Online LPN Programs, Classes & Training
Learn how you can empower your future as a Licensed Practical Nurse
Thanks for visiting GoLPNOnline.com, one of the best resources on the internet for LPN information. You’ll find lots of great information on this site, including some details about where you might be able to find traditional in-classroom LPN classes (listed at the end of each state page), online LPN programs, a salary page, a blog packed with great information, and much more! The goal of this site is this site is to provide quality information for people in all stages of interest in the field of practical nursing. With that said, keep reading to learn more about what an LPN is, what they do, and other information about the field.
It's 2020 and online LPN programs are in high demand! Training that used to be confined to the classroom is now offered in hybrid online and traditional models from many schools. If you're looking for an LPN program near you that offers the option of online classes.
Are you a caring individual who is looking for an exciting medical career as a License Practical Nurse, or LPN? If you’ve thought about pursuing this engaging career path and are in the process of looking for more information about LPN courses and what the job entails, you’ve come to the right place. This website was designed to aid people like you who are considering the options of licensing in the field of practical nursing. On this site you can research LPN programs, coursework, online options, requirements, testing, continuing education, and much more.
Find LPN Programs Near Me
Select Your State for Local LPN Information
LPN Medical Training Overview
Preparing you for a future in healthcare
What Does LPN Stand For?LPN stands for Licensed Practical Nurse. LPNs are nurses who are licensed by the state they live in and they work with patients just like many other types of nurses. However, LPNs are different from RNs or Registered Nurses. They are licensed to work with patients, but don’t have the same depth of education that RNs have, so they usually don’t perform the same range of duties. LPNs also don’t work in all the places that RNs work, although there is some overlap between the two. LPNs often help patients with daily living tasks and provide supportive care under the supervision of an RN, doctor, or another member of the medical staff.
An LPN is just a step under a Registered Nurse. Training and course work is less than it is for Registered Nurses, but more extensive than CNA training. Starting on the path to becoming a Licensed Practical Nurse is as easy as being accepted into a course program for LPN classes. Unlike becoming a full RN, there are no prerequisite college courses needed before applying for an LPN program. Prospective LPN students need to have completed high school, need to be US citizens, and if English is not your first language, need to take and provide passing scores for the TOEFL (Test of English as a foreign language). Some programs also require background checks. Competitive pay and short training time are huge draws to people looking into LPN training.
Some LPNs go on to become fully Registered Nurses, which takes quite a bit more schooling and time, but also comes with more responsibility and higher pay. However, many stay at the LPN level since there is less responsibility and therefore less stress. LPNs perform duties such as administering medication, checking vital signs of patients, cleaning and managing equipment and instruments, as well as giving out meals. All of the duties an LPN performs are done under the supervision of RNs and other medical professionals. The training an LPN receives can be applied towards other medical training (such as full nursing school), so the time in the program is worthwhile even for those with goals to go further in their medical training.
LPN programs typically take around a year to complete. Many are offered at community or technical colleges, though some programs are also offered online. The first place to look would be at schools which are in close proximity to you. Once a person completes the course work to become an LPN, they must then complete and pass the National Council Licensure exam (this is the test which all LPNs must take no matter what the state requirements are for course work). Once the course work and exam are passed, a person is licensed to work; however, there are also clinical hours which are required as part of the LPN program. Those wanting to become LPNs must complete an internship or hours of training on site, having to put in unpaid hours in order to acquire the necessary experience to be hired on as a full-time employee. LPN jobs are available in hospitals, private practices, in-home care situation, and other medical facilities. There is a lot more supervision in hospital or clinic settings, whereas working in home care LPNs are often on their own.
Where do LPNs Work?
LPNs often work in nursing homes, hospitals, private care facilities, in home care settings, and in residential care facilities. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, these settings make up about 80% of the settings where LPNs work. The other 20% could be a variety of things such as correctional facilities, treatment centers, and other places where people need medical care.
