How to Choose the Right LPN or LVN College near Tuscumbia Alabama
Now that you have decided on a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it’s essential that you select a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school near Tuscumbia AL that will deliver the proper training. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no difference, aside from the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both undertake the same job functions and work in health care facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their duties do differ depending on the state they practice in, which we will look at in the next section. When starting their search for schools, many potential nursing students start with those that are the closest to their residences or that are the least expensive. While price and location are important considerations, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your decision on. Other factors, for example if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely important as well. There are various other questions that you should ask prospective schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN course that we will talk about later in this article. But first, let’s take a look at the role of an LPN and what is involved in the training and licensing process.
Get Free Information on LPN or LVN Programs Near You or Online
What is an LPN?
Licensed Practical Nurses have a number of tasks that they complete in the Tuscumbia AL health care facilities where they practice. As their titles imply, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Alabama. Although they may be accountable for supervising Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves generally work under the guidance of either an RN or a doctor. The health care facilities where they work are numerous and varied, for instance hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can encounter patients in need of medical care is their dominion. Every state not only regulates their licensing, but also what functions an LPN can and can’t perform. So depending on the state, their daily job functions may include:
- Checking vital signs
- Giving medicines
- Setting up IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Taking blood or urine samples
- Keeping patient records
- Assisting physicians or RNs with procedures
In addition to their occupational functions being governed by each state, the health facilities or other Tuscumbia AL healthcare providers where LPNs work can additionally limit their job roles within those parameters. Also, they can practice in numerous specialties of nursing, including long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LVN and LPN Certificates and Degrees
There are essentially two academic credentials available that provide instruction to become an LPN near Tuscumbia AL. The one that may be completed in the shortest time period, commonly about 12 months, is the certificate or diploma course. The second choice is to obtain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These LPN programs are broader in nature than the diploma option and normally require 2 years to finish. The benefit of Associate Degrees, besides providing a higher credential and more extensive 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 adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Online LPN Programs
Enrolling in LPN schools online is becoming a more favored way to receive training and earn a nursing certificate or degree in Tuscumbia AL. Some schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and virtually all programs require a certain number of clinical rotation hours carried out in a local healthcare facility. But since the remainder of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more practical solution to finding the free time to attend classes for some students. Concerning tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even additional expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, 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 job and family responsibilities have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, perhaps an online LPN program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your hectic schedule.
Questions to Ask LPN Programs
Now that you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, as well as if you will attend classes on campus or on the internet, you can use the following guidelines to start narrowing down your choices. As you no doubt realize, there are many nursing schools and colleges near Tuscumbia AL as well as within Alabama and throughout the United States. So it is essential to lower the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we previously pointed out, the location of the school and the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the first two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your selection compares to the other schools.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the certificate program as well as the school are accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting agency. Besides helping make sure that you get a quality education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools near Tuscumbia AL.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for LPNs 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. Many states require a specified number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s important that the school you are attending not only provides an excellent education, but also prepares you to comply with the minimum licensing requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating companies to see what the assessments are for all of the LPN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. Also, get in touch with the Alabama school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some nearby Tuscumbia 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the Tuscumbia AL medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The best way to obtain experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for licensing as well. Ask if the schools have associations with nearby Tuscumbia AL community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Free Info on Night LPN or LVN Classes Near Me Tuscumbia Alabama
Enrolling in the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse program is potentially the most critical step to starting a new career in the healthcare field. There are many factors that you need to consider when deciding on a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently contingent on your current career goals, lifestyle, and financial status. As we have stressed within this post, it is critical that you enroll in an LPN college and a certificate or degree program that are both accredited and have excellent reputations within the health care community. You originally decided to visit this website because of an interest in Free Info on Night LPN or LVN Classes Near Me and wanting to get more information on the topic Affordable Accelerated LPN or LVN Schools Near Me. However, by using our checklist of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a short list of schools to pick from so that you can make your ultimate selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical Nurse in Tuscumbia AL.
More Alabama Nursing Locations
Tuscumbia was the hometown of Helen Keller (Ivy Green) and much of the city is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as the Tuscumbia Historic District. The city serves as the location for the Alabama Music Hall of Fame.
Tuscumbia had its beginnings when the Michael Dixon family arrived about 1816. They traded with Chief Tucumseh for the Tuscumbia Valley and built their home at the head of the big spring. From these humble dwellings quickly developed a village known as the Big Spring Community. The men of the community requested that the state legislature incorporate them as a city. The town was incorporated in 1820 as Ococoposa and is one of Alabama's oldest towns. In 1821, its name was changed to Big Spring and on December 22, 1822, to Tuscumbia, after the Chief Rainmaker of the Chickasaws.
Although shoals on the nearby Tennessee River made the river nearly impassable, a federal highway completed in 1820 provided the area with good access to markets. Tuscumbia soon became the center for agriculture in northern Alabama. A line to the town on the Tuscumbia, Courtland and Decatur Railroad was completed in 1832, and by 1850 Tuscumbia was a major railroad hub for train traffic throughout the South.