General Information

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Essential Functions

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This program is designed for training capable individuals who desire to become Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN). The Practical Nursing program enables the student to obtain the skills and knowledge leading to employment in the health care field. Topics related to safe, knowledgeable, and efficient nursing care are included. The program is approved by the Alabama Board of Nursing. Graduates are eligible to apply to take the state licensing examination (NCLEX-PN) for licensure as Practical Nurses. Graduation from the program however, does not guarantee Board of Nursing approval to take the NCLEX-PN licensing examination. See Standards of Conduct in the Registered Nursing section of the Northwest-Shoals Community College catalog.

The Practical Nursing Program is three semesters in length. Students are admitted to the program - Fall Semester.

The admission criteria is currently under review and is subject to change.

Students are admitted according to the following priority:

  1. First time students
  2. Readmissions
  3. Transfer students with previous nursing education.


Minimum admission standards for the Practical Nursing Program include:

  1. Unconditional admission to the college.
  2. receipt of completed application for the Practical Nursing Program by April 1 for the fall admission annually.
  3. A minimum of 2.5 cumulative GPA on all college work attempted if a student has previous college work.
  4. A minimum of 2.5 high school GPA for students without prior college work (GED acceptable in lieu of high school transcript).
  5. Eligibility for English 101 and Math 116, MTH 100 (Intermediate College Algebra) or higher as determined by college policy.
  6. Good standing with the college.
  7. A score of 76 or higher on the COMPASS Reading Examination (or related ACT Reading Score of 17 or higher) current within three years of application deadline.
  8. Meeting the essential function or technical standards required for nursing (See Essential Functions in Registered Nursing section of the Northwest-Shoals Community College catalog.

Admission to the PN program is competitive. Meeting minimum requirements does not guarantee acceptance.

The College reserves the right to adjust requirements or use additional criteria to determine admission.

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