Top 33 Bachelors of Science in Nursing Schools [2024 Guide]

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bachelors of science in nursing schools

Pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree is a rewarding pathway into the dynamic and in-demand field of nursing. However, with so many accredited BSN programs, selecting the right university can feel overwhelming. 

We’re sharing some of the top BSN programs nationwide – highlighting their standout curriculum, exceptional faculty, state-of-the-art facilities, and proven track records of producing exceptional nursing graduates who are making a difference in healthcare.

Featured Programs

Nursing Academia Excellence: Top BSN Schools for Your Health Care Industry Success

The University of Michigan offers a top-notch BSN program that prepares students for medical excellence. The University of Pennsylvania and the University of Washington are renowned for their rigorous curriculum and state-of-the-art facilities. The University of San Francisco and the University of Wisconsin provide a diverse range of clinical experiences from well-rounded practitioners.

These schools emphasize compassionate care and holistic approaches. I’ve rounded up the highly regarded nursing programs for innovative teaching methods and strong industry partnerships.

BSN SchoolMinimum In-State Tuition FeeMaximum Out-of-State Tuition FeeAcceptance Rate
University of Michigan$7,925$26,00023%
University of Pennsylvania$43,860$58,62025%
University of Washington$12,640$41,99730%
University of San Francisco$11,700$17,40021%
University of Wisconsin, Madison$45,000$60,00054%
Case Western Reserve University$64,100$88,00030%
Purdue University$9,990$28,79467%
Saint Louis University$26,130$52,00070%
University of Texas at Austin$11,560$27,00029%
Stanbridge University$34,000$94,00053%
Texas A&M University$30,608$58,97664%
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill$12,314$32,83023%
University of Florida$11,560$18,30034%
Boston College$32,540$62,95028%
University of Iowa$10,964$32,90083%
Duke University$14,525$26,3609%
Indiana University, Bloomington$11,790$40,48078%
University of Connecticut$23,300$43,00056%
Rutgers University$17,230$36,00068%
University of Utah$11,800$33,00095%
Florida State University$10,300$15,00037%
University of Minnesota$10,220$36,00082%
University of Illinois – Chicago$11,560$15,27379%
Stony Brook University$7,070$26,00048%
Louisiana State University and A&M College$11,950$28,63171%
University of Oklahoma$9,320$25,88020%
West Virginia University$6,400$12,90090%
Arizona State University$12,562$31,20088%
Northeastern University$10,91$17,80018%
University of Wyoming$5,970$10,77097%
San Diego State University$8,290$20,10038%
Texas Tech University$11,840$24,09272%
University at Buffalo$10,781$30,57170%

University of Michigan

The University of Michigan’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree is a traditional, on-campus program designed as an interdisciplinary, fully-rounded education in nursing science. Undergraduate students are expected to be highly motivated and high achieving, benefitting from current faculty research and a low student-faculty ratio intended for close mentorship.

Kelsey Ludeman, an education expert with 15 years of experience in the education sector, recommends U of M as the top college to get your BSN:

“The University of Michigan’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing program stands out for its cutting-edge research opportunities, interdisciplinary approach, and a strong clinical focus that ensures graduates are exceptionally well-prepared to meet the complex challenges of modern healthcare. Its commitment to innovation, top-tier faculty, and a supportive learning environment fosters the development of skilled, compassionate nurses who are ready to lead and excel in their profession from day one.”

The University of Michigan began in 1817, established by the territorial legislature to provide educational opportunities for the region’s settlers. Two centuries later, U of M is a cultural and intellectual center of the Midwest, located in one of the most loved college towns in America.

  • Undergraduate students in the program can also minor in Population Health in a Global Context, as well as take opportunities to study abroad.
  • UM’s School of Nursing is widely ranked as one of the top nursing schools in the nation, according to the U.S. News & World Report.

University of Pennsylvania

The University of Pennsylvania offers a top-class nursing program that attracts top undergraduate students from across the nation. With a student-teacher ratio of just 6:1, nursing students at Penn benefit from personalized attention and guidance from esteemed faculty. 

The university’s exceptional 96% graduation rate, well above the national average, reflects the quality of education and support provided to students pursuing their nursing practice ambitions. Undergraduate students also have the chance to engage in valuable research opportunities, further enhancing their skills and knowledge.

