Overview of Nursing Schools in Idaho

  • There are 13 nursing schools in Idaho. The CCNE accredits 5 nursing schools and the ACEN accredits 5 schools in Idaho.
  • Typically, an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) will take between 18 to 24 months to complete, and a Bachelor Degree in Nursing (BSN) will take about 4 years to complete.
  • The average NCLEX passing rate range for ADN students in Idaho is between 33.30% and 96.80%.
  • The average NCLEX passing rate range for BSN students in Idaho is between 88.72% and 94.52%.
  • The average annual salary for registered nurses is between $52,080 to $111,220 a year.
  • Registered Nurses (RN) throughout the country and in Idaho can expect a favorable job growth of 15 percent from 2016 to 2026 which much faster than the average for all occupations.

About Nursing Schools in Idaho

On average, a registered nurse working in the state of Idaho earns $72,798 annually. That compared to the cost of study to become an RN which is between $6,213.00 and $18,969.00, should be enough to give you an idea of how profitable and lucrative nursing is as a profession in terms of finances. There are currently 12,800 RNs working here. According to the US Department of Labor, the number is expected to go up to 17,070 by 2028, which means that Idaho will need to hire roughly 280 nurses annually to meet the healthcare needs of its citizens.

In addition to that, Idaho has adopted the Nurse Licensure Compact, which gives nurses who reside in a Compact state to practice in other states without having to obtain an additional license in that state. However, the Nurse Licensure Compact is only valid for RNs and LPNs at the moment, so Advanced Practice Registered Nurses must hold an individual state license in the state they wish to practice in.

Similarly, when it comes to Nurse Practitioners, there are currently 810 NPs working here who earn between $91,190 and $163,830 annually, as per their experience. Like the employment rate of RNs, the state is also projected to need 970 nurse practitioners by 2028, which means, on average, 20 NPs will find employment here annually. 

According to the state practice and licensure laws, Nurse Practitioners are permitted for Full Practice. All NPs can evaluate patients, diagnose, order, interpret diagnostic tests, initiate and manage treatments, including prescribing medications and controlled substances. 

There are multiple highly ranked nursing colleges in Idaho help kick-start your nursing career. These colleges are well-equipped with highly trained faculty and have state-of-the-art classrooms and laboratories to provide the students with quality nursing education. The colleges are also affordable and offer multiple financial aid and scholarships to help students fund their education. In addition to that, almost all of these colleges have partnered with local healthcare facilities so that the students gain the hands-on education and experience that they need in order to work as successful professional nurses.

Compare RN Programs ADN BSN
Number of Nursing Programs 7 5
Average NCLEX Passing Rate 81.94% 91.54%
NCLEX Passing Rate Range 33.30% to 96.80% 88.72% to 94.52%

Nursing Programs Offered by Idaho Nursing Schools

  • Registered Nursing: 10
  • Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner: 1
  • CNL: 1
  • Family Nurse Practitioner: 1
  • Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner: 1

Idaho Nursing Schools with the Most Degree Types

Best Ranked RN Programs in Idaho

Best Ranked RN Programs in Idaho

To 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 Idaho and the country. Schools ranked on our list have proven their ability to educate highly competent nurses.

To create our rankings, we evaluated 7 ADN degree programs and 4 BSN degree programs in Idaho. 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 Idaho to provide our state rankings. View our methodology

North Idaho College

96.80% 3-Year
Pass Rate
  • 1000 West Garden Avenue, Coeur d'Alene, ID - 83814-2199
  • (208) 769-3300
  • NCLEX Passing Rate: (A) 96.80%
  • Programs: Registered Nursing
  • Award Levels: Associate

University Information

  • Total Faculty: 147
  • In-State Undergraduate Tuition: $3,396
  • Book and Supplies: $8,736
  • Percent Received Aid: 89%
  • Average Grant or Scholarship: $3,751
  • Percent Admitted: N/A
  • Percent Admitted who Enrolled: N/A
  • Graduation Rate: 28%

Nursing graduates in North Idaho College learn to use information and technology to communicate, manage knowledge, mitigate error, and support decision-making. The faculty engage students as partners to achieve maximum learning outcomes that are relevant to the current clinical practice environment. The students learn to model effective communication, ethical behavior, and respect for diversity.

The nursing graduates at North Idaho College aspire to be a national leader in nursing education by promoting the knowledge, skills, and attitudes required to become exceptional care providers. The nursing program here includes general education courses in the arts and sciences and nursing courses so that the students get both the classroom and clinical experience required to work in health care agencies. 

