2020 - Best LPN Programs in Maryland
Looking for a rewarding healthcare career in the state of Maryland? Due to the increased demand for nurses, becoming a licensed practical nurse (LPN) is a great way to break into this growing field. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports favorable employment outlook for LPNs through the year 2026, expecting nearly 12% growth. To become an LPN in the state, the first step is to enroll in a school with an accredited LPN program. Maryland LPNs earn around an hourly wage of $24.59 or annual salary of $51,140, which is roughly $7,110 more per year than national average.
Are you looking to become a licensed practical nurse in Maryland? The school you choose is important when it comes to getting your license. Approved programs in Maryland are offered at community colleges, technical centers, and private career schools - we list 13 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 Maryland click here.
Details on Maryland LPN Schools & Classes
LPN programs can be found at schools all around Maryland, from community colleges to vocational schools and beyond. Depending on whether a student opts for full-time or part-time attendance, the LPN program can be completed in roughly 1-2 years from start to finish, much quicker than a bachelor’s degree in nursing. The curriculum for LPN programs in Maryland typically consists of core nursing courses, electives, and labs. Common course titles include:
- Foundations of Practical Nursing Concepts
- Introduction to Pharmacology
- Mental Health Practical Nursing Concepts
- Maternity and Pediatric Nursing Concepts
- Human Anatomy & Physiology
Choosing the right LPN program can seem stressful, but a great way to narrow the things down is to search for schools with accreditations. Accredited schools and programs tend to be of better quality and are held to high academic standards. The Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing, for example, is a national accrediting body committed to nursing education. Other regional accreditations may also be available. You may also want to find a program approved and endorsed by the Maryland Board of Nursing.
All prospective LPNs must ensure that they meet the admissions requirements for their school and program of choice. While these requirements may vary depending on school, they commonly include:
- High school diploma or GED
- Must have completed all prerequisite courses with grade of “C” or higher
- Overall GPA of at least 2.0
- Competency in math, reading, English
- Submission of TEAS test scores
Tuition and Costs
While LPN school expenses can and do fluctuate depending on many factors, students will generally be expected to cover the cost of tuition, fees, and course materials such as textbooks and supplies. For example, tuition for the LPN program at the Community College of Baltimore County is approximately $2,520, with another $405 in registration fees and $859 for textbooks. For students with tight budgets, most schools offer financial aid packages and/or scholarships, and other student loan options may also be available.
Maryland LPN Licensing Requirements
Maryland requires completion of a state-approved nursing program and a passing score on the NCLEX-PN to apply for state licensure. Graduates of out-of-state nursing programs can still become licensed in Maryland even if their nursing programs is not considered equivalent by completing a clinical rotation with a preceptor. To apply for licensure, the applicant must submit an application to the Board, along with declaration of primary state of residence and a criminal background check. LPN requirements can be physically demanding, requiring sufficient strength to perform daily activities as well as endurance—long periods of standing, squatting, and walking.
NCLEX Exam Information
The NCLEX-PN test is the exam that all LPNs must pass in order to gain licensure once they graduate from a program. This test covers many nursing topics, and consists of around 100 or so questions. For more information on the NCLEX-PN, check out our comprehensive overview here. Students may also wish to take the NCLEX-PN practice test, designed to help prepare new grads for the real exam.
LPN Reciprocity and eNLC
As a member of the original Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC), nurses licensed in other compact states can work in multiple compact states without additional licensure. As of January 2018, the Enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact (eNLC) is in effect, which adds extra protections to the original mandate. LPNs outside of the compact area can apply for a Maryland license by endorsement by providing proof of current license and Verification of Licensure form, submitting a passport-style photo, and completing a criminal background check. Maryland allows foreign-educated LPN equivalents to apply for a license by submitting approval from CGFNS International, Inc. (CGFNS) after they have evaluated the official transcripts and completed a full course-by-course review and proving their English proficiency. For more information on Maryland licensure by endorsement, visit http://mbon.maryland.gov/Pages/licensure-by-endorsement.aspx
The table below lists career information collected by the BLS for licensed practical nurses in Maryland. The table is sorted by total employment, with the largest metropolitan areas listed first.
|Area||Total Employment||Average Hourly Wage||Average Annual Salary|
|Baltimore, Columbia, Towson||6,190||$24.83||$51,640|
|Silver Spring, Frederick, Rockville||2,370||$25.08||$52,170|
|California, Lexington Park||160||$24.11||$50,150|
For those interested in advancing their nursing career, see our Maryland LPN to RN/BSN programs page.
At Hagerstown Community College, LPN students are trained to work in a variety of settings including home health agencies, doctor's offices, hospitals, and long-term care facilities. The PN Program curriculum includes a balance of general nursing studies and nursing skills with clinical and laboratory practices. After successful completion of the 16-month practical nursing program, students are eligible to take the National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN).
Carroll Community College is a public, open-admission college located in Westminster, Maryland, that offers an excellent practical nurse certificate program. Carroll Community College is a learning-centered community, engaging students to prepare them for an ever-changing world as qualified, compassionate nurses.
Anne Arundel Community College's Nursing department has an outstanding reputation and the express goal to prepare excellent practical nurses who are successfully employed in a variety of healthcare environments. Their students practice simulated nursing skills in a college lab with state-of-the-art equipment and have continually exceeded national and state pass-rate averages.
Columbia’s Howard Community College offers an LPN program to fully train nurses to become a valuable part of a healthcare team at hospitals, clinics, and more. The curriculum includes the use of simulation labs, clinical assignments, and other cutting-edge learning techniques.
Cecil College is a comprehensive, open admission, learner-centered institution located in North East, Maryland, with an additional community locations in Elkton, Port Deposit, Rising Sun, Perryville, and Abingdon. Cecil College provides career training, educational transfer options, and continuing education programs for students, ensuing success in whatever educational path they are interested in.
Continued List of All Programs in Maryland
32000 Campus Dr, Salisbury, MD 21804
7200 Sollers Point Rd, Dundalk, MD 21222
8730 Mitchell Rd, La Plata, MD 20646
12401 Willowbrook Rd, Cumberland, MD 21502
2901 Liberty Heights Ave, Baltimore, MD 21215
301 Largo Rd, Kettering, MD 20774
Programs Not Included In Rankings
, , MD
7932 Opossumtown Pike, Frederick, MD 21702
Are we missing your school's program or need to make changes to the information listed? Please contact us.
Additional MD Nursing Resources
- Maryland Board of Nursing 4140 Patterson Avenue Baltimore, MD 21215 Phone: (410) 585-1900
- Maryland Nurses Association 6 Park Center Court, Suite 212 Owings Mills, MD 21117 Phone: (443) 334-5110
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