Best Nursing Schools and Programs in Texas 2020

Texas is home to not only one of the largest nursing industries in the country, but also one of the fastest growing. A report by the Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce found that 27 percent of the state’s projected 438,000 health care job openings are expected to be in nursing roles. This number, which is set to be reached between 2010 and 2020, equates to nearly 119,000 new positions, making nursing a promising option for anyone looking to help others in the health care field. Learn more about nursing careers, nursing schools in Texas, and licensing requirements to practice in the state.

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The nursing profession attracts individuals who wish to pursue a career helping people live healthier and more active lives. The demand for highly trained and skilled nurses continues to grow, partially due to an aging U.S. population. In addition, many nurses are of retirement age themselves.

Nursing students can pursue several educational tracks to become a licensed nurse. Diploma or certificate nursing programs usually take 1-3 years to complete, while associate and bachelor's degrees in nursing take two and four years, respectively.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects a 7% growth rate between 2019-2029 for jobs in this sector, faster than the overall national average. Nursing degree-holders can expect to enter a job market poised for growth with plenty of opportunities for career advancement.

This guide includes a list of some of the best nursing schools in Texas, selected and ranked according to factors including accreditation, retention and graduation rates, financial assistance, and specialization areas.

What Can I Do With a Degree in Nursing?

All states require nursing graduates to be licensed before they can work as nurses. Students who complete a diploma or certificate in nursing sit for the National Council Licensure Exam for practical nurses, or the NCLEX-PN. Graduates of a two-year associate or a four-year bachelor's degree take the exam for registered nurses, or the NCLEX-RN.

A broad and complex professional arena, nursing offers several specialization areas that often require additional years of study and experience. Some specializations put nurses in clinical settings, interacting directly with patients and being actively involved in their care. Other specializations qualify nurses for leadership positions, whether as program or facility administrators, nurse educators, or even in private practice.

Pursuing an advanced credential in a niche nursing field presents one as a trained and learned practitioner in that field, without limiting their ability to assume responsibilities in general nursing positions.

Graduate Degree Options for a Career in Nursing

There is no shortage of postgraduate academic options for nurses who want to increase their knowledge and improve their skills. Accredited colleges and universities offer some of the top-ranked on-campus and online nursing programs in Texas. Graduate program options for nurses include master of science degrees, doctorate in nursing practice, and doctor of philosophy in nursing programs.

Several top nursing schools in Texas offer advanced nursing certificate programs in diverse specialty areas including pediatric nursing, ambulatory care, psychiatric nursing, and pediatric care. Some programs offer certification programs for nursing subspecialties in fields like holistic nursing, occupational health, wound care, and ICU nursing, to name just a few.

Accreditation for a Degree in Nursing

Higher education accreditation refers to the process that colleges and universities undergo to demonstrate their commitment to providing quality education. It involves recognized accrediting agencies evaluating a school's academic offerings and overall institutional integrity. The U.S. Department of Education (ED) and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) act as project overseers.

Nonprofit, degree-oriented institutions often seek regional accreditation, while career-focused vocational and sectarian schools usually seek national accreditation. Regional accreditors typically adhere to stricter standards throughout the accreditation process. However, ED and CHEA hold national accrediting agencies to industry-recognized standards as well, so students enrolled in nationally accredited schools earn a recognized degree.

Some accreditors focus on specific programs within a school. In the nursing field, ED and CHEA recognize the Commission on the Collegiate Nursing Education and the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing to be the main accrediting agencies.

FAQ

Questions Answers
Can you become an RN in a year? No. A diploma or certificate program, usually 1-3 years in length, qualifies graduates to sit for the NCLEX-PN, which leads to a licensed practice nurse designation (LPN), not a RN designation.
How many years does it take to get a RN degree? It is important to note that an RN is a license and not a degree. Completing a two-year associate or a four-year bachelor of science in nursing qualifies graduates to take the NCLEX-RN test, which leads to licensure as an RN.
What is the yearly salary for a RN? According to data from the BLS, RNs earned an annual median salary of $73,300 in 2019.
How do I start a career in nursing? Begin by completing an accredited nursing program and passing the licensing exam that corresponds to the level of education you completed -- the NCLEX-PN for a diploma or certificate program or the NCLEX-RN for an associate or bachelor's degree.

Admission requirements for a bachelor's program in nursing vary greatly among schools. Generally, most schools require a minimum 3.0 high school GPA, a passing score on the SAT or ACT, and some level of community involvement. More competitive colleges may require higher GPA and SAT/ACT scores in addition to the completion of relevant science coursework.