  • The program provides an Ivy League education with rigorous clinical opportunities at leading hospitals, access to a state-of-the-art simulation center, and classrooms with the latest medical records technology. 
  • The program’s commitment to academic rigor, hands-on learning experiences, and cutting-edge resources guarantees that undergraduate students develop the expertise needed to excel in nursing.

University of Washington

University of Washington’s BSN program prepares students to be registered nurses with a two-year program building upon skills taught in the Learning Lab. Undergraduate students interact in scenarios that provide practice in a controlled environment before attempting them in a clinical setting.

Undergraduate students benefit from over 1000 hours of hands-on training in local community partner sites. The Accelerated BSN allows those with an undergraduate diploma to achieve a second degree in nursing.

  • The program is a compressed and competitive schedule to allow students to complete the program in about half the time. Undergraduate students also benefit from the Learning Lab.
  • UW believes in impacting their community in a profound way, such as Husky graduates collaborating to improve healthcare quality, access, and cost.

University of San Francisco

The University of San Francisco boasts an exceptional nursing school that attracts nursing students from across the country. With a student-teacher ratio of 13:1, aspiring nurses can expect personalized attention and guidance from a dedicated faculty. 

The university’s solid 75% graduation rate reflects its commitment to supporting undergraduate students throughout their academic journey. These opportunities, combined with the school’s rigorous academic curriculum, make it an excellent option for those seeking a well-rounded education that extends beyond traditional corporate hospitals or exclusive clinics.

Nursing students experience rotations through the Department of Veteran Affairs Northern California Health Care System. There are also hands-on experiences in lower-income communities through partnerships with organizations like San Francisco City Impact and Engage San Francisco. 

Additionally, the university offers master’s programs for nursing students interested in pursuing advanced degrees and specializations.


University of San Francisco

University of Wisconsin’s traditional Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), Accelerated BSN, and Online RN to BSN, are some of the strongest nursing degrees in the Midwest. The traditional BSN allows undergraduate students to learn skills in combination with clinical experience and interactive simulations to transition into employment. 

Students can take the exam for an RN license upon graduation. The Accelerated BSN allows undergraduate students who have a bachelor’s degree to earn a BSN in about one year. 

The Online RN to BSN program allows students who are currently RNs to get a BSN by completing a program that is mostly online.

The University of Wisconsin is a leading research institution and part of the state’s health care system. The school grounds its research in practical application, which immediately has a positive influence on the community’s hospitals and schools.


Case Western Reserve University

Case Western Reserve University is renowned for its exceptional nursing program. With a student-teacher ratio of just 11:1, undergraduate students benefit from personalized attention and guidance from day one. The university boasts an impressive 84% graduation rate, well above the national average, showcasing its commitment to student success.

The program’s rigorous curriculum includes nearly double the national average of clinical hours. This helps undergraduate students gain extensive hands-on experience from their first semester. 

One of the standout features of Case Western Reserve’s nursing program is the Marian K. Shaughnessy Nurse Leadership Academy. This unique opportunity allows undergraduate students to develop valuable leadership skills, equipping them to take on advanced roles within the nursing profession. 

With a focus on practical experience, community involvement, and leadership development, Case Western Reserve produces well-rounded nursing professionals ready to make a lasting impact in healthcare.


Purdue University

Purdue University’s BSN degree program teaches students to support the improvement of health across the globe and encourages research that will enhance the current nursing theory. Undergraduate students will learn how to best advocate for enhancements to the healthcare system and work to change current policy as needed. 

The program at Purdue aims to prepare graduates for professional nursing in varied settings and specializations. Upon completion of the coursework, undergraduate students are ready to apply for their Registered Nursing licensing.

One of the most esteemed public research universities in the Midwest, Purdue University is Indiana’s land-grant institution and plays a critical role in STEM and medicine. Its philosophy reflects the school’s beliefs about the role and the education of the professional nurse. The graduates of this program influence the delivery of health care around the community.


Saint Louis University

Saint Louis University’s nursing school is a standout institution that attracts undergraduate students nationwide. With a favorable student-teacher ratio of 9:1, aspiring nurses receive personalized attention and guidance from a dedicated faculty. The university’s impressive 79% graduation rate speaks volumes about the quality of education and student support.

Despite being located in a large, expensive city, the Trudy Busch Valentine School of Nursing remains relatively affordable thanks to the 40+ scholarships it offers to students at various education levels. 

