LVN vs. ADN

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by jupiter101 (New) New Pre-Student

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NurseSpeedy, ADN, LPN, RN

Has 20 years experience. 1,597 Posts

On 11/15/2021 at 9:43 PM, jupiter101 said:

What's the difference in curriculum between an LVN program and ADN?

I’d be more focused on what your employment opportunities are after graduation. LPNs that their own exam. RNs take theirs. The RN program will be a higher level of education. I got my LPN then bridged over to my RN almost 15 years later….so I thought my full time LPN program with a test almost every other day was more intense, but I had a lot of experience under my belt before I bridged over. Then I took a full time RN bridge program but I did my prerequisites all ahead of time so all I had was nursing courses. I was in a fast paced program (12 months) but I found the transition easier because I had the initial foundation. Even with a family and nursing job at the same time. I did what I had to do to get the job I wanted at the time. I still hold both licenses. 
 

Talk to a college advisor. Also, make sure the program is accredited so if you want to advance later on-you can do so and not have to start over.

I’m getting ready to finish my LPN program in December… and it’s not that easy! I still feel like we learn everything just condensed and maybe not getting into the nitty gritty of the physiology of everything. Honestly, if I had my pre reqs done, I would’ve done the ADN. 
In my area they are starting to hire LPNs in the hospitals again, I recently received a job offer as a new grad on a telemetry unit at one of our area hospitals- and I will say- I will be doing the exact same thing as the RN except IV push… and she’ll be making a good bit more than me. 
 

toomuchbaloney

Has 44 years experience. 7,913 Posts

Does the ADN program have the option to license and work as a LVN after completion of certain course and clinical work? 

Mommash, LPN

6 Posts

I am bridging into RN this Spring and have heard the RN transition can be easier. The LPN program I did was an AA degree and is considered the 1st year of ADN school. It's tough, stressful, and demanding. I've talked to many nurses and every single one said LPN was more intense. In the bridge you're building upon the foundation. Basically you're going deeper into patho, meds, and more into acute care. Sorry I can't be more helpful but I recommend looking at jobs in your area to see if LPNs are marketable. 

111th, ADN, LPN

Specializes in Emergency. Has 9 years experience. 49 Posts

I went through an 11-month LPN program and then through an 18-month LPN-RN bridge program 2 years later.

I thought the LPN program was harder. The NCLEX-PN was much harder than the NCLEX-RN. I suppose I had experience to add by the time I went through the bridge program, but the LPN program was so condensed and quick and stressful. Many 2-year ADN programs will let you sit for the NCLEX-PN after the first year so I don’t really think it’s less physiology or anything of that nature. I don’t think I learned anything new in the bridge program, maybe just a little deeper into it?

Although I’m grateful for the experience I received as an LPN, I wouldn’t recommend going that route unless you have to. For me, I was newly married and young and needed to start making more money ASAP. I was also nervous I wouldn’t get into an RN program as I lived in a very competitive area.  It was the correct route for me at the time, but it was much more time consuming and expensive to do LPN and then the bridge vs straight RN. LPNs make significantly less money and have an eighth of the job opportunities that RNs have.

Olivelove20

Specializes in Adult. 41 Posts

The primary difference between an LVN and an RN is that the former requires a less formal program. An LPN performs specific medical duties but is not given the same responsibilities as an RN. 

londonflo

Specializes in oncology. Has 45 years experience. 1,673 Posts

On 11/18/2021 at 7:03 PM, MomWifeNurseStudent said:

I will be doing the exact same thing as the RN except IV push… and she’ll be making a good bit more than me. 
 

Using your hands for a skill, is quite different than assessing the situation, intervening and evaluating the result of the action and being able to defend EVERY action. Please continue on with your education and you will learn the difference. 

NurseSpeedy, ADN, LPN, RN

Has 20 years experience. 1,597 Posts

On 11/18/2021 at 9:06 PM, toomuchbaloney said:

Does the ADN program have the option to license and work as a LVN after completion of certain course and clinical work? 

Yes, in most cases I think there is. however you are still in school for your RN and not too far from graduating by the time you qualify. So you have to get your school records to apply, pay for the application, wearing fir approval, pay for the exam, and then wait for your test date, prep for your test and then have your license and get a job. Most states you know if you passed within days. However by then you are usually very close to graduating your RN program so is the added stress and money worth it while you still need to do well and pass your RN boards?

 IDK. To each is own. I bridged so many years later and the original intent was to get the LPN and immediately begin the bridge to ADN program. At that time there were wait lists for programs based on time on the list, not GPA. The wait list was 3 years after pre-reps for the general program or immediately after pre-reqs for the bridge. I thought I was getting done faster. I was also 18 and not well experienced in LIFE.

LIFE happened. Found out starting a new job as a new nurse was hard for 40 hours a week plus going to school for the pre-requisites. I didn’t have time to take on a full course load and ended up dropping some classes because it was too much with the new job. Then I met my husband, was told there may not be be an online option for theory if there were t enough students signed up (online was very ‘new’ back then), and didn’t want to have to cut my income to go to class instead of work on some days (I couldn’t do nights-bless those who can). So I declined signing up after accepted. Fast forward about 15 years-I was finally finishing the program. If you want the RN, I would recommend just getting it. If you are okay with possibly slowly (and more cost) then consider a bridge later. The type of license will offer dictate the type of work you can do, and some are now wanting higher level degrees on top of the ADN to hire as an RN.

toomuchbaloney

Has 44 years experience. 7,913 Posts

I've worked with very many RN'S who worked as LPNs after the first year of their ADN. 

 

111th, ADN, LPN

Specializes in Emergency. Has 9 years experience. 49 Posts

2 hours ago, londonflo said:

Using your hands for a skill, is quite different than assessing the situation, intervening and evaluating the result of the action and being able to defend EVERY action. Please continue on with your education and you will learn the difference. 

Yes, as someone who worked as an LPN before RN, you don’t know what’s different until you know.

You cannot give IVP medications, often cannot hang the first IVPB, cannot give blood products, and at least in my state, cannot assess. You will likely be working under the supervision of an RN who also takes some responsibility of your patients.

jupiter101

9 Posts

thanks all for the posts. What's the difference in curriclum though between LPN courses and RN courses?