Graduation requirements for the BSN often include completing an internship or practicum. Culminating activities for the degree also vary. Common options include completing a capstone project, writing a thesis, or taking and passing a comprehensive exam.

Courses in a Nursing Program

Understandably, nursing coursework emphasizes science-based classes. However, many nursing programs also require students to enroll in psychology and communication courses as well.

The courses included in the list below represent a sample of classes commonly included in many nursing programs.

Anatomy and Physiology

The course provides nursing students with the fundamental structure and outline of the different functions and systems of the body, including the skeletal, lymphatic, cardiovascular, and reproductive systems. Students develop a firm grasp of anatomic terminology and a comprehensive understanding of how the human body works. This knowledge helps them assess and monitor a patient's medical condition, implement effective treatment protocols, and restore equilibrium.

Chemistry

Nurses need a broad understanding of chemistry to administer medication, identify illness symptoms, and anticipate possible adverse reactions. Most nursing programs include coursework in general-level chemistry, which teaches the different types of elements and compounds, chemical equations, and thermochemistry. A multi-semester course in chemistry may also cover aspects of biochemistry, basic pharmacology, and organic chemistry.

Health and Nutrition

Topics covered in nutrition typically include proper diet for maintaining good health, the health risks of poor diet and lifestyle choices, and how certain medical conditions can be controlled or even treated through a nutritious diet. Students examine the relationship between proper nutrition and good health and learn how to use a healthy daily diet as a preventive measure against illnesses.

Microbiology

Students learn about the biochemical characteristics of microorganisms and how they adapt to different types of medication and therapies. This knowledge helps nurses to maintain a healthy environment safe for both patients and medical practitioners. A microbiology course also teaches students about diseases and the latest advances in biotechnology.

Community Health Nursing

Students gain a broader understanding of the nursing profession outside a hospital environment. The course guides enrollees in developing a holistic approach to patient care by exploring a myriad of issues including socioeconomic factors, lifestyle, and cultural beliefs. Students study a variety of interventions targeting individuals, families, and groups within specific geographical areas. Enrollees learn how to communicate and educate different communities about disease prevention and health maintenance.

Certifications and Licensure for Nursing Majors

All nurses must obtain a license before they can practice. States regulate and monitor nursing practice within their jurisdiction as a way of protecting patients and maintaining the integrity of the profession. States usually have a nursing board oversee the licensure process. Nurses who wish to specialize in a particular nursing arena or qualify for senior or leadership positions often obtain certification granted by recognizing nursing organizations.

Registered Nurse

An RN license requires applicants to complete an accredited nursing program, which can either be a two-year associate or a four-year bachelor's degree. All states use the NCLEX-RN as the standard licensure exam. Other RN licensure requirements vary among states with some requiring a criminal background check and self-disclosure involving relevant professional, legal, and medical issues.

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Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist

Administered by the National Board of Certification and Recertification for Nurse Anesthetists, the CRNA credential qualifies nurses to administer anesthesia to patients scheduled for surgery. Most states require applicants to complete a master's degree (or higher) from an accredited nurse anesthetist program, hold a valid RN license, and have at least one year of professional experience in critical care.

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Family Nurse Practitioner Certification

The FNP certification requires candidates to hold a master's or doctoral degree and show completion of 500 supervised clinical hours. The National Commission for Certifying Agencies and Accreditation Board for Specialty Nursing Certification administers the FNP certification, which remains valid for five years. Renewal requirements typically include completion of continuing education units and an unencumbered RN license.

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Professional Organizations for Nursing Students

Professional organizations provide members with numerous benefits including networking, collaboration, mentoring opportunities, continuing education units, and professional development options. Members keep one another informed about the latest research findings in their field through conferences, newsletters, and online discussion groups. The four nursing organizations below represent a small sample of professional associations for nurses.

Academy of Medical — Surgical Nurses

A 13,000-member organization, AMSN is the only nursing association dedicated to serving the needs of nurses practicing in the medical-surgical field. It administers the Certified Medical-Surgical Registered Nurse exam, ensuring the knowledge and skills of nursing practitioners in this field are current and consistently applied.

American Association of Critical Care Nurses

AACN holds national and local conferences throughout the year that give members the chance to learn about the latest research findings and policy changes impacting their field. The association administers several critical care certifications accredited by the American Board for Specialty Nursing Certification or the National Commission for Certifying Agencies. AACN provides professional development resources and programs, as well as more than 300 continuing education options for its members.

