How to Find the Right Nursing School near West Fargo North Dakota
Finding the right nursing program near West Fargo ND may seem like a complicated endeavor, especially if you aren’t sure what to look for in a good degree program. As you may presently know, for you to practice as a registered nurse, you need to obtain the proper education and training to become licensed. So it is vitally important that you study and measure the qualifications of each school you are thinking about before enrolling in your final choice. The fact is, too many future students base their selection solely on the cost of tuition and the nearness of the school. Selecting the least costly college or the one that is nearest to your home is probably not the best way to choose a nursing college. There are many important additional aspects to investigate before you decide where to attend classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first review what the job of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, as well as the nursing degree options that are offered.
Registered Nurse Job Functions
Registered nurses are the largest occupation in the medical delivery system. RNs practice in many different West Fargo ND medical environments, such as hospitals, family practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general job is to help doctors in the treatment of their patients. Having said that, the exact duties of a registered nurse will depend on their job or specialization along with where they work. A few of the duties of an RN may include:
- Administering medications
- Monitoring patients
- Performing physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Supervising LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Educating patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses with a more advanced degree may have more complex job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for example, must hold a Master’s Degree and generally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can administer primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat common illnesses or injuries.
There are multiple degrees to choose from to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can acquire a qualifying degree in just two years, or advance to achieve a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some short descriptions of the nursing degrees that are available in the West Fargo ND area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is typically a 2 year program offered by North Dakota community colleges. It prepares graduates for an entry level position in nursing in medical facilities such as hospitals, clinics or nursing homes. Many utilize the ADN as an entry into nursing and later attain a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more expansive training than the ADN. It is normally a 4 year program offered at North Dakota colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their prior training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may wish to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the employment market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is generally a two year program after achieving the BSN. The MSN program offers specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or concentrate on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has obtained one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Various other requirements for licensing change from state to state, so be sure to check with the North Dakota board of nursing for any state mandates.
Online Nursing Classes
Attending nursing programs online is growing into a more favored way to obtain training and earn a nursing degree. Certain schools will require attending on campus for part of the training, and almost all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours completed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this method may be a more accommodating solution to finding the free time to attend college for many West Fargo ND students. Concerning tuition, many online degree programs are less expensive than other on campus choices. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials can be reduced, helping to make education more economical. And numerous 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 responsibilities have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, perhaps an online nursing school will make it easier to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
What to Ask Nursing Schools
Now that you have selected which nursing program to pursue, as well as if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following guidelines to start narrowing down your options. As you probably are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges in the West Fargo ND area and throughout North Dakota and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we earlier pointed out, the location of the school and the expense of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two factors that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see how your selection compares to the field.
- 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. In addition to helping verify that you receive an excellent education, it may assist in obtaining financial aid or student loans in West Fargo ND, which are oftentimes not offered for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Some states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s imperative that the school you are attending not only provides a top-notch education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing requirements for North Dakota or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating services to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. Additionally, check with the North Dakota school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some West Fargo ND 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 schools you are considering 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 important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only substantiate that the school has a superb reputation within the West Fargo ND medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a registered 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 requirements for licensing too. Ask if the schools have associations with West Fargo ND hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Looking at Nursing Schools near West Fargo ND?
West Fargo, North Dakota
West Fargo is a city in Cass County, North Dakota, United States. It is, as of the 2016 Census Estimates, the fifth largest city in the state of North Dakota with a population estimated at 34,858, and it is one of the state's fastest growing cities. West Fargo was founded in 1926. The city is part of the Fargo-Moorhead, ND-MN Metropolitan Statistical Area.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 14.72 square miles (38.12 km2), of which, 14.44 square miles (37.40 km2) is land and 0.28 square miles (0.73 km2) is water.
This climatic region is typified by large seasonal temperature differences, with warm to hot (and often humid) summers and cold (sometimes severely cold) winters. According to the Köppen Climate Classification system, West Fargo has a humid continental climate, abbreviated "Dfb" on climate maps.
Choose the Right RN Degree near West Fargo ND
Choosing the ideal registered nursing college is arguably the most important step to launching a new career in the healthcare industry. There are many variables that you need to think about when choosing a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your current career objectives, lifestyle, and financial situation. As we have pointed out within this content, it is essential that you select an RN school and a degree program that are each accredited and have outstanding reputations within the healthcare 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 final selection. And with the proper degree and training, combined with your dedication and drive to succeed, you can become a practicing nurse in West Fargo ND.
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North Dakota State University in Fargo offers bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) and doctor of nursing practice (DNP) degree programs. The university also has a BSN track for existing registered nurses (RNs), called an RN-to-BSN completion program. Continue reading » about Accredited nursing schools in the Fargo-Moorhead metropolitan area
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Top North Dakota Nursing Schools, Colleges & Degree Programs The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics has warned of a looming nationwide nursing shortage. Indeed, the projected growth in the sector is 19%, without taking into consideration how many of the … Read More
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