CEU Requirements for LPNs

Many professions, particularly those that require licensure, have additional continuing education requirements for practitioners. Licensed Professional Nurses (LPNs) are among those who may be expected to demonstrate ongoing training and education for license renewal. As the licensing requirements vary by state, so do the recertification and continuing education requirements. In order to be certain of your state's continuing education requirements, you will need to check with your state licensing board.

  1. Contact Hours

    • Most states that require continuing education for LPNs set expectations for a minimum number of contact hours. The number of contact hours you can earn will be defined by the specific continuing education program you pursue. In many cases, there is a direct correlation between the number of hours you spend in a course and the number of contact hours you can earn. A three hour seminar, for example, will likely be equivalent to three contact hours. Online courses and independent study courses will have a pre-determined set of contact hours associated with them, regardless of how long it actually takes you to complete the course.

      The number of contact hours you need will vary state to state. Arkansas, for example, requires 15 contact hours every two years, whereas California requires 30 contact hours over that same period of time. Some states even specify topics for contact hours. Florida requires hours in HIV training, domestic violence and the prevention of medical errors.


    • Some states will count nursing practice hours towards relicensure. Wyoming, for example, considers 1600 practice hours in the previous five years or 500 hours in the previous two years as an adequate equivalent to formal continuing education courses. In Wyoming, it is also possible to substitute an exam for continuing education requirements.

    Continuing Education Formats

    • One way to achieve continuing education credits is to attend a formal workshop, seminar or class that is run by an approved professional provider. Most workshops will include, in their description, the number of continuing education credits that are available and recognized by the state licensing body. If you are unsure if the credits are approved, you can contact the workshop provider or your state licensing board for verification. Some states will also accept online courses and independent study as approved continuing education options.

    No Requirements

    • There are some states that do not require continuing education for relicensure. As of 2010, Arizona, Connecticut, Colorado, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Maine, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Virginia, Vermont, Washington, and Wisconsin had no continuing education requirements for LPNs.

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