Top LPN Programs in Missouri

Last Updated/Verified: September 15th, 2023

The state of Missouri has a wide array of options for prospective nursing students looking to become entry-level LPNs.

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As the demand for nurses grows, graduates of nursing programs will find LPN jobs to be plentiful. Students can find certificate programs and degree programs in nursing that offer affordable tuition and flexible options.

LPN’s in Missouri Quick Facts

Throughout Missouri, one will find many opportunities in nursing. St. Louis offers the most promising areas for nurses to reside whether for training or jobs. Those living in the outskirts will not have a problem finding programs and employers that meet their needs as well.

Overview of LPN Schools in Missouri

Missouri has more than 30 board-approved nursing programs to choose from that offer part-time or full-time and day, evening, or weekend options. Students can typically complete enough courses to become an LPN with a year.

LPN programs cover the following topics:

  •  Nursing ethics
  • Science
  • Patient care
  • Nursing skills
  • Infection control
  • Specialization course in gerontology and pediatrics


When considering an LPN program, prospective students must ensure that it is accredited, whether regionally by the Higher Learning Commission (HCL), nationally by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN), or both. In Missouri, nursing students should attend courses that are approved by the Missouri Board of Nursing.

LPN Admissions Requirements

While LPN admission requirements vary from program to program, the basics are primarily the same in Missouri. Potential students should contact interested institutions to verify all information. Most programs will require at least the following:

  •  Must be at least 18 years of age
  • High school diploma, GED, or equivalent
  • Completion of prerequisite courses
  • GPA of 2.0
  • Proficient score on TEAS aptitude exam
  • Complete a criminal background check
  • Pass a drug screening test

Tuition & Costs

Missouri offers affordable options for students looking to begin a career in nursing. Many schools offer grants, scholarships, and other financial aid to help students achieve their goals. The cost to complete program requirements to become an LPN varies from school to school. For example, in-district tuition is only $97/credit hour at Crowder College.

LPN Licensing Requirements in Missouri

In Missouri, the LPN practical nursing program is a fast way to become a nurse. Earning an LPN degree full-time takes one year, after which graduates can immediately apply for licensure.

Checklist to become a Missouri LPN:

  1. Complete LPN program from a board-approved school
  2. Apply for licensure with the Missouri Board of Nursing
  3. Pass the NCLEX-PN exam

Missouri-licensed RNs and LPNs are required to renew their licenses every two years. LPNs are not required to complete contact hours for renewal.


Graduates of an LPN course who are applying for licensure in Missouri must pass the NCLEX-PN exam, which is administered by the National Council Licensure Examination. The exam’s content covers five main categories including safe and effective nursing care environment, safety and infection control, psychosocial integrity, and physiological integrity. A passing grade is required to become a licensed nurse.

LPN Reciprocity

LPNs entering Missouri from other states can become licensed through endorsement. Candidates must show proof of licensing in another state. Individuals entering Missouri from outside the US must complete the Commission of Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools (CGFNS) evaluation before taking the licensure exam.

LPN Salaries in Missouri

Missouri Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN) make an average annual income of $44,252, which is 9% lower than the national average of $48,820. Missouri LPNs make an average of 7,125 in overtime per year.

The average salaries for LPNs in Missouri’s major metropolitan areas according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) are as follows:

  1. Kansas City: $47,930
  2. St. Louis: $48,120
  3. Springfield: $43,620
  4. Columbia: $44,640
  5. Joplin: $41,150


In Missouri, salaries are similar but tend to be higher in the St. Louis area. Other factors can affect salaries including years of experience, education, and nursing field. Nurses who specialize in medical, surgical, long-term care facilities, and similar healthcare areas may earn more. Opportunities for higher salaries are often offered to those who work weekend and night shifts.

Job Outlook for LPNs in Missouri

Missouri is a place that is impacted by the increasing demand for nurses just as most other states. Along with an aging population and healthcare issues, nursing professionals are greatly needed. As such, students who desire to focus their careers in nursing will be pleasantly surprised. The training opportunities and places to get employment are endless.

Many nursing programs in Missouri can be complete in a year. Once graduates obtain a license to be an LPN, job placement through many schools is well above the national average. Some programs boast a 100% placement rate.

