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Questions to Ask CNA Degree Programs
Once you have determined which nursing program to pursue, and if to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following checklist to begin narrowing down your options. As you undoubtedly realize, there are many CNA schools and colleges within Alabama and the United States. So it is necessary to decrease the number of schools to choose from in order that you will have a workable list. As we earlier discussed, the site of the school along with the cost of tuition are probably 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 CNA certificate program as well as the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting organization. Aside from helping make sure that you obtain a quality education and employment in the Enterprise AL area, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are often not offered for non-accredited schools.
- Certification Preparation. Certification prerequisites for CNAs differ from state to state. For CNA certification, passing a state specific exam is required. Some states require a certain number of clinical hours be performed, as well. It's essential that the school you are attending not only delivers an excellent education, but also preps you to comply with the minimum certification requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be practicing.
- Reputation. Visit internet rating services to see what the evaluations are for all of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews too. Additionally, check with the Alabama school certification or licensing authority to find out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can contact some Enterprise AL 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 CNA colleges 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 unhappy with the program and dropped out. It's also important that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only verify that the school has a favorable reputation within the Enterprise AL healthcare community, but that it also has the network of relationships to help students gain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a certified nursing assistant 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 requirements for certification also. Find out if the schools have associations with nearby Enterprise AL hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the positioning of students in internships.