In our Alabama RN program guide, find rankings for both ADN and BSN Degree programs, tuition costs, NCLEX passing rates, and more. Research key Alabama RN Program information to help you compare program metrics and to apply to best RN program for your career in nursing.

In the State of Alabama, nurses are helping to change the face of healthcare. To ensure that they have the best education and preparation for future health care challenges, registered nurses need to graduate from a state-approved associate's degree in nursing program or a BSN degree program.

Nurses who graduate from an RN program can obtain certification in over 100 nursing specialties, go on to earn an RN to BSN or RN to MSN degree.

BSN degree holders have options to earn an Advance Practice Register Nursing (APRN) degree and become a Nurse Practitioner (NP), or earn an advanced degree for a career in any number of nursing leadership roles such Nurse Educator or Clinical Nurse Specialist.

Alabama RN Program Comparisons: ADN vs BSN

Compare RN ProgramsADNBSN
Number of Nursing Programs2715
Average NCLEX Passing Rate81.88%87.72%
NCLEX Passing Rate Range50.23% to 98.75%68.65% to 95.77%
Average Net Price$8,410.92$17,341.20
Average Net Price Range$2,651.00 to $22,526.00$10,292.00 to $27,477.00
Average Student Loan$9,357.82$19,579.07
Average Student Loan Range$1,325.00 to $25,000.00$9,500.00 to $27,475.00
Best Ranked School DetailsADN Rankings for Alabama StateBSN Rankings for Alabama State

Best Ranked RN Programs in Alabama

Best Ranked RN Programs in AlabamaTo help nursing students in their search for a top RN program, the education experts at RNCareers.org publish their annual findings of the best nursing schools for both Alabama and the country. Schools ranked on our list have proven their ability to educate highly competent nurses.

To create our rankings, we evaluated 26 ADN degree programs and 15 BSN degree programs in Alabama. We obtained each institution’s first-time NCLEX-RN passing rates, the number of students taking the test, the program nursing accreditation and more. We then compared the results against other nursing programs in Alabama to provide our state rankings. View our methodology


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AL Rank
US Rank
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99.35 ADNCoastal Alabama CC (James H Faulkner State)14 Bay Minette

Coastal Alabama Community College is located in Bay Minette, Alabama and is known to have one of the lowest tuition rates in Alabama. They offer a number of nursing programs – an LPN program, a nursing mobility program (LPN to RN), and an RN program. Nursing graduates from Faulkner State Community College are prepared to be critical thinkers, practicing safely and effectively in a variety of healthcare settings.

PublicCampusACENSee School Details
94.91 ADNCoastal Alabama CC (Alabama Southern)2156 MonroevillePublicCampusSee School Details
94.56 ADNGeorge C Wallace State Community College-Hanceville3171 Hanceville

Wallace State Community College is located in Hanceville, Alabama, and they offer both an LPN and an RN program. The Wallace State Department of Nursing’s goal is to produce nursing graduates “who are dedicated and exceptional healthcare providers committed to transforming the lives of patients, families, and the community.”  Wallace State Community College also has an articulation agreement with University of Alabama, which allows its graduates to pursue their bachelor’s or master’s degree of nursing.

PublicCampusACENSee School Details
94.26 ADNGeorge C Wallace State Community College-Selma4181 SelmaPublicCampusACENSee School Details
93.47 ADNJefferson State Community College5222 BirminghamPublicCampusACENSee School Details
93.18 ADNHerzing University-Birmingham6233 BirminghamPrivate For-ProfitCampus, OnlineSee School Details
93.16 ADNJohn C Calhoun State Community College7235 TannerPublicCampusACENSee School Details
91.35 ADNCoastal Alabama CC (Jefferson Davis)8312 BrewtonPublicCampusSee School Details
90.50 ADNLawson State Community College-Birmingham Campus9341 Birmingham

Lawson State Community College is located in Birmingham, Alabama; there is also a campus in Bessemer, Alabama for an evening RN program.  The school boasts that their nursing program is competitive and prestigious – and difficult to gain entrance.  Although their is a minimum GPA requirement, it is recommended to maintain a high GPA and perform at a high level in all science courses.  It is even recommended that their students take additional biology classes to ready themselves for their nursing program – classes that are not required for the nursing program.