In the U.S., the job outlook for Licensed Practical Nurses and Licenses Vocational Nurses is estimated to increase by 9% by 2029. Missouri currently has 14,770 licensed LPNs with a location quotient of 1.13, which is higher than the national average for employment distribution in the area. In Missouri, the number of jobs for LPNs is projected to grow by 7% from 2014 to 2024.

Top LPN Schools in Missouri


Three Rivers College

2080 3 River Blvd
Poplar Bluff, MO 63901

Three Rivers College offers a 1-year pathway to a Practical Nurse Certificate. Students can attend courses at convenient locations in Poplar Bluff and Sikeston. After completion of 55 credits, students apply for licensure so that they can work as an LPN. The program is ACEN-accredited. This college consistently shows a 100% pass rate on the CLEX exam.

Crowder College

601 Laclede Ave
Neosho, MO 64850

Students attending Crowder College can receive a Practical Nurse Certificate in two semesters. This program does not require college prerequisites. The class size is small with 1 instructor per 8 students, so participants will get individualized attention. All nursing programs are accredited by the ACEN.

St. Louis Community College

3221 McKelvey Rd
Bridgeton, MO 63044

St. Louis Community College offers flexible pathways in nursing. Students must complete 66-78 credits to obtain an Associate Degree in Applied Science. Graduates have the option of licensing as an LPN or RN. The nursing program is accredited by the ACEN.

Ozarks Technical Community College

1001 E Chestnut Expy
Springfield, MO 65802

The Practical Nursing Certificate (LPN) Program at Ozarks Technical Community College prepares students looking to get licensed and employed in the nursing field. Students complete 49 credits, after which they are qualified to take the NCLEX-PN exam. Students have had a 100% pass rate for the exam. The college has recently changed its Health Sciences department to better align with health education.

Webster University

470 E Lockwood Ave
Webster Groves, MO 63119

Webster University offers higher-level education options for those looking for advanced careers in nursing. Students who receive a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree can go on to become licensed as an RN. Some courses may qualify students to take the NCLEX-PN exam to become an LPN while still completed the program.

Lincoln University

820 Chestnut St
Jefferson City, MO 65101

Becoming a staff nurse can be accomplished with the Associate of Applied Science Nursing Program offered at Lincoln University. LPN students are accepted in the fall and complete 40 credit hours to become eligible for licensure. The program is ACEN-accredited with a 100% job placement rate.

Cox College

1423 N Jefferson Ave.
Springfield, Mo 65802

Cox College offers an ACEN-accredited Associate of Science in Nursing (ASN) Program for students desiring to earn a degree. Graduates have the option of becoming licensed as an LPN or RN. Students have the option of taking courses at their Springfield or Monett campus during the day, evenings, and weekends.

Southeast Health College of Nursing & Health Sciences

2001 William St
Cape Girardeau, MO 63703

The Associates of Applied Science in Nursing Program allows prospective students to pursue a career as a Licensed Practical Nurse or a Registered Nurse. Successful completion of all coursework qualifies graduates to take the NCLEX exam to become a licensed nurse. Clinical studies occur at Southeast Hospital, which was awarded Nursing Magnet Status.

Missouri State University-West Plains

2715, 128 Garfield Ave
West Plains, MO 65775

Missouri State University also has an Associates of Science in Nursing (ASN) Degree Program. Students complete 66 credit hours to receive a degree and become eligible for licensing. At an average of 15 students, class sizes remain small. This college is ACEN-accredited.

Southwest Baptist University

Southwest Baptist University
1600 University Avenue
Bolivar, MO 65613

Southwest Baptist University is a faith-based institution that offers nursing programs. The Associate of Science in Nursing prepares students to become licensed nurses. Those not meeting the prerequisite requirements can complete them through SBU and receive up to $500/semester in tuition credits for use while pursuing an associate degree. Students have the option of becoming licensed as an LPN and RN.

Additional Resources

Explore the following resources for more information on becoming an LPN in the state of Missouri

Missouri Board of Nursing

3605 Missouri Blvd
Jefferson City, MO 65109

Missouri Nurses Association

3340 American Ave F
Jefferson City, MO 65109