American Nurses Association

ANA administers several industry-recognized certifications through the American Nurses Credentialing Center, including nurse practitioner and clinical nurse specialist certifications. The association offers professional development opportunities and maintains an exclusive online career center for its members. ANA keeps members informed of current issues, research findings, and regulatory policies in the nursing field through print and online publications.

The National League for Nursing

Founded in 1893 as the first nursing organization in the country, NLN currently includes individual and institutional members involved in nursing education. It offers funding in terms of various research grants, several professional development and continuing education options, and testing services. A members-only career center provides employment and collaboration opportunities.

Scholarships for Nursing Students

Nursing students enrolled in an accredited nursing program can find a variety of financial assistance options. In an attempt to address the critical need for nursing practitioners in almost every healthcare arena, colleges and universities, federal agencies, and private professional organizations offer an array of funding opportunities. The five scholarships presented below are a good place to start.

AfterCollege/AACN Scholarship Fund

Who Can Apply: Nursing students enrolled in an AACN-member school can apply for this scholarship opportunity. The program welcomes applicants pursuing a nursing degree at any level, but gives special consideration to graduate students enrolled in a nurse educator program and students pursuing an RN-to-BSN or RN-to-MSN degree.
Amount: $2,500 per quarter

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American Association of Occupational Health Nurses Scholarships

Who Can Apply: AAOHN offers several scholarship opportunities for nurses pursuing a career in the occupational and environmental health field. The association offers professional development, leadership, and research scholarships. Application requirements for each scholarship program vary; however, applicants must be licensed occupational and environmental health nurses.
Amount: $1,500-$2,500

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American Holistic Nurses Association Research Grant

Who Can Apply: AHNA requires applicants to be members of the organization for at least one year before applying. Applicants must submit a proposal describing their research objectives and how their work relates to the practice of holistic nursing. AHNA only accepts applications from nurses enrolled in an accredited doctoral program.
Amount: $5,000

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ENA Foundation Scholarships

Who Can Apply: The Emergency Nurses Association accepts applications from students enrolled in an accredited undergraduate, master's, or doctoral nursing program. Applicants must have a minimum 3.0 GPA in their most recently completed or current program. ENA only reviews applications from members of good standing.
Amount: Varies

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National Association of Hispanic Nurses Scholarship Programs

Who Can Apply: Active NAHN members of Hispanic descent enrolled in an accredited nursing program can apply for this scholarship opportunity. Applicants must demonstrate strong leadership abilities and a history of involvement in the Hispanic community. The program welcomes applications from students pursuing an LPN/LVN, associate, undergraduate, or graduate nursing program.
Amount: Varies

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Best Nursing Schools and Programs in Texas 2020

Rank Logo School Tuition # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate Graduation Rate Financial Aid Credit For Experience Placement Service Counseling Services Description & Additional Information Toggle
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1 Texas Christian University Fort Worth, TX Tuition $37,344 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

TCU offers undergraduate and graduate nursing programs through the Harris College of Nursing and Health Sciences. Undergraduate students can pursue a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) through a traditional track or an accelerated track. The two tracks require the same number of clinical hours. However, the course and clinical structure for the accelerated track follows a different pathway designed to maximize a student's progress through the program.

Harris College offers a master of science in nursing (MSN) in nursing administration and leadership, nurse educator, and clinical nurse leader. MSN degree-holders can enroll in the college's post-master's doctor of nursing practice (DNP) program. MSN-to-DNP applicants need an advanced practice registered nurse certification.

The college also offers a BSN-to-DNP program with four specialization areas: family nurse practitioner, adult-gerontology acute care nurse practitioner, clinical nurse specialist, or psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner.

Like many of the best nursing schools in Texas, TCU's nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

2 The University of Texas at Austin Austin, TX Tuition $14,156 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

UT Austin's School of Nursing offers several nursing programs for applicants with varying educational backgrounds. Students with an associate degree in nursing (ADN) can apply to the bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) program through the external transfer admission process. ADN students enroll in the same major coursework as BSN enrollees.

Applicants with a bachelor's degree in a non-nursing field can pursue a master of science in nursing (MSN) through the alternate entry (AE) MSN program. This program offers three specialization areas: psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioner, leadership in diverse settings, and adult-gerontology clinical nurse specialist. BSN-trained nurses can apply directly to the MSN program, which offers specialization in three nurse practitioner arenas: family nurse, primary care pediatric, and psychiatric-mental health.

