Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Alaska RN Schools & License Guidelines

Individuals without an official nursing background who are interested in becoming an Alaska Registered Nurse must first graduate from a state-approved RN Alaska program.

All states in the U.S. approve and regulate their own registered nurse (RN) prelicensure academic training programs, the majority of which are either associate-level or bachelor's programs in nursing.

The Alaska Board of Nursing is the organization responsible for approving those AK RN schools found across the state.

This article shows interested nursing students where they can find state-approved Alaska RN programs, and also explains the state's licensing requirements.

RN Alaska License Guidelines

The following requirements must be fulfilled for individuals who have never earned an approved nursing degree before being allowed to work as an Alaska Registered Nurse:

  • Finish an AK RN program that has been state-approved
  • Pass the national licensing examination (called the NCLEX-RN)
  • Complete a criminal history review

Registered nurses in other states who hold a valid license, and who have not been charged with any ethical infractions, can apply to have their license transferred to Alaska. For information on how to obtain an application, contact the board at 907-269-8438.

Alaska Registered Nurse School Curricula

Alaska schools that house nursing programs are able to build their own unique nursing curricula. However, in order to be state-approved, RN Alaska programs must minimally offer the following:

  • Two years of full-time learning
  • A theoretical, academic learning component
  • A clinical training component

In the academic portion of nursing programs, students learn numerous important areas of study in the classroom, including:

  • Psychology
  • Microbiology
  • Medical ethics
  • Pharmacology
  • Social sciences
  • General nursing practice
  • Medical and surgical nursing
  • Mental health issues

In the clinical, hands-on training portion of AK RN programs, students are supervised as they work with patients of all ages. This work, which is often performed in local hospitals, gives students the opportunity to practice those nursing skills acquired in the classroom.

Finding AK RN Schools

The Board of Nursing approves a handful of programs across the state, including an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) program and Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program available from the University of Alaska in Anchorage.

For a complete list of approved nursing schools in the state, contact the board at 907-269-8438.

Benefits of RN Alaska Training

Those who are able to both graduate from an approved nursing program and pass the national licensing exam are able to seek work as an Alaska Registered Nurse.

According to statistics from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, RN jobs are expected to rise in demand over the next ten years as the nation's population ages, making an investment in nurse training a wise move.