LPN Programs in Illinois

A large number of licensed practical nurses are expected to retire in the coming decade, which means it’s a good time to gain training from one of the LPN programs in Illinois. With coursework that touches upon biology, nutrition, pharmacology, anatomy, and how to deliver compassionate direct patient care, students learn beyond the basics of nursing. At the end of their studies, which takes about a year to complete, graduates gain a certificate of completion, and are eligible to sit for the NCLEX-PN exam.

Schools with LPN Programs in Illinois

Finding an LPN Program

There are many different LPN programs to choose from. Though some people prefer campus based programs, the online option has become increasingly popular, especially in the nursing industry. See a Complete List of LPN Programs...

  • In Chicago, students may attend the Practical Nursing Program at Northwestern Institute of Health and Technology, which is approved by the Illinois State Board of Nursing and accredited by the North Central Association, Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement (NCA CASI). The curriculum at Northwestern involves the completion of 1,300 contact hours, which includes core subjects such as Anatomy & Physiology Parts I & II, Fundamentals of Nursing, and Obstetric Nursing. Students typically complete the program within 12 to 15 months – depending on whether they are following a morning or evening schedule.
  • The selective admission process of the LPN program at Richland Community College accepts students for a summer semester start. The curriculum at the school is designed for students to complete within three semesters. Before entering the program, applicants must satisfy admission criteria in order to gain eligibility. Once criteria are met, applicants are scored on a rubric, and those with the highest scores are accepted depending in rank order. Examples of criteria to meet include the completion of PSYCH 110 with a “C” or better, and earning a composite score of 120 or greater on the Nelson Denny Reading Test.
  • The LPN program at Black Hawk College admits students once a year with an application available in the month of February for fall admission. Qualified applicants for the program must receive a minimum score of 40 on the TEAS test to be considered for admission. In addition to the TEAS score, prospective students are also ranked on their GPA, grades in PN 110 or BIOL 145, and the optional possession of a CNA certificate. Black Hawk’s Practical Nursing program is approved by the Illinois Department of Professional Regulation.
  • Kankakee Community College offers a one-year Advanced Certificate program in Practical Nursing comprised of 27 credit hours for major-related courses, and 10-14 credit hours for general education courses related to communications and Laboratory Sciences. Students must receive a minimum grade of ‘C’ in his or her core classes. A minimum of 37 completed credit hours are required to earn the PN certificate.
  • Students complete 45 ½ credit hours of coursework within two semesters and two summer sessions to earn a certificate in Practical Nursing from Carl Sandburg College. Every year, 40 students are admitted into the Day Section of the LPN program, while 20 students are accepted into the Evening Section. Clinical experiences take place at local hospitals, nursing homes, and community health organizations throughout the surrounding counties. Some of the courses a student may take include Nutrition, Intro to Psychology, and Common Health Problems. The College’s Practical Nursing program is fully accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing, and approved by the Illinois State Board of Nursing, Department of Professional Regulation.
  • Danville Area Community College offers an ADN/RN program with a multi-exit ladder option for aspiring LPNs. Those who wish to take the (NCLEX-PN) exam for immediate entry into the workforce may choose to exit (graduate) after completing the first level of nursing education. Graduates will then earn a Practical Nursing Certificate, and then become eligible to take the licensure exam.
  • Heartland Community College offers a practical nursing program to prepare graduates to take the NCLEX-PN exam to become an LPN. Completion of the 41-credit hour program leads to the receipt of a one-year certificate. Some of the required core classes for the LPN program include Medication Principles for Nurses, Fundamentals of Nursing, and Community-Based Nursing. Students are also required to complete a criminal background history and drug screening through a college-selected provider before they can participate in any field experience.
  • Preparing graduates to take the NCLEX-PN exam, the LPN program at Spoon River College ends with a Practical Nurse Certificate. The curriculum is based on 40 credit hours of coursework completed within two semesters and a summer session that includes classes in Anatomy & Physiology, Pharmacology, and Nursing Through the Life Cycle. The College’s Nursing program is fully approved by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation.

Illinois LPN Checklist

  • Apply to and graduate from a state-approved educational program for LPNs, which typically takes one year to complete.
  • After getting a certificate in Practical Nursing, pass Illinois’ National Council Licensure Examination-Practical Nurse (NCLEX-PN).
  • Gain licensure as an LPN by submitting an application to the Illinois Board of Nursing, and paying the initial ~$91 fee.
  • Every two years, renew LPN license.
  • To fulfill continuing education requirements for the state of Illinois, LPNs are expected to complete 20 hours of approved CE credits.

Salary Data

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median salary for entry-level licensed practical nurses employed in the state of Illinois is $42,680. However, with experience and additional training, LPNs can earn a higher income when applying to job positions that seek an employee with supervisory and managerial skills.