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Best Online LPN Programs in Arkansas

Looking for a role in a healing profession? See how you can jumpstart a meaningful career as an LPN in Arkansas.

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Author: James Mielke

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If you’re ready to pursue a career as a licensed practical nurse (LPN) in the great state of Arkansas, you’re likely looking for information that can help you navigate the world of nursing education. No doubt you have questions about finding the best program, understanding licensing requirements, and much more. If so, you’ve come to the right place.

Arkansas is home to multiple nursing programs, but finding the school that best aligns with your academic needs, career goals, and personal life can feel daunting. That’s where we come in. The best online LPN programs in Arkansas offer quality training and the flexibility to complete coursework while keeping up with personal and professional obligations.

The best online LPN programs in Arkansas offer the theoretical and practical training you need to secure your licensure, jumpstart your career, and, most importantly, provide excellent and compassionate care to your patients. Throughout this page, we highlight two standout LPN programs, dive into what it takes to earn and keep your LPN license, and share what you can expect regarding earning potential and the Arkansas job market. Keep reading to learn about what the best schools have to offer and how you can begin your journey toward a career in allied healthcare.

Inside Look at LPN Programs Online in Arkansas

The best online LPN programs in Arkansas provide quality instruction, hands-on learning opportunities, and experienced instructors. Finding the best school for you is an important choice. Read on as we highlight two of the state’s best online LPN programs.

Baptist Health College Little Rock

Established in 1920 as Baptist State Hospital, Baptist Health College Little Rock offers multiple academic programs, including a two-semester LPN program. This flexible and affordable program includes campus-based instruction, extensive hands-on learning opportunities, and online coursework for select students.

Throughout this two-semester LPN program, students develop the knowledge and skills to secure licensure and provide competent nursing care. As they progress through academic requirements, they encounter essential courses such as medical-surgical nursing, mental health nursing, nutrition, and anatomy and physiology. Students must complete each course with a minimum grade of 77% to secure their diploma.

Prospective students apply online and must include an official high school or GED transcript. Additionally, applicants must include transcripts from all previously attended colleges or universities along with ACT or TEAS test scores. As one of the top online LPN programs in Arkansas, Baptist Health College Little Rock considers applicants primarily based on past academic achievement.

University of Arkansas Pulaski Tech

Founded in 1945, the University of Arkansas Pulaski Tech is a public technical college that’s home to one of the best online LPN programs in Arkansas. This Little Rock institution serves over 6,000 students and prioritizes the experiential learning vital to an LPN program. Students complete this program in about three semesters.

Throughout this 49- to 54-credit LPN program, students dive into the theoretical foundations of practical nursing while gaining direct experience working with patients in a real-world setting. Students complete a variety of essential courses, including nursing care of adults, nutrition in health and illness, clinical nursing, and nursing care of mothers. Students must hold a 2.0 GPA to secure their diploma.

While hands-on learning is vital in LPN programs, the University of Arkansas Pulaski Tech utilizes online learning opportunities to maximize the program’s flexibility. Students can expect extensive clinical experiences while completing various assignments via email and online message boards.

Arkansas LPN Licensing Information and Requirements

One of the most vital elements of your LPN career is state license. Without it, you can’t practice. In the next section, we highlight some essential things you need to know to secure and maintain your Arkansas LPN license.

Background Check

A state and federal criminal background check ensures that every prospective LPN in Arkansas is fit to take on the responsibilities of an essential healthcare worker. As a result, every prospective LPN must undergo a criminal background check as part of the licensing process.

A background check not only ensures that an LPN complies with state rules and ethical expectations, but it also fosters a sense of patient confidence and promotes patient safety. In short, a background check reviews each applicant’s criminal history and other relevant information.

Education and Training

Education acts as the foundation for LPN licensure, and all LPN candidates in Arkansas must successfully complete an accredited LPN program to secure their licenses. Standout online LPN programs in Arkansas foster a learning environment where students develop knowledge while gaining vital hands-on experience in real-world healthcare settings.

Throughout their program, LPN students cover a wide range of essential topics, from biology and pharmacology to gerontology and interpersonal skills. When searching for the right LPN program, be sure to prioritize schools accredited by the Arkansas State Board of Nursing.

