Licensed Practical or Vocational Nursing Colleges
How to Enroll In the Right One Near Green Valley Arizona
Now that you have decided on a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it's imperative that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school near Green Valley AZ that will deliver the right education. Texas or California students will alternatively enroll in an LVN school to learn to become a Licensed Vocational Nurse. There is no difference, aside from the names, between an LPN and LVN. They both carry out the same job functions and work in medical facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their functions do differ depending on the state they practice in, which we will cover in the next section. Many nursing candidates begin by searching for schools that are within commuting distance of their homes and of those target the one that has the lowest tuition. But there are other qualifications that a school should have and a decision 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 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 to start with, let's have a look at what is involved in the education and licensing process.
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LVN and LPN Training Programs
There are principally two academic credentials offered that provide training to become an LPN near Green Valley AZ. The one that can be concluded in the shortest time period, normally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma program. The second option is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to finish. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from supplying a higher credential and more extensive instruction, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor's Degree in nursing. Regardless of the type of credential you pursue, 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 warrants that the core curriculum properly prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
LPN and LVN Online Programs
Attending LPN or LVN schools online is becoming a more popular way to receive instruction and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Green Valley AZ. Some schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs require a specific amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more accommodating solution to finding the time to attend school for some students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more easily affordable. And many online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. So if your work and household responsibilities have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online LPN school will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Things 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 online, you can use the following pointers to begin narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges near Green Valley AZ as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is essential to decrease the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we previously pointed out, the site of the school along with the expense of tuition are probably going to be the initial two things that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection compares to the field.
- 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 recognized accrediting agency. Aside from helping make sure that you obtain a quality education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited schools near Green Valley AZ.
- 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) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Many states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's essential that the school you are attending not only provides an outstanding education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Look at online rating services to see what the evaluations are for all of the LPN or LVN schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. In addition, contact the Arizona school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some local Green Valley 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 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 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 verify that the school has a superb reputation within the Green Valley AZ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to obtain 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. Many states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing as well. Check if the schools have associations with local Green Valley AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.
Enroll in the Right Green Valley LPN or LVN School
Selecting the right Licensed Practical Nurse program is arguably the most important first step to launching a new career in the medical care industry. There are numerous factors that you should consider when picking a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have highlighted in this post, it is critical that you choose an LPN college and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your final 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 Green Valley Arizona.