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How do I Choose the Best Nurse Practitioner Course?

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  • Written By: Carol Francois
  • Edited By: Heather Bailey
  • Last Modified Date: 15 May 2018
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    Conjecture Corporation
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There are three things to consider when looking for the best nurse practitioner course: appropriate level, qualified instructors, and accreditation. Nurse practitioner course are available from both traditional universities and dedicated online schools. Nurse practitioner is a graduate-level program, designed to provide the training required for a nurse to become the primary medical resource. Depending on the state and local region, nurse practitioners perform many of the same functions as doctors, with the exception of surgery. They can diagnose and treat various ailments either in consultation with or independently of the physician.

The level of the nurse practitioner course is very important, as there are two types: certification and continuing education. For nurses who are studying to become a practitioner, the certification courses are appropriate. Nurse practitioners who have already graduated, but want to keep their skills fresh, should register for continuing education courses.

Read the course description carefully, and make sure that it provides the appropriate level of detail for your needs. Look for courses that are available part time or online. This flexibility will allow students to complete the coursework while working full time. When selecting a course from an online school, make sure that the course is accepted by your primary school.

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Nurse practitioner courses should be taught by qualified instructors who are experts in their field. The level of skill of the instructor has a huge impact on the depth of material that can be covered, as the instructor is responsible for writing the course notes, creating the recorded lectures, and facilitating discussions. Traditional schools offering online courses typically use the same instructors as their classroom courses. Read the biographies of the instructor with care, to make sure that you are corresponding with the instructor, and not a teaching assistant. A program at this level should have dedicated faculty available directly to students.

When reviewing nurse practitioner course options, it is important to ensure that the school is accredited. An accredited school has been reviewed by an independent agency to ensure minimum standards are met. If you decide to use an online school, verify the status of the school independently, to make sure that it is valid. If not, the cost and time spent on the class is wasted, as you will have to repeat the class from an accredited school to receive credit for it.

Check the online program description for information about system availability, communication methods, group projects, and tools for facilitating group discussion. Online courses should provide the same opportunities for interaction and discussion as would be available in a traditional program. All the technology required to do this is readily available and should be used to enhance the learning experience.

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