Registered Nurses may work in a variety of places where LPNs can’t work such as surgical rooms, and other places that require a higher level of education. This doesn’t mean that LPNs aren’t extremely valuable to a medical team, because they definitely are—it just means that among nurses, there are different levels of schooling and different specialties that people may choose to pursue based on their interests. Some people may be drawn more to one path in nursing, while others may prefer another path.
Common LPN Tasks
LPNs have a wide range of tasks that they perform from things that are more closely focused on patient care, to things that are more focused on administrative duties. Let’s look closer at some of the different things that LPNs do while working with patients, and also some of the administrative tasks that they may do.
LPNs may work with a variety of patients, and what they do in the setting where they work may depend heavily on the needs of their patients. Take for instance an LPN who works in a hospital; they may be doing a lot more tasks related to wound care because so many people are in the hospital because they need surgery or because they are injured. LPNs who work in a nursing home may do more tasks related to helping patients with daily living skills because many patients in a nursing home are there because they are unable to care for themselves, and not necessarily because they are injured, so the setting where an LPN works in important to consider when thinking about the tasks or job duties that they may have.
LPNs may commonly be found caring for wounds, helping patients who can’t move on their own get from one place to another, taking medical measurements and recording patient data (blood pressure, body temperature, etc.), and other supportive tasks such as changing bed sheets, helping dress patients, giving them medication (in some states), helping patients with meal preparation or eating, and guiding patients to treatment rooms. LPNs may also perform administrative tasks such as working with computers, ordering supplies, and working with other members of the medical staff to coordinate care.
Completing the NCLEX Exam & Clinical Hours
Exploring online degree programs for LPNs
After LPN course work is complete, the next step is to take the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX). The NCLEX test covers different areas of needs to assess the test taker’s knowledge in the realm of safe and effective care. These include such items as management care and safety and infection control, psychological integrity (which include items such as coping and psychosocial adaptation), health promotion and maintenance (which covers questions on growth and development), and disease detection and prevention. Finally, the NCLEX also covers physiology integrity, with questions on basic patient care and comfort, pharmacological and parenteral therapies, reduction of risk potential, and physiological adaptation. The LPN program course work should adequately prepare a student for the NCLEX exam, although studying is also necessary. There are practice tests available online, and it is highly recommended to take advantage of such reviewing opportunities. It is not recommended to go into the test without having studied prior to the exam.
Clinical hours, which are hours of training in a clinical setting under the supervision of certified nurses, are also required as part of an LPN program. These are critical training hours where everything that you learned during course work is put to use in a real-life medical setting. Often the school where the program is being completed will help set up the clinical observation hours. The number of hours which need to be completed will depend on the state you live in and also the program you are enrolled in. These hours need to be documented and signed off by your supervising nurse or clinical staff, and are required in order to complete the entire LPN program and to be certified to be working as a paid LPN. It is because of these local in-person requirements that it is strongly recommended that you select an LPN program near you.
Online Options for Licensed LPN Training
Exploring online degree programs for LPNs
Although some of the course work can be completed online, not all of the LPN work can be done this way. Clinical hours, for one, cannot be completed online. Many schools these days offer what is known as hybrid programs. Many schools offer some LPN courses online, which allows for more flexibility, especially for people who are working and trying to complete a program at the same time.
It is important to be very skeptical of courses that claim to be complete LPN programs online. It is difficult to complete an LPN program on the internet alone, as the program has such a heavy emphasis on clinical hours. In addition, if the online LPN program is not offered by a school in close proximity to you, they probably don’t have the existing relationships with hospitals and clinics to set up clinical hours (most local colleges that offer LPN programs have these existing partnerships). This means having to set up clinical hours independently, as well as having to verify course accreditation through the state you live in to make sure the course work is even an acceptable means of LPN programming.
