As an LPN you may want to start branching out and improving your qualification. This article provides you with all of the information you need about LPN to RN programs.
LPN To RN Program Facts
If you want to do an LPN to RN program you should consider the different types of degrees that you will be able to earn in order to achieve this. You will be able to get either an:
- Associate’s Degree in Nursing (ADN)
- Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Nursing (BSN)
- Master of Science Degree in Nursing (MSN)
Each of these qualifications takes a different amount of time to complete and you will also find that the higher your qualification the more job options will be open to you in the future.
Useful subjects to have a good understanding of at college level are level algebra, microbiology, chemistry, anatomy, physiology, freshman English, history, civics, psychology, computers, and statistics. If you have studied these subjects in depth at college level you will be well prepared for your LPN to RN course and you will find it a ,lot easier to not only get through the exam but also to be an effective RN once you are qualified and working in your full capacity as a registered nurse. If you dislike or are nervous about these subjects, reconsider your career options now.
Working And Learning: Scope Of Practice
While you are doing your LPN to RN qualification you will be able to continue working as an LPN in your old job. This is because many of these kinds of programs are done on a part time basis, and some of them are even done online. However it is important to remember that even though you are learning the tasks of an RN while you work you will not be allowed to perform any RN duties while you are only employed as an LPN. If you do anything beyond a LPNs scope of practice you could get into serious trouble.
Reasons For Becoming An LPN First
Although it is possible to become an RN straight away many people choose to become an LPN first. This qualification can serve as a stepping stone in your career and allows you to get to work sooner than if you do an RN qualification straight away. Once you are an LPN you will be able to continue working while you do your LPN to RN program. LPN vs. RN duties are quite different, but the first can prepare you very well for the second. You will also be able to see whether or not nursing is really the career for you.
If you want to study to be an RN but don’t have the money for the LPN to RN programs that are available you may want to consider looking into the many financial aid options available out there for prospective nurses. Remember that there is a shortage in nurses at the moment, so if you get your qualification in this regard you will be in great demand and you will be guaranteed of having stable work all the time. Below is a list of some of the sources from which you may be able to get financial aid.
Especially if you are already employed in a hospital setting as an LPN your employer may be the most logical source to turn to for financial aid. Your employer will be more than happy to have a qualified RN on his or their staff that is already familiar with the setting, so if you want to do an LPN to RN qualification this may be the best place for you to start looking. LPN vs. RN studies can be very different, but with the support of your employer you will get through the program easily enough. The worst your employer can do is say no, so why not ask?
There are also a number of financial aid options available specifically for nurses doing there LPN to RN programs as well as for people with financial difficulties in general. All of these programs are well worth looking into. The best place to start would be to apply for grants with FAFSA and see what option they have open for you. If you don’t qualify for the grants and scholarships offered by the government there are loan options for your consideration that have very reasonable repayment schemes in place to help you fund your studies.
Some specific colleges also offer financial aid to students wanting to do their LPN to RN program. This is to encourage more and more students to get involved at that particular school. If you have a particular college in mind, start by enquiring with their financial office whether or not they have any programs in place that you may be able to take advantage of. If they do find out if you are eligible. There are a number of merit-based as well as needs-based programs offered by different colleges, so if you are a top achiever your chances are higher.
Length Of LPN To RN Programs
In order to complete an LPN to RN program you will have to work for anything from about 1 to 2 years. This is a much shorter period of time to spend then if you do an RN qualification right away. Some qualifications may be a little longer for particularly advanced RN degrees, but in general you will find that this is a fair reflection of the amount of time you will spend on a course. Consequently you need to be aware of how much time you are willing to devote to your LPN to RN program when choosing the best program for you.
