attain employment.
- Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with local Pelham AL community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.