Welcome to OnlineLPNtoRN.org, a comprehensive directory of LPN to RN programs. Our blog is run by Megen Duffy, a registered nurse and a contributing editor to the American Journal of Nursing. For your convenience, we have listed the most commonly asked questions about LPN to RN programs below along with detailed answers.

  1. What is an LPN to RN program?
  2. What are my degree options in this field?
  3. What career opportunities are available for registered nurses?

What is an LPN to RN program?

An LPN to RN program is an accelerated-degree option for LPNs, or licensed practical nurses, who want to advance their careers. These programs are specifically designed to help LPNs acquire further qualifications in a short time. The curriculum consists of traditional courses as well as hands-on training through practicums or internships.

When researching your options, consider the following questions when determining what program is right for you:

  • Is the program accredited by the National League for Nursing Accreditation Commission (NLNAC) or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) or both?
  • Does the program prepare graduates for licensure examinations and transition into practice?
  • Does the program match your career goals and suit your lifestyle by offering flexible scheduling and online options?

The following online programs fulfill these criteria and can be excellent options for LPNs. Click on the program name to request more info.

Indiana State University - Indiana State University offers a robust online program designed for LPNs wanting to become registered nurses and earn their BSN degree. Since ISU’s credits transfer to over 80 campus majors, this is an ideal program for people wanting to open opportunities for their career down the road.

The College Network - The College Network is a partnership with several universities and organizations like the National League for Nursing that focuses on online education and programs, with several courses for nurses or those interested in a nursing career. Specifically, TCN helps students prepare for their LPN and RN licensures and move on to earn graduate degrees.

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What types of nursing bridge programs are available?

There are a variety of nursing degree options, and each of them are slightly different. Depending on your career goals, different levels of education are required.

Online programs are a desirable option for nurses who are working and are unable to take classes on-site. If you’re unsure of what degree you should pursue, we’ve outlined your options below:

Type of Program: Program Description: Additional Information:
LPN to RN For LPNs who wants to become an RN
  • Takes one to two years to complete, depending on previous coursework and experience as an LPN
  • Requires LPN licensure for admission
LVN to RN For LVNs who wants to become an RN
  • Takes one to two years to complete, depending on previous coursework and experience as an LVN
  • Requires LVN licensure for admission
LPN/LVN to BSN For LPNs or LVNs who wants to become an RN with a BSN
  • Takes two to three years to complete, depending on previous coursework and experience as an LPN or LVN
  • Requires LPN or LVN licensure for admission
Paramedic to RN For EMTs and paramedics looking for career advancement as an RN
  • Takes one to two years to complete, depending on previous coursework and experience in the healthcare industry
  • Requires EMT licensure for admission
RN to BSN For nurses who have licensure as a RN, but have not yet earned a BSN
  • Takes two to three years to complete, depending on previous coursework and experience
  • Requires RN licensure and possibly professional experience in the field as a nurse

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What career options are available to registered nurses?

Registered nurses can work in a variety of healthcare environments. With the right credentials, RNs can specialize in one or more areas of patient care such as ambulatory care or midwifery.

Below is a list of the many career options along with job descriptions for RNs:

