Essential Steps to Become a Registered Nurse

Nursing careers are quite high in demand these days. The entire nation is facing a shortage of trained nurses. A career in nursing offers multiple paths for aspiring candidates to pursue. Candidates can choose to become a nursing assistant, an LPN or a registered nurse. Both in terms of job security and job satisfaction, becoming a registered nurse proves to be a profitable career. If you are really interested in improving people's lives and establish a successful nursing career, you need to be familiar with where and how to get started and how to make the most of your career as a registered nurse (RN). According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary of a registered nurse is $62,450.

Given below are some important steps that you need to follow for becoming a registered nurse -

Obtain the Basic Education

A registered nurse's career requires a higher level of education and training, as compared to other nursing careers. A high school diploma or GED is the least requirement to begin on your path to becoming a registered nurse. Those who are still studying in high schools should focus on science subjects. Candidates also need to appear for the SAT or ACT exam for getting enrolled in a reputed undergraduate school.

Acquire Adequate Advanced Education in Nursing

Advanced academic qualification is required to become a registered nurse. Aspiring candidates can choose from any of the major degree paths - a master's degree in nursing, a Bachelor of Science degree in nursing, an associate degree in nursing and a diploma in nursing. An associate degree in nursing is the most preferred degree option these days. The degree program takes 2 years duration to complete. There are several community colleges and junior colleges that offer associate degree programs in nursing. A bachelor's degree, on the other hand, takes 4 years to complete.

While choosing a nursing degree program, candidates need to think about their future career path. If you want to occupy administrative positions in nursing, you need to go for a bachelor's degree. A master's degree will enable you to become a nurse practitioner. An associate degree in nursing is the quickest way to become an RN.

Clear the NCLEX-RN Exam to Become Licensed

To obtain a registered nursing license, candidates need to pass a state licensing examination. This is applicable in all the states and United States territories including the District of Columbia. The NCLEX-RN examination is organized by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing. The state licensing examination is held to test the knowledge and skills of the candidates, promoting safe and efficient practice of nursing.

If you have decided to become a registered nurse, it is always advisable to start working towards this career as early as possible. One good option for aspiring candidates is to work as a hospital aide to become familiar with the hospital setting. You can also benefit from volunteering opportunities at hospitals while you are pursuing an academic career.

Do you have a strong passion for becoming a Registered Nurse (RN)? Let us help you by offering a wide range of accredited colleges and universities where you can Enroll in a Degree Program and pursue your dream career. However, you need to be sure that becoming a registered nurse is the right career path for you. If you are confused or unable to make the right career decision, you can take a Free Career Aptitude Test Now to help yourself choose the right career path.

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