The nursing profession is in high demand and will remain so for the foreseeable future. If you are looking for a future career where you can care for people, relieve their suffering and also make a decent living for yourself, then you have likely considered a degree in nursing. If you are looking into applying for nursing programs, here are some things to consider.
There will be some requirements for admission into nursing school. If you are still in high school and planning ahead for a nursing degree, you may have opportunity to get some of these requirements out of the way while you are still in high school.
- Science: It's pretty obvious that nursing school, being in the medical field, will require you to have a good background in science. Particularly in Chemistry (both organic and inorganic), Biology, as well as Anatomy and Physiology.
- Mathematics: You'll need to have a solid math background for nursing school. Particularly, it helps to have a background in Algebra, Geometry and Statistics. Calculus and other advanced math classes can be helpful
- English: Having advanced composition skills can help you during the application process as well as the various writing assignments you'll have during your nursing program.
Likely, there will be a set of prerequisite courses you'll have to take prior to starting your actual nursing program. If you are still in high school, the best thing you can do is to try to get a solid background in some of these areas. AP courses offer an opportunity to take courses at a college level which could be accepted by your future nursing program. This may eliminate some of the prerequisites you'll have to take before starting your actual nursing courses. Our recommendation is to focus on AP Science and Math classes if at all possible. The more you get done now, the less you'll potentially have to pay for in college courses later. It's always a great idea to have your future degree in mind when you are planning your high school coursework.
Searching for and Applying to Nursing Programs.
If you are in the position where you are currently searching for nursing schools, here are some things to think about:
- Accreditation: It is important for you to choose an accredited school. Most nursing schools are, but you should check to be sure. Nursing schools are accredited in two ways. First, the coursework is approved by the state board of nursing. This ensures that the coursework you'll be doing will prepare you for state licensing tests. Second, the program is accredited by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing, Inc. This ensures that the program meets the educational requirements on a national level. If your school isn't accredited in this way, your coursework may not be acceptable to a graduate school, should you choose to get more than an undergraduate degree in nursing.
- Applying: After you have investigated a school and you have decided on one or more program for which to apply, you can typically start the process by contacting the admissions office of the school. Once you have narrowed down your choices, we recommend that you visit the campus of the school to get a real view of what it would be like to attend the school. Start your application process early. You'll need to provide the school with your transcripts, ACT or SAT scores, and possibly a personal statement or essay which gives the school more information about you and why you wish to attend that particular school.