Want to be part of the health industry?
Then you’re at the right place at the right time!
Even after the peak of the pandemic, there’s still a huge demand for nurses, especially in Oklahoma.
More people are availing of healthcare services from assisted care facilities and private home care, and these places are where Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs) are needed.
Thankfully, becoming an LPN is a relatively easier and faster way of becoming a nurse.
In fact, all it takes are 4 straightforward steps to get your license!
In this article, we’ll give you our simple guide on how to become an LPN in Oklahoma.
We’ll also answer common questions, such as:
- How much do LPNs earn in Oklahoma?
- How often do I need to renew my LPN license in OK?
- What are the renewal requirements for my LPN license in OK?
- Is Oklahoma an NLC state?
Excited to start your journey?
Then let’s begin!
How to Become an LPN in Oklahoma in 4 Easy Steps
These are the four easy steps to becoming an LPN in Oklahoma.
- Step #1: Complete admission requirements
- Step #2: Enroll in a state-approved LPN training program
- Step #3: Apply to Oklahoma’s Board of Nursing for licensure by examination or endorsement
- Step #4: Get your license and practice as an LPN
Step #1: Complete Admission Requirements
Just like your typical schools, you need to prepare some documents before you can get into a program.
Here are the common requirements of Oklahoma LPN training programs:
- Official high school transcript with the graduation date or the GED equivalent document
- Scores of pre-entrance exams
- Proof of completion of prerequisite courses
- Fully-accomplished application form
- Personal interview by the school’s faculty or staff (Contact the school’s admissions office to schedule this in advance
Step #2: Enroll in a State-Approved LPN Training Program
Want to get the education that can help you pass your exams with flying colors?
Or learn all the technical skills and techniques you’ll be doing daily to become the best LPN you can be?
The best chance of getting these two is from Oklahoma-approved training programs.
Oklahoma’s Board of Nursing has a list of approved programs. There are 33 PN programs you can choose from!
If you want to see the top schools in the state, you can check out the list here.
If you look at the schools’ program duration, you’ll find that most of them can be finished in just 1 year!
We weren’t joking when we said that the process of becoming an LPN takes a shorter time than other nursing types!
What do you learn in LPN training programs?
An LPN is still considered an entry-level nurse but is definitely a step higher than CNAs or Certified Nursing Assistants.
You get to record patients’ medical histories, help in assessments, and even administer medication under the guidance of doctors and RNs.
To help you prepare for these more technical roles, you’ll see a more exhaustive curriculum for LPNs.
Here are the courses you will encounter:
- Nursing Fundamentals
- Anatomy and Physiology
- Assessment of Health History and Physical Examination
- Growth and Development
- Patient Safety
- Infection Control and Prevention
- Medication Administration
- Basic Patient Needs
- Adult Medical Nursing
- Emergency Nursing Care
- Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing
- Grief and Loss
- Rehabilitation and Restorative Care
- Maternal and Natal Nursing
- Pediatric Nursing
- Gerontology Nursing
- Mental Health Nursing
- Intravenous Medications
Aside from classroom and laboratory instruction, you will be placed in different healthcare settings where you will receive clinical training under the supervision of an RN.
How much do LPN training programs cost?
LPN programs can cost as low as $2,100 and reach up to $29,000.
Prices would vary depending on the school you’ve chosen and the inclusions of the programs.
Some programs automatically include miscellaneous fees such as laboratory and clinic usage, textbooks, and even uniforms.
We know this can be a huge upfront cost for many, but don’t worry! Some schools offer financial aid and scholarship grants.
All you need to do is ask the admissions office if there are available offers and grants.
Step #3: Apply to Oklahoma’s Board of Nursing for Licensure by Examination or Endorsement
There are 2 ways you can obtain a license in Oklahoma.
One is by taking an exam, and the other is by getting an endorsement or reciprocity.
What’s the difference between the two?
If you are a first-time applicant, you will need to take a test known as the NCLEX-PN.
But if you already have an LPN license in another state, then you just need to get endorsements!
Let’s tackle the first and more common approach first – getting a license by examination.
Licensure by Examination
Done with your 12-month training program?
Then it’s time to take the exam you’ve been preparing for – the NCLEX-PN. And while you’re at it, submit an application for licensure to Oklahoma’s Board of Nursing.
What is NCLEX-PN?
The National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses, also known as the NCLEX-PN, is the examination that will determine whether or not you’re prepared to practice as an LPN.
You’ll hear people in the industry call this “The Boards” or “The State Boards,” as this exam is mandated and conducted by the state’s Board of Nursing.
The ultimate goal, of course, is to pass the NCLEX-PN.
But how do you do that?
Scroll down further to see how you can prepare better for the test.
What is the coverage of the NCLEX-PN?
The simple answer is all the topics you’ve learned in your LPN program!
But to help you review, this is how the Board of Nursing groups and structures the test.