Tips For Choosing LPN To RN Programs
Preparation for the exam – In order to become an RN you have to write the NCLEX-RN exam. This exam is what will allow you to become registered as a nurse with an RN qualification, so you have no choice but t pass it. Consequently you want to attend an LPN to RN that will prepare you adequately for your exam so that you can be guaranteed of being successful when the time comes to sit the paper. Check that the coursework that you will do is comprehensive and covers all of the necessary bases for the examination.
Coursework – Let’s talk about the coursework of your LPN to RN program in more detail. Good coursework will include both a clinical side and a practical side. In some cases you are not required to do clinical work for this kind of program because you would have covered that in your LPN studies, but it is helpful to get as much clinical experience as possible. Find out ahead of time what sorts of topics will be tested on the exam and then make sure that the coursework matches up with these topics. A comprehensive course needs to cover all of the basics.
Tuition fees – You may be in a position where you need to consider the tuition fees of the LPN to RN course that you are looking at attending. If you are, remember that it is not always necessarily the most expensive course that is the best one or the cheapest course that is the worst. Look carefully and closely at all of the aspects of each of the courses that you look into. If possible don’t base your entire decision only on the cost of the course as this may be a very superficial idea of the quality of that specific course.
Financial aid – Some colleges, as we mentioned earlier offer financial aid packages to students wanting to do their LPN to RN courses through them. If you are someone who needs to worry about the financial side of things you may want to move schools offering financial aid right to the top of your list of consideration. There are many schools that do this but, again, don’t make this your only criterion for selection as there are many other aspects involved in a course such as this that are of equal importance and consideration. Financial aid can also be found at other sources.
Location – Although not the most important aspect of your LPN to RN school decision, the location of the school can affect a number of things such as your transport costs. Consequently you may want to focus on programs offered at the hospital where you work or ones that are offered online to save the time and money involved in travelling far distances in order to study. However you should always base your choice on the quality of the school above its location so make sure that you are able to look past this detail at the other important aspects of the school.
Clinical facilities – Because a good LPN to RN program is one that offers clinical hands-on training you should take the time to consider the clinical facilities offered by the programs you are interested in looking into. If possible you should do a tour of each of the schools offering these programs and see whether or not the clinical facilities grab you and speak to you. The better the facilities the higher that school should be placed on your list for consideration. If you can afford to be choosy choose the school that has the best clinical exposure and facilities possible.
Past pupils experiences – Find out form past pupils of that LPN to RN program whether or not they had a good experience at the school or college. If they did, try and find out why, you should also try and get information regarding how many students form that school pass the RN exam each and every year, and how many of those that have passed are actually successfully employed in RN positions. All of these factors are important in establishing your chances of future success should you attend that particular program. This information will be available online and form past students who have been at that school before.
LPN vs. RN
Scope of practice – One of the key features of the LPN vs. RN question lies in the scope of practice. LPNs are simply not allowed to do everything that RNs can do. A key difference when it comes to RN vs. LPN lies in the fact that LPNs tend to be involved in the more menial duties. Another LPN vs. RN difference is that an RN will be more actively involved in diagnostics and medication administration, as well as in patient education while an LPN will have little part to play in these matters. LPNs simply cannot do everything that RNs do.
Length of studies – A key LPN vs. RN difference lies in how long it takes to study for the position. To become an LPN you will only have to study for about a year while if you go straight to becoming an RN you will have t study for anything from 2 to 4 years. This is a big RN vs. LPN difference and serves as the reasons why many people choose to become an LPN first. Another aspect of LPN vs. RN differences in this regard is that you will be less stressed in terms of studies and work.
Delegation – An RN can delegate tasks to an LPN, but an RN has to be careful about what tasks she delegates as there are a number of tasks that fall outside of a LPNs scope of practice. An LPN in some ways is in charge of the CNAs and the nursing aids that sometimes help out in hospitals. LPNs need to be supervised by RN in practically everything. RNs have a lot more freedom n decision making and have to answer only the physicians in charge of the patients in their care. Being an RN is a much bigger responsibility but also comes with an increased salary and perks.