How to Enroll In the Best LVN or LPN Course Near Phoenix Arizona
Now that you have decided on a fulfilling career in the field of nursing, it's important that you choose a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) school near Phoenix AZ that will deliver the proper instruction. If you live in Texas or California, then you will be searching for a Licensed Vocational Nurse (LVN) school instead. There is no distinction, aside from the names, between an LPN and an LVN. They both perform the same job functions and work in healthcare facilities under the supervision of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their duties do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will cover in the following section. When starting their search for schools, many potential nursing students start with the ones that are the closest to their houses or that are the least expensive. Although price and location are important factors, they are not the only qualifications that you should base your selection on. Other variables, such as if the schools are accredited or have high pass rates on the licensing exam are extremely important too. There are even more questions that you should ask potential schools before enrolling in a LPN or LVN program that we will cover later in this article.
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Questions to Ask LPN and LVN Programs
Once you have decided on obtaining your LPN certificate, and if you will attend classes on campus or online, you can use the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you no doubt are aware, there are many nursing schools and colleges near Phoenix Az as well as within Arizona and throughout the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a manageable list. As we already pointed out, the site of the school as well as the expense of tuition are probably going to be the first two things that you will take into consideration. But as we also stressed, they should not be your only qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to see how your pick measures up to the field.
- 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 recognized accrediting organization. Aside from helping make sure that you get a premium education, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools near Phoenix Arizona.
- Reputation. Visit online rating services to see what the assessments are for each of the LPN schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews also. Also, get in touch with the Arizona school licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some nearby Phoenix AZ healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their assessments are of the schools as well.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to obtain experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. Various states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing as well. Check if the schools have a working relationship with local Phoenix AZ community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships. Also, it's important that you choose a school that offers clinical training in the type of facility you are most interested in. For example, if you want training and experience in pediatric care, make sure that the school you choose provides adequate clinical rotation in an area Pediatric Hospital.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for LPNs vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is needed on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) in addition to graduation from an approved school. Many states require a certain 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 an outstanding education, but also readies you to meet the minimum licensing standards for Arizona or the state where you will be working.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the LPN 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 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 verify that the school has a superb reputation within the Phoenix AZ medical community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students obtain a position.
- NCLEX Exam Pass Rate. Once you receive your certificate or diploma, you must sign up for and pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN). Enrolling in a school with at least a 75% pass rate is highly preferred. Lower pass rates may indicate that a school’s program, curriculum or instructors are ineffective in teaching its students. You can find out from the school what their passing rate is for the last 5 years, or request the information from the State Board of Nursing.
Choose the Right Phoenix Licensed Practical Nurse School
Choosing the right Licensed Practical Nurse school is potentially the most important step to launching a new career in the health care industry. There are many variables that you should consider when picking a nursing school. These variables will be prioritized differently contingent on your existing career goals, obligations, and economic situation. As we have pointed out in this post, it is essential that you enroll in an LPN college and a certificate or degree program that are each accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. By utilizing 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 right degree and training, combined with your dedication and desire to succeed, you can become an LPN in Phoenix Arizona.