CNA to LVN Programs Austin, TX

Certified nursing assistants are competent workers, attending to patients’ physical, mental, and social needs under the supervision of a licensed nurse. The preparation to become a certified nurse aide is not as comprehensive and lengthy as other roles on the nursing team. It is for this reason that many who are interested in the healthcare industry choose this avenue as a point of entry. The ability to care for others, to show compassion and provide aid to those who are injured, ill, or disabled is in itself rewarding. But there are some downsides. The work is challenging and the compensation is meager compared to other members of the patient care team. CNAs are most likely to sustain injury from constant bending and lifting. Enrolling in a vocational nursing program is the next step to continue caring for patients in a different role. Vocational nursing transition programs in Texas are limited as the programs are comprehensive, progressive, and specific to Texas State requirements. However, since admission is always competitive, CNAs with active licenses and experience receive extra points in the selection process. Moreover, nursing assistants are more likely to succeed in the overall program and especially in the clinicals rotations as they put their experience to work.

Cybertex Institute of Technology

The Vocational Nursing program at Cybertex Institute of Technology offers advanced placement for medical assistants. Certified nursing assistants may receive points in the selection process.  Medical assistants receive up to 180 hours of advanced placement. The program includes instruction in the classroom as well as scheduled clinical rotations at an approved healthcare facility. It requires completion of 1410 contact hours or 88 credit hours. Course topics include basic and advanced nursing skills, health science, pediatrics, pharmacology, maternal-neonatal nursing, nursing in health and illness, essentials of medication administration, geriatrics, NCLEX-PN review, and clinical vocational nursing. Graduates will receive a vocational nursing certificate and be eligible to take the NCLEX-PN for state licensure as a licensed vocational nurse.

Admission criteria:

  • Must be 18 years or older on the first day of classes
  • Must be a high school graduate or completed GED. Non-high school graduates must have a score of 70% or above on the TABE
  • Submit a completed application and non-refundable fee of $100
  • Complete Background Screening Questionnaire and Signed Disqualifying Criteria/Program Dismissal Acknowledgement Statement
  • Apply for eligibility background clearance from the Texas Board of Nursing
  • Complete the Kaplan Nursing Admission Test (KNAT) with a score of 35% or greater
  • Must have current American Heart Association CPR certification
  • Provide immunization records for Hepatitis B, MMR, DPT, Varicella, seasonal flu, and TB test or chest x-ray
  • Submit a completed CIT Physical Examination form completed by a physician or physician’s assistant
  • Submit report of a negative urine drug screen

Tuition and fees cost $27,995. Other costs include urine drug test, transportation costs, criminal background check, fingerprinting, physical exam, immunizations, health insurance, and cap and gown for the graduation ceremony.

  • Website:
  • Address: 9001 IH-35N, Austin, TX 78753
  • Phone: (512) 454-6116
  • Fax: (512) 454-6336
  • NCLEX-PN Pass Rate: 52.54%

Austin Community College

Austin Community College offers a traditional vocational nursing program that provides competent and professional vocational nurses to fill positions in the Austin Community. The program does not reward certified nursing assistants with advanced placement or credit for prior learning and experience but the experience in healthcare will be valuable when the skills and clinical courses commence. The curriculum requires completion of 43 semester credit hours which includes core nursing and non-nursing courses. The non-nursing courses (7 credits) should be completed before admission to the program. Course modules include Intro to Anatomy and Physiology, Gerontology, Foundations of Nursing, Nutrition, Growth and Development, Basic Nursing Skills, Medical Surgical Nursing, Mental Health and Mental Illness, Pharmacology for Health Professions, Maternal Neonatal Nursing, Pediatrics, and Leadership and Professional Development. Clinical rotations are based in learning objectives and not on location. Students must attend scheduled assignments which could commence as early as 6:00 am or as late as 11:00 pm. Graduates will receive a Certificate in Vocational Nursing, which makes them eligible to take the NCLEX-PN. New students are admitted in the fall and spring semesters.

