2021 - Best LPN Programs in Arizona
With a nationwide nursing shortage, Arizona is constantly looking to hire licensed practical nurses to improve healthcare in the state. With the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projecting an 9% growth in employment for the industry from 2019 to 2029, it’s no wonder why those in the state looking for a promising career pathway are opting for LPN school. LPNs in Arizona earn approximately $26.00 per hour, which equates to an average annual salary of $54,090. This is roughly $7,040 per year more than the national average.
Are you looking to become a licensed practical nurse in Arizona? The school you choose is important when it comes to getting your license. Approved programs in Arizona are offered at community colleges, technical centers, and private career schools - we list 12 schools across the state. After careful review of NCLEX-PN exam first-time pass rates over the past several years, we have ranked the top 5 programs. For more information on our LPN program rankings, see our Methodology page.
To see all the top ranked LPN programs in Arizona click here.
- Total Number of State Approved LPN Schools: 12
- Total Number of Test Takers in 2020: 262
- 2020 Average Statewide Arizona NCLEX-PN Pass Rate: 92.4%
Details on Arizona LPN Schools & Classes
Becoming an LPN in Arizona consists of attending a school that offers an accredited LPN program, and then taking and passing the NCLEX-PN exam. Many schools in the state, from community colleges to trade schools, offer quality LPN programs for potential students to choose from, and most can be completed in as little as one year. Once enrolled in an LPN program, students will take a mixture of science and nursing courses, such as these from the LPN program at Pima Community College in Tucson:
- Anatomy, Physiology, and Microbiology
- Nursing Care Fundamentals
- Pediatric Nursing for the Practical Nurse
An accredited LPN program is worth its weight in gold, as these programs are held to high academic standards. The Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing is an excellent example of a national accreditation to watch for. The Arizona Board of Nursing also maintains a list of approved LPN programs.
Arizona LPN schools typically require the following in order to be eligible for admission:
- High school graduate or equivalent
- Certified Nursing Assistant documentation may be necessary
- Results from TEAS standardized exam
- Math and biology proficiency
Tuition and Costs
While the cost of an LPN program can depend on many factors, including type of school, duration of program, and others, all students will need to cover the cost of tuition, mandatory school/program fees, and course materials. For example, tuition fees for the LPN program at Pima Community College in Tucson run roughly $18,500. This does not include any additional expenses, such as textbooks, application fees, or uniforms.
Arizona LPN Licensing Requirements
To become an LPN in Arizona, applicants must receive a diploma or a certificate of completion from a state-approved practical nursing program and pass the NCLEX. Arizona Licensing Applications and Forms can be found here. Physical strength and endurance challenges are part of the job when working as an LPN, so the applicant’s physical abilities may need to meet certain criteria before he or she is offered a job as an LPN in the state. Arizona LPN licenses expire every 4 years and do not require continued education for renewal.
NCLEX Exam Information
The NCLEX-PN exam must be taken and passed by students once they graduate from an LPN program. The exam covers topics such as health promotion and maintenance, physiological integrity, and more. To learn more about the NCLEX-PN, be sure to take a look at our overview, and feel free to take our NCLEX-PN practice exam in order to prepare for the real test.
LPN Reciprocity and NLC
As part of the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC), Arizona does not require nurses from other NLC states to hold additional licensure to practice in the state. As of January 2018, Arizona moved forward with the NLC allowing nurses to practice in other NLC states, without having to obtain additional licenses. LPNs from states located outside of the compact area can apply for an Arizona license by endorsement. Aside from having a current license from another state, applicants must also have:
- Practiced nursing for more than 960 hours within the last 5 years.
- Graduated from a nursing program and obtained a degree within the last 5 years.
- Obtained an advanced nursing degree within the last 5 years.
Foreign-educated and licensed applicants must submit proof of having met the education and practice requirements, that he or she has competent English language skills, and has passed the NCLEX exam. For detailed information about this process, check out the Arizona State Board of Nursing's Application for Licensure page.
The table below lists career information collected by the Bureau of Labor Statistics for licensed practical nurses in Arizona. The table is sorted by total employment, with the largest metropolitan areas listed first.
|Area||Total Employment||Average Hourly Wage||Average Annual Salary|
|Phoenix, Mesa, Scottsdale||4,830||$26.92||$56,000|
|Lake Havasu City, Kingman||190||$20.92||$43,520|
|Sierra Vista, Douglas||50||$21.61||$44,940|
For those interested in advancing their nursing career, see our Arizona LPN to RN/BSN programs page.
Arizona Western College
Yuma's Arizona Western College offers an "exit option" LPN program where students complete the first 3 semesters of the Associate Degree nursing program to earn their practical nursing certificate. Experienced faculty and staff supervise and mentor students through the curriculum to foster success.
Northland Pioneer College
Aspiring LPNs enrolled in Northland Pioneer College's Show Low, AZ campus practical nursing program will be on their way to a rewarding healthcare career in no time. NPC's small class sizes, hands-on clinical experiences, and affordable tuition make earning a PN certificate a breeze.
Pima Community College
Pima has been offering specialized, quality health care training in the Tucson community since 1972. The school's Practical Nurse career training certificate is designed to be completed in 13 months or less, allowing grads to enter the workforce immediately or continue on to earn a registered nursing degree.
GateWay Community College
Phoenix's GateWay Community College (GWCC) offers a Fast Track Practical Nursing program that can be completed in just 18 months. GWCC's economical and convenient program blends theory lectures and skills practice to give students a holistic nursing education.
Sierra Vista's Cochise College offers a 32-credit practical nursing program to introduce students to entry-level nursing. The curriculum emphasizes patient safety, professional values, and cultural competence, giving students the knowledge and skills needed to become compassionate LPNs.
Continued List of All Programs in Arizona
Mohave Community College
3400 Highway 95, Bullhead City, AZ 86442
East Valley Institute of Technology
1601 W Main St, Mesa, AZ 85201
Programs Not Included In Rankings
Eastern Arizona College
615 N Stadium Ave, Thatcher, AZ Thatcher
555 North 18th Street, Suite 110, Phoenix, AZ 85006
Paradise Valley Community College
18401 N. 32nd Street Phoenix, Phoenix, AZ 85032
Pima Medical Institute - Mesa
957 S Dobson Rd, Mesa, AZ 85202
Pima Medical Institute - Tuscon
2121 N Craycroft Rd Building 1, Tuscon, AZ 85712
Are we missing your school's program or need to make changes to the information listed? Please contact us.
Additional AZ Nursing Resources
- Arizona State Board of Nursing 4747 North 7th Street, Suite 200 Phoenix, AZ 85014-3653 Phone: (602) 889-5150
- Arizona Nurses Association 1850 East Southern Avenue, Suite 1 Tempe, AZ 85282 (480) 831-0404
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