Resource Guide to LPN to RN Bridge Programs

Welcome to our site, LPNtoRNBridge.org, an online guide to nursing careers and degree programs. An LPN to RN bridge program can help any LPN quickly gain a bachelor’s degree and smoothly transition into a better paid career. If you’re interested in becoming an RN, click on the links below to learn more about the process. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

Popular LPN to RN Degree Programs

The LPN to RN program offered by Indiana State University has excellent curriculum that gives students the ability to further their education without requiring them to quit their day jobs. This program is created for nurses that have busy schedules by offering the program online giving greater flexibility than other more traditional programs. This online RN/BSN training program is the only one of its kind, and offers distance learning courses enabling nurses to earn their baccalaureate job without requiring a full time commitment.
The LPN/LVN to RN (ADN) program offers an exciting new way for nurses to earn their NLNAC accredited degree in half the time and cost of traditional programs with NO Campus Attendance. Nurses can earn their degree in 12-18 months with no waiting list and local clinicals. The College Network has worked with the National League for Nursing to develop and deliver these programs to assure they are up-to-date with current standards and regulations.

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What is an LPN to RN bridge program?

An LPN to RN Bridge is a special degree program for licensed practical nurses (LPN) who wish to obtain their registered nurse (RN) license. LPN education takes less time and money than an RN education, so it’s a practical solution for those who can’t afford or spend four years pursuing their baccalaureate degree. Many LPNs eventually want to make the jump into working as an RN, though, and an LPN to RN bridge program is ideal for students who wish to seek leadership positions and assume more responsibilities in their nursing careers. An online LPN to RN degree program makes it possible for students to continue their current nursing jobs while pursuing higher education. You can learn more about LPN to RN and other common bridge programs below:

If you are already working as an LPN, the advantage of studying online to become an RN is that you can get both education and practical experience simultaneously. If you keep your nursing job, but also go to school, you'll come out with a higher level of education, and more work-hours under your belt, both of which look great on a resume. With an RN license you can earn more money and qualify for advanced positions in the field. A study by the U.S. Bureau of Health Professions showed that by 2020 the U.S. nursing shortage will grow to more than 1.7 million. It shouldn't be hard to find a job as a nurse, but any extra education will provide a competitive advantage when you're seeking promotions or pay raises.

More schools now offer an LPN to RN bridge program due to the increased need for qualified nurses. There are a few program options available for an LPN to RN bridge including:

Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN): As a two to three year program that provides entry-level education requirements to practice as an RN, this is the most common initial nursing education. Graduates of an ADN program are eligible to take the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) and receive an RN license after passing the exam. An online LPN to RN program can take as little as 18 months to complete.

Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN): This is a four-year program that provides the basic level of education to practice as an RN. Curriculum for BSN degrees includes courses that aren’t available through an ADN program such as leadership and management, community health nursing, risk reduction, and disease management.  Graduates of BSN programs qualify for advanced positions with both higher pay and career benefits. BSN graduates can also pursue specialty certification which provides the educational foundation for jobs in healthcare administration and management.

What are the admissions requirements?

To enroll in an LPN to RN bridge program you must already be certified as an LPN or LVN (licensed vocational nurse). A high school diploma or GED is also required, and you must be currently employed or at least have had been employed as an LPN. Occasionally programs require an associate’s degree in nursing. Nursing program entrance exams, CPR certification, or a criminal background check is sometimes required for admissions to this program. Examples of nursing program entrance exams include:

Why should I enroll in an LPN to RN bridge program?

Many accredited universities offer LPN to RN online degree programs that are convenient for the working student. No classroom attendance requirements and the ability to learn at your own pace are a few of the benefits of attending an online LPN to RN bridge program. It's also a great time to become a registered nurse, due to the increased need for qualified healthcare professionals. The map below illustrates the areas with the highest employment level in this occupation:
Employment of Nurses BLS Graph

How do you know if an online LPN to RN degree bridge program is right for you? First, research different colleges and universities that offer this degree online and find a program that suits your needs. Some clarifying questions you should get answers for are as follows:

  • Is the program accredited?
  • How much does the program cost?
  • Do you require financial aid?
  • How long will the program take you?
  • How many classes will you need to complete?
  • When you need to log onto the internet for those classes?
  • How much flexibility is involved with the coursework?
  • Is the program progressive or traditional?
  • Will they accept credits from your LPN training?
  • Are clinical hours required?

An online program might be an option worth considering. Distance learning allows you to attend classes when it's most convenient for you. Most classes provide a detailed syllabus at the start of the course. Courses are typically set-up so you can post questions or comments to other students and professors. Assignments are sent by email or by course management software such as Blackboard. If you are considering earning your RN license after working as an LPN, you are well on your way to a lifelong career in nursing, and it may benefit you to start planning your educational and career moves for the next five to ten years. When researching LPN to RN bridge programs, in can be useful to ask about further advancement options, to see whether the school you attend can provide any extra help in subsequent legs of your journey toward the top of the nursing field.

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