Earn A Nursing License By Enrolling in LPN Nursing Programs

LPN nursing programs offer students a good opportunity to enter the nursing profession in the shortest possible time. Generally, LPN programs last from 12 to 15 months including all classroom and clinical course work. This is the advantage of this program over all other licensed nurses. They can work and earn more quickly than the ADN and BSN nurses. The downside is that they usually earn less than their

A licensed practical nurse (LPN) is also called a licensed vocational nurse (LVN) in some states. Regardless of designation, LPNs must pass the NCLEX-PN exam administered by their state boards of nursing to earn their nursing license. LPN nursing programs are provided by vocational schools, community colleges, health care agencies, and a few hospitals. These institutions require different requirements for entry but usually ask for a high school diploma, medical clearance, basic life support certification, and certain prerequisites.

The curriculum of LPN programs is compressed in such a way that roughly half of the schooling is done in the classroom setting and the other half in the clinical environment. The typical subjects included in this program are anatomy, microbiology, fundamental nursing skills, microbiology, and adult health. Students develop a solid grounding of the concepts behind nursing. LPN programs teach students to focus more on bedside nursing skills rather than intermediate and high-level nursing functions performed by registered nurses. They get to utilize these practical skills as soon as they graduate after a year or so.

Much like certified nursing assistants (CNAs), LPNs can perform routine, non-invasive tasks such as grooming, ambulation, and hygiene. They also monitor and document vital signs, feed patients and collect urine or blood samples. But unlike nursing assistants, LPN nurses are also trained to perform more invasive work like inserting catheters, changing dressings, and giving oral or injectable medications.

Successfully passing the NCLEX-PN exam will allow the student to practice as an LPN in structured settings like hospitals and nursing homes. LPNs also work in less traditional settings such as home health care and rehabilitation facilities. In all settings, most LPNs are considered a valuable member of the health care team. They supervise CNAs and perform tasks delegated to them by registered nurses. Their bedside skills are an asset to the nursing team who depend on them and nursing assistants to complete more routine, repetitive tasks.

Schools will continue to provide LPN nursing programs in the foreseeable future as more nurses with adept bedside skills are needed to care for a growing, aging population. LPNs are found in most practice settings including hospitals but have been increasingly more active in nursing homes and home health care.

The LPN career is promising in itself and is projected to grow in the next ten years. However, nurses who want to earn more and develop professionally should enroll in programs such as an LPN-to-BSN or LPN-to-RN program. These programs give LPNs the opportunity to shoulder more responsibilities and adopt a more holistic view of patient care which was introduced to them by LPN nursing programs.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

angela maximovich December 2, 2010 at 12:53 pm

I am currently enrolled at Cuyahoge Community College. I have most of my prerequisites completed and being a single mother of three, am looking for a program that will not only offer me a quality education, but also a much shorter if none at all, waiting list. Ive been an aide for almost 14 years and love the medical field. Im older now, and know that being an aide is not something that my body will be able to endure forever. Can you please assist me in getting my future in nursing started on the right path.


Admin December 6, 2010 at 12:24 pm

Hey Angela,

Unfortunately, waiting lists are hard to avoid these days regardless of what program you might consider. I wrote an article a while back that provides some ideas on how to possibly get around the waiting lists. You can read that article here (click on the link):

Nursing School Waiting Lists

Good luck!


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