Types of Nursing Programs

Nursing programs vary not only in the material they teach and the degrees conferred, but also what opportunities are available to individuals post graduation. The simplest version of nursing is the LPN - licensed practical nurse - whose responsibilities are regulated by the state in which they practice. LPNs typically have a high school diploma , GED , or the equivalent, and complete an eighteen to twenty four month program involving basic anatomy, physiology, pharmacology, and other nursing related subjects.

Individuals who want a larger responsibility may choose to become a registered nurse (RN) instead. Some LPNs also choose to become RNs after some experience in the workplace. To become an RN, generally a greater educational investment is required compared to a LPN. RNs typically graduate from three or four year programs and often hold advanced undergraduate degrees in nursing. Because of the need to oversee the lower level nurses, registered nursing programs emphasize core skills as well as the sciences that the job demands.

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