Licensed Practical or Vocational Nursing Colleges
How to Select the Best One Near Princeton Alabama
A first step that you need to take after making the decision to become a Licensed Practical Nurse is to find and enroll in the right LPN program near Princeton AL that will help you enter the gratifying profession of nursing. Texas or California residents will instead 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. Both work in medical facilities supervised by Physicians and Registered Nurses and fulfill the same job functions. But their functions do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will look at in the following segment. Most nursing candidates start searching for schools that are within commuting distance of their homes and of those lean towards the one that is least expensive. Although price and location are important factors, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your decision on. Such as are the schools accredited or do they have high pass rates on the licensing exam, which are both extremely important too. There are additional questions that you should ask prospective schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN program that we will cover later in this article. But to start with, let's have a look at the job of an LPN and what is involved in the instruction and licensing process.
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What does an LPN or LVN Do?
Licensed Practical Nurses have numerous functions that they accomplish in the Princeton AL health care facilities where they work. As their titles signify, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Alabama. Although they may be responsible for managing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves usually work under the guidance of either an RN or a doctor. The medical care facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can encounter patients requiring medical care is their domain. Every state not only oversees their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can't perform. So depending on the state, their routine job functions can include:
- Checking vital signs
- Administering medicines
- Starting IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Taking care of patient records
- Helping doctors or RNs with procedures
In addition to their occupational duties being governed by each state, the health care facilities or other Princeton AL healthcare providers where LPNs work can additionally limit their job duties within those parameters. Additionally, they can practice in different specialties of nursing, including long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LVN and LPN Training ProgramsThere are essentially two academic credentials available that provide training to become an LPN near Princeton AL. The one that may be concluded in the shortest time frame, typically about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma program. The 2nd option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and generally require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, aside from providing a higher credential and more in-depth instruction, are that they furnish more transferable 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 another national accrediting organization. The NLNAC guarantees that the syllabus effectively prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Online LPN and LVN Programs
Enrolling in LPN or LVN schools online is growing into a more favored way to receive training and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Princeton AL. Some schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs require a certain amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more convenient solution to finding the free time to attend college for many students. Concerning tuition, many online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus choices. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more economical. And numerous online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. So if your job and family commitments have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, maybe an online LPN program will make it easier to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Questions to Ask LPN and LVN Schools
Once you have decided on obtaining your LPN or LVN certificate or degree, as well as if you will attend classes on campus or online, you can use the following checklist to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges near Princeton AL as well as within Alabama and throughout the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we already mentioned, the site of the school as well as 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 selection, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up to the field.
- Accreditation. It's a good idea to make sure that the certificate or degree program in addition to the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. Besides helping make sure that you receive a quality education, it may assist in securing financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not offered for non-accredited schools near Princeton AL.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for LPNs and LVNs differ 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. Many states require a specified number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's imperative that the school you are attending not only delivers an outstanding education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check online rating companies to see what the assessments are for each of the LPN or LVN schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Also, contact the Alabama school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some nearby Princeton 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 programs 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 unhappy 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 Princeton AL medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students obtain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour requirements for licensing too. Check if the schools have a working relationship with nearby Princeton AL community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Find Out More Info About Learning to Become an LVN or LPN in Princeton
Enroll in the Best Princeton LPN or LVN School
Deciding on the right Licensed Practical Nurse school is perhaps the most crucial step to beginning a new career in the health care field. There are numerous variables that you must consider when choosing a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have pointed out in this post, it is essential that you select an LPN school and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a short list of schools to pick 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 Princeton Alabama.
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