Before you begin contacting LPN schools about signing-up for classes, it’s a good idea to first prepare a list of questions to ask. This list should, of course, include things that are important to you personally, but there are also four universally-important questions that everyone should ask.
Four Questions to Ask LPN Schools
The following are four important questions to be sure and ask during your interviews with admissions departments from the various LPN schools.
“What are your admission requirements?”
This is a fairly obvious one, but you will find that practical nursing programs have different admission requirements. Some schools require students to have completed specific classes in high school (e.g. biology and other basic science courses), have posted a minimum GPA in their previous studies, or have satisfactory test scores on entrance exams.
In general, however, you can safely assume that most schools will require the following four things at minimum from applicants:
- A high school diploma or GED
- Be at least 18 years of age
- Be a U.S. citizen or resident
- Pass a criminal background check
“What is your school’s accreditation status?”
Finding out if a school is accredited by one of the major governing bodies for practical nursing (the National League for Nursing Accreditation Commission is the largest) is important for a few reasons:
- Accredited schools maintain curricula that make their graduates eligible to sit for the NCLEX-PN licensure exam
- Employers prefer to hire graduates from accredited programs
- Accredited LPN schools must keep their facilities and equipment up-to-date with industry standards
If a school is not accredited by the NLNAC or another major organization, you may want to consider looking into other programs.
“Does your program include a clinical component?”
The specific requirements may vary from state to state, but becoming an LPN will always require you to complete a specific number of hours in clinical training first. Most programs facilitate this for their students by arranging for externships with local hospitals and clinics, but there are some that do not.
If a school does not arrange for clinical training on behalf of its students, the students themselves will have to reach out to local healthcare facilities and make their own arrangements.
“Do you offer job placement services?”
One final thing that you’ll want to find out when talking to representatives from LPN schools is whether or not they offer job placement services. Because it is sometimes difficult for newly-licensed practical nurses to land their first job, getting assistance from the school can be a tremendous benefit. Be sure to take advantage of this service if it is available.
Other Questions to Consider
In addition to the four questions listed above, you may also want to find out about such topics as financial aid and the availability of specialized programs, to name a couple. You’ll also want to find out about special licensing requirements in your state and any other special considerations that may apply to you personally.
After you’ve put together your list of questions and are ready to start interviewing, we invite you to take advantage of your search feature at the upper right that will help you find accredited LPN schools near you.