The LPN to ASN (Associate in Science Nursing) program is an accelerated course of study tailored for Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN) who wish to become registered nurses and be provided with additional responsibilities, greater independence, along with higher salaries. After graduation from LPN to ASN programs you will be eligible to take the NCLEX-RN exam administered by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSB).
Overview of LPN to ASN Bridge Programs
Most LPN to ASN program are two three years in length depending on whether you attend on a full- or part-time basis. LPN to ASN programs focus on hands-on patient care and the technical aspects of nursing practice rather than on nursing theory. The programs are considered accelerated because students may be given credit for their work experience as an LPN, along with coursework they had taken as part of the LPN diploma program.
LPN to ASN program are offered by local community colleges and private vocational schools. Tuition costs are relatively inexpensive but keep in mind that you will also need to pay for textbooks, uniforms, as well as clinical lab fees. There are an array of financial aid programs that can help pay the cost of tuition and supplies. Such assistance may be in the form of grants, scholarships, as well as government loans. It may also be possible for working LPNs to obtain tuition assistance from their employer in the form of reimbursement programs. In most cases you will need to pass the course with a minimum B average to be eligible for reimbursement. You will also need to agree to remain with the employer for a certain period of time upon graduation. If you elect to work in certain rural or inner city areas you may also be eligible for loan forgiveness of a certain portion of our federal student loan.
As noted above, an LPN who enrolld in an associate degree program may have coursework waived in light of work experience or prior coursework taken as part of the LPN diploma program. Make an appointment with the admissions office of any school that interests you and bring your transcript and résumé to obtain an evaluation of transferable credit and professional experience. Typical courses for which you may receive credit include anatomy and physiology microbiology, pharmacology, as well as family and pediatric care. Your current work experience in patient care may satisfy the clinical portion of the program.
Finding Accredited LPN to ASN programs
As you begin to research schools, the most important criteria are that they have received accreditation from the National League of Nursing Accreditation Commission (NLNAC). The NLNAC has been recognized by the U.S. Department of Education as the official accreditation agencies for nursing education on the diploma, associates, bachelor’s, master’s and doctorate degree levels. The benefit of attending an accredited LPN to ASN program is that it will be accepted by your State Board of Nursing which administers the NCLEX-RN exam and issues your registered nurse license. Contact your State Board of Nursing for a list of approved LPN-to ASN programs in your area. You can locate contact information for your state board on the Web site of the .National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN.org).
Admission LPN to ASN programs
Acceptance to most LPN to ASN bridge programs is somewhat selective with minimum standards that must be met before you may be accepted. Typical requirements include possession of a high school diploma or general equivalency diploma (GED), cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher in your LPN diploma program with official transcripts, as well as academic and professional references. Contact the admission office for specific requirements and deadlines for application.
Career Options after Graduation form an LPN to ADN Program
Career prospects are excellent for those who graduate from an LPN-ASN program. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) the nursing sector is expected to increase by 22 percent through the year 2018. This represents a much faster rate of growth than for most other careers.
Graduates of LPN to ASN nursing programs may begin employment as staff nurses within a variety of nursing specialties in different types of settings. Common employers include hospitals, home health agencies, private doctor offices, as well as nursing homes. .
Many registered nurses who graduate from an LPN to ASN program go on to continue their education by pursuing a bachelor’s degree so they may become involved with advanced nursing care. Bachelor programs place a greater focus on nursing theory and practice as they recognize that students are seeking to advance their nursing career into leadership positions. There are accelerated ASN to BSN programs that are structured very like LPN to ASN programs in that you may be provided with credit for prior studies, as well as work experience.
Students in ASN to BSN programs are also eligible to obtain tuition assistance in the form of scholarships, grants, and loans. Working nurses may be eligible for tuition assistance from their current employers There are also loan forgiveness programs for those who agree tow rok in certain underserved areas. Students may graduate from accelerated BSN programs in about three to four years depending on whether they attend full or part time.
Median salary ranges with top-paying employers: (as per BLS)
- Private physician offices: $67,290
- General medical and surgical hospitals: $63,880
- Home health care agencies: $63,300.
- Nursing facilities: $59,320
LPN to ASN Programs – Selected Reviews
Santa Fe College:
Santa Fe College is located in Gainesville, Florida. Santa Fe College offers an Associate of Science in Nursing (ASN) bridge program designed specifically for LPNs or LVNs to attain their ASN degrees. The bridge program helps students by building on their current nursing skills. They offer competency placement exams that will demonstrate the student’s current knowledge for proper program placement. The Associate of Science in nursing program is a two-year program that may be completed more quickly, depending on current competencies. Upon graduation, the nursing student is prepared to take the licensing exam to become a Registered Nurse (RN).
Grand Canyon University:
Grand Canyon University is located in Arizona. It offers a 2-year Degree Program to attain an Associate of Science Degree in Nursing (ASN). It provides programs for students who already have a nursing background with practical experience as an LPN. The degree prepares the nursing student to take the NCLEX (National Council Licensure Exam). Upon graduation from the program, the nursing student is ready to become an LPN or RN. GCU has a School of Nursing that is dedicated to the education of nurses, preparing them for satisfying careers in the medical field.
Lincoln Memorial University:
Lincoln Memorial University is located in Harrogate, Tennessee, about 55 miles north of Knoxville, TN. The LPN to ASN program at Lincoln Memorial University offers LPNs the ability to complete the ASN program in just three semesters. The student must enter the program with the minimum required credits in general education courses. The bridge program offers students an accelerated syllabus. Students must provide proof of a valid LPN license and will receive two additional credit hours after validation of one year of current work experience as an LPN.
Fairmont State University:
Fairmont State University School of Nursing and Allied Health Administration has two program options for the LPN – ASN degree. The traditional LPN-ASN program is the best option for new LPN graduates or for students with fewer required support courses under their belts. The courses are taught on-campus. The non-traditional LPN – ASN program is for students with more nursing experience and offers a combination of on-campus and online courses. Both programs require 3 semesters of course work. FSU is located in Fairmont, West Virginia. Classes are limited to 24 students.
Southwest Baptist University:
Located in Bolivar, Missouri, Southwest Baptist University has accredited nursing programs including the LPN to ASN bridge program. The program is designed for LPNs who are licensed and IV-Certified. Students must meet the admission criteria and pass the admissions and fundamentals exams. Nurses who have taken the 29-hour pre-requisite courses may enter the program in the third semester. SBU has been recognized as one of America’s Best Christian Colleges for 14 consecutive years.
North Georgia College & State University:
Located in Dahlonega, Georgia, North Georgia College Department of Nursing offers an accredited LPN bridge program. The LPN to ASN program allows the student to validate their first two semesters of the ASN program through two core courses. After successfully completing these courses, the LPN will join the second year of the ASN program. The bridge program allows students to complete the ASN degree in three semesters or one calendar year.