For doctoral candidates, UT Austin offers a research-focused doctor of philosophy (Ph.D.) in nursing and a practice-based doctor of nursing practice degree. The Ph.D. in nursing program also features an AE program for applicants with a bachelor's or master's degree in a non-nursing field.

UT Austin's nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

3 Baylor University Waco, TX Tuition $35,158 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

Baylor's Louise Herrington School of Nursing offers nursing programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Students who wish to earn a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) can pursue a traditional or accelerated track. Both tracks require applicants to have at least 60 transferable general education credits (or an associate degree) from an accredited school or program. Students in the traditional track earn the BSN in two years. Students in the accelerated track graduate in 12 months. All students complete 60 credits of upper-division nursing coursework.

On the graduate level, students can pursue a master of science in nursing leadership and innovation or a doctor of nursing practice (DNP) degree. The DNP offers nurse practitioner specializations in family, neonatal, pediatric, and nurse midwifery. Students can also pursue a DNP in executive nurse leadership. The school offers a nurse anesthetist program through the United States Army Graduate Program in Anesthesia Nursing.

Like many of the top nursing schools in Texas, Baylor's nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

4 Texas A & M University-College Station College Station, TX Tuition $19,118 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

The bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) programs at Texas A&M University accept applications from students with varying educational backgrounds. The on-campus traditional BSN welcomes applicants who have completed two years of general education coursework. Licensed registered nurses (RNs) with an associate degree in nursing can apply to the RN-to-BSN program, which runs mostly online. Texas A&M offers an onsite second-degree BSN for students who hold a non-nursing bachelor's degree. Enrollees usually complete the second-degree BSN within 15 months.

The College of Nursing also offers a master of science in nursing (MSN) for bachelor's-trained RNs. The MSN program offers specializations in nursing education, family nurse practitioner (FNP), and forensic nursing. All MSN programs accept part-time and full-time enrollees. The college offers coursework for the nursing education and forensic nursing programs primarily online. The FNP program follows a hybrid delivery schedule. The university also offers an online graduate certificate in forensic healthcare.

Texas A&M's nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

5 University of Houston Houston, TX Tuition $16,002 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

UH students entering their junior year who wish to pursue licensure as a registered nurse (RN) can apply to the traditional bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) at the College of Nursing. Traditional BSN students attend on-campus classes. Associate-trained RNs can apply to the university's hybrid RN-to-BSN program. The college offers a third type of BSN for enrollees who already have a bachelor's or master's degree in a non-nursing field. Called a second-degree BSN, the program offers a full-time, accelerated (12 months) on-campus curriculum.

The master of science in nursing (MSN) prepares enrollees for advanced practice roles as family nurse practitioners, nurse administrators, or nurse educators. The MSN follows a hybrid delivery format. Laboratory and clinical components require onsite presence, while instructional courses run online. In most instances, an MSN fulfills the educational requirements for a post-master's certificate as nurse administrator or nurse educator.

Similar to many nursing programs in Texas, UH offers nursing programs that are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

6 The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston Houston, TX Tuition $7,224 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

UTHealth's Cizik School of Nursing offers several nursing programs to accommodate nursing applicants with varying educational backgrounds. The Pacesetter bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) consists of 60 credits of junior- and senior-level undergraduate nursing coursework that learners can complete in 15 months. Completion qualifies graduates to sit for the NCLEX-RN.

Licensed registered nurses (RNs) with an associate degree in nursing can apply for the RN-to-BSN program. RNs with a bachelor's degree in a non-nursing field can apply to the RN-to-MSN program. BSN degree-holders who apply to the master of science (MSN) program can choose from six clinical tracks, including nursing leadership, psychiatric-mental health, and adult/gerontology primary care.

On the doctoral level, MSN-trained students can pursue a doctor of philosophy in nursing or a doctor of nursing practice (DNP) degree. The Cizik School of Nursing also offers a BSN-to-DNP with tracks in nurse anesthesia and nurse practitioner.

UTHealth's nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

7 The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio San Antonio, TX Tuition $5,704 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

Students accepted to the bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) program at the UT Health San Antonio School of Nursing can pursue a traditional or an accelerated BSN track. The traditional BSN track admits students who have completed four semesters of general education coursework and who will be applying for initial registered nurse (RN) licensure at the end of the program. The traditional BSN track requires 22 months of full-time enrollment. The accelerated track is a 15-month full-time program designed for non-RN enrollees with a bachelor's (or higher) degree in a non-nursing field.

