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Nurse Practitioner Zone

Illinois Nurse Practitioner Certification

In the state of Illinois, NPs are RNs who have earned additional licensing because they have met advanced education and certification requirements established by the state.

Among other duties, an Illinois nurse practitioner examines and assesses patients, orders diagnostic tests, evaluates and diagnoses patients, records findings, sets up management plans for illnesses and diseases, recommends medication, and provides patients with information and advice about disease prevention and health management. An NP must work collaboratively with a physician. Nurse practitioners in Illinois may specialize in pediatric care, Ob/Gyn care, family care, adult care, geriatric care, and school practice. They may work in variety of urban or rural settings, including doctor’s offices, public health agencies, hospitals, clinics, and health centers.

To become an NP, you must complete an NP program at an approved and accredited educational facility. Within Illinois, you can study at: Illinois State University, Rush University, University of Illinois at Chicago, Loyola University Medical Center, St. Xavier University, Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville, Northern Illinois University, North Park University, and DePaul University. Optionally, you can attend an online school or university offering an NP program approved by the Illinois Department of Professional Regulation. Some of these schools include Frontier School of Midwifery and Family Nursing, Liberty University, South University, Philadelphia University, and the Graceland University. Online programs offer students the flexibility to study at their current location and within the hours they have available, so that they can continue working as RNs and handling other personal obligations.


After you have completed your advanced nursing program, you must pass an exam in your specialized area provided by a recognized national certification body. Adult, family, school, pediatric, acute care, and geriatric NPs are certified by the American Nursing Association (ANA). Pediatric NPs may be certified by the National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners (NAPNAP) or by the ANA. In order to be certified by the ANA, you must have earned a minimum of a master’s degree.

To apply for your license as an Illinois NP, you must provide proof of your advanced education, your national certification, and your current Illinois RN license.

Salaries for NPs in Illinois can vary widely based on location, specialization, facility, and experience. For example, an NP in Chicago will earn much more than one based in a rural area. On average, NPs in Illinois earn $96,000 per year, which is one of the highest rates nationally for NPs.

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Last Updated: 05/19/2014