How to Pick the Best LPN College near Calera Alabama
Once you have decided on a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it’s imperative that you choose a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school near Calera AL that will furnish the proper instruction. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, apart from the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both perform the same job functions and work in medical facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. However their duties 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 begin with those that are the closest to their homes or that are the least expensive. Although price and location are important considerations, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. Other variables, for instance if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are very important also. There are even more questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN training program that we will talk about 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.
What is an LPN?
Licensed Practical Nurses have a number of duties that they carry out in the Calera AL medical facilities where they practice. As their titles indicate, they are mandated to be licensed in all states, including Alabama. Even though they may be accountable for overseeing Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves typically work under the guidance of either an RN or a doctor. The medical facilities where they work are numerous and assorted, such as hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can find patients requiring medical attention is their domain. Every state not only controls their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can’t perform. So based on the state, their routine job functions can include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Giving medicines
- Starting IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Collecting blood or urine samples
- Keeping patient records
- Supporting physicians or RNs with procedures
Along with their job functions being regulated by each state, the healthcare facilities or other Calera AL healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. In addition, they can work in different specialties of nursing, including long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
There are generally two scholastic credentials available that provide education to become an LPN near Calera AL. The one that can be finished in the shortest amount of time, usually about twelve months, is the certificate or diploma course. The 2nd alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are broader in nature than the diploma alternative and normally require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides offering 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 kind of credential you seek, it should 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 most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
LPN Programs Online
Attending LPN programs online is becoming a more preferred way to obtain training and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Calera AL. Certain schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and nearly all programs call for a specified number of clinical rotation hours conducted in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more practical solution to finding the free time to attend college for many students. Concerning tuition, many online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even supplemental expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be minimized, helping to make education more easily affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. Therefore if your job and family obligations have left you with very little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online LPN program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Questions to Ask LPN Schools
Now that you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, and if you will attend classes on campus or on the internet, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt are aware, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges near Calera AL as well as within Alabama and throughout the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier discussed, the site of the school and the price of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two factors that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So before making your ultimate choice, 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 program along with the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. In addition to helping confirm that you obtain a quality education, it may help in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available for non-accredited schools near Calera AL.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for LPNs 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. Certain states require a specific number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the school you are enrolled in not only delivers an exceptional education, but also preps you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Alabama or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Check online rating companies to see what the assessments are for each of the LPN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews as well. Also, get in touch with the Alabama school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some local Calera AL healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their opinions are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the LPN 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 displeased 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 superb reputation within the Calera AL medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students obtain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Check if the schools have a working relationship with local Calera AL community hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the positioning of students in internships.
Online LVN Programs Calera Alabama
Deciding on the right Licensed Practical Nurse school is perhaps the most crucial step to starting a new career in the healthcare field. There are numerous factors that you should take into account when deciding on a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career objectives, obligations, and economic situation. As we have emphasized in this post, it is critical that you select an LPN college and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare community. You originally decided to visit this website because of an interest in Online LVN Programs and wanting to get more information on the topic LPN Nursing Schools Online. However, by utilizing our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the appropriate degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical Nurse in Calera AL.
More Nursing Locations in Alabama
As of the 2010 census Calera had a population of 11,620, more than tripling its total in 2000, making it the fastest-growing city in Alabama. It is within the Birmingham-Hoover, Alabama Metropolitan Statistical Area.
Calera is located in southern Shelby County at 33°06′27″N 86°45′00″W / 33.107572°N 86.749964°W / 33.107572; -86.749964. The city limits extend southward into Chilton County along U.S. Route 31, the main highway through the city. Interstate 65 passes through the eastern side of the city, with access from exits 228, 231, and 234.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 24.4 square miles (63.1 km2), of which 24.1 square miles (62.4 km2) is land and 0.27 square miles (0.7 km2), or 1.17%, is water.
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