How to Choose the Best RN Program near Woodstock Valley Connecticut
Choosing the best nursing college near Woodstock Valley CT may seem like a formidable endeavor, particularly if you have no idea what to search for in a good degree program. As you may already know, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you need to receive the necessary education and training to become licensed. So it is essential that you research and measure the qualifications of each program you are considering before enrolling in your final choice. Regrettably, too many prospective students base their determination entirely on the price of tuition and the distance of the school. Selecting the least costly program or the one that is local to your residence is no doubt not the most reliable way to decide on a nursing program. There are many crucial additional factors to explore before you decide where to enroll in classes. But before we explore that checklist, let’s first review the nursing degree alternatives that are offered along with what the roles of nurses are in our medical system.
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Nursing Degree Options
There is more than one degree option offered to become a nurse. And to become a Registered Nurse (RN), a student must attend an accredited school and program. A nursing student can acquire a qualifying degree in just 2 years, or continue on to attain a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short explanations of the nursing degrees that are offered to aspiring students in the Woodstock Valley CT area.
- Associates Degree. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is commonly a two year program offered by community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level job in nursing in medical facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many employ the ADN as an entry into nursing and afterwards earn a higher degree.
- Bachelor’s Degree. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) provides more comprehensive training than the ADN. It is generally a 4 year program offered at colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be qualified to complete an accelerated program based on their past training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may desire to advance to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s Degree. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is commonly a 2 year program after acquiring the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
When a graduating student has earned one of the above degrees, she or he must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) so as to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so make sure to get in touch with the Connecticut board of nursing for any state requirements.
Why Become a Nurse?
Nurses are an integral component of a Woodstock Valley CT medical team, and for a large number of patients, their primary care providers. A nursing career can lead to many opportunities, including research, health care education and specialty areas of practice. Nurses enter the profession for various reasons, among the most significant are its practical and personal rewards. Nurses provide personal, one-on-one care to patients. Most patients in a medical facility or home care setting spend more time with nurses than with doctors. Nurses often go into the profession out of a desire to administer to the needs of patients, including in situations of short-term treatment of illness and prolonged care of chronic ailments. This humanistic side of the medical profession, as opposed to the analytical or research related elements, is attractive to many who decide to pursue a nursing career. Nurses have a wide range of applicable skills and can select from an assortment of work settings, including home care facilities, physician’s offices, health clinics, community centers and hospitals. Also, nurses can progress into a number of specializations, including substance addictions, critical care, genetics and neonatology. Although most nurses deliver direct patient care, others opt to be educators, policy consultants or pharmaceutical representatives.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in many different medical environments, namely Woodstock Valley CT hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their primary job is to aid doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the exact duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization along with where they work. Some of the functions of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Observing patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Managing care
- Managing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Keeping health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more complex job duties and accountabilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and typically work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
Online Nursing Programs
Enrolling in nursing programs online is emerging as a more preferred way to get instruction and attain a nursing degree. Many schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a certain number of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the rest of the training can be accessed online, this option may be a more practical solution to finding the time to attend college for some Woodstock Valley CT students. Pertaining to tuition, many online degree programs are less costly than other on campus alternatives. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by organizations such as the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. So if your work and household commitments have left you with little time to pursue your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing school will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your active schedule.
Things to Ask Nursing Degree Programs
Now that you have chosen which nursing degree to enroll in, along with if to attend your classes on campus near Woodstock Valley CT or online, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges throughout Connecticut and the United States. So it is important to lower the number of schools to select from in order that you will have a workable list. As we previously discussed, the location of the school as well as the price of tuition are probably going to be the primary two points that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your ultimate selection, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick measures up to the other programs.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program in addition to the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Aside from helping make sure that you receive a quality education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans, which are oftentimes not available in Woodstock Valley CT for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for registered nurses are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) as well as 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 enrolled in not only provides a top-notch education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum licensing requirements for Connecticut or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Check online rating companies to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. In addition, get in touch with the Connecticut school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Woodstock Valley CT 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 RN colleges 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 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 confirm that the school has a good reputation within the Woodstock Valley CT medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing as well. Ask if the schools have associations with Woodstock Valley CT hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Low Cost Nursing Degrees Online Woodstock Valley Connecticut
Enrolling in the right nursing school is perhaps the most important phase to launching a new career in the medical care field. There are numerous variables that you need to take into account when picking a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career objectives, lifestyle, and economic situation. As we have pointed out in this post, it is critical that you choose a nursing school and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. You originally came to this website due to your interest in Low Cost Nursing Degrees Online and wanting more information on the topic Guide to Nursing Degree Programs Online.. However, by using our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to develop a shortlist of schools to choose from so that you can make your final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your hard work and drive to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in Woodstock Valley CT.
More Connecticut Nursing Locations
In the mid-17th century, John Eliot, a Puritan missionary to the American Indians, established "praying towns" where Native Americans took up Christianity and were expected to renounce their religious ceremonies, traditional dress, and customs. One Praying town, called Wabaquasset (Senexet, Wabiquisset), six miles west of the Quinebaug River in present-day Woodstock, was the largest of the three northeastern Connecticut praying towns.
In 1675, when King Philip's War broke out, some of the town's Indians, (especially in the southern part of the town) sided with the Mohegans and the English while others sided with the Indians led by Philip, rallying to arms on what is now Curtis Island in present Holland, Massachusetts and Brimfield, Massachusetts. During the war, the Praying town became deserted, and the English with their Indian allies marched through Woodstock to present day Thompson in the summer of 1676 burning any crops or stored corn they could find.
In 1682, Massachusetts bought a tract of land, which included Woodstock, from the Mohegans. A group of 13 men from Roxbury, Massachusetts (home of the Pastorate of Woodstock's earlier visitor, John Eliot), settled the town in 1686 and named it New Roxbury. Judge Samuel Sewall suggested the town change its name to Woodstock in 1690, citing its proximity to Oxford, Massachusetts, and in 1749 the town became part of Connecticut. The present name is after Woodstock, in England.
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