Practical Nursing Certificate (PNC)

Practical Nursing Certificate (PNC)

The Cincinnati State Practical Nursing Certificate program offers classes at the Clifton Campus. The program is structured to be completed in three continuous semesters of study.

Licensed practical nurses share in the responsibility for patient care within the established guidelines of the Ohio Nurse Practice Act. The Practical Nursing Certificate prepares students through concurrent classroom education and clinical practice in the areas of basic nursing skills, maternal and infant care, adult and child health, gerontological nursing, mental health concepts, and community health. 

Program graduates are eligible to take the national standardized NCLEX-PN exam for licensure as a Practical Nurse. Passing a nationally standardized comprehensive exam is part of the requirements for the final course in the certificate program.

Admission to the Practical Nursing Certificate program requires completion of Selective Admission requirements. Interested students should speak to an advisor and attend an information session.

Enrollment requirements include:

  • Submit written proof of current registration as a State Tested Nurse Aide prior to applying for Selective Admission. Students may complete the Nurse Aide Certificate course (MCH 130) to prepare for the state test. 
  • Complete a criminal background check, CPR certification, and a statement of health form.
  • Have a total grade point average (GPA) of 2.50 or higher, and a GPA of 2.00 or higher in math and science courses.
  • Beginning Fall 2023, Selective Enrollment requirements will include TEAS testing.

Because nursing is a dynamic profession, the program reserves the right to change the curriculum and/or admission requirements as necessary.

The Practical Nursing Certificate Program is approved by The Ohio Board of Nursing, 17 South High Street, Suite 400, Columbus, Ohio, 43215-3413. Phone: (614) 466-3947. Website:

For more information, please contact the Health and Public Safety Division at (513) 569-1670.

To apply for this program at Cincinnati State, visit the Admissions section of the College website.

Practical Nursing Certificate (PNC)

Program Prerequisites: Students seeking admission to the Practical Nursing Certificate program must complete selective enrollment requirements. Students should meet with their academic advisor to discuss eligibility and deadlines for selective enrollment.

Semester 1LecLabCredits
PN 101Practical Nursing Concepts 1 598
FYE 1XX First Year Experience Elective  101
BIO 1XX Biology Elective  324
Semester 2  
PN 102Practical Nursing Concepts 2 7910
PSY 110Introduction to Psychology 303
Semester 3  
PN 103Practical Nursing Concepts 3 466
MCH 100Healthcare Informatics 202
PN 185Practical Nursing Role Transition 282
ENG 101English Composition 1 303
Total Credits:  303439


First Year Experience Elective
FYE 100College Success Strategies: Overview1
FYE 105College Success Strategies: Overview and Application2
FYE 110College Success Strategies: Practice and Application3
Biology Elective
BIO 117
BIO 127
Human Body in Health and Disease
and Human Body in Health and Disease Laboratory
BIO 151
BIO 152
Anatomy and Physiology 1
and Anatomy and Physiology 2

Some courses are offered in alternative versions identified with a letter after the course number-- for example, ENG 101 and ENG 101A.

  • This curriculum displays only course numbers without the added letter.
  • The alternative version, when available, meets the requirements of the course version without the added letter.


PN 101 Practical Nursing Concepts 1
8 Credits. 5 Lecture Hours. 9 Lab Hours.

An introduction to the practical nursing role with applications of basic nursing skills in lab, simulation, and clinical settings. Topics include: pharmacology, safety, nursing process, nursing history and law, and alterations in health.
Prerequisites: Admitted to the Practical Nursing Certificate program, high school biology and chemistry within the past 7 years, and STNA (minimum grade C for all courses)
View Sections

Instructor Consent Required

PN 102 Practical Nursing Concepts 2
10 Credits. 7 Lecture Hours. 9 Lab Hours.

A continuation of PN 101, with applications of clinical reasoning and nursing skills in classroom, lab, simulation, and clinical settings. Topics include: mental health, and care of the patient with alterations in health across the lifespan.
Prerequisites: PN 101
View Sections

Instructor Consent Required

PN 103 Practical Nursing Concepts 3
6 Credits. 4 Lecture Hours. 6 Lab Hours.

A continuation of PN 102 focusing on preparation for transition to the role of the practical nurse, with applications of nursing skills. Topics include: care of the patient with complex alterations in health, women?s health/OB, and the professional role.
Prerequisites: PN 102
View Sections

Instructor Consent Required

PN 125 Academic Success Strategies for Practical Nursing
3 Credits. 3 Lecture Hours. 0 Lab Hour.

A course on strategies for academic success in the Practical Nursing Certificate program. Topics include: building skills in critical thinking, studying, mathematics, and test-taking; improving time management skills; and developing effective communication and conflict resolution skills.
Prerequisites: Instructor consent
View Sections

Instructor Consent Required

PN 185 Practical Nursing Role Transition
2 Credits. 2 Lecture Hours. 8 Lab Hours.

Students apply practical nursing knowledge and skills while working with diverse groups of patients. Topics include: professionalism, and transition from student to practical nurse role. To pass the course, students must achieve a predetermined score on a national standardized exam.
Prerequisites: PN 122 (minimum grade C), and PN 182
View Sections

Instructor Consent Required


Program Chair

Barbara Ratliff, RN, MSN

Health and Public Safety Division Advising

(513) 569-1670