How to Become a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN)

How to Become a Licensed Practical Nurse

The amount of schooling required to become a licensed practical nurse (LPN) falls in between the amount needed for a certified nurse assistant (CNA) and for a registered nurse (RN).

A high school degree is usually required, and there may also be a few prerequisite courses required before a student can enroll in an LPN program.

In order to become a licensed practical nurse, the student must complete a state-approved nursing program (ranging from 7 to 24 months) and then pass a licensing examination, the NCLEX-PN. Courses can be taken in junior colleges and career schools, and occasionally in hospitals.

Typical subjects covered in a licensed practical nurse program include:

  • Anatomy
  • Physiology
  • Medical-surgical nursing
  • Pediatrics
  • Obstetrics
  • Psychiatric nursing
  • Administering drugs
  • Nutrition
  • First aid

Some LPNs eventually choose to become registered nurses, which requires further education.