How to Enroll In the Best LPN or LVN Classes near Tuskegee Alabama
Now that you have chosen a rewarding vocation in the field of nursing, it's important that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program near Tuskegee AL that will deliver the appropriate education. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no difference, except for the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both undertake the same job functions and work in medical facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their functions do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will cover in the following segment. When beginning their search for schools, many prospective nursing students begin with the ones that are the nearest to their houses or that are the least costly. While price and location are important considerations, they are not the only criteria that you should base your decision on. Other variables, for example if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely 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 discuss later in this article. But to start with, let's have a look at the function of an LPN and what is involved in the instruction and licensing process.
What does an LPN or LVN Do?
Licensed Practical Nurses have many different functions that they accomplish in the Tuskegee AL medical facilities where they are employed. As their titles signify, they are required 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 supervision of either an RN or a doctor. The health care facilities where they work are numerous and varied, including hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Virtually any place that you can encounter patients requiring medical attention is their domain. Every state not only oversees their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can't perform. So based on the state, their routine work functions can include:
- Checking vital signs
- Administering medicines
- Setting up IV drips
- Monitoring patients
- Taking blood or urine samples
- Maintaining patient records
- Supporting physicians or RNs with procedures
Along with their job responsibilities being regulated by each state, the health facilities or other Tuskegee AL healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. Also, they can work in different specialties of nursing, for instance long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN and LVN ProgramsThere are basically two academic credentials offered that provide education to become an LPN near Tuskegee AL. The one that may be completed in the shortest period of time, typically about one year, is the certificate or diploma program. The next option is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma option and commonly require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, along with offering a higher credential and more in-depth instruction, are that they provide more transferable credit toward a Bachelor's Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you pursue, it needs to be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or another 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.
Online LPN and LVN Programs
Enrolling in LPN schools online is becoming a more favored way to get training and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Tuskegee AL. Many schools will require attendance on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs call for a specified amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare facility. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient answer to finding the time to attend classes for many students. Regarding tuition, many online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus alternatives. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be lessened, helping to make education more affordable. And many online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. So if your work and household obligations 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 hectic schedule.
Questions to Ask LPN and LVN SchoolsNow that you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, as well as if you will attend classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following checklist to begin narrowing down your choices. As you probably realize, there are a large number of nursing schools and colleges near Tuskegee AL as well as within Alabama and throughout the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we previously pointed out, the location of the school along with the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the first two points that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final selection, use the following questions to see how your pick compares to the other schools.
- Accreditation. It's a good idea to make sure that the certificate program in addition to the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Aside from helping ensure that you get a premium education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools near Tuskegee AL.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for LPNs are different 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. Some states require a certain number of clinical hours be completed, 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 preps you to comply with the minimum licensing standards for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the evaluations are for each of the LPN schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Additionally, contact the Alabama school licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some nearby Tuskegee AL 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 schools 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 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 favorable reputation within the Tuskegee AL medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to assist students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire 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. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing as well. Find out if the schools have a working relationship with nearby Tuskegee AL community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placing of students in internships.
Pick the Best Tuskegee Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse Program
Deciding on the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse program is arguably the most critical step to launching a new career in the healthcare industry. There are various factors that you should consider when picking a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and financial 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 exceptional reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and ambition to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical or Vocational Nurse in Tuskegee AL.