Is It Difficult to Transition from an LPN to RN?

Posted by Athena Career Academy on Oct 21, 2016

While some people may consider LPNs and RNs to basically be the same thing, they are actually extremely different. The LPN is a Licensed Practical Nurse with a certificate from a short program that runs between a year to two. The RN is a Registered Nurse who has completed a four year professional degree and generally has a higher level of responsibility. When you make the choice to further your education and explore LPN to RN programs you may hear mixed commentary about how easy or hard the transition is. Here are some things to keep in mind when you compare programs:

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The Effect Your Experience has on the New Program

nc12_2.jpgBoth LPNs and RNs have to take a demanding course load full of highly technical courses. However, the program for becoming an RN will be at least twice (or even four times) as long.  Some students prefer to amass a good deal medical knowledge (earned through experience) before going into RN classes so that higher level courses will be more surmountable. However, others may tell you that having a lot of experience can be a bit of setback, as your personal experiences may conflict with what is being taught. Regardless, your personal experiences in the medical field (or lack thereof) will certainly have an impact upon the course of your education.


Bridge Programs
When you start the LPN to RN program that you have picked, you more than likely will go into what they call a bridge program. While most of the classes in said program will focus on the medical side of things you will also be required to take classes to bridge the gap between the lower degree and the four year degree. These classes will include topics like  English, humanities, math and more. Depending on what type of LPN degree you have, some of those classes may also count towards the bridge program. Some may be a bit unhappy about being required to take classes beyond the medical subjects, but those classes will fill out the higher level degree and prove useful when the applicant is in the field.


Future Potential

If you are still not sure if you are ready for an LPN to RN transition take the time to look into the improved career opportunities that being an RN would come with. In many parts of the country there is a shortage of RNs so there is a great deal more job security with this higher degree. You would also of course see a pay increase as well. Because becoming an RN takes 2-4 times as long many who wish to enter that field eventually will choose to become an LPN first. This allows them to earn an income in their chosen field more quickly. However, for many nurses making the transition to becoming an RN eventually is very beneficial for a number of reasons.


nurses.jpgAnother benefit of the RN program is the fact that it can open up many leadership and manager level positions that you cannot obtain as an LPN. If you enjoyed being an LPN you may choose to work as a mentor training new LPNs getting a higher degree. The coursework to earn an RN degree is going to be more academically challenging than those in the LPN program experience, but with the right mindset it is manageable. Being prepared to handle the tougher course work and being motivated to advance your career will put you well on your way to making a successful transition. If you want to improve your career prospects and take that next step enroll at Athena Career Academy today.

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To learn more about a career as a Practical Nurse, and whether it’s the right fit for you, schedule an appointment with Athena Career Academy today. One meeting with our Admissions counselors could help put you on the path to a successful new career that could change your life for the better. 

Athena Career Academy is located at:
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Toledo, Ohio 43615
Hours: Monday - Friday 7:30AM to 4:30PM
Phone: (419) 329-4075

Topics: Practical Nursing, LPN, Registered Nurse, RN