BSN-trained nurses who apply to the master of science in nursing (MSN) can specialize in administrative management or in clinical nurse leadership. The school offers a doctor of philosophy in nursing and a doctor of nursing practice (DNP) program. Both programs accept BSN- and MSN-trained applicants. BSN-to-DNP enrollees can choose from several advanced practice tracks, including acute care and psychiatry-mental health nurse practitioner. Students admitted to the MSN-to-DNP program can choose an advanced practice leadership, executive administrative management, or public health nurse leader track.

UT Health San Antonio offers nursing programs accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

8 Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center Lubbock, TX Tuition $6,200 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

Students accepted to TTUHSC's School of Nursing can enroll in one of three bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) programs. The traditional BSN accepts students who have completed two years of prerequisite general education courses and are planning to apply for an initial registered nurse (RN) license after the program. Associate-trained RNs apply to the RN-to-BSN program, which comprises 30 credits and takes 2-3 semesters to complete. The second-degree BSN is designed for applicants with a non-nursing bachelor's or master's degree.

Many of the school's master of science in nursing (MSN) programs accept only BSN-trained applicants. MSN students can specialize in one of several advanced practice fields, including nursing informatics, adult-gerontology primary and acute care, nursing administration, and nurse midwifery. On the doctoral level, the school offers a doctor of nursing practice (DNP) for MSN-trained students. The DNP also accepts BSN-trained applicants who can specialize as family nurse practitioners or psychiatric-mental health nurse practitioners.

TTUHSC's nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

9 University of the Incarnate Word San Antonio, TX Tuition $24,098 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

The Ila Faye Miller School of Nursing and Health Professions at UIW offers a traditional and an accelerated bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) for students who plan to sit for the NCLEX-RN.

The 62-credit traditional BSN takes five semesters or 28 months to complete. The program welcomes applicants who have completed general education requirements and specific nursing prerequisites. Students who already hold a bachelor's degree (or higher) in a non-nursing field can apply to the accelerated BSN, which is a full-time 16-month program.

At the postgraduate level, UIW offers a master of science in nursing (MSN) in nursing leadership and an RN-to-MSN program that accepts associate-trained registered nurses (RNs). The school also offers a doctor of nursing practice (DNP) that accepts BSN- and MSN-trained applicants. The BSN-to-DNP program leads to nurse practitioner roles in family nursing and in psychiatric-mental health nursing.

UIW's nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

10 The University of Texas Medical Branch Galveston, TX Tuition $6,392 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

UTMB's School of Nursing offers a traditional bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) for students with 60 general education transferable credits from an accredited institution. The traditional BSN prepares students to take the NCLEX-RN. Learners can complete the degree in four consecutive semesters, or 16 months. Associate-trained registered nurses (RNs) can apply for the RN-to-BSN program.

UTMB's master of science in nursing (MSN) offers four nurse practitioner tracks: family, neonatal, adult-gerontology acute care, and adult-gerontology primary care. The MSN program also offers education/leadership tracks in clinical nurse leader, executive nurse leader, and nurse educator.

At the doctoral level, the school offers a doctor of philosophy (Ph.D.) and a doctor of nursing practice (DNP). Delivered primarily as an online program, the DNP only accepts applications from MSN-trained nurses. The Ph.D. program accepts applications from BSN- and MSN-trained nurses. Most of the required Ph.D. courses occur on campus.

UTMB offers nursing programs accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

11 Texas State University San Marcos, TX Tuition $13,729 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

St. David's School of Nursing at Texas State offers bachelor's and master's degrees in nursing for students coming from a variety of educational backgrounds. Applicants who are not registered nurses (RNs) must show completion of general education credits as well as prerequisite courses (if any) prior to applying to the bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) program. Associate-trained RNs can apply to the 30-credit RN-to-BSN program, which takes two semesters of full-time enrollment.

The school's master of science in nursing (MSN) offers concentrations in two nurse practitioner (NP) roles: family NP and psychiatric and mental health NP. The programs follow a cohort model of education and blend online instruction with on-campus learning intensives. The family NP comprises 48 credits. The psychiatric-mental health NP consists of 40 credits.

The school also offers an MSN in leadership and administration nursing. The 36-credit program follows the same blended delivery as the two MSN programs above. MSN graduates qualify to sit for the American Nurses Credentialing Center Certification Exam for Nurse Executive or Nurse Executive, Advanced.