Bachelor’s degree students leave SLU well-prepared for real work. With an impressive 94% NCLEX pass rate, graduates are ready to embark on their nursing careers.

With the federal government projecting more than 117,000 new registered nurse positions to be created each year from 2021-2031, the nursing school at Saint Louis University is poised to play a vital role in meeting this growing demand. The school offers a comprehensive curriculum, hands-on training opportunities, and a supportive learning environment for its undergraduate students.


University of Texas at Austin

University of Texas at Austin’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing program (BSN) empowers undergraduate students to thrive in both theory and practice. They work in numerous clinical environments for a wide range of experience to help them gain employment upon graduation. 

The program focuses on clinical judgment, planning, implementing, and evaluating nursing care. Undergraduate students also study nursing leadership in a variety of clinical settings. Students can take the exam for an RN license upon graduation.

  • From Austin, TX, the University of Texas is the Lone Star State’s flagship and one of the most influential public institutions in the nation. As one of the leading nursing schools in the nation, UT Austin School of Nursing is known for its academics and service. 
  • In the past, they have been ranked 17th in the nation by U.S. News & World Report, as well as 15th in research funding by the NIH.

Stanbridge University

With an impressive 15:1 student-teacher ratio, Stanbridge University places a high value on individualized learning. On the West Coast, it guarantees undergraduate students get enough attention and assistance.

In addition to its academic excellence, Stanbridge University works to increase access to education by offering financial aid. Stanbridge also supports study-abroad initiatives that allow nursing students to extend their horizons and add meaningful experiences to their academic path.

Nursing students have access to modern resources, such as the renowned SynDaver Synthetic Canine Cadaver Labs and a virtual reality lab, which enable immersive learning opportunities.

Stanbridge’s nursing curriculum is well-known for its outstanding licensure preparation, putting undergraduate students on a trajectory for career success with a notable 98% first-time NCLEX pass rate.


Texas A&M University

Texas A&M University’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing is offered in three different formats. They have the traditional BSN, Second Degree BSN, and the RN to BSN. The traditional BSN uses face-to-face teaching with simulation, clinical exposure, and lectures via video conference.

The second BSN degree is a compressed program that allows a student who already has a bachelor’s degree in another field to receive a BSN in about 15 months. This is an online-only program to allow undergraduate students to balance work, family, and education.

A highly regarded STEM and healthcare-focused research university, Texas A&M recognizes the shortage of nurses across the State of Texas and is actively working towards providing graduates who are ready to excel in nursing. 

They are committed to creating a technologically advanced environment in which undergraduate students can learn. The College of Nursing is dedicated to fostering the concept of social and global responsibility that nurses need.


University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Situated in the charming town of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, the University of North Carolina’s nursing school is a premier institution that attracts top undergraduate students from across the country. With a student-teacher ratio of 13:1, aspiring nurses receive personalized guidance and support throughout their academic journey. 

UNC’s impressive 91% graduation rate underscores the high-quality education and rigorous standards upheld by the university’s nursing program. In 2020 alone, the nursing school awarded $353,000 in scholarships, making it accessible to a diverse pool of undergraduate students.

  • The program’s successful outcomes are evident in that 97% of its graduates were employed within three months of earning their BSN. This enables them to quickly embark on their healthcare careers and repay any existing student loans.
  • With its commitment to accessibility, exceptional educational standards, and a focus on preparing undergraduate students for the professional work, UNC’s nursing school offers a well-rounded experience for those seeking a master’s degree or pursuing a career in nursing, especially around Chapel Hill.

University of Florida

The University of Florida’s bachelor’s in nursing degree programs prepare undergraduate students to enter employment in a variety of care settings with clients across diverse populations. The traditional BSN has four semesters, while the Accelerated BSN is a compressed version of that. 

The coursework includes classroom and lab activities with supervised clinical practice. Nursing students will analyze a variety of issues in professional nursing practice and health care.

One of Florida’s two flagship institutions, the University of Florida allows students access to educational and clinical experiences while in the UF College of Nursing. UF believes students should explore nursing research and science, have clinical experiences with a diverse group of patients, and be involved in the school and community. 

In a state with one of the highest rates of demand for nurses, UF is critical to the healthcare system and the well-being of the Sunshine State.


Boston College

Boston College’s nursing program stands out as one of the nation’s finest. With an impressive 94% graduation rate, the university attracts top undergraduate students seeking a high-class education in the healthcare field. 

