Best Online Nursing Programs of 2015 (Undergraduate)

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One of the goals of Super Scholar is to help you discover ideas and opportunities that will help you achieve a happier and more successful life. Our Smart Choice ranking of online undergraduate nursing schools is designed to help current and future nurses make a smart choice about where to begin or continue their nursing education.

The Value of an Accredited Online Nursing Degree

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for nurses will grow by 19% in the next 10 years. This explosive growth is connected to an aging Baby Boomer population and is greater than average growth rates of all other occupations. Furthermore, in an article titled The Future of Nursing: Focus on Education, the Institute of Medicine argues that America will not only need more nurses but better qualified nurses to respond to the changing medical climate. Indeed, the report recommends that 80% of nurses in the United States hold a bachelor’s degree by 2020. Whether you are already an RN, or just beginning your nursing education, an accredited degree program will help you become more marketable, increase your pay, and give you more options.

The growth in demand for nursing programs has led many top notch nursing schools to offer online degrees in nursing at the undergraduate and graduate levels. This Smart Choice ranking focuses on the best online undergraduate programs in the country. Many quality nursing schools offer flexible programs for RNs to obtain a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) 100% online or in an online/hybrid format. Some RN to BSN programs can be completed in as few as 12 months for students who have already completed the prerequisites and the co-requisites (courses required by the respective university that are not included in the major). While all of the programs listed are online, some programs do not transfer from state to state. Thus, applicants considering an out-of-state online program should check with her or his State Board of Nursing and Department of Education to determine which programs will be accepted.

Our Methodology for This Ranking

In developing our Smart Choice ranking of the best online undergraduate nursing programs we only considered online nursing schools that are accredited by CCNE or ACEN (formerly known as the NLNAC). This ensures that all online programs have met the highest standards of recognized institutional accreditation. The nursing schools that met this initial accreditation criterion were then evaluated based on reputation, selection, quality, student satisfaction, affordability, and NCLEX pass rates. The result is a ranking of online nursing schools that offers prospective students a helpful tool for making a smart choice about where to earn an online undergraduate nursing degree.

#50. East Carolina University

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East Carolina University is a public, research university with a main campus in Greenville, North Carolina. ECU also has two other campuses in the Greenville area – The Health Science Campus and the West Research Campus. The school was founded in 1907 as a teacher training school and currently has nearly 27,000 students enrolled. Accreditation is granted by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

ECU offers a number of online nursing degrees including an RN to BSN, a Master of Science in Nursing and a Doctorate of Nursing Practice. The MSN program with specializations in Neonatal Nurse Practitioner, Nurse Midwifery, Nursing Education, Nursing Leadership, and Clinical Nurse Specialist.

The RN to BSN is built upon a liberal arts and a natural and behavioral sciences education. Each BSN credit costs $134 for residents of North Carolina and $648 for out-of-state students. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate for the BSN programs at ECU was 95%. The nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#49. Northern Arizona University

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With a main campus in Flagstaff, Arizona, Northern Arizona University is a public university that was founded in 1899. The school also has 34 extended campuses in Arizona. NAU has 27,715 students and is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

Northern Arizona University offers an online Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), a Master of Science in Nursing (MSN), and  Doctorate of Nursing Practice (DNP). The MSN students can get a general degree or one with a Family Nurse Practitioner emphasis. NAU offers an online BSN – Concurrent program for residents of Arizona who are enrolled in Maricopa County Community College or Pima Community College. The university also has an RN to BSN program offered 100% online. 

The 2013 NCLEX pass rate for the BSN programs at NAU was 90.44%. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) provides accreditation for the nursing programs.

Admissions Website

#48. University of Missouri – ​St. Louis

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Established in 1963, the University of Missouri – St. Louis is one of four universities in the University of Missouri System. With over 13,500 undergraduate students, UMSL is the largest research university in St. Louis. The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association provides accreditation.

The online RN to BSN program at UMSL is housed in the School of Professional & Continuing Studies. It can be completed 100% online. Students are not required to come to campus.  UMSL starts a new online program every fall and spring semester.  Students can attend part-time or full-time, depending on what works best for their busy schedule.

The tuition for undergraduate students taking online courses at Univeristy of Missouri – St. Louis is $315.80 per credit for residents of Missouri and $826.50 for non-residents. The NCLEX pass rate was 98% in 2012 and 86.5% in 2013. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) provides accreditation for the nursing programs.

Admissions Website

#47. Lamar University

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Located in the southeastern Texas town of Beaumont, Lamar University is a public research university with over 14,000 students. The school was founded in 1923 and transitioned to being a part of the Texas State University system in 1995. LU is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Lamar offers an online RN to BSN program and two online MSN programs. The two online accelerate MSN programs are in the fields of education and administration.

