LPN Programs in Wisconsin

Last Updated/Verified: Nov 29, 2020

The state of Wisconsin provides ample opportunity for aspiring licensed practical nurses (LPNs) to complete their education and find employment after graduation.  An aging population has led to an increase in jobs across the country, and in Wisconsin has led to aspiring nurses to seek state-approved schools for licensure. There are several community colleges, vocational programs, and private schools across the state of Wisconsin that offer LPN programs. LPNs in Wisconsin earn approximately $21.77 per hour, which equates to an average annual salary of $45,290. This is roughly $1,760 per year less than the national average.

Details on Wisconsin LPN Schools & Classes

With several practical nursing programs around the state to choose from, nursing students in Wisconsin have several options to consider. Many practical nursing programs can be completed in one to two years depending on whether a student attends classes on a full- or part-time basis.

A typical course load for an LPN program in Wisconsin includes classroom and clinical learning experiences. Coursework may include the following:

  • Introduction to Clinical Care Practice
  • General Anatomy & Physiology
  • Nursing Fundamentals
  • Nursing Skills
  • Nursing Pharmacology
  • Clinical Care Across the Lifespan
  • Developmental Psychology


One of the most important criteria when choosing a practical nursing program should be program accreditation. A program’s accreditation signifies its high quality and is held to high standards through agencies such as the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing. Nursing students in Wisconsin can check with the Wisconsin Board of Nursing for a listing of state-approved practical nursing programs.

Admission Requirements

Before applying to any LPN program, it is critical to make sure you meet or exceed all entrance requirements. While specific entrance requirements may fluctuate slightly from school to school, they often include:

  • Completion of high school or GED program (including transcripts)
  • Cumulative GPA of 2.5 in all relevant coursework including prerequisite courses
  • Completion of all prerequisite courses, such as college-level Math, English I and Basic Physiology & Human Anatomy
  • Standardized Test Scores, such as the ACT or TEAS V exam
  • Personal interview
  • Background check, drug screen and proof of required immunizations
  • Submission of completed application and associated fees

Tuition and Costs

Cost can be an important factor to consider when choosing a practical nursing program. All schools will have their own unique set of fees, so it is important to understand the full range of costs associated with your education before you apply. In general, costs for a practical nursing program include tuition, mandatory college and course fees and supplies (including textbooks). In addition, students should factor in the costs of housing and/or commuting to classes into the total price tag. Financial aid, loans, and scholarships are options for those who need assistance covering the costs of their LPN program.

To provide an example, the tuition cost for the 2-year Associate Degree Nursing program at Southwest Tech is estimated around $11,000. This does not include additional materials costs, which are estimated anywhere from $250 - $2,500 per semester depending on coursework.

Wisconsin LPN Licensing Requirements

To become an LPN in Wisconsin, individuals must be complete a state-approved nursing program. Once that is complete, he or she must sit and pass the NCLEX-PN exam—the required state-test to show proficiency.

In order to receive state licensure, the applicant must submit an application to the state of Wisconsin, including:

  • Official transcript from state-approved nursing program
  • Proof of passing score of the NCLEX exam
  • Fingerprints submitted digitally to the state
  • Authorization for release of FBI information form to check criminal history

Wisconsin LPN licenses expire April 30th of every odd-numbered year and require nurses to complete a Nursing Workforce Survey and Report State of Primary Residency form with the state in order to renew.

NCLEX Exam Information

Before a practical nursing program graduate can receive licensure, they must first sit for and pass the NCLEX-PN examination. LPN program coursework should adequately prepare students for this important exam. To read more about the NCLEX-PN exam, please visit our overview page here. In addition, the NCLEX-PN practice test is available to help students prepare and study.

LPN Reciprocity and NLC

Wisconsin is a member of the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC), which allows nurses to work in multiple states that are in the compact area without additional licensing. The LPN does, however, have to register Wisconsin as a primary state of residency. LPNs can apply for licensure by endorsement by submitting proof of current licensure and having passed the NCLEX.

In addition, applicants must also submit:

  • Fingerprints submitted digitally to the state
  • Authorization for release of FBI information for criminal background check

Wisconsin allows foreign applicants with LPN equivalent background to apply for licensure in the state, but he or she must first submit approval from the Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools (CGFNS) following a completed course-by-course transcript review and English proficiency testing results. The applicant must also sit for and pass the NCLEX exam if he or she hasn’t already.

LPN Salary in Wisconsin By Area

The table below lists career information retrieved from the Bureau of Labor Statistics for licensed practical nurses in Wisconsin. The table is sorted by total employment, with the largest metropolitan areas listed first.

AreaTotal EmploymentAverage Hourly WageAverage Annual Salary
Milwaukee, Waukesha, West Allis2,280$22.96$47,760
Green Bay610$20.49$42,620
Eau Claire290$20.39$42,420
Janesville, Beloit170$22.14$46,040
La Crosse, Onalaska170$21.55$44,830
Oshkosh, Neenah150$21.68$45,090

For those interested in advancing their nursing career, see our Wisconsin LPN to RN/BSN programs page.

LPN Programs in Wisconsin

Fox Valley Technical College
1825 N. Bluemound Drive, Appleton, WI 54912
(920) 735-5600 Visit Homepage
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Herzing University - Brookfield
15895 W. Bluemound Road, Brookfield, WI 53005
(262) 457-7624 Visit Homepage
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Herzing University - Kenosha
5800 7th Ave., Kenosha, WI 53140
(262) 293-5475 Visit Homepage
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Lakeshore Technical College
1290 North Ave, Cleveland, WI 53015
(920) 693-1000 Visit Homepage
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Northeast Wisconsin Technical College
2740 W Mason St, Green Bay, WI 54307
(920) 498-5400 Visit Homepage
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Are we missing your school's program or need to make changes to the information listed? Please contact us.

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