The different parts of the NCLEX-PN:
Part 1: Safe and Effective Care Environment
- Coordinated Care
- Safety and Infection Control
Part 2: Health Promotion and Maintenance
- Ante/Intra/Postpartum and Newborn Care
- Data Collection Techniques
- Lifestyle Choices and Self Care
- Health Promotion Programs
- Developmental Stages and Transitions
- Disease Prevention
Part 3: Psychosocial Integrity
- Coping Mechanics and Grief and Loss
- Stress Management
- Support Systems
- Chemical Dependency
- Behavioral Management
- Crisis Intervention
- End-of-Life Care
Part 4: Physiological Integrity
- Basic Care and Comfort
- Pharmacological and Parenteral Therapies
- Reduction of Risk Control
- Physiological Adaptation
Expect that most questions will come in the form of multiple choice. But there’ll be identification and drag-and-drop situations here and there.
How long is the exam?
The NCLEX-PN can range from 85 to 205 questions.
We know. That seems like a lot.
To make sure you get to answer and review the test properly, the Board gives each examinee 5 hours.
How do you apply to take the NCLEX-PN?
To take the NCLEX, you need to apply with the Board and register with Pearson Vue.
Here are the steps and requirements:
- Fill up the application form and pay the non-refundable application fee of $85
- Upload the appropriate notarized Evidence of Status Form to show your citizenship.
- Undergo the criminal background check.
- Write a statement describing the date, location, circumstances of the incident, and resulting action taken by the court or disciplinary board if you said yes to any of the questions under “Criminal Charges, Disciplinary Action, or Judicial Declaration of Mental Incompetence”.
- Make sure your LPN school sends a copy of your official transcripts directly to the BON.
- Head over to Pearson Vue to register for the NCLEX-PN.
- Pay for the $200 examination fee.
- Wait for your ATT or your “Authorization to Test” document to be sent to you.
- Follow the details indicated on your ATT, such as your registration number, the date of examination expiry, and testing sites in Oklahoma.
- Select the date of your examination on the site.
Once you finish and pass the exam, what comes next?
You will receive your license! Congratulations!
What happens if you fail?
You can retake the exam, but you will need to re-apply with the BON and re-register with Pearson Vue.
Licensure by Endorsement
Are you already an LPN in another state? Want to practice in Oklahoma?
Since it is assumed that you already graduated from an LPN program and passed the NCLEX-PN before, you won’t need to repeat these processes.
You just need to show proof that you have an active LPN license from your home state.
Here’s what you need to submit:
- Current license verification
- Proof of taking continued competency education or at least 105 contact hours
- Employer verification that shows you worked at least 520 hours in the last 2 years
- Official transcripts from your state-approved nursing program
- Proof of passing the NCLEX-PN
But thankfully, Oklahoma is part of the Nurse Licensure Compact or NLC!
This allows LPNs from NLC member-states to practice in other member-states without having to apply for a separate license by endorsement.
As long as you have a multistate license from your NLC home state, you can practice as an LPN in Oklahoma!
Step #4: Get Your License and Practice as an LPN
Finally, the moment you’ve been waiting for. You finally received your LPN license!
Now it’s time to look for a job, but where exactly?
The places where LPNs are needed most in Oklahoma are assisted living facilities and aged care facilities.
The state has observed an increase in the number of patients with dementia and Alzheimer’s, and for this reason, LPNs are needed more in these centers.
If you’re looking at a different setting with more interaction with doctors, you can try general hospitals and private clinics.
If you want less strenuous hours, then you can try education and office establishments.
FAQs About Becoming an LPN in Oklahoma
How much do LPNs earn in Oklahoma?
Based on the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the mean annual wage of LPNs in Oklahoma is $48,090, which is lower than the country’s average of $55,680.
However, your salary will depend on what facility you work in, what city you are in, how much experience you have, and whether you have specialized training or not.
How often do I need to renew my LPN license in OK?
In Oklahoma, you need to renew your LPN license every odd-numbered year, specifically before the end of your birth month.
What are the renewal requirements for my LPN license in OK?
To renew your LPN license in Oklahoma, you have to provide proof of either of the following:
- 24 contact hours within the last 2 years; or
- Proof of employment that required LPNs to verify at least 520 work hours in 2 years; or
- Proof that you completed a minimum of 6 credit hours in nursing coursework equivalent to LPN or higher licensure; or
- Certification showing that you completed a nursing specialty
Aside from these, you’ll need to pay $75 for the renewal fee.
Is Oklahoma an NLC state?
Yes, Oklahoma is part of the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC).
This means you can practice as an LPN with your multistate LPN license from a different state.
If you don’t have a multistate license, you can apply for an LPN license by endorsement, which removes the long steps of taking the required education and passing an exam.
Here’s what you need to submit:
- Proof of continued competency showing 6 academic hours or 105 contact hours
- Employer verification from your current state showing at least 520 hours worked in the last 2 years
- Official transcript of your state-approved nursing program
- Proof of passing the NCLEX-PN
Nowadays, LPNs are needed more than ever.
Thankfully, it’s easy and fast to become an LPN in Oklahoma!
You can get your license in less than a year, as long as you finish your 12-month program and complete all documents necessary on time.
Though the salary is lower versus other states as of now, there’s no doubt that this career decision is still fulfilling and worth your investment!