North Idaho College provides financial aid in the form of scholarships, grants, loans, work-study, and grants-in-aid for students who are unable to fund their education. The college also tries to make the students assume as little debt as possible therefore unsubsidized loans are discouraged and non-debt-related types of aid are leveraged whenever possible.

Undergraduate Programs: The Associate’s Degree in Nursing program is committed to student success, educational excellence, community engagement, and lifelong learning. Upon completion of this challenging and fulfilling course, students are eligible to take their NCLEX-RN examinations and start practicing as registered nurses. 

The ADN at North Idaho College is a transfer degree and is designed to satisfy the core requirements at Idaho public colleges and universities that offer RN to BSN programs. Similarly, LPNs who are looking to advance their education and professional careers are also eligible to apply for advanced placement in this course.

Idaho State University

School of Nursing

95.20% 3-Year
Pass Rate
  • 921 S 8th Ave, Pocatello, ID - 83209
  • (208) 282-2700
Nurse Admin: Karen Neill, PhD, RN
Title: Associate Dean and Professor
  • NCLEX Passing Rate: (A) 95.20%
  • Programs: CNL, Family Nurse Practitioner, Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, Registered Nursing
  • Award Levels: Accelerated BSN, Associate, Bachelor, BSN to DNP, LPN to BSN, MSN, MSN to DNP, RN to MSN

University Information

  • Total Faculty: 608
  • In-State Undergraduate Tuition: $7,872
  • Book and Supplies: $1,000
  • Percent Received Aid: 95%
  • Average Grant or Scholarship: $6,842
  • Percent Admitted: N/A
  • Percent Admitted who Enrolled: N/A
  • Graduation Rate: 34%

Idaho State University School of Nursing aims to prepare exemplary nurse leaders who integrate education, service, and scholarship, through practice and research. The graduates are devoted to enhancing the quality of life for both rural and diverse populations.

At Idaho State University School of Nursing, the students are involved in innovative and meaningful simulations that provide them with a unique learning experience. The simulation takes place through the use of high-fidelity mannequins, community members as patient actors, task trainers, and various computerized simulators.  These simulations provide students with a realistic and safe environment to learn and perfect their skills for the complex healthcare environment.

With the 13:1 student to teacher ratio and low cost of tuition, this university provides one of the most highly ranked nursing courses in the state.

Undergraduate Programs: The School of Nursing offers a traditional Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree that prepares students with no prior nursing experience for a career as a professional registered nurse.  In addition to that, the school also has an Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing program for students with a bachelor’s degree in other disciplines. There is also a Baccalaureate Completion Program for RNs designed for working RNs with an associate degree who want to complete their bachelor’s degree.

Graduate Programs: The Master of Nursing in Nursing Education aims to prepare nurses for an educator role in a variety of settings such as hospitals, healthcare clinics, and other health care settings.

Similarly, there is a Ph.D. in Nursing degree program that prepares the students for independent research, collaborate as a scholar and leader, and educate for improving health and healthcare globally. The DNP program exists for students seeking a terminal degree in nursing in Family Nurse Practitioner and Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner. Finally, there is a Family Nurse Practitioner to Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner certificate program that is designed to extend the licensure and practice of licensed FNPs.

Lewis-Clark State College

Division of Nursing and Health Sciences

94.52% 3-Year
Pass Rate
  • 500 8th Ave, Lewiston, ID - 83501-2698
  • (208) 792-5272
Nurse Admin: Krista Harwick, DNP, RN, APRN, NP-C
Title: Chair of the Nursing and Health Sciences Division
  • NCLEX Passing Rate: (A) 94.52%
  • Programs: Registered Nursing
  • Award Levels: Bachelor, LPN to BSN

University Information

  • Total Faculty: 171
  • In-State Undergraduate Tuition: $6,982
  • Book and Supplies: $1,400
  • Percent Received Aid: 97%
  • Average Grant or Scholarship: $6,500
  • Percent Admitted: 100%
  • Percent Admitted who Enrolled: 31%
  • Graduation Rate: 36%

At Lewis Clark State College, nursing students are taught by qualified faculty in the classroom, laboratory, and clinical settings to develop the hands-on skills they need to begin and sustain a career as a professional nurse. The nursing program integrates education, practice, research, and service to achieve its goals. 

One of the most highly rated nursing colleges in the state and the nation, Lewis Clark State College offers multiple tracks to help students achieve their goals of becoming credible and skilled registered nurses. Students learn theoretical knowledge in state-of-the-art classrooms where they are instructed by highly skilled instructors. They also practice their practical skills in high-fidelity simulation labs where they are provided with various scenarios and situations that they might encounter in real-life practice. Upon completion of theoretical classes and skills practice in labs, students learn through clinical rotations in multiple healthcare centers in the area, where they gain experience in how to work with real patients and healthcare team members.

