For many individuals starting out in the health care field becoming a LVN (licensed vocational nurse) provides a great opportunity to quickly enter the nursing field and find an entry-level position at a local health care facility, however because the LVN program offers only a beginners level education in the field of nursing LVN’s sometimes find themselves having trouble finding opportunities to advance their career due to their lack of knowledge.
LVN’s that are interested in increasing their salary and LVN’s that want more career opportunities will do best going back to school and earning their degree in registered nursing.
Luckily there are options available to LVN’s that will make transitioning into their nursing program quick and fluid.
The LVN to RN programs which may be offered at certain colleges and universities give licensed vocational nurses the opportunity to take additional nursing courses and earn their registered nurse license in less time than it would normally take a student to become a registered nurse.
The two most common LVN to RN programs colleges offer students include the ASN and BSN degrees.
Depending on the college or university that offers the transition program LVN’s may be able to apply as much as 1 year worth credits towards the LVN to RN program.
Those who decide to enter the program may have to take a 1 credit transition course, so that they can make the transition as seamless as possible.
LVN’s may also be required to take a number of prerequisite courses before being given entry into the LVN to RN program.
Each college varies in terms what requirements are needed in order to get accepted into the program.
The most commonly required prerequisites for those wanting to enter the nursing program include:
- Anatomy & Physiology I & II
- Intro to Psychology or Psychology 101
- Intro to Sociology or Sociology 101
- English 101
The best way to figure out which requirements are necessary to get into program is to speak with the guidance counselor at the college or university you are thinking of applying to and ask them what prerequisite courses and/or GPA average is needed in order to get accepted into the program.
It may also be beneficial to find out how much competition that school has for those trying to enter the program so that you can see what your odds are of getting accepted and determine whether or not that school is right for you.
Some studies have shown that hospitals and health care facilities may be trying to replace LVN positions with registered nurses due to the increased education standards and experience they receive, which allows them to be more functional and provide additional medical care that LVN’s are not capable of providing.
The current job outlook for registered nurses on the other end is much higher and more diverse.
By the year 2020 the nursing gap is expected to expand to 800,000 jobs and the majority of those jobs are likely to be available to registered nurses, especially those who have acquired several years of experience and hold a BSN in nursing.
Getting certified as an LVN offers nurses a great opportunity to quickly get their foot in the door and find out whether or not becoming a registered nurse is right for them.
Many students that want to become registered nurses start out as working as LVN’s so that they can start work quickly and gather as much experience as possible.
It also looks great on a resume which make finding a job easier once they become certified as a registered nurse, since they have more work experience than an RN who has just earned the licenses but doesn’t possess any real world work experience.