PublicCampusACENSee School Details
89.64 ADNSouthern Union State Community College10376 Wadley

Southern Union State Community College has multiple campuses in Alabama- Wadley, Opelika, and Valley.  The RN school is housed on the Opelika campus.  Their RN program is unique in that it offers mobility programs for not just LPNs seeking to become RNs, but also paramedics seeking to become RNs.

PublicCampusACENSee School Details
89.12 ADNChattahoochee Valley State Community College11397 Phenix CityPublicCampusACENSee School Details
89.12 ADNNorthwest-Shoals Community College11397 Muscle ShoalsPublicCampusACENSee School Details
88.21 ADNSnead State Community College12425 BoazPublicCampusACENSee School Details
87.97 ADNBevill State Community College13437 JasperPublicCampusACENSee School Details
86.45 ADNShelton State Community College14493 Tuscaloosa

Shelton State Community College is located in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.  They offer both a traditional RN program and an LPN to RN program; they also offer an LPN program.  Shelton State Community College prides itself on being the first full-time and evening practical nursing program in the state of Alabama.  The college also advertises it’s SOAR institute – Student Opportunities for Achievement and Resources.  This institute housed within the college assists students with general education courses and offers the use of computers for student use.

PublicCampusACENSee School Details
86.17 ADNTroy University - Troy15501 Troy

Troy University is located in Troy, Alabama.  Their RN to BSN program also offers a pathway for students to enter directly into an MSN program, allowing the nurse to continue to their advanced nursing degree immediately following completion of their BSN degree.  Students can also take the majority of their coursework online.

PublicCampus, OnlineACENSee School Details
85.77 ADNBishop State Community College16511 MobilePublicCampusACENSee School Details
85.03 ADNGeorge C Wallace State Community College-Dothan17526 DothanPublicCampusACENSee School Details
82.53 ADNNortheast Alabama Community College18588 RainsvillePublicCampusACENSee School Details
81.14 ADNUniversity of West Alabama19613 LivingstonPublicCampusACENSee School Details
79.39 ADNLurleen B Wallace Community College20634 AndalusiaPublicCampusACENSee School Details
75.65 ADNCentral Alabama Community College21664 Alexander CityPublicCampusACENSee School Details
73.76 ADNGadsden State Community College22678 GadsdenPublicCampusACENSee School Details
66.99 ADNFortis College-Montgomery23701 MontgomeryPrivate For-ProfitCampusSee School Details
96.78 BSNSpring Hill College177 Mobile

Spring Hill College is located in Mobile, Alabama.  Spring Hill College is the oldest Catholic college in the Southeast and the third oldest Jesuit college in the US.  They boast that their student to faculty ratio is 13:1.  In addition, nursing students comprise 9% of their student population, which is pretty outstanding when their are 46 majors available.

Private Not-For-ProfitCampusCCNESee School Details
96.71 BSNUniversity of Alabama at Birmingham279 Birmingham

The University of Alabama at Birmingham is located in Birmingham, Alabama.  Their RN-BSN program is unique in that it can be tailored to fit the needs of the student.  If the student chooses to attend school full-time, it can be completed in two semesters.  However, for the student who may have to work full-time, they can opt for a decelerated program and attend for as long as five semesters.  In addition, the bulk of the coursework can be completed online, with professors being accessible via the Internet as well.

PublicCampus, Hybrid, OnlineACEN, ACME, CCNE, COASee School Details
96.38 BSNUniversity of South Alabama392 MobilePublicCampus, OnlineACEN, ACME, CCNE, COASee School Details
96.32 BSNUniversity of Alabama495 Tuscaloosa

The University of Alabama is located in Tuscaloosa, Alabama.  They boast that they were the first public college of Alabama, founded in 1831.  They are also proud to say that their NCLEX-RN pass rate has been between 96% and 100% since it began in 1976.  They offer an RN to BSN program and an RN to BSN/MSN program.