Texas State's nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

12 Texas Lutheran University Seguin, TX Tuition $19,507 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

TLU's Department of Nursing offers a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) that prepares graduates to sit for the NCLEX-RN. The BSN requires applicants to show completion of general education credits. Applicants must also demonstrate mastery of prerequisite coursework in basic human anatomy and physiology, principles of chemistry, and introductory classes in psychology and sociology.

TLU also offers an accelerated BSN track for applicants with a bachelor's degree in a non-nursing discipline. The program requires learners to complete 60 nursing core credits and at least 945 hours of clinical experience and hands-on training. Most students graduate after 16 months of continued enrollment. Prerequisite coursework for accelerated BSN applicants includes microbiology, general chemistry, nutrition, statistics, and developmental psychology among others.

Applicants must have earned their bachelor's degree within seven years of applying to the accelerated BSN program. Students can sit for the NCLEX-RN upon graduation.

TLU's nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

13 Hardin-Simmons University Abilene, TX Tuition $21,306 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

HSU's Patty Hanks Shelton School of Nursing (PHSSN) provides nursing education programs to both HSU and McMurry University. Students complete general education coursework at either school and then apply to PHSSN to enroll in at least 60 credits of nursing classes to meet the requirements for the bachelor of science in nursing (BSN). The degree qualifies graduates to sit for the NCLEX-RN.

The school also accepts applications from registered nurses (RNs) who completed either a diploma or associate nursing program from an accredited institution. Most of the courses for the RN-to-BSN occur online.

At the graduate level, PHSSN offers a master of science in nursing (MSN) with two specialization areas: nurse educator and family nurse practitioner. MSN courses follow a hybrid delivery system, enabling working students to continue their jobs. PHSSN also offers an on-campus post-master's certificate in family nurse practitioner.

HSU offers nursing programs accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

14 The University of Texas at Arlington Arlington, TX Tuition $12,277 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

UTA's College of Nursing and Health Innovation offers a pre-licensure bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) and a post-licensure RN-to-BSN. Both programs cover upper-division nursing subjects such as holistic health assessment, nursing research, population and community health nursing, and clinical nursing foundations. Students can pursue the degree online or on campus. The online RN-to-BSN follows an accelerated delivery schedule, allowing students to graduate after 9-10 months.

Master of science in nursing (MSN) programs include specializations in nursing administration, nurse educator, and nurse practitioner roles in pediatric primary and acute care and adult-gerontology. Similar to BSN programs, the MSN is available online or on campus.

On the doctoral level, students can pursue either a doctor of philosophy (Ph.D.) or a doctor of nursing practice (DNP). The Ph.D. accepts BSN- and MSN-trained applicants. The 36-credit DNP runs online and takes six semesters to complete.

UTA's nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

15 Lubbock Christian University Lubbock, TX Tuition $23,407 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

LCU offers nursing programs through the Ward Lane College of Professional Studies. The bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) accepts applications from licensed registered nurses (RNs) who completed an accredited diploma or associate nursing program. The total number of credits for the RN-to-BSN depends on an enrollee's educational background coming into the program. Applicants without an undergraduate degree can also apply to the BSN program after completing general education and prerequisite coursework.

LCU's master of science in nursing (MSN) offers concentration areas in nurse education/leadership and family nurse practitioner (FNP). The non-thesis MSN in nursing education and leadership comprises 35 credits and follows a hybrid delivery format. Applicants must submit GRE scores obtained within five years at the time of application.

The non-GRE MSN-to-FNP consists of 46 credits and includes a minimum of 720 hours of hands-on clinical training. The program follows a cohort model of education and offers mostly on-campus courses with online components.

LCU's nursing programs are accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing.

16 Texas Woman's University Denton, TX Tuition $9,324 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

Students who wish to enroll in upper-division classes of the pre-licensure bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) at TWU must show completion of at least 46 credits of nursing prerequisites. At least 25 of these credits should include core nursing subjects such as anatomy and physiology, microbiology, development psychology, and elementary statistics. Licensed registered nurses (RNs) with a diploma or associate in nursing can apply to the RN-to-BSN program, which runs fully online. The total number of credits to complete the RN-to-BSN program depends on a student's educational background upon admission.

TWU offers a master of science in nursing (MSN) with specializations in nurse education, nursing health systems management, and nurse practitioner roles. At the doctoral level, MSN-trained nurses can apply to either the doctor of nursing practice (DNP) or the doctor of philosophy (Ph.D.) program. TWU also offers a DNP-to-Ph.D. bridge program for nursing professionals who wish to conduct original research in the field or simply add to their knowledge of research methodology.