Of the 54 full-time educators, an impressive 11 have been inducted as American Academy of Nursing Fellows, and 61% of them are active professionals. 

This blend of academic excellence and experience provides undergraduate students with invaluable insights and perspectives on the ever-evolving healthcare landscape. 

With a student-to-teacher ratio of 14-to-1, Boston College undergraduates have direct and easy access to some of the industry’s leading minds. This fosters an enriching and collaborative learning environment within the nursing program.


University of Iowa

Founded in 1847, the University of Iowa is one of the nation’s top public research universities. 

The University of Iowa’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing and RN to BSN programs prepare undergraduate students for licensure and entry into employment. UI has a Nursing Clinical Education Center in Iowa City that allows students to practice complex nursing in a clinical environment. 

It is located in the General Hospital in the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics. It provides a learning environment for undergraduate students to enrich their educational experience and help improve patient welfare. 

The 24-hour, seven-day-a-week center focuses on patient simulation, general pediatrics, adult medical surgery, and pediatric and adult ambulatory care, among other areas.


Duke University

Duke University’s nursing school stands out as one of the nation’s premier programs. With a low student-teacher ratio of just 6:1, undergraduate students benefit from personalized attention and mentorship from top-class faculty. 

Duke’s exceptional 95% graduation rate, coupled with its highly selective 9% acceptance rate, speaks volumes about the caliber of education and opportunities offered by the school.

Many factors contribute to Duke University’s status as one of the best nursing schools. These include its excellent faculty, wide variety of programs, access to the state’s #1 hospital for clinical hours, and a strong focus on research and innovation.

Nearly 28% of employers require new hires to have a bachelor’s degree, Duke’s program equips undergraduate students with the knowledge and skills sought after by top healthcare organizations. Additionally, the school offers master’s degree programs for those seeking advanced nursing specialization.


Indiana University, Bloomington

Indiana University, Bloomington’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing offers three different ways to earn a BSN degree. They offer a traditional BSN, an Accelerated Second Degree, and an RN to BSN. 

The Indiana University School of Nursing has a 94% first-time passing rate on the licensing exam. They have a 100% job placement rate for graduates. A BSN trains undergraduate students for a professional nursing career providing care to individuals and communities in areas such as hospitals and schools.

Undergraduate students gain an understanding of health care policy and its impact on communities, as well as financial and regulatory constraints on health care delivery. Students learn the value of critical thinking and its application to reasoning and decision-making.

Nursing students become culturally sensitive and socially aware members of their community and provide holistic and patient-centered care. Undergraduate students learn to become leaders and apply checks and balances to patient care and safety.


University of Connecticut

University of Connecticut Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) course includes a foundation in the arts, humanities, and the sciences. UConn adheres to a strict set of requirements for nursing students. These core five areas are motor, sensory, communication, behavior, and critical thinking skills.

UConn believes these areas highlight a reasonable expectation of performance by nursing students. Undergraduate students will learn how to navigate unique challenges in clinical settings while understanding the responsibility of caring for patients across a diverse landscape.

UConn encourages the pursuit of knowledge through innovation. They are proud of their diverse culture and its impact on the community. 

In a region dominated by elite Ivy League and small liberal arts colleges, UConn is one of the most important forces for higher education. It provides affordable education for Connecticut’s young people and working professionals.


Rutgers University

Rutgers University’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), second degree BSN, and RN to BSN represent the best opportunities in New Jersey. Nursing students can take concentrations in nursing leadership, clinical leadership, and Informatics. 

The School of Nursing is part of Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences (RBHS), which is New Jersey’s most in-demand college for nursing. Undergraduate students build skills and knowledge to help create a better healthcare system

  • This program is fluid and changes with social and political trends. This course encourages undergraduate students to become leaders and participate in collaborative and professional environments. 
  • The School of Nursing uses innovative teaching strategies and promotes an understanding of how healthcare needs change across populations, ages, and the community.

University of Utah

The University of Utah’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing is in line with the mission of the school. It believes in promoting healthy behaviors and community-based intervention. 

Located in Salt Lake City, Utah, the College of Nursing has a world-renowned nursing and research faculty. Nursing school students have an above-average rate of passing the licensing exam on the first attempt.

Undergraduate students of the University of Utah College of Nursing will learn to deliver safe and effective patient-based care. They learn the best way to advocate for the needs of patients while leading professionally. 

