Licensed Practical or Vocational Nursing Courses
How to Enroll In the Right One Near Phenix City Alabama
A first step that you need to take after deciding to become a Licensed Practical Nurse is to locate and enroll in the right LPN college near Phenix City AL that will help you enter the rewarding field of nursing. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. Other than the titles, there is no difference between an LPN and 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 functions do differ depending on the state they practice in, which we will talk about in the next segment. When initiating their search for schools, many future nursing students start with those that are the closest to their houses or that are the least expensive. While tuition and location are important considerations, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. 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 various other questions that you should ask prospective schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN program that we will cover later in this article. But first, let's have a look at what is involved in the education and licensing process.
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LVN and LPN Training
There are generally two scholastic credentials offered that provide instruction to become an LPN near Phenix City AL. The one that can be finished in the shortest time frame, generally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The 2nd alternative is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and commonly require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from providing 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 seek, it needs to be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or any other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC warrants that the course of study adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Online LPN and LVN Programs
Attending LPN or LVN programs online is emerging as a more favored way to get training and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Phenix City AL. Some schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating solution to finding the free time to attend school for some students. Regarding tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be reduced, helping to make education more easily affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. So if your work and family commitments have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online LPN school will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Things to Ask LPN and LVN Programs
Once 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 use the following checklist to begin narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges near Phenix City AL as well as within Alabama and throughout the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we previously mentioned, the location of the school and the price of tuition are probably going to be the first two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see how your selection 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 organization. Besides helping make sure that you obtain a premium education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited schools near Phenix City AL.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria for LPNs and LVNs differ from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) along with 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 attending not only provides an outstanding education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating companies to see what the evaluations are for all of the LPN or LVN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Additionally, check with the Alabama school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some local Phenix City 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 complete their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were displeased with the program and dropped out. It's also imperative that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a favorable reputation within the Phenix City AL medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students obtain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to obtain experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Check if the schools have associations with nearby Phenix City AL community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Enroll in the Right Phenix City LPN or LVN Program
Enrolling in the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse program is arguably the most crucial phase to beginning a new career in the medical care industry. There are various variables that you need to think about when choosing a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your current career goals, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have highlighted within this post, it is critical that you enroll in an LPN college and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have excellent reputations within the medical community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become an LPN or LVN in Phenix City Alabama.