The online RN to BSN program at Lamar takes approximately 13.5 months for students to take the 30 core program credits. The tuition of the core credits is $268 per credit. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate for the BSN programs at Lamar was 88%. The Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) provides accreditation for the nursing programs.

Admissions Website

#46. University of Maine at Fort Kent

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The University of Maine at Fort Kent is a public liberal arts university in Fort Kent, Maine. The university is part of the seven-member University of Maine System and has slightly over 1,200 undergraduate students. Accreditation for the university is provided by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Commission on Institutions of Higher Education.

UMFK offers one online nursing program – an RN to BSN degree.  With its rural nursing focus, the online RN-to-BSN program at UMFK offers a unique perspective to students. That being said, the education is still based on a liberal arts approach. Thus, students in the program will be equipped for practicing in non-rural settings as well.  The tuition for the RN to BSN program is $220 for residents of Maine and $330 for non-residents.

The 2013 NCLEX pass rate for the BSN programs at UMFK was 83%. Accreditation for the nursing program is provided by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#45. University of Southern Indiana

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Resting in the wooded rolling hills of Evansville, Indiana, the University of Southern Indiana is a public university with nearly 10,000 students.  The school was founded in 1965 and has the lowest tuition of Indiana’s four-year universities. Accreditation is provided by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

USI offers a few levels of nursing degrees online – a doctorate with two concentrations, a masters with six concentrations, and an RN to BSN program. RN to BSN students can attack the program at their own pace. Tution for the RN to BSN program is $221.22/credit hour for residents of Indiana and $331.83/credit hour to $532.56/credit hour for non-residents. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate for the BSN programs at NAU was 96%. Accreditation for the nursing program is provided by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#44. University of Illinois at ​Chicago

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Located on the near west side of Chicago, Illinois,  the University of Illinois at Chicago is a public research university in the University of Illinois system. Over 28,000 students are enrolled in the university.  Accreditation is provided by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools

The School of Continuing Studies at UIC offers an online nursing doctoral degree, an online RN to BSN degree, and four online certificates out of the College of Nursing. The RN to BSN Online Degree Completion Program is 100% online and is self-paced. The tuition of the program is $650 per credit. Accreditation for the nursing program is provided by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#43. McKendree University

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Founded in 1828 under the name Lebanon Seminary, McKendree University is a private liberal arts college with a main campus in Lebanon, Illinois. The school also offers courses at Scott Air Force Base, and in Louisville, Kentucky and Radcliff, Kentucky. Over 3,000 students are enrolled in the institution and the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools provides accreditation.

McKendree offers three different online nursing degree programs: a Master of Science in Nursing, a combined MSN/MBA, and a RN to BSN. Tuition for the online Bachelor of Nursing program is $340 per credit hour. Accreditation for the nursing program is provided by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#42. Fort Hays State University

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Fort Hays State University is a public university located in Hays, Kansas. With over 13,400 students, FHSU is considered to be the fastest growing university that is governed by the Kansas Board of Regents. The North Central Association of Colleges and Schools provides accreditation for the university.

FHSU has several online degrees in nursing out of the Virtual College. The university offers two post master’s certificates, an RN to BSN degree, and a MSN degree with two concentrations (administration and education). The online RN to BSN tends to take full-time students 12 to 18 months and part-time students 18 to 36 months complete. The tuition is a mere $186.50 per credit hour and is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#41. Duquesne University

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Affiliated with the Catholic church, Duquesne University is a private school located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Nearly 10,000 students are enrolled in the school. Accreditation is provided by Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

Duquesne has six nursing programs that can be completed online. The programs include an RN to BSN program, a MSN with two concentrations (Forensic Nursing and Nursing Education), two post-master’s certificates, a PhD, and a DNP. While the coursework is completed online, students must schedule visits to the Pittsburgh campus to demonstrate competencies.

The tuition of the RN to BSN program is $687 per credit. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).  The 2013 NCLEX pass rate for the BSN program was 80%.

Admissions Website

#40. Old Dominion University

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Established in 1930, Old Dominion University is a public research university in Norfolk, Virginia. More than 70 degree programs are taught by satellite, video-streaming, CD-ROM, and online. Old Dominion University has nearly 25,000 students and is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

Old Dominion offers an RN to BSN program, an MSN with four different concentrations (Adult-Gerontology, Family Nurse Practitioner, Administration and Midwifery) and a DNP with two concentrations (Executive and Advanced Practice).

