ACLS/PALS Certifcation

  1. Currently I am a nursing student pursuing my associates degree. I want to be a CRNA. Ive looked into the requirements for a local college that offers a CRNA program, and they said you need ACLS/PALS certification. Ive been looking online for classes/information about that. I know what the certification is for, I just don't know what the test itself is comprised of. Ive read conflicting/non-inclusive information depending on what site I looked at.

    I have a couple questions- Do I need to be an RN to take the classes/certification? I read on one website that I need to be signed off on my clinical skills on a real patient, but I don't know if I can do that since I am a student.

    What did your certification consist of?
    Last edit by kimmie518 on Feb 18, '07
  2. Visit kimmie518 profile page

    About kimmie518

    Joined: Oct '06; Posts: 101; Likes: 10

    8 Comments

  3. by   HappyNurse2005
    my certification for acls was 2 days of classes, then a test. It was offered thru my hospital, and was required for my previous position.
    I dont know if you can do it as a student. I dont think it would be a really good idea as a student, b/c you can't implement a good deal of whatyou learn (meds), plus, without the practice of these situations, you will forget them.
    If i remember right, dont you have to have been a RN for a while, and have ICU experience to go to CRNA school? wait til you are a RN to take the classes-your hospital might even pay for them that way.
  4. by   podell
    Hi-
    I live in NH and I know that ACLS instructors arent RNS we have alot of docs paramedics and intermiditates. I think the biggest thing is taking the class which is usually two days each but it may vary from state to state.
  5. by   anne74
    Usually people become ACLS/PALS certified after they've become an RN. It's usually a 2-day-ish program that your hospital pays for. You have enough to worry about just getting through nursing school - don't try to rush into extra programs.

    Also too, I would first focus on getting some experience as an RN before even thinking about requirements for becomming a CRNA. Even when you're done with RN school, there is SOOOO much to learn on the job. I've been working as an RN (BSN) for 8 months now, and I'm so overwhelmed with learning the basics, I'm not even considering which advanced degree I'm going for, for at least 2 years.

    And I'm not sure - but don't you need a BSN before going for an advanced nursing degree?

    I know the paycheck sounds nice, but CRNA's have a tremendous amount of responsibility - basically that of an anesthesiologist who have years, years of training. You simply need some to time to be confronted with different scenarios, experiences before you can be competent. It's good to know what requirements you need to get to your destination, but take it slow and master the basics first. Good luck to you!
  6. by   kimmie518
    Well every person is different. I'm a pretty fast learner, I know my course work, I know my theories. I dont mean to brag about myself but my clinical instructor told me to drop out of nursing and go to medical school instead. Im confident in my skills and problem solving.


    I plan on getting my BSN right after my assocates, and then attend graduate school. My plan is to be completed with all my formal schooling within 5 years. To achieve this, I need to have a position in a Critical Care area for atleast 2 years. To get a position like this out of college, I thought I could increase my chances by becoming ACLS/PALS certified before hand.
  7. by   HappyNurse2005
    Well every person is different. I'm a pretty fast learner, I know my course work, I know my theories. I dont mean to brag about myself but my clinical instructor told me to drop out of nursing and go to medical school instead. Im confident in my skills and problem solving.


    I plan on getting my BSN right after my assocates, and then attend graduate school. My plan is to be completed with all my formal schooling within 5 years. To achieve this, I need to have a position in a Critical Care area for atleast 2 years. To get a position like this out of college, I thought I could increase my chances by becoming ACLS/PALS certified before hand.
    how are you going to get all your college done in 5 years, including grad school, and also work in critical care for 2 years? would you be doing that while going to school?

    many icu's hire right out of school. they also will pay you to take pals/acls as necessary.

    your attitude won't get you far though. you have an air of superiority, which will not bode well as a new nurse.

    good luck in whatever you choose!
  8. by   cardiacRN2006
    You can be anything you want to take ACLS. When I was a tech, my hospital was thinking about making all the PCTs take it. I just recently took it and it was a breeze. It was only one day long. From what I hear, they have really simplified the algorithms. I can't comment on PALS.

    My second semester Clinical instructor told me that I should be in med school also -and so have a few doctors at work who are very suprised when I tell them I'm new. That doesn't make me 'superior' and nor does it make you that way. If you know your stuff then you know your stuff. To me, you seem focused and driven. There's nothing wrong with that, and it will probably be beneficial towards achieving your dream. Why is it nobody asks med students to work for a while before deciding if they really want to be a doctor? If you want to be a CRNA, then be a CRNA.

    Good Luck.
  9. by   pcicurn7
    From what i understand, most CRNA programs require a BSN and at least 1 year of acute care experience. ACLS and PALS, if i remember correctly, can be VERY expensive to take. Most hospitals will pay for it if they require it for your line of work.

    When i first started nursing school, i had this urge to complete everything as quickly as possible so that i could be ahead of the game....I too inquired to see if i could take the ACLS or PALS as a nursing student. But you know what? I am so glad that i didnt, because there is much that one needs to know before going into those classes. You may think you know lots right now, but, frankly, you dont. There is no amount schooling that can prepare you for the "real" world.
  10. by   luckylucyrn
    With ACLS and PALS, a lot of the interventions would require an advanced license anyway, such as paramedic, emt-iv, RN, or MD. There's no point in getting it before graduation. Not to say you couldn't pass it, the tests for both are pretty easy.

close