How To Choose The Right Nursing School: What To Consider Before Selecting A Program
You thrive on helping others. The most rewarding thing you can think of is saving someones life. You want your career to directly impact peoples well being. It sounds like you have found your calling. Its why you chose nursing. This is where things get slightly complicated.
With hundreds of options at your fingertips and so many things to consider, selecting the right nursing school is not an easy task. Even with all the research, it still may seem intimidating to pick the school and program thats perfect for you.
Since the direction in which you take your nursing education will influence your future career, its important to choose wisely. If youre wondering what you should be looking for in a nursing school, what factors you need to consider to pick a quality program, or how to narrow down your choices, you have come to the right place.
In this guide, we aim to make the How to decide what nursing college to go to? question less daunting. Lets walk together through the steps of choosing the right nursing school.
Evaluate The Culture Of Each Nursing Program
In as challenging of a field as nursing, a supportive learning environment is paramount to ensuring that you can succeed in the program and graduate ready to treat real patients with confidence. Pay careful attention during your discussions with nursing school admissions representatives to ensure that their culture feels like the right fit.
See How The Curriculum Helps Build Real
A nursing school curriculum should, in addition to meeting all accreditation requirements, provide a solid foundation to base a nursing career on. While coursework is valuable, classroom or online learning alone doesnt provide the necessary experience to treat real-world patients. Look for a nursing program that emphasizes lab and clinical experience, and youll know that youll be prepared for your future role as an RN.
We designed the Utica ABSN curriculum not only to meet New York state licensure and regional accreditation requirements, but also to equip students with the key skills todays healthcare employers demand. The Utica College ABSN program curriculum involves three primary components:
- Online courses feature interactive media and animations to not just memorize material, but rather to help you understand how nursing theory concepts affect patient care.
- Hands-on patient simulations and skills labs that take place at our program site serves as the perfect experiential learning components essential for creating confident, practice-ready nurses.
- Students in the Utica ABSN program complete clinical rotations at various leading healthcare facilities in central New York, under the watchful eye of experienced instructors and preceptors.
See what every semester as a Utica ABSN student will look like.
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Find Out If There Is A Waitlist Associated With Your Nursing Program
Traditional nursing schools with no waiting list can be rare, and many university nursing programs can only start students once a year. In some cases, you could even earn a traditional bachelors degree in the time itd take you to start classes in some nursing schools with a waitlist!
Thats not the case at Utica ABSN: We have the capacity to enroll a high number of qualified students because we enroll three starts every year. That means if you meet the qualifications to enroll, you can start classes when youre ready not just when theres an opening. Once you complete all the prerequisites, you can earn your nursing degree in as few as 16 months.
When deciding on a program, I was looking for the convenience of getting in early, says Logan, Utica ABSN program graduate. A lot of other schools had long waits and told me Id have to wait at least a year to start Uticas ABSN program was more convenient for me since it had an earlier time.
Final Phase: Choose A Nursing School That Meets Your Needs And Ambitions
Choosing a nursing program is an important decision that will create a ripple effect throughout your career. Thats why you have to choose wisely and go for a program that fits your needs and professional ambitions.
At Nightingale College, we offer you a variety of high-quality accredited nursing programs that will prepare you for a successful and rewarding career in the healthcare industry. Based on what your goals are, we can help you achieve them. Leaning toward a Practical Nurse Diploma or are you ready to commit to a Bachelors of Science in Nursing? Are you already a working RN and have decided its time to go back to school and get your BSN? Or maybe you want to go the education route and impact the future of nursing by becoming a Nurse Educator yourself? Whichever option you choose, were here to help you become the best nurse you can be.
Our rigorous curriculum combined with the dedicated supervision of our highly qualified faculty will ensure your success in the wonderful albeit challenging world that nursing is.
Feel free to reach out if you have any questions about our programs, admissions and application process. Well be happy to hear from you!
Career Outlook For Registered Nurses
The career outlook for registered nurses is very high. The position earns an average of $68,450, with the top 10% earning over $100,000. Even the bottom 10% earns an average of $47,120. The expected career growth is also high, with a 17% increase between 2014 and 2024.
West Virginia has the highest concentration of registered nurses, with South Dakota, Delaware, Mississippi, and Rhode Island rounding out the top five.
Career Options And Salary Range With A Nursing Degree
Each type of nursing degree can afford you a variety of career options and varying salary levels. Prospective nursing students may want to find out what the highest-paying nursing degree is or learn more about MSN careers and MSN salary before committing to a specific educational track. How much a nurse makes will be largely influenced by the amount of education they have obtained and their specialty area. Nurses with advanced-level degrees could potentially make more money than their colleagues who have entry-level degrees, which is one of the benefits of a masters degree in nursing.
