Becoming an LPN in Idaho
Looking for a new healthcare career in Idaho? Licensed practical nursing (LPN) offers numerous advantages, including a promising future of employment; the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts growth of roughly 12% for the industry through the year 2026. With salaries and job security in the desirable range, many Idahoans are looking into schools that will give them a solid LPN education. Idaho LPNs earn around an hourly wage of $19.17 or annual salary of $39,870, which is roughly $4,160 less per year than national average.
Details on Idaho LPN Schools & Classes
LPN programs are peppered throughout the state of Idaho, and can be found in community colleges, technical/vocational schools, and more. With a length of approximately 1-2 years (depending on part-time or full-time attendance), you can begin your career as an LPN much faster than with other nursing degrees, such as a Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing (BSN).
Idaho LPN schools typically include course titles like the following:
- Medication Administration for Practical Nursing
- Basic Foundations of Nursing Lab
- Clinical Foundations of Nursing
- Family Nursing for the Practical Nurse
- Medical-Surgical Nursing
To ensure that you choose a school with a quality LPN program, you should inquire about the school’s accreditations. For example, the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing is a well-known national accrediting agency for nursing programs. Smaller, regional accrediting bodies may endorse programs as well. Lastly, the Idaho Board of Nursing can also point you in the direction of an approved LPN program in the state.
Each prospective student will need to make sure they meet all the requirements before they can be admitted into an LPN program. While admission requirements vary slightly depending on school, most include the following:
- High school diploma or GED
- CNA certification may be required
- Minimum GPA of 2.5
- Completion of any prerequisite courses
- TEAS results
- Must pass a background check/drug test
Tuition and Costs
The total cost of an LPN program will ultimately depend on the school you choose. Common expenses include tuition, course materials, and any mandatory fees imposed by the college. Room and board may also be an expense if you must relocate. Tuition and fees for the LPN program at North Idaho College in Coeur d’Alene, for example, costs approximately $6,247 for in-state students, and $14,047 for out-of-state students. This does not include textbooks and supplies.
Idaho LPN Licensing Requirements
Becoming an LPN in Idaho is not a painful process, but the applicant must keep in mind that certain job functions may not only require quick thinking but may also require physical strength and endurance. To meet state education requirements, individuals must attend an approved nursing program, as well as complete the NCLEX-PN exam—state-required testing to prove the applicant is ready for the field of nursing. The following must also be submitted along with the required application for licensure:
- Headshot (passport-style) photograph—indicating the date the photo was taken.
- Affidavit of graduation submitted by applicant’s nursing program.
- Fingerprint card and criminal background check.
- NCLEX Acknowledgement.
Idaho LPN licenses expire on August 31st every even-numbered year. See
https://ibn.idaho.gov/IBNPortal/IBN/FORMS/6%20-%20LPN%20Licensure%20by%20Examination.pdf for licensure by exam information in Idaho.
NCLEX Exam Information
Every student who wishes to become an LPN must pass the NCLEX-PN exam in order to gain licensure. Upon graduating from an approved LPN program, students are eligible to take the test, which consists of roughly 100 nursing-based questions. Learn more about the NCLEX-PN exam here. In addition, students can also take the NCLEX-PN practice test to see what the real exam is like.
LPN Reciprocity and eNLC
Idaho is a member of the Nurse Licensure Compact, which means that nurses in compact states must register a primary state of residence, but can work in multiple compact states without additional licensure. As of January 2018, an expanded Enhanced Nursing Licensure Compact (eNLC) will go into effect. Nurses under the original NLC will be grandfathered in to the eNLC.
LPNs from states outside of the Nurse Licensure Compact can apply for an Idaho license by endorsement provided he or she submits the following:
- Proof of licensure in another state for a minimum of 2 years.
- Original transcripts from state-approved nursing program equivalent to the state of Idaho
- Pass the NCLEX or SBTPE.
- Fingerprint card and criminal background check.
- Employment reference from the 3-year period preceding the application.
- Foreign applicants must also submit a course-by-course review and English proficiency.
For detailed information about LPN endorsement by application in Idaho check out:
The table below lists career information obtained from the BLS for licensed practical nurses in Idaho. The table is sorted by total employment, with the largest metropolitan areas listed first.
|Area||Total Employment||Average Hourly Wage||Average Annual Salary|
For those interested in advancing their nursing career, see our Idaho LPN to RN/BSN programs page.
1122 North Liberty St, Boise, ID 83704
315 Falls Ave, Twin Falls, ID 83301
1600 S 25th E, Idaho Falls, ID 83404
921 South 8th Ave, Pocatello, ID 83209
500 8th Ave, Lewiston, ID 83501
1000 W Garden Ave, Coeur d'Alene, ID 83814
Additional ID Nursing Resources
- Idaho Board of Nursing
280 N. 8th Street, Suite 210
P.O. Box 83720
Boise, ID 83720
Phone: (208) 334-3110
- Idaho Nurses Association
1850 E Southern Ave, Suite 1
Tempe, Arizona 85282
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