How to Become a Licensed Practical Nurse in Illinois

Illinois map

Candidates who would like to pursue a career in the healthcare industry, more specifically, as licensed practical nurses, must complete a state-accredited course at a tertiary institution.

In order to meet the education and training requirements for this course, candidates have two options.

The first option would be to attend and graduate from an accredited nursing program that meets Illinois state requirements, and the second option is to attend an out-of-state institution and obtain education, training, and licensure through this institution, provided that it meets Illinois requirements.

Once a student graduates, the student may be eligible to sit for the national exam and gain licensure.

5 Licensed Practical Nurse Schools in Illinois

The following schools offer an LPN certificate or diploma course in the state of Illinois.

1. Rend Lake College

Rend Lake College Logo

Rend Lake College is located in Ina, Illinois.

The school offers a certificate course in Practical Nursing.

The course runs over two semesters and has a total of 37 credit hours.

Students are required to complete two semesters of listed Associate Degree coursework as well as complete a course in NURS 1212.

The school’s nursing program is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN).

The course aims to provide the fundamental knowledge to provide nursing care for patients, become familiar with pharmacological measures to ensure proper administration of medication, and have a critical thinking ability to be able to respond to any situation.

Tuition and fees for in-state students are $9,734.00.

Upon completion of the course, students are eligible to sit for the national examination.

2. Southeastern Illinois College

Southeastern Illinois College Logo

Southeastern Illinois College is located in Harrisburg, Illinois.

The school offers a Practical Nursing Program.

The full-time program is offered from Monday through Friday for 11 months and consists of 36 credit hours.

Students must complete 16 credit hours of Pre-Requisite Courses prior to applying for this course.

The part-time course begins every fall and runs over six semesters in the fall, spring, and summer months over two academic years.

The school intake program only allows for 60 applicants for the traditional program and 20 applications for the part-time program.

Students must maintain a minimum grade of C in all course materials to successfully complete the program.

The total estimated cost for this program, including other fees, is $10,759.50.

3. Shawnee Community College

Shawnee Community College Logo

Shawnee Community College is located in Ullin, Illinois.

The school offers a Practical Nursing (PN) certificate program with a minimum of 50 credit hours.

There are two options; full-time, which runs over 11 months (three semesters), or part-time, which runs over 24 months.

The program is comprised of theoretical coursework and clinical experience.

Upon successful completion of the course, students may sit for the NCLEX-PN Examination for Practical Nurses.

The approximate tuition for the program is $8,700.00, which includes tuition, fees, books, uniform, equipment, and licensure fees.

4. Elgin Community College

Elgin Community College Logo

Elgin Community College is located in Elgin, Illinois.

The school offers an associate degree LPN course which consists of 45 credit hours and runs over two years.

The course combines theory, lab work, and clinical experience to offer a holistic approach to teaching nursing.

In addition, the course aims to prepare students with the required skills to tackle everyday problems in the field of nursing and tend to patients using techniques and approaches learned through the course material.

Upon successful completion of the course, students may sit for the national examination.

Tuition for this course is:

  • In-district: $5,805
  • In-state: $19,575
  • Out-of-state: $19,575

5. Sauk Valley Community College

Sauk Valley Community College Logo

Sauk Valley Community College is located in Dixon, Illinois.

.The school offers an LPN training program which consists of 43 credit hours.

The program starts in the fall and runs over three semesters.

The course work is comprised of theory and clinical experience.

Students are required to maintain a minimum course grade of C in all course materials to successfully pass this program.

Upon successful completion of the course, students may sit for the national examination.

Tuition for this course is:

  • In-district: $7,461.00
  • In-state: $16,792.00
  • Out-of-state: $18,598.00

Licensed Practical Nurse Schools in Illinois – Summary Table

Top 5 Schools in Illinois

School NameAddress
Rend Lake College468 North Ken Gray Pkwy, Ina, IL 62846
Southeastern Illinois College3575 College Rd, Harrisburg, IL 62946
Shawnee Community College8364 Shawnee College Rd, Ullin, IL 62992
Elgin Community College1700 Spartan Dr, Elgin, IL 60123
Sauk Valley Community College173 IL-2, Dixon, IL 61021


The average salary for this position in the state of Illinois may differ slightly, depending on the facility that you are employed at, your current level of experience, and the type of program that you graduated from.

On average, candidates may expect an entry-level salary of $42,840.

Candidates with some experience in the field may expect a median salary of $51,974 and, on the high end, a salary of $63,129.

Annual Salary Range:

Average Salary of Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN)s in Illinois

City NameSalary
* Salary information last updated 2024

Regional Salary in Illinois

RegionEmployedAvg. Annual SalaryAvg. Hourly PayTop 10% Annual SalaryBottom 10% Annual Salary
Bloomington, IL210$55,770$26.81$68,200$46,580
Carbondale-Marion, IL500$48,940$23.53$57,410$39,570
Champaign-Urbana, IL230$55,350$26.61$63,230$46,880
Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI10,880$62,410$30.01$73,260$50,530
Danville, IL100$55,730$26.8$64,400$46,410
Decatur, IL190$56,890$27.35$70,960$46,590
Kankakee, IL220$57,240$27.52$65,080$47,750
Peoria, IL750$55,270$26.57$64,150$46,870
Rockford, IL530$57,190$27.5$64,430$49,130
Springfield, IL540$52,220$25.11$62,080$45,370
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Licensed Practical and Licensed Vocational Nurses, OCC Code 29-2061, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can a registered LPN start IV in the state of Illinois?

There is nothing in The Illinois Nurse Practice Act that directly mentions or references LPNs providing IV treatment.

However, there is some guidance in the rules that does provide information regarding LPNs providing certain types of IV treatment.

Can LPNs draw blood in the state of Illinois?

Yes, LPNs are authorized, according to the rules and regulations of the industry, to draw any type of blood specimens, on all types of patients, in any type of care facility or setting.

Are LPNs permitted to work as CNAs in the state of Illinois?


Both a registered nurse (RN), as well as a licensed practical nurse (LPN), may work without having to be on the registry, provided that they have a valid and current Illinois license and provided that the license is in good standing.

May I challenge the LPN board in Illinois?

Challenging the board in Illinois references the fact that a candidate does not have to take the NCLEX-PN exam provided that they are able to provide the board with sufficient evidence of hands-on experience in the industry.

How long does it take to become a licensed practical nurse in Illinois?

Certificate and diploma courses can take anywhere from one year up to two years to complete.

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