How to Find the Right LPN School near Edwardsville Illinois
Once you have decided on a rewarding career in the field of nursing, it’s essential that you locate a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) program near Edwardsville IL that will provide the appropriate instruction. If you reside in Texas or California, then you will be looking 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 medical facilities under the guidance of Registered Nurses (RN) or Doctors. But their duties do fluctuate depending on the state they practice in, which we will address in the next segment. When starting their search for LPN schools, many potential nursing students begin with those that are the nearest to their houses or that are the least expensive. Although tuition and location are important considerations, they are not the only criteria 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 very important too. There are even more questions that you should ask prospective schools before enrolling in an LPN program that we will talk about later in this article. But first, let’s look at the role of an LPN and what is involved in the education and licensing process.
What is an LPN in Edwardsville IL?
Licensed Practical Nurses have numerous tasks that they accomplish in the Edwardsville IL health care facilities where they are employed. As their titles indicate, they are required to be licensed in all states, including Illinois. Even though they may be accountable for supervising Certified Nursing Assistants (CNA), they themselves usually work under the supervision of either an RN or a doctor. The medical care facilities where they work are numerous and diverse, such as hospitals, medical clinics, schools, and long-term care facilities. Anywhere that you can encounter patients in need of medical assistance is their domain. Each state not only controls their licensing, but also what work activities an LPN can and can’t perform. So depending on the state, their everyday work activities might include:
- Measuring vital signs
- Administering medicines
- Setting up IV drips
- Overseeing patients
- Getting blood or urine samples
- Managing patient records
- Assisting doctors or Registered nurses with procedures
In addition to their job functions being mandated by each state, the health care facilities or other Edwardsville IL healthcare providers where LPNs work can further limit their job duties within those parameters. Additionally, they can work in numerous specialties of nursing, such as long-term care, critical care, oncology and cardiology.
LPN Programs in Illinois
There are basically two academic accreditations available that provide education to become an LPN. The one that can be concluded in the shortest time frame, usually about 1 year, is the certificate or diploma course. The other alternative is to attain a Practical Nursing Associate Degree. These programs are more comprehensive in nature than the diploma alternative and usually require 2 years to complete. The benefit of Associate Degrees, in addition to offering a higher credential and more in-depth instruction, are that they provide more transferrable credit toward a Bachelor’s Degree in nursing. Regardless of the kind of credential you seek, it needs to be state approved and accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission (NLNAC) or some other national accrediting organization. The NLNAC attests that the course of study adequately prepares students to become Practical Nurses, and that most graduates pass the 50 state required NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
Online LPN Programs
Enrolling in LPN schools online is growing into a more favored way to get training and attain a nursing certificate or degree in Edwardsville IL. Some schools will require attending on campus for a component of the training, and virtually all programs require a certain amount of clinical rotation hours performed in a local healthcare center. But since the balance of the training can be accessed online, this alternative may be a more convenient solution to finding the time to attend college for some students. Pertaining to tuition, a number of online degree programs are less costly than other on campus options. Even other expenses such as for commuting and study materials may be lessened, helping to make education more easily affordable. And a large number of online programs are accredited by U.S. Department of Education recognized organizations. So if your job and family obligations have left you with limited time to work toward your academic goals, maybe an online LPN program will make it more convenient to fit a degree into your busy schedule.
Things to Ask LPN Schools
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 undoubtedly are aware, there are numerous nursing schools and colleges near Edwardsville IL as well as within Illinois and throughout the United States. So it is necessary to reduce the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we already mentioned, the site of the school and the cost of tuition are undoubtedly going to be the initial two things that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your final selection, use the following questions to see how your pick measures up to the other programs.
- 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 acknowledged accrediting organization. Besides helping confirm that you obtain a premium education, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not offered for non-accredited schools near Edwardsville IL.
- Licensing Preparation. Licensing prerequisites for LPNs vary from state to state. In all states, a passing score is required on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-PN) in addition to graduation from an accredited school. Certain states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well as the passing of additional tests. It’s essential that the school you are attending not only delivers an exceptional education, but also readies you to satisfy the minimum licensing standards for Illinois or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Look at internet rating services to see what the reviews are for each of the LPN schools you are looking into. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews also. In addition, contact the Illinois school licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some nearby Edwardsville IL healthcare organizations you’re interested in working for after graduation and ask what their assessments are of the schools as well.
- Graduation and Job Placement Rates. Find out from the LPN schools 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a good reputation within the Edwardsville IL medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students obtain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to get experience as a Licensed Practical Nurse is to work in a clinical setting. Essentially all nursing degree programs require a specified number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour mandates for licensing also. Check if the schools have associations with local Edwardsville IL community hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.
Considering LPN School in Edwardsville Illinois?
Edwardsville is a city in Madison County, Illinois, United States. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 24,293. It is the county seat of Madison County and is the third oldest city in the State of Illinois. The city was named in honor of Ninian Edwards, then Governor of the Illinois Territory.
Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, the Edwardsville Arts Center, the Edwardsville Journal, the Madison County Record, and the Edwardsville Intelligencer are located here. Edwardsville High School and Metro-East Lutheran High School serve students in the area.
Edwardsville is a part of Southern Illinois, the Metro East region, and Greater St. Louis. It is part of the Edwardsville School District, which also includes the villages of Glen Carbon, Hamel, and Moro, as well as the townships areas around them.
Edwardsville was originally incorporated in 1818, making it the third oldest city in Illinois. It marked the first movement of European-American settlers up onto the Illinois tallgrass prairie and out of the American Bottom below the river bluffs. The first European-American settler was Thomas Kirkpatrick, who came in 1805, laid out a community, and served as the Justice of the Peace. He named the community after his friend Ninian Edwards, then territorial governor of Illinois. (Illinois did not become a state until 1818.) The Edwards Trace, a key trail in the settlement of Central Illinois, used Edwardsville as a northward launching point.
Select the Right LPN School near Edwardsville IL
Picking the ideal Licensed Practical Nurse school is potentially the most critical phase to beginning a new career in the medical care field. There are various variables that you must consider when selecting a nursing school. These aspects will be prioritized differently depending on your existing career goals, obligations, and economic status. As we have emphasized in this article, it is important that you choose an RN school and a degree program that are both accredited and have exceptional reputations within the health care community. By utilizing our list of qualifying questions, you will be able to create a shortlist of schools to select from so that you can make your final selection. And with the right degree and training, combined with your hard work and desire to succeed, you can become a Licensed Practical Nurse in Edwardsville IL.
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