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Things to Ask CNA Schools
Once you have selected which nursing program to enroll in, along with whether to attend your classes on campus or online, you can use the following checklist to begin narrowing down your choices. As you undoubtedly realize, there are many CNA schools and colleges within Arkansas and the United States. So it is important to reduce the number of schools to select from to ensure that you will have a manageable list. As we earlier mentioned, the site of the school and the expense of tuition are probably going to be the first two factors that you will consider. But as we also emphasized, they should not be your sole qualifiers. So prior to making your ultimate decision, use the following questions to evaluate how your pick compares to the other schools.
- 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 organization. Aside from helping confirm that you obtain a quality education and employment in the Rogers AR area, it may help in securing financial aid or student loans, which are frequently not provided for non-accredited schools.
- Certification Preparation. Certification criteria for CNAs are different 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 important that the school you are attending not only delivers an excellent education, but also preps you to meet the minimum certification requirements for Arkansas or the state where you will be working.
- Reputation. Visit online rating companies to see what the evaluations are for each of the schools you are considering. Ask the accrediting agencies for their reviews as well. In addition, get in touch with the Arkansas school certification or licensing authority to check out if there are any complaints or compliance issues. Finally, you can speak with some Rogers AR healthcare organizations you're interested in working for after graduation and ask what their opinions 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 essential that the schools have high job placement rates. A high rate will not only confirm that the school has a good reputation within the Rogers AR healthcare community, but that it also has the network of contacts to assist students attain a position.
- Internship Programs. The most ideal way to obtain experience as a certified nursing assistant is to work in a clinical environment. Virtually all nursing degree programs require a specific number of clinical hours be completed. A number of states have minimum clinical hour prerequisites for certification too. Find out if the schools have associations with nearby Rogers AR hospitals, clinics or labs and help with the placement of students in internships.