The University of Utah offers its nursing students the ability to study in a state-of-the-art simulation learning center, which provides a safe environment to put their learning into practice. Undergraduate students are taught that nursing holds the highest standards of morals and ethics.


Florida State University

Florida State University’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) traditional program and Accelerated BSN prepare undergraduate students to take the exam for an RN license upon graduation. The ABSN allows students who already have a Bachelor’s Degree to complete a BSN in one year.

The traditional BSN lets undergraduate students learn the principles of liberal studies, biological and behavioral sciences, and nursing theory.

  • The program uses patient simulators, research tools, and labs to make sure undergraduate students are ready for employment upon graduation. 
  • They are proud of their legacy of readying nurses for practice and research across a diverse community. This diverse base in combination with the nursing process provides students with competency in diverse settings.

University of Minnesota

The University of Minnesota’s Bachelor of Science qualifies graduates to immediately sit for the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). In addition, BSN graduates have the opportunity to earn their public health nurse certification as well. 

The School of Nursing celebrates its 110th year of nursing education. Degree candidates are prepared to enter the nursing field as leaders ready to move the field forward.

  • The University of Minnesota is home to more than 51,000 students; making it the 6th largest main campus in the country. 
  • Vital to professional education, especially in the health sciences, UMTC has earned its reputation as one of the greatest public research institutions.

University of Illinois - Chicago

The University of Illinois at Chicago’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers two separate paths: the Traditional BSN path and the RN to BSN path. UIC’s traditional BSN is completed with face-to-face experience. 

Traditional BSN candidates must possess 57 credit hours to be accepted. The RN to BSN path is designed for licensed nurses ready to further their education to include a baccalaureate degree.

  • The main campus runs adjacent to the famous Chicago Loop. The RN to BSN path is delivered through their flexible distance-learning platform.
  • The University of Illinois at Chicago School of Nursing baccalaureate degree programs are spread among three of UIC’s six campuses: Chicago, Springfield, and Urbana. UIC’s School of Nursing seeks to be the premier educational leader in advancing the field of nursing.

Stony Brook University

Stony Brook University’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing, an Accelerated BSN, and an RN to BSN come from the renowned Stony Brook School of Nursing. Nursing students follow SUNY Stony Brook’s values of Integrity, Respect, Excellence, Accountability, Creativity, Honesty, Unity, and Perseverance. 

The State University of NY at Stony Brook was established in 1957 as a public space-grant and sea-grant university.

  • SUNY Stony Brook’s nursing programs focus on patient care through the applied principles of science and humanity.
  • The School of Nursing is one of SUNY’s Stony Brook’s six Health Science schools. SUNY Stony Brook graduates are qualified to sit for the NCLEX-RN.

Louisiana State University and A&M College

The Louisiana State University’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program is a comprehensive professional degree with two separate education pathways: the Traditional BSN pathway (a three-year study program) and the RN to BSN (a one-year program of study) education pathway.

The traditional BSN class sizes are quite limited. Graduates of the traditional BSN are qualified to sit for the NCLEX-RN. 

Undergraduate students interested in the RN to BSN path must possess an unencumbered RN license in Louisiana. In 2017, the School of Nursing at LSU earned the Stellar School Award issued by the National Student Nurses Association (NSNA). 

LSU incorporates nine core values for nursing students and faculty. These include Caring, Respect, Stewardship, Integrity, Citizenship, Excellence, Professionalism, Nursing Innovations, and Diversity.


University of Oklahoma

The University of Oklahoma’s BS nursing programs include the traditional BSN, an Accelerated BSN (ABSN) program, a Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) to BSN, and a Registered Nurse (RN) to BSN. 

The Earl Ziegler College of Nursing is nationally recognized through its extensive research initiatives that reach the local, regional, and international health communities. The University of Oklahoma’s College of Nursing has received its accreditation from the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

The School of Nursing strives to educate nursing students who will seek to advance the nursing field through well-developed nursing skills and leadership qualities. The faculty at the School of Nursing has been chosen to participate as an item writer for the NCLEX-RN.


West Virginia University

West Virginia University’s bachelor’s in nursing programs include a BSN, a second degree BSN (BS/BA to BSN) program, and an RN to BSN. The traditional BSN is recognized by healthcare agencies for its excellence. 

One hundred percent of WVU’s BS/BA nursing graduates passed the NCLEX in 2016. West Virginia University’s RN to BSN can be completed through its online educational platform. The online platform’s tuition rates remain the same for undergraduate students, independent of their residency.

