|Score||Tuition||Student/Teacher ratio||Program count||Graduation Rate|
|4||Alvin Community College||88.00||17:1||1||16%|
|6||College of the Mainland||86.75||14:1||10||18%|
|7||Paris Junior College||86.00||22:1||1||23%|
|12||Texas State Technical College-West Texas||83.25||13:1||10||31%|
|14||Lone Star College||82.75||18:1||1||10%|
|15||San Jacinto College||82.25||19:1||10||15%|
|17||Southwest Texas Junior College||81.00||22:1||10||25%|
|19||Northwest Vista College||79.75||22:1||10||21%|
|21||St Philip’s College||79.50||15:1||10||10%|
|22||McLennan Community College||79.50||17:1||1||18%|
|24||Trinity Valley Community College||79.00||20:1||10||20%|
|25||Palo Alto College||78.00||20:1||10||16%|
|26||Northeast Texas Community College||77.25||20:1||10||20%|
|28||Southwest Collegiate Institute for the Deaf||76.75||9:1||10||8%|
|29||Wharton County Junior College||76.50||20:1||10||18%|
|30||El Centro College||76.50||20:1||1||6%|
|32||North Central Texas College||76.00||25:1||10||14%|
|34||San Antonio College||75.75||19:1||10||11%|
|35||Houston Community College||75.75||22:1||10||12%|
|37||Tarrant County College District||74.50||25:1||10||10%|
|38||Lamar State College-Port Arthur||74.50||17:1||10||17%|
|39||Del Mar College||74.25||14:1||10||8%|
|40||Central Texas College||74.25||18:1||10||8%|
|42||Tyler Junior College||73.25||21:1||10||17%|
Prospective nurses in Texas can choose from more than 200 nursing education programs, providing a diverse set of academic offerings at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. The search tool below helps students find a program of study that meets their personal and professional goals.
In Texas, registered nurses must hold a valid license in order to practice legally. The Texas Board of Nursing is responsible for establishing and regulating licensure requirements, and manages the licensing and renewal processes for registered and advanced practice nurses. Learn more about the licensure requirements for first-time candidates below.
- Complete an approved program of nursing at a two- or four-year institution
- Complete an online examination application and pay a $100 fee
- Pass a criminal background check through the Federal Bureau of Investigation and Department of Public Safety
- Register with Pearson VUE at least 30 days before graduation to take the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) and pay a $200 testing fee
- Take and pass the Texas Nursing Jurisprudence Examination
- Graduates of both Texas and out-of-state nursing schools must request an affidavit of graduation be sent to the Board of Nursing by the Dean or Director of their program
- After receiving the materials listed above, the Board of Nursing will issue an Authorization to Test and students can set a day to take the exam
Keeping a TX License Active
Registered nurses must renew their licenses biannually and show proof of completing at least 20 continuing education credits during the previous two years. Nurses renewing their license for the first time are exempt from the continuing education requirement, but must still pay the standard renewal fee of $60.
TX Licensure Information for APRNs
The Texas Board of Nursing licenses advanced practice registered nurses in a variety of roles, including positions as nurse anesthetists, nurse midwives, nurse practitioners, and clinical nurse specialists. Applications are completed online and the Board of Nursing recommends applicants submit all supporting documents at one time. Learn more about the educational requirements and licensing process below:
- Nurses who graduated on or after January 1, 2003 must complete at least 500 clinical hours in a specialized area of advanced practice during their graduate program of study
- Pay a fee of $100 for APRN licensure or $150 for a licensure with prescriptive authority
- Show valid RN licensure in Texas or from a state with compact privilege
- Graduate from an accredited advanced practice nursing program that is recognized by the Texas Board of Nursing
- Hold national certification for the specialized area of nursing practice and submit verification of that certification
- Complete at least 500 hours of clinical practice in an advanced practice role within the last two years (or during the educational program)
- Complete at least 20 hours of continuing nursing education within the last 24 calendar months
For more detailed information, forms, and updates on advance practice nursing in Texas, go to the Texas Board of Nursing.
The American Association of Colleges of Nursing reports Texas has nearly 280,000 RNs in the state, a number that includes approximately 17,600 nurse practitioners and other advanced positions. Although the number of nurses is continually growing, the state has one of the highest rates of underserved populations in the country, with the AACN highlighting 315 understaffed regions. These findings coincide with the state experiencing one of the highest rates of growth for nurses in the nation, with a projected increase of 26 percent expected between 2012 and 2022. Those looking to work as a nurse practitioner are expected to see the biggest growth. Learn more about the state’s occupational outlook and earning potential for RNs and APRNs.
Top-Paying Areas for RNs in Texas
|Area||Hourly Median Wage||Annual Median Wage|
|Dallas-Plano-Irving Metropolitan Division||$34.43||$71,620|
|Fort Worth-Arlington Metropolitan Division||$33.96||$70,630|
|Southern Texas nonmetropolitan area||$32.93||$68,500|
|San Antonio-New Braunfels||$31.55||$65,630|
|Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos||$31.31||$65,130|
Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014
Texas vs. National Numbers
Sources: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014
Sources: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014 and Projections Central
The Texas Board of Nursing regulates the practice and licensure of nurses in the state by establishing licensing requirements, handling the licensing and renewal process, managing nursing complaints, and establishing nursing compacts with other states.
TENA is a nonprofit organization that has local chapters of emergency nurses throughout the state. The association offers continuing education programs, professional development opportunities and scholarships.
The Texas Nurses Association is the leading professional association for registered nurses from all specializations in the state of Texas. Through its legislative agenda, political action work, educational programs, networking events, and conferences, the TNA supports the training, professional development and career advancement of nurses in the state.
Founded in 1988, the TNP works with and for nurse practitioners in the state. The membership-based organization offers a range of services including student memberships, continuing education programs, grassroots legislative efforts, and a career center.
The Texas Organization of Nurse Executives is an organization for nursing administrators and executives that provides a united voice, access to networking opportunities, and insights into health care industry trends.
TCNO is an affiliate of the National Association of School Nurses. The organization offers continuing education programs, and hosts events and conferences for its members working in school nursing roles throughout the state.