PublicCampus, Hybrid, OnlineACEN, CCNESee School Details
96.11 BSNUniversity of Mobile5103 MobilePrivate Not-For-ProfitCampus, OnlineCCNESee School Details
96.05 BSNTroy University - Troy6105 Troy

Troy University is located in Troy, Alabama.  Their RN to BSN program also offers a pathway for students to enter directly into an MSN program, allowing the nurse to continue to their advanced nursing degree immediately following completion of their BSN degree.  Students can also take the majority of their coursework online.

PublicCampus, OnlineACENSee School Details
95.69 BSNAuburn University7115 Auburn

Auburn University is located in Auburn, Alabama.  Its BSN program was formed in 1979, graduating its first group of students in 1981.  Per their website, admission into their nursing program is extremely competitive; it does require a minimum GPA of 2.5 but in reality, the minimum GPA is most likely much higher.  In addition, applicants must undergo an interview process in order to be accepted into the program.

PublicCampus, OnlineACEN, CCNESee School Details
94.60 BSNUniversity of North Alabama8160 FlorencePublicCampus, OnlineCCNESee School Details
94.09 BSNJacksonville State University9186 JacksonvillePublicCampusCCNESee School Details
92.09 BSNSouth University-Montgomery10267 MontgomeryPrivate For-ProfitCampusACME, COASee School Details
91.29 BSNSamford University11295 Birmingham

Samford University is located in Birmingham, Alabama.  Their Ida V. Moffett School of Nursing was originally founded as a diploma nursing program in 1922.  It was the first nursing program in Alabama to be accredited by the National League of Nursing.  The school merged with Samford University in 1973, and moved to its campus in 1988.  To date, the school has graduated more than 5,000 RNs.

Private Not-For-ProfitCampus, Hybrid, OnlineACEN, CCNESee School Details
89.42 BSNUniversity of Alabama in Huntsville12343 HuntsvillePublicCampus, Hybrid, OnlineACEN, CCNESee School Details
88.02 BSNAuburn University at Montgomery13379 MontgomeryPublicCampus, Hybrid, OnlineACEN, CCNESee School Details
84.09 BSNTuskegee University14453 TuskegeePrivate Not-For-ProfitCampusACME, COASee School Details
66.43 BSNOakwood University15528 HuntsvillePrivate Not-For-ProfitCampusACME, COASee School Details

Become an Advance Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) in Alabama

RNs who wish to become advanced practice registered nurses will want to pursue any number of avenues to earn Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree. Earning a Master of Science in Nursing consists of graduate-level coursework and clinical practice for those nurses who wish to direct patient roles such as a nurse practitioner. You can also pursue indirect patient roles such as teaching or leadership roles, or become involved in policy, state-wide health initiatives or community engagement. There are many clinical and non-clinical avenues that an RN with MSN can pursue.

Become a Nurse Practitioner (NP) in Alabama

Learn how to become a Nurse Practitioner (NP) and research schools in Alabama offering the following high paying nurse practitioner specialties: Learn about Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Degree.

Alabama  RN Licensing Requirements

RN State A future nurse must pass the NCLEX-RN exam through Pearson VUE while applying to the Alabama Board of Nursing. Nurses need to submit documentation to prove their U.S. citizenship and pay an $85 application fee. They must also complete twenty-four contact hours of continuing education every two years. Each state requires an examination or endorsement in order to obtain licensure. In some cases, nurses can be trained abroad and do a number of things in order to attain licensure.

NCLEX-RN Licensing Information

The state of Alabama has strict requirements set for becoming an RN. The most important requirement is attending a State Board-approved nursing program and passing the NCLEX exam. In addition to the completed application, the applicant must also submit:
  • Official transcript from the state-approved nursing program.
  • Proof of US citizenship or lawful presence.
  • Receipt of NCLEX exam registration.