  • West Virginia University’s School of Nursing receives nearly $2 million in research grants. Their job placement rate is almost 100%. 
  • The CCNE accredits West Virginia’s nursing programs. West Virginia University was founded in 1867 and is currently considered an intensive research, space-grant, and land-grant university. 

Arizona State University

Arizona State University’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing teaches undergraduate students high-quality professional nursing care. Its curriculum focuses on evidence-based practice, clinical reasoning, innovation, interprofessional communication, and information technology. 

Undergraduate students can pursue one of two prelicensure tracks, the online RN to BSN or participation through the concurrent enrollment program offered through participating community colleges.

  • In addition to the BSN, the College of Nursing and Health Innovation offers an additional master’s degree that trains students for the challenges of health care. 
  • This professional, fast-paced downtown is also a transit network hub that includes light rail and connections to other ASU campuses and points of interest throughout metropolitan Phoenix.

Northeastern University

Northeastern University’s Bachelor’s in Nursing (BSN) programs include a traditional BSN degree program, an accelerated BSN (ABSN) program, and their online RN to BSN.

NU’s Bouve College of Health Sciences is one of the most renowned programs of its kind in New England. The traditional BSN is a mandatory full-time program that includes an internship in a variety of clinical settings.

The 16-month ABSN is available on Northeastern University’s Boston campus and a satellite campus in Charlotte, NC. It is open to those who have already attained a baccalaureate degree. The RN to BSN degree is offered as online coursework that can be completed full-time or part-time.


University of Wyoming

The University of Wyoming’s Bachelor’s in Nursing (BSN) program, from the Fay W. Whitney School of Nursing, is a traditional four-year, on-campus degree. UW also offers the BRAND degree (Bachelors Reach for Accelerated Nursing Degree), a great option for students who already hold a baccalaureate degree. 

This 15-month program is designed to deliver services to Wyoming’s rural areas. The University of Wyoming’s online-only BSN Completion program is a flexible coursework program completed in eight-week terms.

  • The CCNE accredits every nursing program offered by the University of Wyoming. The University of Wyoming Fay W. Whitney School of Nursing provides an intimate education experience within its cutting-edge labs and Clinical Simulation Center. 
  • The University of Wyoming is home to several public collections, such as the Art Museum, the Geological Museum, and the American Heritage Center, among others.

San Diego State University

San Diego State University’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) traditional degree program comes from the School of Nursing, as does their RN to BSN degree program. SDSU’s traditional BSN degree prepares nursing graduates to become critical thinkers with adept decision-making skills.

The university was founded in 1897 as a teacher training school. One of the most diverse universities in the nation, SDSU is a leader in helping minority students graduate and enter professional careers, especially in healthcare.

  • The 12-15 month RN to BSN degree program is available to those who currently possess an associate degree in nursing or a nursing diploma from another nursing program.
  • The CCNE accredits San Diego State University’s undergraduate and graduate nursing programs. SDSU’s NCLEX-RN exam passing rates exceeded 98% for 2017-2018.

Texas Tech University

Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center’s BS Nursing is a great fit for undergraduate students who hold no nursing accreditations. Texas Tech’s RN to BSN in Nursing program is available to students who already have a Registered Nurse license or completed an Associate’s Degree in Nursing (ADN). 

Texas Tech also offers two accelerated BSN nursing programs. The second BSN degree works for those who already have earned another bachelor’s diploma. Meanwhile, the accelerated BSN is designed for veterans who have medical training from their time in the service.

  • The Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center is an independent part of the Texas Tech system and a significant part of healthcare in West Texas, serving 100 counties in the region.
  • The College of Nursing began teaching nursing courses in 1979. The National League for Nursing (NLN) has recognized Texas Tech as a Center of Excellence in Nursing Education from 2014-2018.

University at Buffalo

The School of Nursing at the University at Buffalo’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) offers three education paths for new and experienced nurses. The traditional BSN is a comprehensive program that prepares graduates to work professionally in a variety of clinical settings. 

The RN to BSN degree is completed entirely online. It builds upon the knowledge of students who hold a license as a registered nurse or have already earned an associate’s degree. 

  • The Accelerated 12-month BSN (ABSN) program is an educational option for students who already have a baccalaureate degree in another discipline.
  • Today, SUNY Buffalo is New York State’s largest public university with a student enrollment that exceeds 30,000.