Professional Nursing Examination

As your online LPN program in Arkansas winds down, you’ll spend considerable time preparing for the National Council Licensure Examination for Practical Nurses (NCLEX-PN). The NCLEX-PN exam is one of the final steps to securing your license, acting as the ticket to your healthcare career.

This comprehensive, multiple-choice test scrutinizes your nursing knowledge while simultaneously challenging your critical thinking skills. Requiring about two hours, the test includes as many as 200 questions, covering a wide range of information including standard nursing procedures, nursing ethics, pharmacology, and the ins and outs of patient care.

Renewal of Licensure & Continuing Education

After securing your Arkansas LPN license, you’ll need to renew it every two years. The license expires on the last day of your birth month, every other year. To remain in compliance with the Arkansas State Board of Nursing, LPNs must complete 15 contact hours of continuing education. These classes help ensure that LPNs continue to learn and keep up with new developments in the field. Continuing education course topics vary, covering everything from comprehensive acute stroke care to elder care. Be sure to leave enough time to complete all necessary requirements while preparing for any unplanned administrative hiccups.

Career and Salary Insights for Arkansas LPNs

While job growth rate for LPNs in Arkansas dips slightly below the national average, employment data shows that LPNs can still anticipate an increase of nearly 8% by 2030. With an LPN workforce approaching 12,000 employees, LPN graduates in Arkansas can rest easy knowing that they’ll see over 1,000 job openings in the state per year.

In addition to a growing job market, future LPNs can anticipate a median annual salary that’s right around the state’s average of $48,570. Still, that number fluctuates based on location, experience, and area of practice. Generally, LPNs tend to make more in Arkansas’s bigger cities, including Little Rock and Fayetteville. Experienced LPNs in Arkansas can earn more than $57,380 annually.

For licensed LPNs and nursing students wanting to expand their career options and earning potential, it’s worthwhile to consider further training and education. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, registered nurses earn a median annual salary of over $81,000 — roughly $35,000 more per year than Arkansas-based LPNs.

New Jobs
Job Growth RateAvg. Annual Openings

Source: Projections Central

Location10th PercentileMedian90th Percentile
Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers, AR-MO$39,480$49,300$59,600
Fort Smith, AR-OK$38,230$47,480$54,240
Hot Springs, AR$36,970$45,330$51,810
Jonesboro, AR$32,240$42,640$52,240
Little Rock-North Little Rock-Conway, AR$38,620$47,510$59,190
Pine Bluff, AR$37,520$48,320$60,440

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Resources for Arkansas LPN Students and Professionals

  • Arkansas Center for Nursing: The Arkansas Center for Nursing is a workforce development nonprofit with the mission of promoting health and wellness within the state through nursing education, competent practice, and leadership. In addition to serving as a statewide clearinghouse for nursing employment data, this group promotes diversity within the profession.
  • Arkansas Nurses Association: The leading professional organization for nurses in Arkansas, the Arkansas Nurses Association not only advocates for the professional development of its licensed members but it also works toward expanding access to quality healthcare throughout the state. This site also posts job opportunities, industry news, and other vital information.
  • Arkansas Nursing Students’ Association: The Arkansas Nursing Students’ Association is an essential organization dedicated to supporting the state’s nursing students throughout their academic and professional journeys. Additionally, this group promotes professional development while advocating for accessible, high-quality healthcare.
  • Arkansas State Board of Nursing: The Arkansas State Board of Nursing is your hub for everything LPN licensure-related. From license renewals to criminal background checks, if you become an Arkansas-based LPN, you’ll become familiar with this site.
  • Beginner’s Guide to the NCLEX: Passing the NCLEX-PN exam is perhaps the most vital element in your journey to becoming a healthcare professional. Through this page, you’ll gain study strategies, resources, and expert exam advice to help you ace the test on your first go.
  • Scholarships and Online Resources for Nursing Students: This page is dedicated to the financial needs of nursing students. From scholarship information to an exhaustive list of online resources for nursing students, this guide will prove beneficial throughout your academic journey.