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LPN to BSN salary: breakdown and influencing factors

More education is perhaps the best way to boost one's earning potential, and licensed practical nurses (LPNs) are often encouraged to continue their training for better earnings. LPNs who earn bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) degrees can become registered nurses (RNs), which typically leads to more robust earnings and advancement potential.

The LPN to BSN salary bump

The vast majority of LPNs have earned nursing diplomas or associate degrees in Nursing (ADNs). By pursuing their BSNs and passing the National Council Licensure Examination, or NCLEX-RN, LPNs advance to RN positions. The LPN to BSN salary boost depends on a number of factors, but according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, RNs earned $26,370 more on average than LPNs in 2014.

Location improves LPN to BSN salary potential

Location is perhaps one of the biggest factors influencing one's ultimate LPN to BSN salary improvement. For instance, RNs working in California are among the highest paid in the country, earning nearly $15,460 more in 2014 than Oregon-based RNs. According to the BLS, the following states and their associated RN salaries in 2014 represent the highest-paying markets in the country:

  • California: $98,400
  • Hawaii: $88,230
  • Massachusetts: $85,770
  • Alaska: $84,740
  • Oregon: $82,940

Certification pays off for nurses

One final major factor that impacts one's LPN to BSN salary hike is certification. While many RNs remain general staff nurses, others become certified to boost their specialization and earning power. Some examples of popular nursing certifications, among others, include:

  • Oncology
  • Pediatrics
  • Cardiology

In order to be certified in any specialty, LPNs turned RNs must typically take additional coursework and pass an exam.

Sources:

http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes291141.htm

http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes292061.htm

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