Methodology: Ranking the Best Value Nursing Schools

To determine the best traditional on-campus BSN programs in America, Value Colleges began with all accredited nursing schools in the US. From there, I applied the VC Best Value methodology.

The Best Value ranking methodology is consistently dedicated to leading prospective undergraduate students to the programs that provide the best all-around value, and we do that by focusing on three, equally weighted criteria:

  • Affordability
  • Reputation
  • Institutional ROI

By triangulating with these data sets, Value Colleges determines which programs have the highest quality of education, the strongest job market presence, and the best opportunity for return on investment. That’s what Value Colleges means by value.

For our data we used the most recent College Consensus meta-ranking scores available. The Consensus is a combination of both national publisher rankings and student review ratings. We also used the most current IPEDS data set and the College Scorecard Alumni salaries.

A nursing assisting a patient

Why Should I Finish a Nursing Program?

Getting a bachelor’s in nursing is the smartest choice a working nurse today can make. Nursing is also one of the most diverse careers.

The biggest generation, the Baby Boomers, are heading into their retirement years and beyond. With their long life expectancy and commitment to active lifestyles, there’s going to be a lot of need for healthcare workers to care for them

The “nursing shortage” may be a little overblown in the media, although there’s no doubt that there’s an increasing demand for nurses.

Women and men from varying backgrounds, races, ethnicities, and nationalities find a place in the nursing profession. Patients come from all backgrounds, races, ethnicities, and nationalities too, and a diverse workforce makes patients more comfortable.

The American Nurses Association has long advocated for the BSN as the minimum standard for nurses, and employers are beginning to listen. It’s still possible to get a well-paying, secure job with an RN. As more hospitals, clinics, and healthcare facilities begin requiring a BSN for their nurses, it’s going to get harder for those with only an RN.


Nurses make up the largest sector in the American healthcare industry. There were over four million nurses in the United States in 2022. With a diploma from an undergraduate or graduate school, BSN graduates can take advantage of these benefits.

  • Better career mobility and opportunities for advancement in the nursing practice
  • Higher pay compared to nurses with an ADN or diploma
  • More respected credentials can open doors at top nursing programs and schools
  • A broader educational foundation prepares undergraduate students for leadership roles
  • Easier pathway to pursue a master’s degree or other advanced nursing degrees later on


According to the United States Chamber of Commerce, half of nurses leave their jobs within the first two years. This may stem from a number of reasons.

  • Longer program length of our years compared to an ADN program
  • Higher cost than an associate’s degree in nursing (ADN)
  • More intensive and academically rigorous coursework and requirements
  • Potential for increased student debt load from the nursing school’s tuition
  • The competitive admissions process at many top BSN nursing programs
A nursing student using her laptop

What Are the BSN Degree Requirements?

Nursing degree requirements for the best undergrad nursing schools can vary. They will depend on different factors, including the state you’re in, the school, the program, and your educational background. 

When you choose your program, you’ll get a better idea of what those BSN degree requirements entail. Most nursing major schools offer different options for a degree. 

These fall into categories based on your prior education and if you are already a nurse. For example, an accelerated nursing program is typically for individuals with a non-nursing bachelor’s degree. 

These accelerated BSN programs, or ABSN programs USA, are faster because the students have already completed some of the requirements with prior education. Some accelerated programs may also offer credit for work experience.

Application Time

For applicants, BS Nursing requirements for enrollment generally include the following:

  • A 2.75 or higher GPA from your high school or associate’s degree
  • A strong resume, recommendations, and essay or personal statement
  • For an RN to BSN degree, a current RN license and an associate’s degree from an accredited school


Once in the program, undergraduate students will have a wide range of course requirements. Most BSN programs will require specific classes. Nursing classes include:

  • General education (writing, social sciences, electives)
  • Anatomy and physiology
  • Biology
  • Pharmacology
  • Leadership
  • psychiatric mental health nursing
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Suppose you already have an ADN from a community college. You may have already completed all of the general education requirements, and many of the nursing prerequisites as well. 

Three nursing students on the school

BSN degree requirements will also include clinical hours. These will vary, usually depending on the number of hours required for the state’s RN exam. 

In general, three clinical hours for each classroom hour is the standard. Online BSN programs will usually allow undergraduate students to set their own clinical experiences in their home area.

