Practical Nursing Diploma












The Practical Nursing Diploma program prepares students to provide nursing care under the direction of a registered nurse or physician. The program emphasizes ethical and cultural sensitivities, which all healthcare professionals must exercise, as well as facilitates students in becoming safe, conscientious healthcare professionals committed to excellence and responsibility. Areas of preparation include scope of practice, ethical and legal considerations, communication, nursing skills, interpersonal/team building skills, problem solving, and health education/professional growth.

The Pine Technical & Community College Practical Nursing diploma program prepares students to take the practical nursing licensure exam (NCLEX-PN) upon successful completion of classroom and clinical coursework. Clinical experiences are scheduled in clinics, long-term care, transitional care, and assisted living settings. PTCC’s diploma program is designed with flexibility in mind; the program fulfills a prerequisite for the A.S. Degree in Nursing.


Practical Nursing Program Mission Statement and Program Goals

Mission of the Nursing Department

Pine Technical and Community College (PTCC) Nursing Department is committed to providing an opportunity for higher education in an affordable student-focused environment. The Nursing Department offers comprehensive educational opportunities, including general and transfer education, technical program education and lifelong learning. 

The Nursing Department is committed to the advancement of teaching methodologies and technology, student development, and community service. The Nursing Department believes in the practical value of higher education as a means of economic and personal advancement in society. The Nursing Department respects and cares for students as individuals and as members of diverse groups, supporting their aspirations for a better life. 

Practical Nursing Program Goals

Program completion:  75% of practical nursing students will complete the program at 150% of the program length, averaged over the past 3-years.

NCLEX-PN:  80% (or higher) of PN graduates will pass the NCLEX-PN on first attempt, averaged over 3-years.

2016 NCLEX-PN = 85.37%
2017 NCLEX-PN = 91.67%
2018 NCLEX-PN = 93.94%
2019 NCLEX-PN = 100%

Job Placement:  80% of PN graduates will be employed in their nursing field at 6-12 months post-graduation; 30% of PN graduates will continue on in their nursing education.

6-12 month Graduate Surveys:  50% of PN graduates will complete and return the 6-12 month graduate surveys; 80% of respondents will chose “Excellent” or “Good” for each survey question; 80% of respondents will rate program satisfaction as “Excellent” or “good”; Qualitative comments will be trended and changes made to program as needed for continuous quality improvement.

PTCC Nursing Programs Alignment with Other States' Educational Requirements

See all Program Requirements and Courses

Practical Nursing Program Information

Learn more about the PN program requirements and the application process.

Click here to view the powerpoint presentation.

STEP ONE: Become a Pine Student

1. Save a Pine and apply online at

2. Request all external transcripts be sent to PTCC

  • If you attended a Minnesota State school, your transcripts will automatically be sent
  • If you attended a school outside the MNState system, contact the school to have your official transcripts sent to PTCC

3. Complete your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)

STEP TWO: Apply to the Practical Nursing Program

1. Apply online to the Practical Nursing Program (click here for the online application)

2. Meet all program timeline requirements

3. Application Due Date

  • Spring 2021 semester start online application due date: Nov. 11, 2020
  • Late applications accepted, with program seats filled on a space available basis.

4. Students are required to complete ALL of the following requirements before full acceptance into the program. 

  • At the time of application, you must be registered for, or have completed the following prerequisite courses with a grade of "C" or better AND a cumulative GPA of 2.8 or higher:
    • ENGL1276 College Composition
    • BIOL1240 Health & Disease in the Human Body OR BIOL1250 General Biology, BIOL1260 Anatomy & Physiology I, and BIOL1270 Anatomy & Physiology II (must complete all 3 courses)
    • HPPC1000 Medical Dosages
    • HPPC 1002 Medical Terminology
    • HPPC1004 Pharmacology

      Use the GPA Calculator
      to determine your prerequisite GPA

      For questions regarding your prerequisites: Contact Bill Asmus

  • Are current and in good standing on the Minnesota or Wisconsin Nursing Assistant Registry

  • Have taken the ATI TEAS exam within the last 12 months with an overall composite score of 53 or higher


Thurs., Oct. 29 at 12:00 p.m.; and Thurs., Nov. 5 at 12:00 p.m. 

1. Register to take the ATI TEAS test

  • The test is $92.00 (cost subject to change by ATI)
  • Students need a 53 or better to be accepted into the Practical Nursing program
  • If you take the TEAS at PTCC, your scores will automatically be sent without extra costs to the student
  • If you take the TEAS at another location, you will need to have your scores sent to PTCC (extra cost)
  • You can take the TEAS more than once, and we will accept your highest score (you may take the TEAS three times within a one year period)
  • Check this out for more TEAS information 
  • Need some help studying for the TEAS?

Licensed Practical Nurses are valuable members of the healthcare team, meeting the basic physical, emotional, social, and spiritual needs of patients. Licensed practical nurses help fill the nursing needs of many community healthcare agencies including long-term care and assisted living facilities, hospitals, clinics, home care, and public health agencies. Nursing continues to have a critical shortage of workers as the U.S. population ages. Licensed practical nurses play a crucial role in meeting the healthcare needs of our population, and the outlook for employment is very strong. The best job opportunities will occur in nursing care facilities and home health care services, while applicants for jobs in hospitals may face competition.

Gainful Employment for Practical Nursing Diploma - 41 credits

Practical Nursing Career Information

The Minnesota Board of  Nursing  has approved this program since July 2003.
Minnesota Board of Nursing

National League of Nursing



Top Nursing Schools

Pine Technical & Community College's Practical Nursing program has been ranked 10th in the state by

Bill Asmus (new students and admissions)

Gina Zorotovich (nursing program application questions)

Health Care Pre-Professional

A.S. Degree in Nursing