Top Nursing Schools in Oklahoma

Rank School Name Score Tuition Student/Teacher ratio Program count Graduation Rate
1 Western Oklahoma State College 96.75 $$$$$ 15:1 1 18%
2 Carl Albert State College 96.50 $$$$$ 23:1 1 24%
3 Tulsa Community College 96.50 $$$$$ 17:1 1 13%
4 Northern Oklahoma College 96.50 $$$$$ 17:1 1 20%
5 Seminole State College 95.25 $$$$$ 23:1 1 28%
6 Murray State College 95.00 $$$$$ 16:1 1 21%
7 Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College 94.75 $$$$$ 21:1 1 23%
8 Redlands Community College 94.50 $$$$$ 23:1 1 23%
9 Rose State College 94.50 $$$$$ 19:1 1 12%
10 Eastern Oklahoma State College 94.00 $$$$$ 22:1 1 20%
11 Connors State College 94.00 $$$$$ 22:1 1 13%
12 Oklahoma City Community College 93.25 $$$$$ 23:1 1 12%
Rank School Name Score Tuition Student/Teacher ratio Program count Graduation Rate
1 Oklahoma City University 95.00 $$$$$ 11:1 1 59%
2 Oklahoma Baptist University 94.00 $$$$$ 15:1 2 51%
3 University of Tulsa 94.00 $$$$$ 11:1 5 70%
4 Southern Nazarene University 93.75 $$$$$ 15:1 2 46%
5 Oklahoma Wesleyan University 93.00 $$$$$ 15:1 2 37%
6 Oklahoma Christian University 92.75 $$$$$ 14:1 10 47%
7 Northeastern State University 92.50 $$$$$ 18:1 5 31%
8 Northwestern Oklahoma State University 92.50 $$$$$ 14:1 10 34%
9 Bacone College 91.25 $$$$$ 15:1 5 13%
10 Oklahoma State University-Oklahoma City 91.00 $$$$$ 19:1 5 4%
11 Southwestern Oklahoma State University 91.00 $$$$$ 18:1 10 34%
12 East Central University 90.75 $$$$$ 19:1 10 34%
13 Rogers State University 90.75 $$$$$ 19:1 5 19%
14 Oral Roberts University 90.75 $$$$$ 16:1 10 53%
15 Langston University 90.50 $$$$$ 18:1 10 4%
16 University of Central Oklahoma 90.00 $$$$$ 20:1 10 37%
17 Oklahoma Panhandle State University 89.25 $$$$$ 18:1 10 17%

Search Nursing Schools in Oklahoma

As of 2014, the Oklahoma Board of Nursing has approved 21 associate-level programs and 14 bachelor’s degrees in nursing throughout the state. As the Board works to combat the shortage of nursing faculty, these numbers are set to grow in the coming years. The search tool below helps prospective students find and filter through academic options to find the best match.

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Getting an RN License in Oklahoma

The Oklahoma Board of Nursing is the government agency charged with overseeing professional certification and licensing requirements in the state, ensuring all nurses are qualified and competent professionals. Information on how to obtain an initial nursing license, along with details on license renewal, is provided below.


  • Submit a completed license application approximately two months before graduation along with an $85 fee
  • If completing the application online, pay an additional $3.50 online processing fee
  • Graduate from a program in registered nursing education approved by the Oklahoma Board of Nursing. Students, regardless of whether they graduate from a program based in Oklahoma or outside the state, must show proof that the program provided theoretical and clinical experience related to care of the adult, care of children, maternal-newborn nursing, and psychiatric-mental health nursing
  • Request an official transcript be sent from the graduating institution to the Board
  • Submit proof of citizenship or permanent legal status
  • Sign up for the NCLEX examination via Pearson VUE and pay a $200 testing fee
  • Provide fingerprints for a criminal background check
  • Applicants who already hold a license in another state can apply for an Oklahoma license by endorsement

Renewal in Oklahoma

Registered nurses in Oklahoma must renew their licenses by the last day of their birth month in even-numbered years. Nurses are able to renew their licenses up to three months before expiration, and all must complete one or more of the following continuing qualifications requirements:

  • Employment that requires verification of at least 520 work hours
  • Completion of at least 24 contact hours of continuing education in nursing practice
  • Certification in a specialty area
  • Completion of a Board-approved refresher course
  • Completion of six or more semester hours of nursing coursework

Costs of renewal vary depending on the type of nurse:

  • RN renewal fee: $75
  • APRN renewal fee: $40
  • Prescription authority recognition renewal fee: $40

Nurses with inactive licenses are not eligible for renewal; instead, they will need to fill out a Return to Active License form and provide necessary supporting documentation. These documents may include proof of completed continuing education hours that would have been required had their license been active.

Requirements for Advanced Practice Nurses

Advanced practice nurses will need to meet further qualifications because they serve in a specialized area. Registered nurses who wish to take their education a step further can qualify to work as an APRN. To practice in Oklahoma, APRNs must hold a current state RN license. Other requirements for becoming a fully licensed APRN include:

  • Submit official transcripts verifying completion of an advanced practice nursing education program (graduate level or above) in a specialty area recognized by the Board of Nursing
  • Submit evidence of national certification in the specialty area
  • Complete an application for licensure and submit a nonrefundable $80 fee

More information about advanced practice nursing specifically in Oklahoma, as well as required forms for APRNs, can be found at the Oklahoma Board of Nursing.

Nursing Wages in Oklahoma

Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, more Oklahoma residents than ever before now have access to health care. With 79 areas of the state currently classified as medically underserved by the US Department of Health and Human Services, more qualified nursing professionals are needed to meet the state’s patient population demands. The following numbers offer an overview of salary and employment projections for RNs and APRNs in Oklahoma.

Top-Paying Areas for RNs in Oklahoma

Area Hourly Median Wage Annual Median Wage
Tulsa $28.40 $59,070
Oklahoma City $28.08 $58,420
Northeastern Oklahoma nonmetropolitan area $27.44 $57,070
Lawton $26.39 $54,900
Southeastern Oklahoma nonmetropolitan area $26.38 $54,860
Northwestern Oklahoma nonmetropolitan area $26.16 $54,410
Southwestern Oklahoma nonmetropolitan area $25.92 $53,920

Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014

Oklahoma vs. National Numbers

  • Oklahoma
  • National
  • Annual Salary (25th percentile)
  • Annual Salary (median)
  • Annual Salary (75th percentile)

Sources: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014

Total Employment (2014)
2022 occupational outlook
Avg. annual openings (2012 – 2022)

Sources: Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2014 and Projections Central

Oklahoma Resources for Nurses

Association of Oklahoma Nurse Practitioners

AONP organizes and advocates for nurse practitioners at the state level, supporting changes in legislation that advance the role of the nurse practitioner. It also offers networking opportunities and resources for nurse practitioners.

Oklahoma Nurses Association

The Oklahoma Nurses Association is the professional organization for all registered nurses in Oklahoma. Nurse-force numbers, workplace safety, standards of care, scope of practice, patient safety, and political advocacy are some of the concerns of the ONA.

Oklahoma’s Nursing Times

First published in 1999, this weekly newspaper provides the latest news for registered nurses, licensed practical nurses and other health care professionals in Oklahoma City and surrounding areas.

Oklahoma Organization of Nurse Executives

Part of the Oklahoma Hospital Association, the OONE encourages effective administration of nursing service and aims to help enhance the quality of patient care in hospitals. Membership is open to practicing registered nurses and RNs who hold administrative and management roles.

Oklahoma Student Nursing Association

The Oklahoma Student Nursing Association provides networking opportunities and other resources to nursing students in the state of Oklahoma.