How To Select The Best Nursing School
If you want to make a positive difference in this world and use your skills for the greater good, there are few better professions than nursing. But you should note that learning the intricacies of the profession takes time and years to master.
To get a good start, the first step is choosing the best nursing institute for quality education, depending on your area of specialization. And we can offer some assistance in that regard. Since you will be engaged in helping people lead better lives, allow us to help you find the top college.
Let us be your support staff in this journey, and all we request is for you to read our guide!
Choosing The Best Nursing School
- What’s Your Objective?
Get your priorities in order and determine what you want from a nursing program. Nursing schools have varying programs and offer different benefits to students based on their areas of expertise. So, take your time and find the answer to the following questions.
What are your future plans? What’s your preferred learning style? Are there certain commitments you must fulfill that influence your professional and academic decisions?
When you find the answer to these questions, enrolling in a suitable university program becomes easier.
- Course Duration
All nursing degrees are different, so it’s crucial to check the duration of the college courses before taking admission. Do you want to start working professionally ASAP, or do you wish to complete an advanced degree program?
Since the length and outcomes ofnursing educationand programs may vary, we have provided a rough estimate below –
- Trade School/Community College
1-year course for a licensed practical nurse certificate/diploma.
- Registered Nurse (RN)
18-24 months course for an associate’s degree in nursing.
- Bachelor’s Degree (BSN)
RNs looking for better job opportunities can enroll in a 4-year BSN program.
- Master’s Degree (MSN)
Additional 2-3 years after BSN programs to earn an MSN degree for working in advanced nursing specialty clinics.
- Classroom Structure
Prospective nurses (and even doctors, for that matter) often fail to consider the classroom structure of their preferred medical institute, which has a big impact on their course. Many students like attending large lecture halls full of budding nurses, while others are more comfortable in small classes where the teacher can dedicate their attention to your queries.
We should also mention the popularity of online courses in modern times, as students can attend classes from the comfort of their homes. So, compare the average number of students in a class and the teaching environment among institutes to make the right call.
- Are There Any Specialties Offered?
Do you have a specialization in mind, like surgical nursing, neonatal, pediatric, cardiovascular, or acute care? Then, check the programs offered in your preferred area of expertise and whether the university holds extra classes and provides clinical time.
Choosing a specialty is vital for students who want to study for advanced healthcare degrees.
Like real estate, choosing the best nursing college also depends on location. And there are two things to consider in that regard –
- Will you be commuting from home?
- Will you choose to stay on campus?
Students who commute daily need to factor in the distance of the college from their homes, cost of travel, time, etc. Similarly, those who opt to live on campus need to know about the surrounding neighborhood and gather information about the city/town.
- On-Campus Life
You should be aware of other aspects of on-campus life before choosing a nursing institute. Staying on campus means sharing a dorm room with other students, finding the time to study or rest, and making lifestyle changes.
So, we have made a list of the things to check before finding accommodation on campus –
- Dining options and quality of service
- Distance of the classrooms from the dorm
- Transportation facilities
- Lounge areas
- Library access
- Recreational Activities
Let’s be honest – studying all the time isn’t going to make you a better nurse; most importantly, it’s impossible to sustain. We suggest choosing a college that has state-of-the-art infrastructure to help budding nurses relax and rewind after a tiring day.
Some of the popular activities that any top college should have-
- Student committees
- Sports teams
- Sororities and fraternities
- Coffee shops
- Fitness centers
- Media centers
- Entertainment areas nearby
An easy way to narrow down choices is by looking at the university rankings. Sure, rankings aren’t full-proof, and there are several things to consider, but you can at least know about the top colleges in your field of interest.
- Visit The Schools
If possible, we suggest visiting the schools to know more about their educational courses and learning programs. Moreover, you can visit the canteen, dorm, and library and take a campus tour to decide whether you can adjust to that lifestyle. Best of all, campus visits allow you to talk to the faculty and get an insight into the university.
Visit the official website of the medical school and check if it’s accredited by the state board of nursing. If a medical institute doesn’t have the required accreditation, don’t enroll yourself in their program. Take it from us – it’s challenging to land a job in a top hospital, get financial aid, or transfer credits for advanced degrees from such institutes.
Acquiring A Degree In Nursing
Becoming a nurse and completing the degree is only part of the journey, as the real goal is to serve patients and help people in need.
But for that, you need to be trained by the best and learn how to handle pressure situations, such as operating on critical patients in intensive care units. So, don’t compromise when choosing a medical institute, especially when you’re good enough to get admission to the top colleges.