Admission criteria:

  • Must be enrolled in Austin Community College – admission to ACC does not guarantee admission to the Health Sciences program
  • Must be over 18 years of age on the first day of the semester
  • Must meet the TSI testing requirements
  • Must obtain a minimum composite score of 58.7% on the TEAS to submit an application to the program
  • Must meet the program’s Technical Standards
  • Complete the Vocational Nursing Program Information Session
  • Complete the program-required immunizations
  • Verify and sign for Eligibility – BON Licensure Requirements
  • Obtain and submit official transcripts for coursework taken at other schools
  • Completing the non-nursing courses is not required before recommended before applying to the nursing program – Anatomy and Physiology I and II, Pharmacology for Health Care Professionals
  • Complete the CastleBranch requirements (green checks – clearance)
  • Download and complete the application for the Vocational Nursing Program
  • Certified Nursing Assistants will receive additional points in the selection process
  • Complete a criminal background check
  • Complete a 10-panel drug screen
  • Obtain a satisfactory health status certified by a completed ACC Health Sciences Health Data/Physical Exam form signed by a licensed physician, physician’s assistant or nurse practitioner
  • Obtain a negative TB test
  • Must have current CPR certification from the American Heart Association Basic Life Support for the Healthcare Provider

The total program cost of $6,528 for in-district students includes tuition, TEAS V exam, CastleBranch profile account, drug screen, CPR certification, physical, flu vaccine, uniforms, lab pack, textbooks, health insurance, and HESI exam.

McLennan Community College

McLennan Community College prepares certified nursing assistants and adults with no experience in healthcare to function as licensed vocational nurses in various health care settings. The curriculum covers 13 nursing courses each with theoretical and clinical components giving students the opportunity to learn through hands-on application of the concepts covered in the classroom. Courses include Essential of Medication Administration, Basic Nursing Skills, VN Concepts, Clinical Practice, Nursing in Health and Illness, Maternal Neonatal Nursing, Pediatrics, and Leadership and Professional Development. Applicants must complete the prerequisite courses before entering the program – Anatomy and Physiology, General Psychology, Speech Communication, and Medical Terminology. The program is approved by the Texas Board of Nursing. Graduates will receive a Certificate of Completion and will be eligible to take the NCLEX for vocational nurse licensure. The duration of the program is three semesters.

Admission criteria:

  • Must be admitted to MCC before applying to the VN program
  • Submit an application for the Vocational Nursing Program
  • Submit a utility bill or driver’s license with current address with the application
  • Pay the non-refundable application fee of $20
  • Provide proof of completing a Texas college placement test – must include scores, in Reading, Writing, and Mathematics or placement test Exemption Status
  • Submit transcripts from all colleges where credit has been earned
  • Provide documentation of immunization – Hepatitis B, varicella, Tdap, influenza, and Covid vaccine
  • Provide proof of two negative TB test
  • Must have current CPR certification
  • Must have current health insurance coverage
  • Complete prerequisite courses with a grade C or higher – anatomy and physiology, speech general psychology, medical terminology

Tuition costs $106 per credit for McLennan County residents, $124 for Texas residents, and $181 for out-of-state residents.

Blinn College District

Certified nursing assistants may enroll in the vocational nursing program at Blinn College to prepare for licensure as a vocational nurse. Instruction is conducted in the classroom as well as online. The curriculum includes 1408 clock hours of theory, skills lab, and clinical rotations. Course modules include Health Science, Basic Nursing Skills, Gerontology, Growth and Development, Vocational Nursing Concepts, Mental Health and Mental Illness, Essentials of Medication Administration, Pharmacology, Pediatrics, Maternal-Neonatal Nursing, Medical Surgical Nursing, Leadership and Professional Development, and Vocational Nursing Clinical. After completion of the 39 credit hours, students will receive a Certificate of Completion and to sit for the licensure exam to become a licensed vocational nurse. New students are admitted in the Fall semester. Enrollment is limited to 30 students per cycle to provide a learner-friendly environment. The duration of the program is 12 months.

Admission criteria:

  • Participate in an information session held over Zoom
  • Complete the ATI TEAS to include Reading, Math, English, and Science. Must score 33.3% on science and a minimum score of 50% on all other sections of the test
  • Must be accepted as a student of Blinn College
  • Must have a TSI status of college ready or exempt
  • Must take a state-mandated assessment in addition to the ATI TEAS
  • Submit a completed Allied Health Program Student Application
  • Submit official sealed high school transcript, official sealed college transcript, or GED certificate with application
  • Provide proof of up-to-date immunization including hepatitis B series
  • Must have good physical and mental health
  • Must be skilled with the computer as some of the courses are delivered online
  • Complete a drug screen
  • Pass a criminal background check
  • Must have current CPR certification
  • Submit a completed health/physical exam

The program cost of $12,975.99 for in-district students includes tuition, general fee, nursing program fee, activity fee, liability insurance, and ATI testing fee. Other costs include books, uniforms, kit, supplies, and licensure expenses.



Crystal G

Crystal is a certified Registered Nurse (RN) with a passion for writing about nursing education. Through her articles, Crystal shares insights and tips to help fellow nurses enhance their skills and stay updated with the latest developments in the field. With a focus on practical advice and relevant topics, Crystal's writing is a valuable resource for nursing professionals seeking to advance their careers.