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Nurse Career Information & Profiles

“How do you become a licensed practical nurse (LPN)?” and “What education is necessary to be a nurse practitioner (NP)?” are common questions of those who are interested in entering nurse careers. The nursing profession is made up of all sorts of career levels, and each of them requires a minimum level of education in order to cover a specific set of nurse duties. Whether you’ve been in your current role for years or you're just hoping to break into the nursing field, here you’ll find detailed salary and job information for each of the levels of nursing.

Do you faint at the sight of blood or are you a full-fledged trauma junkie? Do you love working with kids or prefer to spend time with older patients? Do you want to focus on wellness and disease prevention or assist patients who are acutely ill? No matter what your answers to these questions, there's a nursing career path that fits your goals. Nurses are needed at all levels of health care, in a range of diverse settings.

Licensed practical nurses are responsible for much of the basic care patients receive, whether it's taking vital signs during an office visit or helping with bathing for a hospital patient. LPNs typically work under the supervision of more experienced registered nurses and doctors, but with experience, they may move into positions supervising other LPNs or medical staff such as assistants. Typically, you must graduate from an accepted program, which lasts about one year, and pass the NCLEX-PN exam to become licensed.

Registered nurses can earn either an associate degree, bachelor's degree or, less commonly, a diploma from a hospital-based program. Upon graduation, you must pass the NCEX-RN before being work as a licensed registered nurse. Registered nurses provide more advanced patient care, such as taking medical histories, developing a nursing plan and performing certain diagnostic tests. Registered nurses may also work more independently in settings such as schools or camps, providing primary treatment for minor illnesses and injuries.

At the graduate level, nurses who hold a BSN may move up by earning a Master of Science in Nursing, or MSN. An MSN can allow you to move into advanced roles in administration or management or prepare you to become an advanced practice nurse such as a nurse practitioner, nurse midwife, clinical nurse specialist or nurse anesthetist. Duties of advanced practice nurses vary depending on specialty and state regulations, but often they have the ability to practice more independently and may be able to prescribe medication.

Finally, a doctor or nursing practice, or DNP is available. This degree trains nurses to work as nurse educators or clinicians at the highest levels. Nurses can also earn a Ph.D. in nursing, which brings a more academic focus to the field and may be the preferred degree for nurses who wish to work in research.

Whether you're looking for a nursing degree program that provides a quick entry into the workforce or are seeking further training to move into a more advanced position, nursing can offer opportunities at every level.

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            Doctor of Nursing Practice with an Emphasis in Educational Leadership
            • Do you aspire to fulfill an evolving healthcare role as a highly-qualified nursing professional? GCU is the place for you.
            • RNs, pursue your BSN or MSN conveniently online, backed by the legacy of GCU's traditional campus.
            • GCU's bachelor's and master's programs prepare students to fill roles in direct care, management, health education and administrative disciplines.
            • The baccalaureate degree in nursing and master's degree in nursing at GCU are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education
            • Develop with hands-on practice, online and lab simulations and in depth peer discussions exploring best practices.
            • Accredited
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            Doctor of Education - Nursing Education
            • Northcentral University was founded in 1996 to provide working professionals around the world with unprecedented access to richly engaging, professionally relevant, and academically-rigorous education from a U.S. university.
            • As a regionally accredited, private, online and graduate-focused university, NCU offers doctoral, master’s and bachelor’s degrees in business, technology management, education, and psychology, as well as doctoral and master’s degrees in marriage and family therapy.
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            Online Doctor of Nursing Practice - Leadership Track (MSN to DNP)
            • Ranked #4 among the 2015 Best Regional Universities in the Midwest by U.S. News & World Report.
            • Designated as 2015 Military Friendly School by U.S. News & World Report.
            • Student to faculty ratio of 12:1, with an average class size of 21.
            • 85% of faculty holds a doctorate or terminal degree in their field.
            • Regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association (NCA).
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            Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)
            • Ranked among the 2015 Best National Universities by U.S. News & World Report.
            • Designated as a Military Friendly School every year since 2012 by Victory Media.
            • Offers credit for prior learning and experience through assessment tests.
            • Provides a short term Leadership Certification program in partnership with EQUIP®.
            • Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association (NCA).
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            Master of Science in Nursing: Nursing Administration
            • Liberty University provides a worldclass education from a christ-centered worldview
            • 100% online programs at associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral levels
            • No standardized testing if student meets admission requirements
            • Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
            • 95% of Liberty University students receive some form of financial aid
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            Nursing (RN to BSN)
            • Ranked among the Best Grad Schools for Physician Assistants in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
            • Dedicated to delivering quality education and personalized attention to students since 1899.
            • Provides a range of campus experiences and services online including advising, tutoring, student community, and career services.
            • Offers counseling services and a 24/7 crisis hotline to students at no extra charge.
            • Gives students and alumni access to career assistants who help with resumes, cover letters, job hunting, and more.
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            Master of Science in Nursing

            Founded in 1887, Benedictine University is dedicated to the education of undergraduate and graduate students. Benedictine is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA).

            Benedictine University provides a values-centered Liberal Arts education. Today, Benedictine enrolls nearly 10,000 students from all 50 states in the US and over 17 countries.

            Why Benedictine University Online?

            • Over 130 year legacy of academic excellence
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            RN-BSN (Bachelor of Science) - Online
            • For the 12th consecutive year, Cal U was named one for the best schools in the Northeast by The Princeton Review 
            • Recognized by the U.S. News and World Report for: Best Online Programs, Bachelor’s 2017, Best Online Programs, Grad Education 2017 and Best Online Programs, Bachelor’s for Veterans 2017
            • Quality Online courses at Cal U have the same objectives, content and learning outcomes as campus-based programs and are taught by the same expert professors.
            • Offers private school amenities at a public school cost. Student-to-teacher ratio of 20:1
            • CAL U online programs complete an annual assessment of student learning to ensure outcomes are focused on your success in career entry, advancement or enhancement!
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            Master of Science in Nursing

            Founded in 1856, Seton Hall is one of the country’s leading Catholic universities. Rich in history, Seton Hall is also an institution on the rise. U.S. News ranks us among the top universities, and we have moved up 13 places in just five years.

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            RN to BSN Online Option

            Designed by RNs for RNs

            Chamberlain’s RN to BSN option offers convenient 100% online coursework, no mandatory login times and no campus visits. This flexible framework allows you to continue in your current role while you pursue your degree. And, because the curriculum is developed and taught by RNs who are also educators, you know you are learning what you need to push your skills forward now – and in the future.

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