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Nurse Beth Nurse Beth, MSN (Advice Column) Writer Innovator Expert Nurse Verified

Wants to Take LPN Boards While in RN Program

Nurse Beth   (530 Views 3 Comments)
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Dear Nurse Beth

I'm a nursing student finishing my pre-requisites next semester. I want to take LPN courses on my semester in nursing school while in registered nursing program. My question is how viable that option is? Which courses can I take for LPN?

Dear Nursing Student,

Congrats on finishing up your pre-requisites for the nursing program.

Getting your LPN is a separate nursing program, not only courses. It includes clinical rotations. Some states consider the first two semesters of an RN program as equivalent to LPN training, but you will have to check with your state board for eligibility to sit LPN boards.

I would just concentrate on doing well in the RN program once you get started. Nursing school is full time and for most students, takes all your energy.

There is not much to be gained by dividing your interests and pursuing an LPN while in RN school. Consider working as a PCT or CNA during school breaks or on weekends to gain exposure and also to network.

Best wishes,

Nurse Beth

Author, "Your Last Nursing Class: How to Land Your First Nursing Job"...and your next!

Edited by Nurse Beth

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It depends on your state. In CA it's possible to challenge the boards while in the RN program if you have pharmacology and have comepleted one year of nursing. However, you need to have had 6 weeks of peds/ob, and psych nursing. Call your state's board to find out what your options are.

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Depending on the program you attend and the state you are in it might be an option built in to the RN curriculum. Where I live the ADN nursing programs have their curriculum designed in a way that allows students to take the LPN NCLEX after the first year of nursing courses are complete. I live in a border town so I know the option exists in both MN and WI. If that's a possibility where you go to school, great! It allows you to work as a nurse while going to school and gives you valuable experience in taking that dreaded NCLEX so when the time comes to test as a graduate RN you've already been through it once so it's a lot less scary! If your program didn't specifically advertise this as an option check with your advisor at school to see if you can do this or not.

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