Type of Nurse: Job Overview: Common Career Settings:
Addictions Nurse Addictions nurses work with patients trying to overcome alcohol or drug abuse.
  • Hospitals
  • Substance abuse clinics
  • Mental health clinics
  • Psychiatric wards
  • Inpatient or outpatient treatment centers
Ambulatory Care Nurse Ambulatory care nurses typically work in outpatient care facilities, seeing as many patients as possible as quickly as possible.
  • Hospitals
  • Community clinics
  • Home care
  • Schools
Cardiac Catheterization Lab Nurse Cardiac catheterization lab nurses work with patients to measure how well the heart is working.
  • Coronary care and intensive care units in hospitals
  • Private clinics
  • Cardiovascular catheterization labs
Certified Nurse Midwife Midwives assist with gynecological exams, family planning, pregnancy health management, birth planning, the delivery process, and newborn evaluation.
  • Hospitals
  • Outpatient facilities
  • Birth centers
  • Patients’ homes
Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) CNAs record vital signs, take patient history notes, assist with personal hygiene tasks, feed patients, and check medical equipment.
  • Hospitals
  • Outpatient facilities
  • Physicians’ offices
Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist Nurse anesthetists work with anesthesiologists and other nurses to develop and administer an anesthesia plan for patients.
  • Hospitals
  • Outpatient facilities
  • Physicians’ offices
Critical Care Nurse Critical care nurses work with patients who need immediate attention and continual care, most often in emergency rooms and intensive care units at medical facilities.
  • Coronary and intensive care units
  • Progressive care units
  • Flight units
Cruise Nurse Cruises nurses work as part of the medical staff on a cruise ship to help patients and employees with health-related matters.
  • Cruise ships
  • Private yachts
  • Boat tours
Developmental Disabilities Nurse Developmental disabilities nurses work with patients who are dealing with physical and mental handicaps as a result of genetic disease, birth defects, or other medical problems that manifested before the age of 18.
  • Hospitals
  • Schools
  • Private practices
  • Patients’ homes
Diabetes Management Nurse Diabetes management nurses help patients who have Type I and Type II diabetes with educating patients and their families about this disease, monitoring blood sugar, and developing nutritional plans with patients.
  • Hospitals
  • Schools
  • Private practices
  • Patients’ homes
Emergency/Trauma Nurse Emergency nurses provide care in high-stress situations, many times when a patient is severely injured or ill and on the brink of death.
  • Emergency rooms in hospitals
  • Urgent care centers
  • Helicopters
Flight/Transport Nurse Flight/transport nurses work with patients who haven’t yet reached a stable care facility or who can’t make it to one of these locations for some reason.
  • Emergency rooms
  • Hospitals
  • Helicopters/Airplanes
Forensic Nurse Forensic nurses serve as liaisons between medical facilities and investigators, working with patients to ensure that their injuries are documented.
  • Hospital emergency rooms
  • Laboratories
  • Courts of law
Genetics Nurse Genetics nurses work with patients dealing with a variety of hereditary diseases, assisting both with treatment and with family planning concerned with genetics.
  • Hospitals
  • Physicians’ offices
  • Outpatient care clinics
Geriatric Nurse Geriatric nurses work with elderly patients to manage diseases, promote health, and generally work with senior citizens to increase their quality of life.
  • Nursing homes
  • Private practices
  • Patients’ homes
HIV/AIDS Nurse HIV/AIDS nurses work with patients dealing with or at risk for developing this medical condition.
  • Hospitals
  • Physicians’ offices
  • Outpatient care clinics
Holistic Nurse Holistic nurses work with patients to treat medical conditions by examining the “whole” person and treating the cause of the disease, not just the symptoms.
  • Integrated care departments in hospitals
  • Patients’ homes
  • Birthing centers
Home Health Care Nurse Home health care nurses work with patients who need daily help from medical professionals, but who opt to live at home rather than in long-term care facilities.
  • Patients’ homes
  • Nursing homes
Hospice / Palliative Care Nurse Hospice or palliative care nurses work with patients who are dying to provide the highest quality of live possible.
  • Hospice care clinics
  • Patients’ homes
Legal Nurse Consultant Legal nurse consultants provide expert opinion in courts or help lawyers strengthen their cases and understand the medical information involving their clients.
  • Law firms
  • Insurance companies
  • Hospitals
Medical Assistant Medical assistants work doing general nursing tasks, giving you a way to get started in this field even if you have little to no formal education.
  • Hospitals
  • Outpatient facilities
  • Physicians’ offices
Medical Surgical Nurse Medical surgical nurses work with patients before and during surgeries, as well as provide after-surgery patient care.
  • Inpatient care units
  • Clinics
  • Surgical centers
  • Hospitals
  • Ambulatory care units
Neonatal Nurse Neonatal nurses work in intensive care units, working with newborns born prematurely or with other complications.
  • NICUs in hospitals
Nurse Anesthetist Nurse anesthetists assist medical teams during surgery or other minor procedures to provide anesthesia-related care to patients during and surrounding a surgery.
  • Hospitals
  • Outpatient facilities
  • Physicians’ offices
Nurse Practitioner/FNP Nurse practitioners or FNPs serve as the primary caregiver, offering medical care such as annual physicals, basic first aid, prescription administration, nutrition planning, and vaccination.
  • Hospitals
  • Physicians’ offices
  • Your own practice
Nursing Informatics Consultant Nurse informatics consultants work with computers and networks to help medical care facilities deal with the flow of data.
  • Hospitals
  • Pharmaceutical and research facilities
  • Healthcare consulting firms
Occupational Health Nurse Occupational health nurses work with employers to prevent injury and illness for works while they are at job sites.
  • Public health clinics
  • Private practices
  • Schools
Oncology Nurse Oncology nurses work with patients who have developed cancer and also provide education and assessment of patients who are at risk.
  • Hospitals
  • Physicians’ offices
  • Outpatient care facilities
Parish Nurse Parish nurses combine medical knowledge with religious faith that combines physical and spiritual healing.
  • Churches
  • Hospitals
  • Community health clinics
Pediatric Nurse Practitioner Pediatric nurse practitioners perform advanced nursing skills while working with children who are ill or injured and their families.
  • Hospitals
  • Physicians’ offices
  • Your own practice
Perianesthesia Nurse Perianesthesia nurses care for patients after they come out of surgery until they wake up.
  • Hospitals
  • Ambulatory surgical units
  • Physicians’ offices
Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Psychiatric mental health nurses work with patients dealing with mental disease, disabilities, and other problems.
  • Mental health clinics
  • Correctional facilities
  • Your own practice
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner Psychiatric nurse practitioners have advanced nursing training, so they can work in leadership positions in the field of mental health.
  • Mental health clinics
  • Correctional facilities
  • Your own practice
Public Health Nurse Public health nurses work with the community to promote health through education and research.
  • Community clinics
  • Schools
  • Outpatient clinics
Radiology Nurse Radiology nurses work with patients undergoing treatment or screening using MRI, sonography, CAT scans, and more.
  • Hospitals
  • Outpatient care facilities
  • Physicians’ offices
Rehabilitation Nurse Rehabilitation nurses with patients on a long-term care basis, even if they’ve been injured or suffer from a long-term disease.
  • Community clinics
  • Schools
  • Outpatient clinics
School Nurse School nurses work with children to provide non-emergency care in an educational setting.
  • Elementary, middle and high schools
  • Universities
Transplant Nurse Transplant nurses work with patients who are receiving new organs to prepare them for the transplant and provide care during and after the operation.
  • Hospitals
  • Ambulatory surgical units
Travel Nurse Travel nurses work in general staff nursing roles, but in temporary positions, typically for one month to two years, to support staff members in areas where there is a need for nurses.
  • Hospitals
  • Clinics
  • Outpatient facilities
Wound, Ostomy and Continence Nurse WOC nurses work in the field of wound, ostomy and continence helping patients who have wounds, which are often chronic.
  • Hospitals
  • Nursing homes
  • Home healthcare organizations

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