National Entry-Level Competencies for LPNs adopted by CLPNA

The Canadian Council for Practical Nurse Regulators (CCPNR) released the Entry-Level Competencies for Licensed Practical Nurses in August 2019. This document “describes the knowledge, skills, judgment and attitudes required of beginning practitioners to provide safe, competent and ethical nursing care”, and is a foundational document for base curriculum and registration exam development. Beginning practitioners, also known as entry-level LPNs, are those at the point of initial registration following graduation from a nursing education program.

The Council of the College of Licensed Practical Nurses of Alberta (CLPNA) adopted this document for use in Alberta, and the document’s competencies have been embedded into the upcoming fourth edition of the CLPNA’s Competency Profile for LPNs coming in September. It replaces the Entry-to-Practice Competencies for Licensed Practical Nurses adopted in 2013.

DOWNLOAD Entry-Level Competencies for LPNs

The CCPNR’s commitment is to lead excellence in regulation by expanding capacity within practical nurse regulation. Competency experts were contracted to work with a pan-Canadian task force and to consult with stakeholder groups across the country to revise and validate the entry-to-practice competencies. The CCPNR, of which the CLPNA is a member, is a federation of provincial and territorial members identified in legislation as responsible for public safety through the regulation of licensed practical nurses (LPNs).

ELCs are used by LPN regulators and other stakeholders for:

  • Practical nursing education program approval/recognition
  • Development of standards
  • Practice assessment and measurement of initial applicants and current registrants
  • Professional conduct review
  • Competency-based assessments
  • Curriculum development
  • Exam development
  • Practice consultation
  • Stakeholder information
  • A resource for employers and the public to promote awareness of the practice expectations


The ELC’s will also be incorporated into the development of the national nurse registration exam coming in 2022.

RELATED – Vendor to develop next generation national LPN exam (CPNRE)


  • Changes in format.
  • Document title changed from Entry-to-Practice Competencies to Entry-Level Competencies to align with current language.
  • A requirement of new and enhanced knowledge related to Calls to Action of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada, technology in practice, and an understanding of regulatory requirements for the profession.

Questions? Contact the CLPNA’s Practice Department at Ask, 780-484-8886 or 1-800-661-5877 (toll free in Alberta).