Compare specific job and pay information for different nursing degree holders
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What Is An Agacnp
As mentioned above, an NP can select among several nurse practitioner specialties. One is adult-gerontology acute care. This specialty focuses on an adult patient population, ranging from late adolescents to the elderly, with an additional focus on acute or emergent conditions, some of which may be life-threatening.
The difference between certifications for primary care and acute care is important. As stated in its Statement on Acute Care and Primary Care Certified Nurse Practitioner Practice, the National Organization of Nurse Practitioner Faculties clarified that acute care and primary care are differentiated not by the setting in which they are performed, but by the educational preparation of the nurse practitioner, thereby determining that practitioners scope of practicespecifically, primary care NPs see patients who are medically stable, while acute care NPs treat patients with emergent conditions.
Master’s Degree In Nursing
A master of science in nursing degree can qualify graduates to become nurse practitioners, who can work independently and prescribe medication. Other types of master’s degrees in nursing include education, administration, and healthcare informatics. Master’s programs emphasize research methodologies and typically require 1-2 additional years of study.
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What Will I Learn
The BSN Completion Program teaches registered nurses concepts related to clinical reasoning, critical thinking, cultural sensitivity, evidence-based practice, genetics and genomics, informatics, inter-professional teams, life-long learning, patient-centered care, patient safety, professionalism, quality improvement, and practice across the lifespan.
Tips For Giving The Best Answer
Analyze the Job Posting: Its a good idea to look carefully at the job posting, as well as the hospital website, to get a feel for what they are specifically looking for in the person who fills the open position, as well as the general culture of the hospital.
Be prepared to discuss your clinical skill set, as well as your personal qualities, that make you qualified for the job. The interviewer may ask you to provide examples of situations where you applied those skills. You should have a list of your nursing skills with you, preferably on a copy of your resume.
Discuss Patient Scenarios: You will be asked about challenges you have met and problems which you have solved in patient care contexts. Be ready to share specific patient scenarios where you intervened with difficult cases and individuals to help generate positive outcomes.
Show You’re a Team Player: Nurses must be effective team members and get along with challenging personalities. Be prepared to share examples of how you have dealt with difficult colleagues.
Practice Your Answer: Prepare a response to this question and then practice your answer, either in front of a friend or the mirror.
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How To Choose A Nursing Program: 4 Steps For Making The Decision
If youre wondering how to choose a nursing program, youll want to consider factors like the type of learning environment, any waitlists, and the prerequisites required and offered through the university youre considering. With the right criteria, you can find the perfect fit for your education.
Because you have a passion for caring for others and know career opportunities abound for highly skilled nurses, youre sure you want to change careers to nursing the sooner the better. But the question remains: How do you sift through all the nursing schools out there to find a quality program to best meet your needs?
If youre not sure about how to choose a nursing program, the Utica College Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing program is here to help. As a 16-month advanced standing bachelors degree program offered through a hybrid learning format, we understand that if youre pursuing a degree, you want a program that can set you up to quickly pursue competitive job opportunities within your desired field. Read on to discover four important steps you should take when choosing a nursing program and gain the insight you need to make an informed choice.
Determine How Each Program Approaches Their Curriculum
Nursing is a demanding profession that requires knowledge, aptitude, and the ability to rapidly react to a wide array of patient care situations. Especially if youre pursuing a degree through an accelerated nursing program, you should look for a program curriculum that does as much as possible to acclimate you to real-world patient care. With as little as 16 months to prepare for an entirely new career if youre considering an ABSN program, youll want every bit of experience you can get.
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Opportunities For Further Education
LPNs could study to become a RN.
The Post-LPN Bachelor of Nursing program at Athabasca University helps you segue from a LPN to RN eligibility. Its a 120-credit degree 30 credits for LPN coursework and 90 credits for course work . Some students can receive up to 45 transfer credits towards their course work, depending on their prior education.
Admission Requirements Of A Bsn Degree
Each program will have different requirements for admission into the bachelors degree. However, you can generally expect to see a few broad requirements. First of all, you will need your high school diploma or equivalency. For many programs, there is a GPA requirement, which will usually range from 2.75 to 3.0. If you want to use your college GPA for entry, there is often a minimum amount of collegiate hours, usually around 25 to 30.
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What Do Family Nurse Practitioners Do
Family nurse practitioners deliver care in accordance with established, evidence-based nursing protocols. The majority of FNPs provide primary care services, frequently in a private practice. The AANP offers this list of services that FNPs offer:
- Conducting patient examinations
- Ordering and performing diagnostic tests
- Managing a patients care
- Prescribing medications and other treatments
- Educating patients and families on healthy lifestyle choices
- Offering counseling
- Referring patients to specialists, as needed, and managing patient transfers
One of the benefits of being a family nurse practitioner is being able to deliver health care to multiple family members when necessary. For instance, if several family members develop an infection, the FNP can treat each member according to their age and condition. The FNP can also help assess, diagnose and be part of the interdisciplinary team that cares for individuals experiencing mental health illnesses.
