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What Education Do You Need to Become a Vocational Nurse?

There are many reasons to shift into nursing when finding a job. According to, the average licensed vocational nurse makes about $24.73 per hour. The highest percentile makes up to $31.56 per hour.

Nurses are an essential part of the healthcare system, and there are always positions to be filled. They handle things such as intake, patient observation, and more. You could say that hospitals would fall apart without them.

Here’s everything you need to know about the path to becoming a vocational nurse.

Vocational Nurse Responsibilities

There are two main types of nurses you can become: registered and vocational nurses.

A registered nurse is someone who has completed at least an associate degree in nursing. They may have a bachelor’s degree and meet certain nursing standards to gain their license.

In contrast, a vocational nurse only needs an associate degree in the field and to pass a licensure exam. They work under a registered nurse or some other kind of medical practitioner.

Nursing Requirements

One of the benefits of vocational nursing education is that it won’t take as long as becoming a registered nurse. However, there is still a process before you can start applying for jobs.

Diploma or GED Certificate

First of all, going to school is essential to obtain a basic education. This can come in the form of a high school diploma or GED.

If you’re a student, you need to complete your high school education. However, you can still take GED classes and pass the test as an adult.

Both classes and the test are available online. The cost will vary depending on where you take it, but expect to pay for either individual tests or for the entire GED battery.

LVN Training Program

The next step is to complete your vocational nurse training. This happens at either a public or private institution’s LVN training program. These programs are offered in a variety of formats, including online, in-person, and part-time.

Keep in mind that different programs have different requirements. Research your options before sending out applications.


Your final step before you can become a vocational nurse is to pass the National Council Licensing Examination (NCLEX). More specifically, vocational nurses take the NCLEX-PN. It costs $200 to take and is offered at designated testing sites.

This test focuses on four areas of practice, including:

  • Basic care and comfort
  • Reduction of risk
  • Physiological adaptation
  • Pharmacological therapy

To pass the test, you must answer at least 75 questions correctly.

Receive the Right Education

The path to becoming a vocational nurse hinges heavily on receiving the right education. However, it can be difficult to find the right program in your area that meets your needs. Luckily for you, there are plenty of online and hands-on healthcare training options available.

Healthcare Career College is one such place in South Los Angeles, CA that offers programs for vocational nurses, physical therapy aides, and more. Contact us to book an information session and apply online for our next semester.