When Will a Bachelor’s Degree in Nursing Be Mandatory for a Nursing Practice?

Will BSN be mandatory for nurses? It depends on where you live and work. New York already has a “BSN in 10” law, which means that nurses must obtain a BSN within 10 years of becoming licensed. 

The American Nurses Association has held that the BSN should be the standard for entry-level nursing since 1964, though no other state has adopted that standard formally. Unfortunately, for the rest of the US, there’s no definitive answer. 

Some experts believe that it’s only a matter of time before the law requires all nurses to graduate from nursing schools. What is certain is that lawmakers have debated the schools question since the mid-1960s. Some states have considered signing BSN laws, although other than the law in New York, nothing concrete has happened.

Some aspiring nurses don’t like this career uncertainty. Many can’t stop asking “When will BSN be mandatory for nurses?” Your safest bet is to get your BSN if you’re one of these people.

Even if the law never requires a BSN, you’ll still see a lot of benefits from your BSN degree. For example, you’ll get paid more with a BSN. You may also find travel nurse job opportunities, and be ready to move on to graduate programs for an MSN degree.

How Much Does a Nursing Program Typically Cost?

The average cost of a nursing school is about $70,000. That doesn’t mean that you have to settle for the average cost of a BSN school, though. The cheapest BSN will cost around $40,000. 

You can find schools that stick to the lower end, and choosing an accelerated program can help.

Will an Accelerated BSN Save Me Money?

Graduates of accelerated programs are just as successful as traditional BSN students on the NCLEX RN licensure exam. Because you’ll have fewer semesters in school, the accelerated option can give you the cheapest BSN. You’ll also enter the workforce more quickly, which means that if you have student loans, you can start paying them back fast.

When looking for the cheapest accelerated BSN school, nursing students can take different routes. These days, searching for “BSN nursing programs near me” just doesn’t cut it. People understandably refuse to settle for programs that aren’t financially feasible.

  • Start by finding schools that are close to where you live. From there, you can narrow it down to the best money-saving options.
  • Accelerated programs can sometimes cost more per semester than a traditional program might cost. You still have to consider the costs of books and lab fees. 

When it comes to the cheapest accelerated nursing programs, schools with online options are your best bet. Online schools often have the cheapest accelerated nursing programs because you don’t have to pay for housing or any extras.

A nursing student with her uniform

Related Questions

Which Bachelor’s Degree Is Best for Nursing?

The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree is widely considered the best path for nursing students seeking a comprehensive education and hands-on learning experiences. A BSN diploma equips undergraduate students with a strong theoretical foundation and extensive clinical training and prepares them for a successful nursing career.

Which College Has the Best Nursing Program?

While opinions may vary, many experts and nursing professionals agree that the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Michigan offer the best nursing programs in the country. Their curriculum is rigorous, the faculty is exceptional, and the program provides ample opportunities for practical experience and skill development.

What Is the Difference Between a BSN and an RN?

The main difference lies in the level of education. A BSN (Bachelor of Science in Nursing) is a four-year undergraduate degree. Meanwhile, an RN (Registered Nurse) is a professional license obtained after completing either a BSN or an associate’s degree in nursing.


Considering the best value schools for a nursing program can be a game-changer for aspiring nurses. With a degree from a top-ranked institution, you’ll be well-equipped to tackle the challenges of the healthcare industry. By investing in a reputable BSN degree, students can secure a brighter future in this noble profession.

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Aya Andrews


Aya Andrews is a passionate educator and mother of two, with a diverse background that has shaped her approach to teaching and learning. Born in Metro Manila, she now calls San Diego home and is proud to be a Filipino-American. Aya earned her Masters degree in Education from San Diego State University, where she focused on developing innovative teaching methods to engage and inspire students.

Prior to her work in education, Aya spent several years as a continuing education consultant for KPMG, where she honed her skills in project management and client relations. She brings this same level of professionalism and expertise to her work as an educator, where she is committed to helping each of her students achieve their full potential.

In addition to her work as an educator, Aya is a devoted mother who is passionate about creating a nurturing and supportive home environment for her children. She is an active member of her community, volunteering her time and resources to support local schools and organizations. Aya is also an avid traveler, and loves to explore new cultures and cuisines with her family.

With a deep commitment to education and a passion for helping others succeed, Aya is a true inspiration to those around her. Her dedication to her craft, her community, and her family is a testament to her unwavering commitment to excellence in all aspects of her life.

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