The RN to BSN program offers classes in two online formats. Some are “online asynchronous” which means that there are few to no scheduled online meetings but that there is a schedule for assignments and exams. Other classes are taught “online synchronous” which means that students will need to participate in live, online class gatherings. The RN to BSN program’s tuition is $299-314 per credit hour. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).  The 2013 NCLEX pass rate for the BSN program was 85%.

Admissions Website

#39. Liberty University

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Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains in the town of Lynchburg, Virginia, Liberty University is a private Christian university. Liberty is the largest Christian university in the world, with over 100,000 traditional and online students. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges provides accreditation for the university.

Liberty offers an online RN to BSN program, an online Master of Science in Nursing with two concentrations (Nursing Administration and Nurse Educator), and a Doctor of Nursing Practice (both Post-BSN and Post-MSN options).

The RN to BSN program costs $360 per credit hour (based on full-time enrollment). The 2012 NCLEX pass rate for the residential BSN program was a whopping 97%. The School of Nursing’s B.S.N. and M.S.N Program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), One DuPont Circle, NW, Suite 530, Washington, DC 20036, 202-887-6791; the D.N.P. programs are seeking accreditation.  All of the programs areapproved by the Virginia State Board of Nursing.

Admissions Website

#38. West Texas A&M University

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West Texas A&M University, part of the Texas A&M University System, is a public university located in the Texas panhandle town of Canyon. Nearly 8,400 students are enrolled in courses at the university. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools provides accreditation.

The university offers a partial online Master of Science in Nursing and an online RN to BSN completion program. Students can begin the RN to BSN program at the beginning of the fall, spring, or summer sessions. It is possible for students to finish the program in one year. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate for the BSN program was 94.52%.

The RN to B.S.N. Nursing Program is fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). The program is also approved through the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board and the Texas Board of Nursing.

Admissions Website

#37. American Sentinel University

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Founded in 2006, American Sentinel University is a for-profit university that offers distance courses in the areas of nursing, management, technology, and Geospatial Information Systems. The university has nearly 3,700 students enrolled and is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of the Distance Education and Training Council (DETC).

American Sentinel University offers a variety of online nursing programs. There is an RN to BSN program, an RN to MSN program, an MSN with five specializations (Case Management, Infection Prevention and Control, Nursing Education, Nursing Informatics, and Nursing Management and Organizational Leadership), a DNP with two specializations (Executive Leadership and Educational Leadership), and a certificate in Infection Prevention and Control.

Courses in the BSN program are eight weeks long and start monthly. The degree is 100% online. The RN to BSN program at American Sentinel University has a tuition of $375 per credit. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#36. Minot State University

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Founded in 1913, Minot State University is a public university in Minot, North Dakota. Over 3,500 students are enrolled in the school. MSU is accredited by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

MSU offers one online nursing program, an RN to BSN completion program. The program is available for part-time or full-time students. Full time enrollment generally allows the RN to complete the curriculum in a minimum of 15 – 18 months. The RN to BSN currently costs $259.76 per credit. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate for the BSN programs was 96%. The Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) provides accreditation for the nursing programs.

Admissions Website

#35. University of Alabama in ​Huntsville

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Sitting on a  400-acre campus is in the heart of Huntsville, Alabama, the University of Alabama in Huntsville is a public research university in the University of Alabama System. There are over 7,300 students enrolled in the school. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools provides accreditation.

UAH offers four online nursing programs – a certificate in Nursing Education, an RN to BSN program, a Master of Science in Nursing with an emphasis in Leadership in Health Care Systems, and a DNP.

The full-time RN to BSN program takes two semesters with admission twice per year (fall and spring). Part time options are also available. The program is 100% online but students are encouraged to attend the orientation at the beginning of the program in person. Tuition for the online RN to BSN program is approximately $305 per credit for residents of Alabama and for non-residents. Note that non-resident students in the on-campus program do pay more per credit. The values listed are based on a course load of 15 hours per semester. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#34. University of St. Francis

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The University of St. Francis is a private, Roman Catholic university that is affiliated with the Franciscan religious order. The main campus is located in Joilet, Illinois. There is also a campus in Albuquerque, NM, and one in Miami, FL. The university has nearly 3,800 students enrolled in their on-campus and off-campus learning programs. The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools provides accreditation.

USF offers online nursing programs through the Leah College of Nursing. The online programs include an RN to BSN, an MSN with several specializations, a DNP and a few nursing certificates. Note that restrictions exist depending on your state of residence. Check with the admissions office to ensure you qualify for the program.

