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What to Ask CNA Degree Programs
Now that you have decided on which nursing program to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus or on the web, you can use the following checklist to begin narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly are aware, there are numerous CNA schools and colleges within Alabama and the United States. So it is important to decrease the number of schools to choose from to ensure that you will have a workable list. As we already discussed, the site of the school as well as the price of tuition are most likely going to be the primary two things that you will consider. But as we also stressed, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So before making your final choice, use the following questions to see how your selection measures up to the other programs.
- Accreditation. It's a good idea to make sure that the certificate program as well as the school is accredited by a U.S. Department of Education recognized accrediting agency. Aside from helping confirm that you obtain a premium education and employment in the Prattville AL area, it may assist in acquiring financial aid or student loans, which are often not available for non-accredited schools.
- Certification Preparation. Certification requirements for CNAs are different from state to state. For CNA certification, passing a state specific exam is required. Certain states require a specific number of clinical hours be completed, as well. It's imperative that the school you are attending not only delivers a top-notch education, but also prepares you to meet the minimum certification requirements for Alabama or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit online rating services to see what the assessments are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting organizations for their reviews too. Additionally, check with the Alabama school certification or licensing authority to determine if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can call some Prattville 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 considering 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 substantiate that the school has a favorable reputation within the Prattville AL medical community, but that it also has the network of contacts to help students attain employment.
- Internship Programs. The most effective way to acquire experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical environment. Almost all nursing degree programs require a certain number of clinical hours be completed. Many states have minimum clinical hour requirements for certification also. Ask if the schools have a working relationship with nearby Prattville AL hospitals, clinics or labs and assist with the placement of students in internships.