Licensed Practical or Vocational Nursing Courses
How to Enroll In the Best One Near Oro Valley Arizona
One of the first things that you need to do after making the decision to become a Licensed Practical Nurse is to find and enroll in the right LPN college near Oro Valley AZ that will help guarantee your entrance into the gratifying field of nursing. If you live 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 supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However, as we will cover in this report, their daily job functions can differ based on the state where they are employed. When initiating their search for schools, many prospective nursing students begin with the ones that are the nearest to their houses or that are the least expensive. Even though tuition and location are relevant points to consider, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your decision on. For example are the schools accredited or do they have high pass rates on the licensing exam, 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 discuss 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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LPN and LVN Training Programs
There are principally two academic credentials available that provide instruction to become an LPN near Oro Valley AZ. The one that can be concluded in the shortest period of time, generally about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The other alternative is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and commonly require 2 years to complete. The advantage of Associate Degrees, aside from supplying a higher credential and more in-depth training, are that they furnish more transferable credit toward a Bachelor's Degree in nursing. No matter the type of credential you seek, it needs to 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 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 in demand way to obtain training and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Oro Valley AZ. Some schools will require attendance on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs require a specific number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. 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 many students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus options. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, helping to make education more affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. So if your work and household commitments have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online LPN program 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 utilize the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you no doubt are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges near Oro Valley AZ as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier mentioned, the site of the school along with the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the primary two factors that you will look at. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see how your pick compares 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 recognized accrediting agency. Aside from helping ensure that you receive a quality education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools near Oro Valley AZ.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for LPNs and LVNs are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) together with graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It's imperative that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an excellent education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Arizona or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check internet rating companies to see what the evaluations are for all of the LPN or LVN schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. In addition, check with the Arizona school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some local Oro 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 looking at 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 displeased with the program and dropped out. It's also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the Oro Valley AZ healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing too. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with nearby Oro Valley AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placing of students in internships.
Enroll in the Best Oro Valley LPN or LVN School
Choosing the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse program is arguably the most crucial step to launching a new career in the health care industry. There are many aspects that you should consider when deciding on a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have pointed out within this article, it is essential that you pick 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 shortlist of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse in Oro Valley Arizona.