The tuition of the online RN to BSN program at USF is $599 per credit hour. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate was 91%. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#33. University of Colorado Colorado Springs

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Established in 1965, the University of Colorado Colorado Springs has over 11,300 students enrolled. The campus is located on approximately 521 acres in northeast Colorado Springs at the foot of Austin Bluffs. The university is accredited the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

UCCS offers an online RN to BSN degree, an online MSN with two specializations (Nurse Practitioner and Nursing Educaiton), an online DNP, and an online certificate in Forensic Nursing. The online RN to BSN program has two formats. One is the common online format for those who already have an ADN or a Diploma in nursing. The other is an online dual credit program designed for students who are currently enrolled in an ADN program at a Colorado Community College.

The tuition of the online RN to BSN program at UCCS $357 per credit for Colorado residents and $455 per credit for non-residents. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate was 87.37%. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#32. Eastern Kentucky University

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Eastern Kentucky University is a research university located in Richmond, Kentucky. The school also has extension campuses throughout Kentucky in Corbin, Danville, Hazard, Lancaster, Manchester, and Somerset. Total enrollment of EKU is over 16,000. The Southern Association of Schools and Colleges – Commission on Colleges provides accreditation.

EKU has a robust online offering of nursing programs. The school has a DNP, an MSN with three concentrations (administration, rural health, and mental health), four nursing certificates, and an RN to BSN program. The RN to BSN completion program offers eight week courses and can completed in a little as a year. The tuition for the online RN to BSN program at Eastern Kentucky is $398 per credit. EKU boasts of a 2013 NCLEX pass rate of 100%. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#31. California State University, Chico

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Commonly referred to as Chico State, California State University, Chico is located about 90 miles north of Sacramento, California in the town of Chico. The university has nearly 16,400 students enrolled. The Western Association of Schools and Colleges provides accreditation.

Chico State has two online nursing degrees – a Master of Science in Nursing and an RN to a Bachelor of Science in Nursing completion program. The RN to BSN program takes approximately a year to complete. Chico’s 2013 NCLEX pass rate was 92%. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).Chico is accredited by the Western Association of Colleges and Schools.

Admissions Website

#30. California Baptist University

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California Baptist University is a private, Christian university located in Riverside, California. CBU also offers degree programs in San Bernardino and online. The school has nearly 8,000 students enrolled. The Western Association of Colleges and Schools provides accreditation.

CBU offers one online nursing degree – the RN to BSN completion program. One of the goals of the online program is to prepare students with high moral character and ethical behavior in the field of nursing. Students can begin the program in both the Fall and the Spring semesters.

The tuition for the online RN to BSN program at CBU is $550 per credit. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate was 100%. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#29. Saint Louis University

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Founded in 1818, Saint Louis University is a private, Catholic university that is affiliated with the Jesuit order. The school has nearly 17,400 students enrolled. Accreditation is provided by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

SLU offers an online RN to BSN degree completion program. The program is offered in partnership between the School for Professional Studies and the School of Nursing. Saint Louis University currently accepts applications to the RN to BSN program from residents of the following states: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia, and Wisconsin. 

The tuition for the online RN to BSN program at SLU is $610 per credit. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate was 92%. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). 

Admissions Website

#28. Western Carolina University

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Western Carolina University is a public university located in Cullowhee, NC and is a member of the University of North Carolina system. The university has over 10,000 students enrolled. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools provides accreditation.

WCU offers four online nursing programs. The school has a Post-Masters Certificate with an emphasis in Nurse Educator, an RN to BSN program, an RN to MSN program, and an MSN with two specializations (leadership and education).

The average length of the RN to BSN program for part-time students is two years. Students are admitted to the program twice a year, in the August and in January. The tuition of the online RN to BSN program at WCU is $143 per credit for North Carolina residents and $494 per credit for non-residents. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#27. Western Kentucky University

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Nearly 21,000 students are enrolled in Western Kentucky University. The main campus of this public university is in Bowling Green, Kentucky and there are three extension campuses in Glasgow, Owensboro and the Elizabethtown area. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges provides accreditation for the university.

WKU offers an online RN to BSN completion program out of The School of Nursing. Both part-time and full-time cohorts are available. While 100% of the classes are delivered online, there is a clinical course that must be taken. The clinical course can be taken in the student’s community. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate was 95%. The RN to BSN costs $463 per credit and is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.

Admissions Website

#26. Michigan State University

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Michigan State University is a public research university located in East Lansing, Michigan and was founded in 1855. Over 49,000 students are enrolled in the university. Accreditation is provided by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

MSU has an offering of two 100% online nursing degrees and two online/hybrid programs. The online/hybrid programs include a Doctor of Nursing Practice and a Master of Science in Nursing with a Nurse Practitioner concentration. The 100% online programs include an MSN with a Clinical Nurse Specialist concentration and an RN to BSN degree completion program.