If you are looking for an online LPN program, a good place to start would be looking for a school that is close to you to see if they offer some courses online. This will allow you to be sure of the validity of the online course work; it would also allow you to work directly with professors and staff at the school when needed. The school will be a large help to an LPN student when looking to set up clinical hours and also when preparing to sign up for and take the NCLEX exam for LPN licensing. The good news is that many colleges and technical schools offer online course options as part of their programs. This allows for flexibility in our fast paced culture. Check with local colleges or technical schools to see how much of the LPN program course work is available as online classes.
While some LPN programs offer online flexibility, there is also a benefit to having to complete courses in person. Building relationships with other classmates and teaching staff is part of the LPN program experience. Also, the huge emphasis on clinical hours is a great benefit to LPN training. This means that licensed LPNs have already had a lot of hands-on experience once they begin working in the field, which means that the skills they are required to do have been polished in a medical setting.
The Benefits of Online LPN Classes
Find an LPN program with a flexible format that accommodates your lifestyle
There are many LPN programs that offer flexible course options. Many of these programs do require some of the classes, as well as clinical hours, to be completed in person; therefore, it is impossible to do the complete LPN program online. If you are looking for the flexibility of taking the bulk of your LPN classes online rather than in person, you will need to do a bit of investigative work before applying to a program. The best option is to check with local colleges, technical schools or community colleges to see if they offer LPN programs and to ask if some of the LPN classes can be done in an online format. The good news is that more and more colleges are offering classes online in addition to those they offer on site.
The major benefit of doing online LPN classes is the flexibility of timing. Many people are working as they go to school and need their class work to fit around their job schedule. Online courses allow a person to complete the work within a period of time but do not regulate when a person does their studying or completes the components that go along with the online course. This means that a person could work their regular schedule and complete their course work when it is convenient for them to do so. It is important to note that there are still due dates for assignments and tests to be completed. Online LPN classes are primarily self-regulated but do also follow a specific timeline. Once you have found a program in your area that does offer the classes for LPN training to be completed online, you can apply and once accepted, begin to work on the classes according to the school timeline. There may be some classes that are not offered online and these you would need to work your schedule around in order to complete. More and more schools are trying to meet the needs of the working student, LPN courses included.
LPN vs RN: What Makes Them Different?
Although this topic is covered on the LPN to RN page of this site, we’ll briefly touch on it here. LPNs and RNs are similar in that they are both nurses, however, there’s a big difference in their level of education and the different things that they are allowed to do.
An LPN (Licensed Practical Nurse) typically undergoes a shorter length of education than a Registered Nurse (RN). Generally speaking, RNs need to attend at least two years of school (often times at a local community college) in order to take the NCLEX-RN exam, as well as satisfy a few other certification requirements with specifics depending upon the state where they live. LPNs have to do similar things, but generally speaking, the requirements are not a rigorous.
In terms of their job duties, LPNs are generally more limited in what they’re allowed to do where RNs are generally more able to do a variety of things. RNs are also able to specialize in certain fields such as cardiac nursing, geriatric nursing, etc., where LPNs are not usually able to specialize. For more information on moving from an LPN to RN, check out the LPN to RN page on this site for some information about the basic process of transitioning from LPN to RN.
Finding LPN Schools
You can also contact the Board of Nursing in your state (or whichever department is similar to the board of nursing as it may not have that exact name where you live) to get a list of approved LPN programs and then use that list reach out to schools for information so you can decide what’s best for you.
Further Reading and Learning
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the field of Licensed Practical Nursing is expected to grow at a rate 25% from 2012 to 2022, which they rate as “much faster than average.” While this never guarantees any type of job or job placement, it does indicate that Licensed Practical Nursing is a growing field with good potential.
This site has a tremendous amount of great information from the state pages, to the salary page, to the blog, and more, so please feel free to look around and take in everything that has been authored here. Hopefully after spending some time on this site you’ll know more about the profession and various aspects of practical nursing. Thanks for visiting!
Find LPN Programs Near Me
Select Your State for Local LPN Information