TWU offers nursing programs accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

17 The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley Edinburg, TX Tuition $4,319 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

The bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) at UTRGV comprises 60 upper-division nursing credits in addition to 60 in general education coursework. A pre-licensure program, the BSN prepares graduates for general nursing work and qualifies them to sit for the NCLEX-RN.

UTRGV also offers a 27-credit online RN-to-BSN program for diploma- or associate-trained registered nurses (RNs). Classes follow seven-week delivery schedules. Students can complete the program after 12 months. The university offers a third pathway to a BSN for applicants who already have a bachelor's degree in a non-nursing field. The second-degree BSN follows an accelerated, onsite 15-month curriculum and qualifies graduates to sit for the NCLEX-RN.

BSN-trained students who wish to pursue a master of science in nursing (MSN) at UTRGV can choose from three specialization areas: nursing administration, nurse educator, and family nurse practitioner. RNs with a bachelor's degree in a non-nursing discipline who wish to enroll in the MSN program must first complete a six-credit transition to a graduate nursing course, which is available online.

UTRGV's nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

18 Concordia University Texas Austin, TX Tuition $18,021 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

Concordia's College of Health Sciences offers a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) with three distinct pathways. The traditional BSN program accepts incoming freshmen registering as pre-nursing majors, transfer applicants, and students seeking a second degree. Applicants to the traditional BSN track must show a 3.0 GPA or higher in their last academic undertaking. After meeting general education and prerequisite coursework (if any), pre-nursing majors must apply to the upper-division BSN program to complete the professional nursing sequence.

Applicants with GPAs of 3.75 or higher can apply to the BSN Direct Admission program, which guarantees them a spot in the upper-division BSN program even as they complete general education and prerequisite courses. They must meet the final requirements for the program's pre-nursing component to assume their reserved spot in the upper-division BSN program.

Students with previous college credits can apply to the accelerated BSN track, which features online courses, clinical practice, and laboratory work. Depending on their educational background, students can earn the BSN in 16 months.

Concordia's nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

19 Tarleton State University Stephenville, TX Tuition $12,352 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

Tarleton's School of Nursing offers a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) and a master of science in nursing (MSN). The BSN program welcomes pre-licensure and post-licensure applicants. Applicants to the pre-licensure or generic BSN must complete pre-nursing courses as part of the freshmen and sophomore general education coursework. Upon satisfactory completion of these courses, they can apply to the School of Nursing so they can begin upper-division nursing coursework.

The post-licensure BSN accepts applications from licensed vocational nurses and diploma- or associate-trained license registered nurses (RNs). LVN-to-BSN students attend classes at the Waco campus. Courses for the RN-to-BSN program occur online. Classes follow eight-week delivery schedules. Students can complete the program in 10-18 months, depending on their enrollment status.

Tarleton's MSN program features two specialization areas: nursing administration and nursing education. While MSN courses run online, enrollees must complete a practicum toward the end of the program. Degree-seekers can complete their practicum near their home.

Tarleton offers nursing programs accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

20 University of Mary Hardin-Baylor Belton, TX Tuition $25,230 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

UMHB offers bachelor's, master's, and doctoral nursing programs through the Scott & White School of Nursing. The bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) program accepts pre-licensure applicants and associate-trained registered nurses (RNs). Pre-licensure applicants must show completion of general education credits and specific subjects such as developmental psychology, basic human anatomy and physiology, chemistry, and sociology.

The RN-to-BSN program offers all required coursework online. A competency-based education degree, the RN-to-BSN allows students to progress through the program at their own pace. Students must show proof of RN employment throughout their enrollment period.

The master of science in nursing (MSN) offers a nurse practitioner track (family and adult-gerontology acute care) and a nurse educator track. The MSN program follows a cohort model of education and a hybrid delivery system. UMHB also offers a doctor of education with a leadership in nursing education track. The 54-credit program consists of a cohort of students meeting on campus five weekends per semester.

UMHB's nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

21 Wayland Baptist University Plainview, TX Tuition $22,516 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

WBU's School of Nursing offers a general bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) for pre-licensure students. Applicants must show satisfactory completion of general education credits and all required prerequisite coursework in biology, psychology, sociology, and nursing research. The general BSN prepares graduates to take the NCLEX-RN. Most students graduate from the program in seven semesters, or two years. The school also offers an LVN-to-BSN program that learners can complete in six semesters. Both BSN tracks offer onsite classes.