RN License by Endorsement

Applicants who hold a license in one of the other 50 states can apply for an Alabama license by endorsement. With the application and fee, the applicant must also provide:
  • Proof (verification) of license from another state.
  • Official school transcripts in a sealed envelope from a state-approved school.
  • Proof of completion of 24 contact hours of continued education.
  • Proof of US citizenship or lawful presence.

RN License for Nurses Educated Abroad

Applicants educated abroad can apply for a license in Alabama and must not only have passed the NCLEX, but he or she must also submit his or her official school transcripts for the Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools (CGFNS) to perform a full course-by-course review and evaluate credentials. The applicant must also be a graduate from an approved nursing program that is equivalent to the state of Alabama, the applicate must have a social security number.

RN License Renewal

Applicants who are looking to renew a relapsed license must submit the following documentation:
  • A completed application for reinstatement
  • Payment of the reinstatement fee
  • Applicants have 24 contact hours in order to reinstate. Contact hours can be obtained in a variety of ways: workshops, seminars, classrooms, webcasts, internet, intranet, home study, continuing education journals, and podcasts. All contact hours must be more recent than 24 months from the date of the application. CE certificates can be faxed to 334-293-5201.
Prepare for to pass the NCLEX-RN exam with our NCLEX practice questions with rationales.

Alabama Board of Nursing

770 Washington Avenue RSA Plaza, Suite 250 Montgomery, AL 36130-3900 Phone: (334) 242-4060 Fax: (334) 242-4360

Nursing School Accreditation in Alabama

Nursing school accreditation is one of the most important aspects to consider at when deciding which RN program to attend. If you ever plan to continue your education, academic credits from an accredited program are more easily accepted or transferred between accredited programs. Some employers will prefer to hire nurses from an accredited program. Not all nursing programs in Arkansas are accredited by either Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) or the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE), the two primary accrediting agencies for nursing programs.

RN Salaries in Alabama

According to the Alabama Department of Labor, nursing is a “high demand” career field. It was listed as the industry with the largest necessity to fill, on average 1,525 jobs annually. When you obtain your RN degree, you will have a better chance of getting a job because you will have shown initiative in furthering your education. BSN nurses are commonly hired over nurses with an Associates degree. The average yearly nursing salary for an Alabama RN is over $55,000. Hospitals are the largest employers in Alabama's health care industry. As of this moment, there are twenty-six licensed hospitals within twenty Alabama communities. Many other hospitals and health care networks are among the top employers in Alabama. As of 2013, Alabama has 4,860 registered nurses. Approximately half of the nurses in Alabama work in hospitals and ambulatory care. Forty-two percent of new RNs in Alabama graduate with a bachelors degree in nursing.

LPN Salary vs RN Salary in Alabama

Compare LPN to RN Salaries in Alabama in the following tables. Learn more in our LPN Salary Guide and RN Salary Guide.

RN Salaries in Alabama

Where in Alabama can you earn the highest RN Salary? Montgomery has the highest annual median wage and hourly median wage across the state of Alabama. However, the Birmingham-Hoover metropolitan area has the highest number of registered nurses.
Area nameEmploymentHourly median wageAnnual median wage
Anniston-Oxford, AL930$23.90$49,710
Auburn-Opelika, AL840$26.41$54,940
Birmingham-Hoover, AL15,240$27.26$56,700
Decatur, AL910$23.31$48,490
Dothan, AL1,950$24.57$51,110
Florence-Muscle Shoals, AL1,120$21.93$45,620
Gadsden, AL1,090$25.08$52,160
Huntsville, AL4,340$26.97$56,090
Mobile, AL4,300$25.99$54,060
Montgomery, AL3,150$27.84$57,900
Tuscaloosa, AL2,400$27.45$57,110
Source: http://www.dol.gov/, 2016 Data