Licensed Practical or Vocational Nursing Colleges
How to Select the Right One Near Goodyear Arizona
Now that you have chosen a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it's essential that you choose a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school near Goodyear AZ that will furnish the necessary instruction. Texas or California residents will instead enroll in an LVN school to learn to become a Licensed Vocational Nurse. There is no distinction, other than the names, between an LPN and LVN. They both carry out the same job functions and work in health care facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However, as we will discuss in this report, their routine job functions can differ based on the state where they are practicing. When initiating their search for schools, many future nursing students start with the ones that are the nearest to their homes or that are the least costly. Although cost and location are relevant considerations, they are not the only criteria that you should base your decision 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 even more questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN program that we will address later in this article. But to start with, let's take a look at the role of an LPN and what is involved in the education and licensing process.
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LPN and LVN Job Description
Licensed Practical Nurses have many different duties that they perform in the Goodyear AZ health facilities where they work. As their titles imply, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Arizona. Although they may be responsible for supervising Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves generally work under the guidance of either an RN or a doctor. The medical care facilities where they work are numerous and varied, for example hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can encounter patients requiring medical treatment is their domain. Each state not only oversees their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can't perform. So depending on the state, their everyday work functions may include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Administering medicines
- Setting up IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Getting blood or urine samples
- Taking care of patient records
- Supporting physicians or Registered nurses with procedures
In addition to their job responsibilities being regulated by each state, the healthcare facilities or other Goodyear AZ healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job roles within those parameters. In addition, they can work in various specialties of nursing, for instance long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN and LVN Training ProgramsThere are basically two scholastic credentials offered that provide training to become an LPN near Goodyear AZ. The one that may be completed in the shortest time frame, typically about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The other alternative is to earn a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and typically require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, aside from providing a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor's Degree in nursing. No matter the kind of credential you pursue, 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 guarantees 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.
Online LPN and LVN Programs
Attending LPN or LVN schools online is growing into a more favored way to receive training and acquire a nursing certificate or degree in Goodyear AZ. Certain schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs require a specified amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more practical answer to finding the free time to attend school for some students. Regarding tuition, some online degree programs are cheaper than other on campus alternatives. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, 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 job and family responsibilities have left you with very little time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online LPN program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active 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 web, you can use the following pointers to start narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges near Goodyear AZ as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is necessary 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 as well as the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two points that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final choice, 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 in addition to the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Aside from helping confirm that you receive a quality education, it may help in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not provided for non-accredited schools near Goodyear AZ.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing criteria 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) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's essential that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an excellent education, but also prepares you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Look at online rating companies to see what the assessments are for all of the LPN or LVN schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Additionally, check with the Arizona school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some local Goodyear 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 finish their programs. A low graduation rate may be an indication that students were unhappy 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 Goodyear AZ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to obtain experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have associations with local Goodyear AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.
Enroll in the Right Goodyear LPN or LVN School
Choosing the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse school is potentially the most crucial first step to starting a new career in the healthcare field. There are a number of factors that you need to consider when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic situation. As we have highlighted in this content, it is essential that you enroll in an LPN college and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. By using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a short list of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse in Goodyear Arizona.