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How to become a Licensed Practical Nurse

Training to become an LPN does not require a bachelor's degree, but it does require an education beyond high school. Most licensed practical nurse programs last 12 to 24 months and include both classroom training as well as clinical training. They are most often run at technical or community colleges. The coursework to become an LPN includes nursing fundamentals, nursing math, pediatric and geriatric nursing, surgical nursing, anatomy, physiology and nutrition. After completing that coursework, you also need to pass the National Council Licensure Examination through the National Council of State Boards of Nursing.

How to become: Registered Nurse - Operating Room · Registered Nurse · Nurse · Registered Nurse - Medical/Surgical · Licensed Vocational Nurse
These qualifications are required: NRCMA · ACLS Certification · RMA
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What skills help Licensed Practical Nurses find jobs?

  • Acute care
  • Blood sampling
  • Care plans
  • Communication skills
  • Computer literacy
  • Computer skills
  • Customer service
  • Data collection
  • Data entry
  • Discharge planning
  • Documentation review
  • EMR systems
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Career progression for Licensed Practical Nurse

Education levels for Licensed Practical Nurses

Based on the requirements of Licensed Practical Nurse job openings on Indeed in the United States within the last three years.
required level of educationpercent of job openings
High school diploma or GED47.2%
Associate's degree40.0%
Bachelor's degree11.3%
Master's degree1.4%
Doctoral degree0.2%
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Expected salary by experience

Based on resume data from Indeed users who reported working as a Licensed Practical Nurse in the United States within the last three years.
Years of experienceAnnual salary in USD
0 - 4$41,400
4 - 8$42,000
8 - 12$42,800
12 - 16$43,100
16 - 20$43,700
20 - 24$42,400
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Common qualifications for Licensed Practical Nurses

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Common questions about career advices for a Licensed Practical Nurse

How long does it take to go from a licensed practical nursing (LPN) to a registered nurse (RN)?

It typically takes about two years to go from a licensed practical nursing (LPN) to a registered nurse (RN). LPN-to-RN bridge programs are designed specifically for LPNs to further their education and career path.

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Would it be necessary to bring nursing certificates to a licensed practical nurse (LPN) interview?

It is usually not necessary but bringing copies of nursing licenses, resumes and certifications to a licensed practical nurse (LPN) interview can show the interviewer that you are prepared and well-organized.

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How long is a typical licensed practical nurse (LPN) program?

The length of time it takes to become a licensed practical nurse (LPN) can vary. Some training programs can be as short as seven months while others can be twenty-four months.

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Is it better to become a licensed practical nurse (LPN) before registered nurse (RN)?

What are the educational requirements for becoming a licensed practical nurse (LPN)?

Can licensed practical nurses (LPNs) get certifications?

Is being a licensed practical nurse (LPN) worth it?

Can licensed practical nurses (LPNs) take the NCLEX-PN test without attending any school or program?

Can licensed practical nurses (LPNs) get a degree online?

What qualities and skills should a licensed practical nurse (LPN) have?

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Licensed Practical Nurse