WBU's master of science in nursing (MSN) prepares students for careers as nurse educators. The 36-credit MSN features online courses that students can complete in five terms. The program focuses on teaching strategies, curriculum development, program evaluation, and adult learning. MSN candidates must complete a clinical-based practicum.

WBU offers nursing programs accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing.

22 Texas A & M International University Laredo, TX Tuition $4,744 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

TAMIU offers bachelor's and master's nursing programs through the Dr. F. M. Canseco School of Nursing. Entering freshmen accepted to the bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) program complete 120 credits, which includes general education and nursing major subjects. The program prepares students to take the NCLEX-RN. Associate-trained registered nurses (RNs) can apply to the RN-to-BSN program, an accelerated 12-month degree that students can complete fully online. The 32-credit program requires learners to complete 126 practicum hours.

TAMIU also offers a master of science in nursing (MSN) with a specialization in nursing administration (NA) and in family nurse practitioner (FNP). The 31-credit MSN-to-NA program takes two full semesters and a summer term to complete. Applicants must have at least one year of full-time RN experience. The 48-credit MSN-to-FNP program requires a minimum of two years of RN experience and at least one year of experience in inpatient nursing. Both programs require enrollees to complete a practicum experience.

TAMIU's nursing programs are accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing.

23 Midwestern State University Wichita Falls, TX Tuition $10,395 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

MSU offers undergraduate and graduate nursing programs through the Wilson School of Nursing. Pre-licensure applicants who do not yet have a bachelor's degree typically enroll in the traditional bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) program, which requires 120 credits of general education and nursing major coursework.

The school enrolls pre-licensure applicants who already hold a bachelor's degree in a non-nursing discipline in the ACCEL-RN program, which enrollees can complete in 15 months. MSU offers a third BSN track for registered nurses (RNs) with a diploma or associate degree from an accredited institution.

Students accepted to the master of science in nursing (MSN) program can specialize as a family nurse practitioner or a psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner. The MSN program requires applicants to have at least one year of professional experience in their field of study. MSN candidates must complete a practicum experience to earn the degree.

MSU offers nursing programs accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

24 The University of Texas at El Paso El Paso, TX Tuition $7,720 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

UTEP's School of Nursing offers bachelor's, master's, and doctoral nursing programs for students of varying educational backgrounds. The traditional bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) accepts pre-licensure applicants, while the RN-to-BSN program accepts associate-trained registered nurses (RNs).

Students interested in pursuing a master of science in nursing (MSN) at UTEP can choose from three major areas: nursing administration and management, nursing education, and nurse practitioner. MSN courses follow seven-week delivery schedules and run primarily online. The nurse practitioner (NP) program includes concentrations in adult gerontology acute care, family primary care, pediatric acute care, pediatric primary care, and psychiatric mental health.

On the doctoral level, the school offers a doctor of nursing practice (DNP) open only to MSN-trained applicants. DNP courses focus on evidence-based practice, informatics and technology, organizational systems, and leadership. Alternately, students can pursue a doctor of philosophy in interdisciplinary health sciences focused on research design and methodology, statistics, and grant-writing.

UTEP's nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

25 The University of Texas at Tyler Tyler, TX Tuition $12,437 # of Online Programs Acceptance Rate - Graduation Rate - Financial Aid - Credit For Experience - Placement Service - Counseling Services -

The bachelor's, master's, and doctoral nursing programs at UT Tyler's School of Nursing admit students who come from various educational and professional backgrounds. The bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) program accepts applications from pre-licensure students admitted to UT Tyler as freshmen, as well as transfer students coming from another accredited school. The program maintains a different track for post-licensure, associate-trained registered nurses (RNs).

The school's master of science in nursing (MSN) offers several specialization areas, including nursing education; informatics, quality, and safety; and nursing administration. MSN candidates can also pursue a nurse practitioner focus in family care and in psychiatric mental health. On the doctoral level, UT Tyler offers a doctor of nursing practice (DNP) and a doctor of philosophy (Ph.D.).

The DNP program includes two tracks: clinical practice and leadership. The program runs mostly online, with an on-campus summer orientation for new enrollees and professional workshops for returning students. The Ph.D. program also follows an online delivery format and accepts applications from BSN- and MSN-trained practitioners.

UT Tyler's nursing programs are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.