We are committed to helping students make informed choices when selecting an RN to BSN nursing program. Our ranking methodology is designed to provide a comprehensive overview of the key factors that contribute to the quality and value of nursing programs. Find your state’s RN to BSN program rankings.
Our analysis is grounded in data from:
- The School’s Website
- The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS)
- National Center for Education Statistics (NCES)
- U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Postsecondary Education (OPE)
We begin by compiling a list of nursing programs across the U.S., including all degree levels and specializations. This involves submitting Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests among other means.
Programs eligible for ranking must not be closing and must have enrollment information available via IPEDS.
Our ranking is based on a points system, with each category assigned a specific weightage:
|Regionally Accredited Institution||5%|
|Nursing Program Accreditation (ACEN and/CCNE)||5%|
|NCLEX Passing Rate for 3-Years||20%|
|Number of Nursing Program Offerings||20%|
|School Reputation Editorial||20%|
Schools are ranked based on the total percentages accrued in these categories.
Detailed Breakdown of Ranking Factors
Each factor is carefully chosen to provide a comprehensive view of what makes a nursing program stand out, helping students make an informed decision about their education.
- Regionally Accredited Institution (5%): Regional accreditation ensures that the institution adheres to high standards of educational quality and student support. This accreditation is essential for students seeking an education that is widely recognized and respected in the professional realm.
- Nursing Program Accreditation (ACEN and/or CCNE) (5%): Accreditation by bodies like ACEN and CCNE indicates that a nursing program meets rigorous standards for nursing education and is committed to ongoing improvement. This is crucial for students who want assurance about the academic rigor and relevance of their nursing education.
- NCLEX Passing Rate for 3-Years (20%): A high NCLEX passing rate over three years reflects the effectiveness of a program in preparing students for nursing practice. It’s a direct measure of the quality of nursing instruction and a program’s success in equipping students for their professional roles.
- Affordability (30%): This factor assesses the overall cost of the program, considering tuition fees and living expenses. Affordability is key for students seeking a high-quality education with a reasonable financial investment, ensuring a higher return on their educational expenses.
- Number of Nursing Program Offerings (20%): The variety and number of nursing programs offered indicate the breadth and depth of a school’s nursing education. A diverse range of programs suggests a comprehensive approach to nursing education, catering to various interests and career paths in nursing.
- School Reputation Editorial (20%): This factor is based on an editorial assessment of the school’s reputation in the nursing education sector, considering aspects like faculty quality, research output, and industry partnerships. A strong reputation often correlates with better educational outcomes and career opportunities for graduates.
We understand that selecting a nursing program is a multi-faceted decision. Our rankings aim to provide a balanced perspective, combining quantitative data with qualitative assessments. We encourage students to use this as a starting point and conduct thorough personal research to find the program that best meets their needs.
Feedback: For comments, questions, or corrections, please contact us via our contact form.
- About the Author
- Latest Posts
After graduating with a degree in English Literature from UCLA, Jeff published four editions of the World Wide Web Yellow Pages by Barnes and Noble, and several editions of the Best of the Web. He’s worked as an executive at both startup and mature companies including CareerPath.com and Microsoft. With nearly three decades of publishing and business development expertise, he now puts that experience to use operating RNCareers.org to help future nursing students get reliable information on registered nursing careers.