Graduated as an RN now want to be an LPN.


I graduated as an ADN I never did go for the license I worked with the provisional license for a year. I was overwhelmed by the responsibility this position had and left nursing until now. I want to go back but as an LPN. Has anyone felt this way. Or am I the only one. :banghead:

Jules A, MSN

8,863 Posts

Specializes in Family Nurse Practitioner.

You want to start over? Perhaps there are other RN positions that you could try that wouldn't be so overwhelming if you are able to get your license. Truth is I didn't feel that being a LPN at my current job was any less stressful than being a RN.


40 Posts

Specializes in Med/Surg. Has 4 years experience.

What would be the purpose of giving up that extra pay? LPNs and RNs both carry a huge amount of responsibility. Don't sell yourself short. You earned your RN, use it.


75 Posts

Specializes in,mental health,geriatrics. Has 25 years experience.

Hang in there. I was an LPN first, then went back for my RN. I felt the same way for awhile. It's a little scary. It doesn't help that hospitals and other settings tend to push RN's into charge roles or even management before they're ready, and they give you little choice about it. They tend to have little sympathy for those of us who really want to do hands-on patient care. Yes, the work that RN's and LPN's do is similar. But some of us really don't like management or even charge nurse roles. We want to work with patients. That's what made me want my LPN role back. But I finally got used to it. My advice to you, besides hanging in there, is that when the pressure's on to take a charge or management role, if you don't want it- don't let them push you into it. It's hard to get out of once you take it.


38,333 Posts

The jobs that I have held don't have responsibilities substantially different for LPN versus RN. Both do essentially the same thing, except the RN signs RN after their name on the paperwork and gets paid more. Don't sell yourself short on pay just to do pretty much the same thing. Furthermore, since you hold an RN license, you will be held to the RN standard of practice even if you work as an LPN with an LPN license. Same amount of worry, with higher stakes and less pay. How can this make sense to you?

You should inquire with the Board as to whether the provisional license/license/graduation from RN school will be held against you. You might find that you can not even obtain an LPN license, depending upon which state you are in (like NY).

diane227, LPN, RN

1,941 Posts

Specializes in Management, Emergency, Psych, Med Surg. Has 32 years experience.

Why? Perhaps you need more experience or orientation in order to feel comfortable. Get and keep your RN.

Home Health Columnist / Guide


11 Articles; 17,846 Posts

Specializes in Vents, Telemetry, Home Care, Home infusion. Has 46 years experience.

please visit our first year after nursing licensure forum.

you are not alone in being overwhelmed that first year. in many states, there is minimal diference in lpn and rn roles. best advice: go back to your school of nursing and ask for guidance from trusted instructor to help sort though your options. they want to make sure their graduates succeed.

jjjoy, LPN

2,801 Posts

Where are you? I've never heard of anyone being able to work on a provisional license for a year. I've heard of working on an interim permit between graduating from school and passing the licensing exam, but that's only good for a limited time. Just curious!

Anyway, it sounds like you currently don't have a license and would have to take the licensing exam to get re-licensed. You'll need to check with your state about what you'd need to do to take the licensing exam. If you've been out of school for some time, you may need to take a refresher course with a clinical component. Or not. Policies can vary from state to state.

In my state, having graduated from an RN program qualifies you to take the RN licensing exam and not the LPN licensing exam. And if job description specifies "LPN" then they can't give the job to an RN. It doesn't make a whole lotta sense to me. If LPN knowledge and scope of practice is subset of RN, why not? But I don't make the rules.

It can be frustrating if you're an RN and see a *specific* job opportunity that appeals to you that is limited to LPNs. On the whole, though, as you see from the responses here, there's not always a whole lotta difference in the degree of responsibility between LPN and RN. So having an LPN license versus RN license wouldn't necessarily solve the dilemma of feeling overwhelmed by responsibility.

Is there a specific LPN role that you see in your area that you'd like to have that makes you think that you'd rather have the LPN license than the RN license?

For example, I inquired about working at local hospice. I wanted work there because unlike most places, they had great staffing ratios. But they would only hire RNs as shift managers, being the sole RN on shift and ultimately responsible for all the patients on the unit. They used LPNs to provide the direct patient care. I didn't feel I was prepared to take on the shift manager position and I would've been game to work in the direct care role for the same wage as the LPNs. But they said that they couldn't hire me to that role because I didn't have the right license for. I would've had to get the direct patient care experience somewhere else in order to get a job there as an RN. So I hear your frustration about LPN vs RN licensure!


2 Posts

jjjoy Thank you and everyone with your replies.:) You asked where I live well I live here in Puerto Rico. Here as I see mostly RN's have to take the shift position. I have seen RN's in hospitals have about 20+ patients on a shift. If your lucky you might have 2 RN's on the same floor at least that's what I had seen a couple of years back. I'm not sure if things have changed now. I apologize if I'm wrong.

Thank you all again for your replies.

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