The RN to BSN program lasts five semesters. Tuition for the program is $561.50 per credit for residents of Michigan and $586.50 per credit for non-residents. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) provides accreditation for the nursing programs.

Admissions Website

#25. SUNY College of Technology at Delhi

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Positioned in the foothills of the Catskill Mountains, SUNY College of Technology at Delhi has over 3,300 students enrolled. SUNY Delhi is around three and a half hours from New York City and two hours from Albany. The college is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

SUNY Delhi offers two online options for students who are looking for a career in nursing. The school has an RN to BSN and a Master of Science in Nursing with an emphasis in Education. The RN to BSN degree completion program emphasizes practice skills and critical thinking necessary for management of patients within a regularly shifting healthcare climate. The program is 100% online.

Tuition for the RN to BSN program at SUNY Delhi is $257 per credit for residents and non-residents. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate was 71.7%. The Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) provides accreditation for the nursing programs.

Admissions Website

#24. Chamberlain College of Nursing

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Chamberlain College of Nursing is a for-profit nursing school that offers nursing degrees on 16 campuses nationwide. The school has was founded in 1889 as the Deaconess School of Nursing. In 2005 the school was acquired by the DeVry Education group and the name was changed to Chamberlain College of Nursing. The college is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) and is a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

The college offers several online nursing programs – RN to BSN, RN to BSN to MSN, MSN, DNP, and graduate nursing certificates. The RN to BSN program can be completed in as few as three semesters. Areas of study within the program include evidence-based practice, community health nursing, and collaborative healthcare.

The tuition for the RN to BSN program at Chamberlain College of Nursing is $590 per credit. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate was 87%. The program is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#23. Linfield College

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Linfield College is a private school in McMinnville, Oregon. The the School of Nursing is in Portland and has nearly 350 students enrolled. The student to faculty ratio at the School of Nursing is 8 to 1. The Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities provides accreditation for Linfield College.

The Linfield College Good Samaritan School of Nursing provides an online RN to BSN degree. The program is designed with a progression plan of four consecutive semesters. All courses are taught online but the program requires clinical experience in an approved community. The program costs $450 per credit. The NCLEX pass rate for 2013 was 86%. The RN to BSN program at Linfield is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#22. Graceland University

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Sponsored by the Community of Christ, Graceland University is a private liberal arts university that was founded in 1895. Approximately 2300 students are enrolled in the school. Graceland has campuses in Lamoni, Iowa and Independence, Missouri. The university is a member of the North Central Association (NCA) and is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

Graceland offers one online nursing degree – an RN to BSN. The program is taught out of the Independence, Missouri campus. Tuition for Graceland’s online RN to BSN is $395.00 per credit. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate for the university was 94%. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) provides accreditation for the nursing program.

Admissions Website

#21. Arizona State University

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Arizona State University is a public research university with a main campus in Tempe, Arizona and several extension campuses. The school has a robust online degree program with approximately 7,500 students enrolled in their online bachelor’s degree programs. Arizona State University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Schools and Colleges.

ASU’s College of Nursing and Health Innovation offers three online programs that are applicable to nurses. The school has an RN to BSN, a Master of Science in clinical research management for nurses and healthcare professionals, and a certificate for nurses and healthcare professionals in Clinical Research Management.

The RN to BSN can be completed in as few as 15 to 18 months. Graduates of the program are critical thinkers, client advocates and effective communicators and they demonstrate holistic, population-based perspectives. The tuition of the online RN to BSN program at ASU is $543 per credit hour. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate was 88.55%. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) provides accreditation for the nursing program.

Admissions Website

#20. Regis University

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Regis University is a private, Roman Catholic university with a main campus in Denver, Colorado. The school has extension campuses in a couple of locations in Denver as well as in Broomfield, Colorado Springs, Loveland, and Thorton. Nearly 10,000 students are enrolled in the university. Regis is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission, a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

The university offers three online nursing programs out of the Rueckert-Hartman College for Health Professions.  There is an RN to BSN, an RN to MSN, and an MSN with two specializations (education and management).

The RN to BSN program is offered in two formats. One is 100% online. The other is a campus blended program with online classes as well as occasional traditional evening courses. Tuition for Regis University’s RN to BSN program is $535 per credit. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate was 99%. The nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) of the American Association of Colleges of Nursing.

Admissions Website

#19. Sacred Heart University

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Founded in 1963, Sacred Heart University is a Roman Catholic university located in Fairfield, Connecticut. Nearly 7,000 students are enrolled in the school. The New England Association of Schools and Colleges provides accreditation for Sacred Heart University.

