The program equips graduates with the knowledge and skill set to administer safe, ethical, patient-centered nursing care in traditional and alternative health care settings. The Practical Nurse (PN) role within the nursing process is taught through classroom learning, simulated client care, and instructor-supervised clinical experiences in health care settings.
Employment in this field typically requires successful completion of the NCLEX-PN licensing exam.
The mission of the Dakota County Technical College Practical Nursing Program is to provide a program of theory and practice in a supportive environment in which students will develop knowledge, skills and behavior essential for success as a licensed practical nurse.
The Dakota County Technical College Practical Nursing Program believes that Practical Nursing is grounded in the biological, psychological, sociological, and spiritual sciences practiced under the supervision of a registered nurse or other qualified health care professional. Nursing is devoted to promoting, maintaining, and restoring the health of individuals as well as promoting a peaceful, dignified death. Licensed Practical Nurses (LPN’s) care for diverse individuals across the lifespan in a variety of inpatient and community based settings by providing safe, culturally sensitive, individualized patient/relationship centered care and by participating as a member of the health care team.
LPN’s recognize that teamwork and interprofessional collaboration among health care professionals is critical to delivering safe, quality patient care. Ongoing quality improvement activities are performed in concert with other members of the health care team. Implementing established evidence based care, skills in informatics, and patient care technology is essential to the delivery of quality, safe, patient-centered care.
Professional values guide interactions with individuals, families and the health care team. LPN’s demonstrate professional behaviors by exhibiting accountability for their actions, meeting the health care needs of patients, and assuming legal responsibility for the care they provide. LPN’s demonstrate professional identity by upholding their commitment to the public and by adhering to an established code of ethics.
The major roles of the LPN includes providing nursing care and participating as a member of the nursing profession. As providers of care, LPN’s contribute to the promotion of wellness; use nursing judgment in the identification of current and emerging patient problems and function as advocates for individual patients. In addition, LPN’s manage care of the individual patient through the use of established protocols and evidence based care incorporating the nursing process and caring as essential tools. LPN’s work ithin an established plan of care to assign other LPN’s and assign and monitor unlicensed assistive personnel tasks/activities to provide safe, quality patient care. LPN’s provide health care information and reinforce education provided by other members of the health care team to achieve positive clinical outcomes.
The program is approved by the Minnesota Board of Nursing. Graduates are eligible to apply to take the licensing examination administered by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing.
Update to accreditation status (June 2023)
The National League for Nursing Commission for Nursing Education Accreditation (NLN CNEA) Board of Commissioners met on June 14-15, 2023 and placed the Dakota County Technical College Practical/Vocational Nursing Program on probationary status for a period of one year (June 2023 – June 2024). Full information regarding the probationary status is provided on the NLN CNEA website, under the June 2023 Board of Commissioners actions.
Background Study Requirement
Background studies are required for health care providers with direct patient contact. All students must pass a background study prior to the clinical courses.
To be considered for admissions into our Pre-Nursing or Practical Nursing Diploma programs, students must complete the TEAS Exam and have a college cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 2.50 or higher (those with no prior college coursework will be considered as a Pre-Nursing student with the expectation that a 2.50 GPA or higher will be achieved).
Complete the TEAS Exam
The following pre-requisites must be met and proof submitted in order for a student to move from Pre-Nursing to a student in the Practical Nursing Diploma program:
- Completion of DCTC’s HEAL 1150 Health Career Math* or an equivalent medical dosages course from another college with a "C" or better.
- Completion of DCTC's HEAL 1101 Anatomy & Physiology or an equivalent course from another college with a "C" or better.
- Completion of DCTCS’s HEAL 1060 Nursing Assistant course or from another state-approved nursing assistant training program.
- Completion of DCTC's PSYC 1350 Lifespan Development or an equivalent course from another college with a "C" or better.
- Pass the state-approved Certified Nursing Assistant examination.
- Be listed on the Minnesota Nursing Assistant Registry
- Current CPR for the Professional Rescuer certification/card from the American Heart Association or American Red Cross.
- Complete all qualifiers and admissions requirements by June 1st (for Fall Semester) OR December 1 (for Spring Semester).
- Have complete admissions file and documentation reviewed and approved by the DCTC Nursing Department.
- Licensed practical nurses
- Licensed vocational nurses
- Practical/vocational nursing students