Licensed practical nurses provide basic care to patients and work under the supervision of doctors and registered nurses. Maryland students who want to pursue this career have several options. Certificate programs that provide the requisite education are presented by many of the state's community colleges.
Part- and full-time programs are offered. Students can expect to complete courses in anatomy, physiology, practical nursing fundamentals, family-centered nursing and lifespan development. The programs consist of classroom instruction, laboratory sessions and clinical experiences.
Following are descriptions of the programs offered at nine Maryland schools, along with a table that outlines their tuition rates.
Allegany College of Maryland
Located in Cumberland, Allegany College of Maryland has a practical nursing certificate. Students are required to complete courses and lab work. The program is one year, and graduates are qualified for the LPN licensing exam.
Anne Arundel Community College
Anne Arundel Community College sits in Arnold and offers a 41-credit practical nursing program. The curriculum covers topics in practical nursing fundamentals, adult health in practical nursing and care of women, children and the mentally ill. A laboratory with state-of-the-art equipment is located on-campus and provides students with simulated nursing experience.
Baltimore City Community College
Situated in Baltimore, this community college has a practical nursing certificate that can be completed on a part-time or full-time basis. Full-time students can complete the program in 23 months; the part-time program takes 45 months to complete.
College of Southern Maryland
Located in La Plata, the College of Southern Maryland has a 42-credit practical nursing program. The certificate consists of labs and courses that cover nursing fundamentals, anatomy, physiology and nursing care of adults.
Community College of Baltimore County
This community college is located in Baltimore and offers a 1-year practical nursing program. The program is 46 credits and consists of 12 courses. About 40 applicants are accepted into the practical nursing certificate program each year.
Hagerstown Community College
Students can earn a practical nursing certificate at this Hagerstown-based community college. The program is 42 credits, and courses include practical nursing through the lifespan, psychology and an introduction to practical nursing.
Howard Community College
Howard Community College is located in Columbia and offers a practical nursing certificate. Students in the program are required to complete 42-46 credits, including courses in medical-surgical nursing, family centered nursing, nursing foundations, life span development, anatomy and physiology.
Prince George's Community College
Situated in Largo, students at Prince George's Community College can pursue an LPN certificate that will prepare them for licensing or transfer into an associate's degree program. Courses cover topics in adaptation and practice, nursing practice foundations, reproductive health and physiologic integrity.
Wor-Wic Community College
Wor-Wic Community College sits in Salisbury and offers a practical nursing certificate. Courses in the program include nursing fundamentals, nutrition, adult nursing, psychiatric nursing and maternal-child nursing. Students learn to care for patients and communicate with other health care professionals.
Students are required to complete a minimum of a certificate program that is approved by the Maryland Board of Nursing in order to gain the necessary knowledge and skills to work in the field. In order to practice in Maryland, as in all states, individuals will need to pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN). Additionally, LPNs in Maryland must reside in the state to be licensed there and pass a criminal background check.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type and Setting||LPN Programs Offered||Undergraduate Tuition and Fees (2015-2016)|
|Allegany College of Maryland||2-year, public; small city||Practical Nursing Certificate|| $3,660 in-district,
|Anne Arundel Community College||2-year, public; large suburb||Practical Nursing Certificate|| $4,464 in-district,
|Baltimore City Community College||2-year, public; large city||Practical Nursing Certificate|| $2,578 in-state,
|College of Southern Maryland||2-year, public; fringe rural||Practical Nursing Certificate|| $3,542 in-district,
|Community College of Baltimore County||2-year, public; large suburb||Practical Nursing Certificate|| $3,712 in-district,
|Hagerstown Community College||2-year, public; midsize suburb||Practical Nursing Certificate|| $3,564 in-district,
|Howard Community College||2-year, public; small city||Practical Nursing Certificate||$7,531**|
|Prince George's Community College||2-year, public; large suburb||Practical Nursing Certificate|| $3,650 in-district,
|Wor-Wic Community College||2-year, public; fringe rural||Practical Nursing Certificate|| $2,880 in-district,
Sources: *NCES College Navigator, **Howard Community College.