Sacred Heart University offers three online nursing programs – an RN to BSN, an RN to MSN, and an MSN. The RN to BSN program at the university has been training nurses since 1980. One thing unique about the school’s approach is that there is much intentionality around helping nurses process the human journey of nursing well.

The tuition of the online RN to BSN program at Sacred Heart University is $530 per credit hour. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate was 100%. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) provides accreditation for the nursing program.

Admissions Website

#18. Stony Brook University

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Stony Brook University is a public university that sits on a 1,039-acre campus on Long Island’s North Shore. The school is part of the State University of New York system. Over 24,000 students are enrolled. Accreditation is provided by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

The School of Nursing at Stony Brook offers several online blended nursing programs. They offer an RN to BSN, an RN to MSN, an MSN with four specializations (education, leadership, Nurse Practitioner, and midwifery), and a DNP. The online nursing programs at Stony Brook require some on-site visits.

The tuition of the online RN to BSN program at Stony Brook University is $285 per credit for residents of New York and $816 per credit for non-residents. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate was 79%. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) provides accreditation for the nursing program.

Admissions Website

#17. University of Texas at ​Tyler

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UT Tyler is one of the fastest-growing universities in the University of Texas System. The school sits on 259 acres in the pine and oak forests of East Texas. Nearly 7,500 students are enrolled in the school. Accreditation is provided by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

The College of Nursing and Health Sciences at the University of Texas at Tyler houses a number of online nursing programs. The online offering includes an RN to BSN, an MSN with two concentrations (education and administration), an MSN-MBA program, and a PhD in Nursing. The school also has an online hybrid MSN with a Nurse Practitioner emphasis and two nursing certificates.

The RN to BSN program can be completed in as little as 12 months of focused study. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate was 87%. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) provides accreditation for the nursing program.

Admissions Website

#16. University of Kansas

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Considered to be the largest university in Kansas, the University of Kansas is a public research university in Lawrence, Kansas. The school has nearly 27,000 students enrolled and a student to faculty ratio of 17 to 1. Accreditation is provided by the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

KU offers two fully online nursing degrees and a handful of online certificates in nursing. The degrees that are 100% online are the RN to BSN and the MSN. The school also offers a hybrid DNP and a hybrid PhD in Nursing.

The RN to BSN can be completed as quickly as one year for full-time students or as slowly as five years for part-time students. Students can enter the program at any semester. The RN to BSN program tuition is $293.70 per credit for residents of Kansas and $761.25 per credit for non-residents. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate was 93%. The nursing programs at KU are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#15. Southeast Missouri State University

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Southeast Missouri State University’s main campus sits a few block off the banks of the Mississippi River in Cape Girardeau, Missouri. The university also has regional campuses located in Sikeston, Malden, Kennett and Perryville. Approximately 12,000 student enrolled in the school. The North Central Association of Colleges and Schools provides accreditation.

The university has one online nursing program – the RN to BSN completion program. According to the RN to BSN student handbook, “The faculty believes that each person is a unique being comprised of body, mind and spirit that together enable the individual to strive to reach an optimal level of health throughout the lifespan, including death with dignity.” The program costs $231.25 per credit and is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). The 2013 NCLEX pass rate for Southeast Missouri State University was 98%.

Admissions Website 

#14. Loyola University Chicago

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Founded in 1870 by Jesuit Priests, Loyola University Chicago is a private, Roman Catholic university located in Chicago, Illinois. The school operates three campuses in Chicago, one campus in Rome, Italy, and globally via online education. Total enrollment of the university is around 16,000. The North Central Association of Colleges and Schools provides accreditation.

Loyola University Chicago has a large number of online nursing degrees and certificates that are offered out of the Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing. The online nursing degrees include an RN to BSN, an MSN in Health Systems Management, an MSN (CNS) in Oncology Advanced Practice Nursing, an MSN in Population-Based Infection Control and Environmental Safety (PICES), and a DNP. There are also online nursing certificates available in Healthcare Informatics, Oncology Nursing, Outcomes Performance Management, Population-Based Infection Control & Environmental Safety, and Post-Master’s Advanced Oncology.

The RN to BSN requires a minimum of 30 credits and can be completed in as few as three semesters. Courses are taught in six to eight week sessions. Tuition is currently $630 per credit for the program but fluctuates each year. The Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#13. Drexel University

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Drexel University is a private research university that was founded in 1891 by the philanthropist and financier Anthony J. Drexel. Its primary campus in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, but the school operates out of several extension campuses in Pennsylvania a campus in Sacramento, California and globally through online degrees. The total student population is over 26,100. The school also The the Middle States Commission on Higher Education provides accreditation.

The university offers an online RN to BSN, an RN to MSN, an MSN with 13 concentrations, a DNP, and a wide variety of certificate programs. The school offers top notch tech support that is available 24/7 for questions. Students in the online programs have full online access to the school library.

