Nursing boards in most states mandate LVN (Licensed Vocational Nurse) CEU (Continuing Education Unit) as a condition of licensure renewal for nurses. Only 13 states – Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Indiana, Maine, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, Oregon, South Dakota, Tennessee, Vermont, Wisconsin – do not expect it. Specifications on the materials covered and hours necessary for completion vary by state. LVNs working in the state of California must complete 30 hours of CEU requirements every two years to remain in compliance with the licensing protocol.
What is a LVN CEU requirement?
Earning an LVN degree and passing the NCLEX-PN are not the only requirements for working in the field. Every two years, LVNs must complete CEU. The current mandate for California LVNs is 30 hours. It is important to note the 30-hour CEU requirement does not apply to the first license renewal following the initial issuance of a LVN.
Nursing is not the only field that requires continuing education credits as a condition of maintaining licensure. Most licensed professions mandate it. California expects LVNs to pursue CEU that is relevant to their practice and skills. CEUs can include:
· Learning experiences that enhance knowledge above licensure requirements
· Scientific knowledge designed to enhance job duties
· Basic or advanced courses in behavioral, physical, and social sciences
· Techniques in advanced nursing care
Most CEU courses require participants to complete a quiz to gauge their understanding of the material and to earn credit for taking the class. After completing a CEU course, LVNs may also be required to complete a survey to solicit feedback about what they liked and disliked about it. It is important to complete these surveys if prompted to do so. To maintain their CEU credentialing privileges, CEU educators must submit survey results to the Board of Vocational Nursing and Psychiatric Technicians.
Acceptable and unacceptable LVN CEU courses
LVNs are not free to take any course and call it CEU. There are strict guidelines on acceptable and unacceptable options. Articles, classes (online or in-person), instructional videos, and webinars are all considered appropriate forms of CEU. They must be created and taught by industry professionals to qualify. State nursing boards must review and approve acceptable CEU materials and educators. In the state of California, some of the continuing education courses deemed acceptable include:
· Crisis Intervention
· Eating Disorders
· Mental Disorders
· Management of Assaultive Behavior (MAB)
· Therapeutic Massage
The California Nursing Board deemed the following courses inadmissible for earning CEUs:
· Advanced Mathematics
· English – Literature
As a general rule, the more CEU credits a course is worth, the longer it will take to complete.
Where to find LVN CEUs
One of the easiest places to find LVN CEUs is online. Some CEU programs are free, while others may charge per CEU course or offer subscription services. Online CEU programs are convenient for nursing professionals who work long hours and various shifts. Many of these online offerings allow flexibility to users, accommodating busy schedules. It is imperative to evaluate the online program before signing up to ensure it meets ANCC accreditation in California.
What happens if LVNs fail to complete CEUs on time?
California’s licensing board advises licensees to retain original copies of CEU certificates for up to four years after they were earned. On occasion, the board performs random audits to ensure licensed LVNs have met all CEU requirements. Copies of all relevant documents are necessary to complete the review. LVNs who are caught failing to complete CEUs can have their licenses suspended.