How to Choose a Nursing School near Tazewell Tennessee
Selecting the right nursing college near Tazewell TN may seem like a complicated undertaking, especially if you have no idea what to look for in a good degree program. As you may already know, in order to practice as a registered nurse, you need to obtain the proper education and training in order to become licensed. So it is critically important that you study and measure the qualifications of each college you are thinking about before enrolling in your final selection. Unfortunately, too many potential students base their selection exclusively on the cost of tuition and the proximity of the school. Selecting the least expensive college or the one that is nearest to your home is undoubtedly not the most ideal way to select a nursing college. There are various important additional aspects to check into before you determine where to attend classes. But before we delve into that checklist, let’s first cover what the function of a registered nurse is in our medical care system, along with the nursing degree choices that are available.
Registered Nurse Job Duties
Registered nurses are the most extensive occupation in the healthcare delivery system. RNs practice in many different Tazewell TN medical settings, such as hospitals, private practices, outpatient clinics, nursing homes and even schools. Their general duty is to assist doctors in the treatment of their patients. However, the specific duties of a registered nurse will be dependent on their job or specialization in addition to where they work. Some of the responsibilities of an RN may include:
- Providing medications
- Monitoring patients
- Conducting physical examinations
- Coordinating care
- Overseeing LPNs, LVNs and nurse aides
- Informing patients and their families
- Taking care of health records and charts
Nurses with a higher degree may have more advanced job duties and responsibilities. Nurse practitioners (NP), for instance, must hold a Master’s Degree and normally work more independently than their RN counterparts. They can deliver primary or specialty care services, prescribe medications, and diagnose and treat routine illnesses or injuries.
There are several degree options available to become a registered nurse. And in order to become an RN, a student must attend an accredited school and program. A student can earn a qualifying degree in as little as 2 years, or continue on to earn a graduate degree for a total of six years. Following are some brief explanations of the nursing degrees that are available in the Tazewell TN area.
- Associates. The Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) is normally a two year program offered by Tennessee community colleges. It preps 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 earn a more advanced degree.
- Bachelor’s. The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) supplies more extensive training than the ADN. It is generally a four year program offered at Tennessee colleges and universities. Licensed RNs may be able to complete an accelerated program based on their previous training or degree and professional experience (RN to BSN). Those applying to the program may desire to progress to a clinical or administrative position, or be more competitive in the job market.
- Master’s. The Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) is normally a 2 year program after attaining the BSN. The MSN program provides specialization training, for instance to become a nurse practitioner or focus on administration, management or teaching.
Once a graduating student has earned one of the above degrees, he or she must pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) to become licensed. Other requirements for licensing fluctuate from state to state, so don’t forget to get in touch with the Tennessee board of nursing for any state mandates.
Nursing Online Schools
Attending nursing schools online is becoming a more favored way to obtain instruction and earn a nursing degree. Some schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and almost all programs call for a certain amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training may be accessed online, this option may be a more convenient approach to finding the time to attend school for some Tazewell TN students. Concerning tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even supplementary expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be minimized, helping to make education more affordable. And numerous online programs are accredited by organizations like the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) for BSN and MSN degrees. Therefore if your work and family commitments have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, it could be that an online nursing program will make it easier to fit a degree into your active schedule.
What to Ask Nursing Schools
Once you have decided on which nursing degree to enroll in, and whether to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can utilize the following pointers to begin narrowing down your options. As you no doubt are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges in the Tazewell TN area and throughout Tennessee and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we already discussed, the location of the school along with the price of tuition are probably going to be the primary two points that you will look at. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final selection, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up to the field.
- Accreditation. It’s a good idea to make sure that the degree or certificate program as well as the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education acknowledged accrediting organization. In addition to helping confirm that you get a quality education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans in Tazewell TN, which are oftentimes not available for non-accredited schools.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing requirements for registered nurses are different from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) as well as graduation from an accredited school. Many 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 provides an exceptional education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Tennessee or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit online rating companies to see what the assessments are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. In addition, get in touch with the Tennessee school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Tazewell TN 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 programs 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 displeased 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 favorable reputation within the Tazewell TN medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students obtain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to acquire experience as a registered nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specified 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 Tazewell TN hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.
Looking at Nursing Schools near Tazewell TN?
Tazewell is a town in and the county seat of Claiborne County, Tennessee, United States. The population was 2,165 at the 2000 census and 2,218 at the 2010 census. The town is named for Henry Tazewell (1753–1799), a U.S. senator from Virginia.
In 1750, Dr. Thomas Walker of Virginia publicized the location of Cumberland Gap, which brought a stream of long hunters down the Clinch and Powell valleys into what is now Claiborne County. The land at the time was part of Cherokee and Shawano hunting grounds, and hostile attacks by members of these two tribes were not uncommon. To protect themselves, hunters, fur traders and early settlers erected a series of small forts and stations along the Powell and Clinch valleys. One such station, known as Fort Butler, was located just west of modern Tazewell.
Among the earliest settlers in the Tazewell area was John Hunt (1750–1822), a militia captain who would later be instrumental in the founding of Huntsville, Alabama. In 1804, three years after the creation of Claiborne County, Tazewell was chosen as the county seat due in part to Hunt's influence (although a local legend states that the residents of Tazewell's rival for the seat, Springdale, were too intoxicated to vote on the day of selection). Hunt was named the county's first sheriff, and the government met at his house until a courthouse was constructed. The original courthouse was a wooden structure which had hitching posts for horses in front.
Pick the Right RN College near Tazewell TN
Enrolling in the ideal registered nursing program is probably the most important first step to beginning a new career in the healthcare industry. There are many aspects that you should consider when choosing a nursing school. These factors will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, obligations, and financial situation. As we have emphasized within this article, it is critical that you choose an RN college and a degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the healthcare community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to produce a shortlist 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 practicing nurse in Tazewell TN.
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