The RN to BSN program promotes action-based learning and in-depth clinical skills. Tuition is $612 per credit for the RN to BSN programl. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate was 99%. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) provides accreditation for the nursing programs.

Admissions Website 

#12. University of Delaware

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The University of Delaware is the largest university in Delaware with over 22,000 students enrolled. The main campus is in Newark and there are satellite campuses in Dover, Wilmington, Lewes, and Georgetown. Accreditation is provided by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

UD has an online RN to BSN program and an online RN to MSN program. The school also has an MSN program with with three concentrations completely taught online and two concentrations taught through a hybrid format. Online programs at UD cost $454 per credit for residents of Delaware and anywhere from $536 to $1,219 per credit for non-residents.

The 2013 NCLEX pass rate for the RN to BSN program was 93% for first time test takers and 98% overall. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) provides accreditation for the nursing programs at the University of Delaware.

Admissions Website

#11. University of Central Florida

University of Central Florida

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The University of Central Florida is the nation’s second-largest university with nearly 60,000 students enrolled.  Located in Orlando, Florida, UCF is a member institution of the State University System of Florida. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools provides accreditation.

UCF has several online nursing degrees. The school offers an Associate of Science degree in Nursing (ASN) to BSN program, an RN to BSN program, and an RN to MSN program. Furthermore, UFC offers an online MSN with two specializations (education and leadership), an online DNP, and several online certificate programs.

Students can complete the BSN completion programs in a few as four or five semesters. The programs are 100% online though students will need to complete clinical work in their home communities. The online undergraduate nursing programs at UCF cost $105 per credit for Florida residents and $616 for non-residents. The average NCLEX pass rate for the school in 2013 was 95.5%. UCF nursing degrees are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#10. University of South Carolina

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The University of South Carolina is a public research university with a flagship campus located in Columbia, South Carolina. The school has four traditional four-year campuses and four additional campuses that award associate’s degrees and online bachelor degrees. There are nearly 32,000 students enrolled in the flagship campus. Accreditation for the school is provided by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

The Mary Black School of Nursing at the University of South Carolina Upstate in Spartanburg, SC offers an online RN to BSN. The degree program can take as little as 12 months for full-time students and 24 months for part-time students. Course work focuses on critical thinking skills, professionalism, healthcare informatics, and leadership. The RN to BSN program is 100% online but students will need to complete virtual community clinical experiences in their own communities.

The cost of the University of SC’s online RN to BSN program depends upon the hours a student takes and the home state of the student. Part-time students who are residents of South Carolina can expect to pay $388 per credit. Part-time students who are not residents of South Carolina will pay $776.50 per credit. The NCLEX pass rate for the school in 2013 was 93%. The nursing degrees are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#9. Ball State University

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Ball State University is a public research university in Muncie, Indiana. Over 20,000 undergraduate and graduate students are enrolled in the school. The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools provides accreditation.

Ball State offers an online RN to BSN degree, an online MSN degree, and an online DNP. The university uses a liberal arts approach to facilitate the online nursing degrees. The RN to BSN can be completed in six semester for part-time students and three semesters for full-time students. Classes are taught in an asynchronous format, meaning there are no specific log-in times.

The RN to BSN program at Ball State has a flat-rate charge of $3,694 per semester for students enrolled in 12 – 18 hours. The NCLEX pass rate for the school in 2013 was nearly 96%. The baccalaureate nursing program is fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) and approved by the Indiana State Board of Nursing.

Admissions Website

#8. University of Arkansas

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Nestled in the hills of the Ozark Mountains in the town of Fayetteville, Arkansas, the University of Arkansas has over 25,000 students from all 50 states and more than 120 countries enrolled. The school is a public research university. The U of A is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

The University of Arkansas offers the following online nursing degrees out of the Eleanor Mann School of Nursing: RN to BSN, MSN, and a DNP with a concentration in Adult-Geriatric Acute Care Nurse Practitioner or a concentration in Adult-Geriatric Clinical Nurse Specialist.

Participants in the RN to BSN program have program advisors who are full-time faculty members who dedicated to student-centered learning and excellence in nursing education. Students can apply in the fall and spring semesters. The tuition for the RN to BSN program at the U of A is $268.86 per credit. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate was 95%. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) provides accreditation.

Admissions Website

#7. University of Texas Medical Branch

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Located in the coastal town of Galveston, Texas, the University of Texas Medical Branch is a component of the University of Texas System. Over 3,000 students are enrolled in the school. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools provides accreditation.

