Licensed Practical or Vocational Nursing Schools
How to Find the Right One Near Chandler Arizona
A first step that you need to take after making the decision to become a Licensed Practical Nurse is to locate and enroll in the right LPN program near Chandler AZ that will help you enter the gratifying vocation of nursing. If you live in California or Texas, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, apart from the names, between an LVN and an LPN. They both carry out the same job functions and work in healthcare facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their functions do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the following section. When initiating their search for schools, many future nursing students start with those that are the nearest to their houses or that are the least costly. But there are additional credentials that a school should have and a selection should not be made based on location and cost 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 address later in this article. But to start with, let's have a look at what is involved in the instruction and licensing process.
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LVN and LPN Degree and Certificate Programs
There are essentially two academic credentials available that provide training to become an LPN near Chandler AZ. The one that may be completed in the shortest period of time, generally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The 2nd option is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and usually require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to supplying a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor's Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you seek, it needs to be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the syllabus effectively 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
Enrolling in LPN or LVN programs online is growing into a more preferred way to receive instruction and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Chandler AZ. Some schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs call for a specific number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this method may be a more practical solution to finding the free time to attend college for some students. Concerning tuition, many online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more economical. And numerous online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. Therefore if your job and family responsibilities have left you with little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online LPN program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic 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 on the internet, you can use the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges near Chandler AZ as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is essential to reduce the number of schools to select from so that you will have a workable list. As we previously discussed, the site of the school along with the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two things that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate choice, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick measures up to the other schools.
- Accreditation. It's a good idea to make sure that the certificate or degree program along with the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to helping verify that you receive an excellent education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited schools near Chandler AZ.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for LPNs and LVNs are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, 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 prepares you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Arizona or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit online rating services to see what the reviews are for all of the LPN or LVN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Additionally, check with the Arizona school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some nearby Chandler 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 or LVN programs 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 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 Chandler AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students attain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing too. Find out if the schools have associations with local Chandler AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Choose the Best Chandler LPN or LVN School
Selecting the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse program is perhaps the most important phase to starting a new career in the health care field. There are a number of variables that you need to consider when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic status. As we have pointed out within this article, it is important that you pick an LPN college and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to pick 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 Chandler Arizona.