How To Become A Licensed Practitioner
After earning your nursing degree, you must pass the NCLEX-PN or NCLEX-RN licensure exam to become a licensed practitioner. NCLEX stands for National Council Licensure Examination NCLEX-PN is for licensed practical/vocational nurses and NCLEX-RN is for registered nurses.
The minimum educational requirement to sit for the NCLEX-RN is an ADN or higher from an accredited program. To qualify to sit for the NCLEX-PN, you will need to complete an approved training program for licensed practical nurses . While enrolling in an LPN program can be a good fit for those who want to break into the nursing field more quickly than a BSN candidate, for example, and at a lower cost, the completion of an LPN program does not result in a nursing degree.
Graduate nursing degreessuch as a masters in nursing or a doctorate in nursing provide nurses with many options to practice at an advanced level, depending on the specialty area in which they choose to practice.
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Considering Nursing Program Cost
Another factor students need to consider is the cost of their degree. Tuition rates vary by school size, the type of institution, and the degree program. For example, public schools offer in-state tuition to residents, and ADN programs cost less than BSN programs.
Aside from tuition, nursing students need to consider other costs, including:
- School and lab fees
- Other course materials such as uniforms and clinical supplies
- Cost of living expenses which may include on-campus room and board
Find The Best Program For You
An accredited program of study will prepare you through didactic coursework and clinical rotations to achieve competence in several key areas, including:
- Advanced practice nursing foundations
- Evidence-informed quality improvement
- Leadership, systems and policy
The online nursing programs offered by Rockhurst University are designed to provide an academically rigorous program of study, based on a philosophy of transformative learning in the Jesuit traditions of professional and personal growth emphasizing ethics, compassion and care for the whole person.
In the Family Nurse Practitioner course of study, you will learn:
- Evidence-based care through analysis of physiologic and pathological disease states
- Application of pharmaceutical principles
- Performance of comprehensive health assessments using the differential diagnostic process
- Use of therapeutic communication in appropriate scientific, cultural and ethical contexts
In the Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner track, you will learn:
- Specialized assessment and advanced procedural skills to provide quality care in multiple settings
- Advanced pharmacologic management, advanced pathophysiology and diagnostic testing interpretation for critically ill and hospitalized patients
- How to employ comprehensive assessment, diagnosis and management of patients with acute, critical or complex chronic health problems, or those with acute exacerbations of their chronic illness
- Multiple intakes per year
Is Nursing School For Me
What do nurses do?
Nurses are one of the largest and fastest growing health professions in the United States. They are the first line providers of primary patient care, including preventative and restorative health care. 62.2% of Registered Nurses work in hospitals but many are employed in a wide range of other settings. Nurses work in collaboration with a team of health care providers but they can also practice independently within their defined scope of practice. Some nurses may also advise and work as consultants in the healthcare, insurance, or legal industries. Nursing science is multifaceted, including biological, psychosocial, and cultural components.
One of the most common paths to professional nursing is through obtaining a Bachelor of Science in Nursing , although students can also train to become RNs while earning an Associate of Science at a community college, typically in a three-year program. In order to practice, all RNs must be licensed which requires meeting a minimum number of hours of clinical experience and passing state board examinations before earning the title of RN.
As UC Berkeley does not have a nursing major, many students who are interested in a nursing career have two options to explore:
Here are some ways you can find out what nurses do:
Consider Nursing School Rankings
Nursing school rankings can be informative, but theyre not necessarily a deciding factor. Thats because these rankings are guidelines based on data and statistics, not individual student experience. Rankings dont take into account things like campus life or the instruction style of professors, so their evaluations might not be a match. That said, if youre struggling to decide between 2 different programs, rankings could help you make that choice.
- Step 4:
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What Are The Motivations Of Absn And Menp Students
Second-career nurses come from many educational backgrounds. They have one thing in common: the motivation to start a new career where they know they can make a difference.
Second-career nurses choose the profession for many reasons. A literature review in the Online Journal of Issues in Nursing identified the most common reasons:
- Higher Job Satisfaction: Professionals who switch to nursing desire more fulfillment from their careers.
- A Passion for More Knowledge: People transition to nursing to care for people in a new capacity and aim to help their communities.
- Inspiration from Nurses: Second-career nurses experience the rewards and impact of nursing through an illness or the perspectives of nurses they know.
- Responsibility to Help Others: Second-career nurses are motivated to act on a sense of social responsibility by promoting public health, especially among vulnerable populations.
The difference between ABSN and direct-entry MSN students are their short-term career goals.
ABSN students want to make a difference through direct patient care and take the fastest pathway to the nursing profession.
Both nursing education programs are admirable. No matter the students motivation, accelerated BSN and MSN programs enable professionals from various backgrounds to pursue new, meaningful careers in nursing.