UTMB offers an online RN to BSN program, an online MSN with six tracks, an online DNP with one in-person visit per semester, and an online PhD program. With a 91% graduation rate, the School of Nursing boasts the highest Academic Health Center graduation rate in the state of Texas. 

The RN to BSN program admits students each fall. The cost is for students taking 28 credits a year is $267 per credit for Texas residents and $649 per credit for non-residents. The NCLEX pass rate for the BSN programs at UTMB is 94%. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) provides accreditation.

Admissions Website

#6. Pennsylvania State University World Campus

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The Pennsylvania State University World Campus has nearly 14,000 students enrolled in online degree programs. The headquarters of school is in University Park, PA. The Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools provides accreditation.

The university has a robust offering of online nursing programs. There are six certificate programs, an RN to BSN completion degree, an MSN degree with two concentrations (leadership and education), and a DNP degree.

Students in the RN to BSN program can choose to take all the classes online or can supplement the degree with traditional classes in University Park. The tuition for the RN to BSN program is $535 per credit for residents of PA and $579 per credit for non-residents. The school has an NCLEX pass rate of 90% for 2013. The RN to BSN proram is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) and the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

 #5. University of Missouri

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Considered to be the oldest public institution of higher education west of the Mississippi River, the University of Missouri was instituted in 1839. The school is a public research university located in Columbia, Missouri. The campus sits on 1,262 acres and is designated as a botanical garden. The school, also known as Mizzou, has approximately 35,000 students enrolled. The Higher Learning Commission provides accreditation.

Mizzou Online has a large number of online nursing programs that are offered out of the Sinclair School of Nursing. There are two certificate programs, an RN to BSN, an MSN with two concentrations (leadership and education), a PhD, and a DNP with five concentrations.

The RN to BSN classes are offered online, but students must come to campus one to two days per semester to supplement the studies. Tuition for the program is $274 per credit for residents of Missouri and $350 per credit for non-residents. The 2013 NCLEX pass rate was 97%. The program is approved by the Missouri State Board of Nursing and is fully accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

Admissions Website

#4. University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Located 90 miles from Boston, the University of Massachusetts – Amherst is the flagship campus of the UMass sytem. The other campuses are in Boston, Lowell, and Dartmouth. The flagship campus has over 28,500 students enrolled. Accreditation for the UMass schools is provided by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

Students enrolled in online programs at UMass take classes from the same professors as traditional students. UMass Amherst offers three online nursing degrees – RN to BSN, MSN, and DNP. There are more online nursing programs available at the other UMass schools.

The RN to BSN program at UMass Amherst costs $510 per credit. The NCLEX pass rate for 2013 was 90%. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) provides accreditation.

Admissions Website

#3. Georgia College & State University

Georgia College

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Georgia College & State University is a public liberal arts university in Milledgeville, Georgia. The school has over 6,500 students enrolled. The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools provides accreditation.

The university offers three online nursing degrees – an RN to BSN, a DNP, and a MSN with a focus in Nurse Practitioner. The programs incorporate nursing and liberal arts education. The RN to BSN program is 100% online but offers fully optional meetings for orientation and exams. The RN to BSN program at Georgia College & State University costs $232 per credit. The NCLEX pass rate for 2013 was 96%. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) provides accreditation.

Admissions Website

 #2. Union University

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Union University is a private, Christian, liberal arts university located in Jackson, Tennessee. There are additional campuses in Germantown and Hendersonville. Approximately 4,000 students are enrolled in the school. Accreditation for Union is provided by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

The only 100% online nursing degree offered by Union is an MSN degree. However, the school offers hybrid nursing degrees in the following areas: RN to BSN, RN to MSN, and DNP. The RN to BSN degree costs $440 per credit and had a NCLEX pass rate of 100% in 2010. The program is approved by the Tennessee Board of Nursing and accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE). 

Admissions Website

#1. Wheeling Jesuit University

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Originally founded as Wheeling College in 1954 by the Society of Jesus, Wheeling Jesuit University is a private, Roman Catholic university in Wheeling, West Virginia. The campus sits on the Ohio River. The school has over 1,600 students enrolled. The U.S. News and World Report ranks Wheeling at #11 on the Regional Colleges (South) list. The North Central Association of Colleges and Schools provides accreditation.

Wheeling Jesuit University integrates liberal arts education into the nursing programs. The school has three online nursing degrees – an RN to BSN, an RN to MSN, an MSN with concentrations in Family Nurse Practitioner, Nursing Education Specialist, and Nursing Administration.

The online RN to BSN completion program is a blended degree that requires one to two visits per semester. Tution for the program is $365 per credit. The NCLEX pass rate for 2013 was 100%. The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) provides accreditation.

Admissions Website

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