If you are interested in helping to provide medical care to others, consider majoring in Practical Nursing and Nursing Assistants.
A Nurse Assistant works under the direction of registered nurses proving basic care, monitoring patients, and reporting progress to doctors. You will take classes in clinical nursing, pharmacology, biology, anatomy and physiology, medical terminology, and chemistry to learn how to teach others how to care for family members, assist in childbirth, and collect medical samples.
Students interested in this field typically major in Licensed Practical Nurse Training, or Nursing Assistant.
This year's Best Practical Nursing & Nursing Assistants Schools ranking compares 41 of them to identify the best overall programs in the country. Explore this or one of our many other custom practical nursing rankings further below.
Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.
Practical Nursing and Nursing Assistant graduates are responsible for providing day-to-day care to patients, making strong interpersonal skills a necessity. You should enjoy working with others, but have compassion and consideration for patients who are sick and injured. It is also important to be detail oriented because you will be responsible for observing changes in patients and reporting back to registered nurses or doctors.
Graduates in this field work full time in hospitals, nursing homes, and other medical centers that require basic health services. Since patients need medical care 24/7, Practical Nursing and Nursing Assistants will be required to work nights and on weekends and holidays. Sometimes shifts may be longer than a standard 8-hour workday.
In order to become a Practical Nurse and Nursing Assistant, students must complete a certification program, and then become licensed by the state. Although some schools offer a bachelor's degree program, it is not necessary.
New students will need to have completed high school or a GED program and each school will have their own minimum GPA and SAT/ACT test requirements. In addition to these basic practical nursing and nursing assistants program qualifications, to serve in some practical nursing careers, special certification may be required outside of your degree.
There are many different practical nursing degree levels. You can spend many years getting as high as a in practical nursing and nursing assistants to something that takes less time like a . The type of practical nursing degree you choose will determine how long it takes to get your diploma.
|Degree||Credit Requirements||Typical Program Length|
|Associate Degree||60-70 credits||2 years|
|Bachelor’s Degree||120 credits||4 years|
|Master’s Degree||50-70 credits||1-3 years|
|Doctorate||Program required coursework including thesis or dissertation||At least 4 years|
An associate degree is the most common level of education achieved by those in careers related to practical nursing, with approximately 10.2% of workers getting one. See the the most common levels of education for practical nursing workers below.
|Level of Education||Percentage of Workers|
|Some College Courses||25.1%|
|High School Diploma||21.6%|
|Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree)||13.0%|
|Less than a High School Diploma||2.7%|
The education level required is different depending on the practical nursing career you are seeking.
Practical Nursing and Nursing Assistants work in a variety of medical locations from hospitals to nursing homes to extended care facilities. T hey are responsible for checking vitals, changing bandages, and providing basic medical care to patients. Certified and licensed students should find good job opportunities after graduation.
Want a job when you graduate with your practical nursing degree? Practical Nursing & Nursing Assistants careers are expected to grow 11.7% between 2016 and 2026.
The following options are some of the most in-demand careers related to practical nursing and nursing assistants.
|Occupation Name||Projected Jobs||Expected Growth|
|Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses||813,400||12.3%|
Recently graduated practical nursing and nursing assistants students earned an average of $36,875 in 2019-2020. Earnings can range from as low as $9,487 to as high as $59,460. As you might expect, salaries for practical nursing graduates vary depending on the level of education that was acquired.
Salaries for practical nursing and nursing assistants graduates can vary widely by the occupation you choose as well. The following table shows the top highest paying careers practical nursing grads often go into.
|Occupation Name||Median Average Salary|
|Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses||$47,050|
With over 1,996 different practical nursing degree programs to choose from, finding the best fit for you can be a challenge. Fortunately you have come to the right place. We have analyzed all of these schools to come up with hundreds of unbiased practical nursing school rankings to help you with this.
Learn about other programs related to Practical Nursing & Nursing Assistants that might interest you.
One of 30 majors within the Health Professions area of study, Practical Nursing & Nursing Assistants has other similar majors worth exploring.
|Licensed Practical/Vocational Nurse Training||44,900|
|Nursing Assistant/Aide and Patient Care Assistant/Aide||34,557|
|Other Practical Nursing, Vocational Nursing and Nursing Assistants||4,817|
|Related Major||Annual Graduates|
|Health & Medical Administrative Services||89,359|
|Allied Health & Medical Assisting Services||84,492|
|Allied Health Professions||82,308|
More about our data sources and methodologies.