Undergraduate Programs: Lewis Clark State College offers multiple tracks to lead students to their BSN degree. The basic track exists for students with no previous nursing degree. There are also options for currently practicing LPNs to get certified to take their NCLEX-RN examination. 

For students in select community colleges who are currently enrolled in their AS degree, the CC to BSN track allows them to enroll concurrently in the BSN degree.  In addition, the college has an online RN to BSN track for RNs that have graduated with an associate degree or are about to graduate with one.

College of Eastern Idaho

92.40% 3-Year
Pass Rate
  • 1600 S 25th E, Idaho Falls, ID - 83404-5788
  • (208) 535-3000
  • NCLEX Passing Rate: (A) 92.40%
  • Programs: Registered Nursing
  • Award Levels: Associate

University Information

  • Total Faculty: 58
  • In-State Undergraduate Tuition: $3,126
  • Book and Supplies: $6,222
  • Percent Received Aid: 86%
  • Average Grant or Scholarship: $3,019
  • Percent Admitted: N/A
  • Percent Admitted who Enrolled: N/A
  • Graduation Rate: 56%

Nursing classes at the College of Eastern Idaho consist of both theory and practical classes. The course is designed to provide students with the essential knowledge and skills to work as general professional nurses. 

Students here learn via hands-on supervised experience at major healthcare facilities and agencies in the area. There are also well-equipped simulation labs and other laboratories where students can learn to harness their skills in controlled environments. The nursing graduates of the College of Eastern Idaho are working in regional hospitals, care centers, home healthcare, rehabilitation centers, physician’s offices, urgent care centers, surgical centers, and other healthcare facilities across the country. With the NCLEX pass rates of the past years at an all-time high, it is no wonder that this college is termed as one of the best in the state.

Undergraduate Programs: The Practical Nursing program is designed to prepare students to pass their NCLEX-PN examination and practice as LPNs under the supervision of RNs. There is also a PN to RN bridge program designed to provide LPNs with the qualifications and skills required to become RNs. The Registered Nursing program provides all the skills and knowledge necessary to practice as Registered Nurses and contribute to the health and wellness of the community.

Boise State University

School of Nursing

90.54% 3-Year
Pass Rate
  • 1910 University Dr, Boise, ID - 83725
  • (208) 426-1000
Nurse Admin: Amy Spurlock, PhD, RN
Title: Associate Divisional Dean
  • NCLEX Passing Rate: (A) 90.54%
  • Programs: Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, Registered Nursing
  • Award Levels: Bachelor, LPN to BSN, MSN, MSN to DNP

University Information

  • Total Faculty: 831
  • In-State Undergraduate Tuition: $8,060
  • Book and Supplies: $1,240
  • Percent Received Aid: 84%
  • Average Grant or Scholarship: $8,980
  • Percent Admitted: 77%
  • Percent Admitted who Enrolled: 24%
  • Graduation Rate: 55%

At Boise State University School of Nursing, students are prepared to provide caring, holistic, and quality nursing services to diverse populations. The faculty also help the students develop effective leadership and interprofessional skills. 

At Boise State University, the faculty and staff are dedicated and focused on academic excellence, high-touch student services, meaningful scholarly pursuits, and engagement with the nursing community. This dedication is evidenced by the consistently high ranking of the university amongst its peers when it comes to quality nursing education. The students practice their skills in a state-of-the-art simulation center that provides them with a safe and controlled environment. They also have access to a 12-bed practice lab that allows them to practice their nursing skills to perfection before going on their clinical rotations. 

Undergraduate Programs: The university offers a BSN program where students are enrolled in a challenging academic experience that emphasizes the strong professional values, core nursing competencies, and leadership skills needed to practice successfully in any healthcare facility. In addition to that, the online RN-BS program also exists for working RNs who want to get their bachelor’s degree.

Graduate Programs: For licensed nurse practitioners who want to expand their scope of practice, the university offers graduate certificates in acute care or primary care adult-gerontology. 

The college also offers a DNP in Leadership degree to prepare nurses to become leaders to transform practice environments, to lead change in complex systems, and to evaluate and implement strategies that optimize health outcomes.

College of Western Idaho

90.50% 3-Year
Pass Rate
  • 5500 East Opportunity Drive, Nampa, ID - 83687
  • (208) 562-3000
  • NCLEX Passing Rate: (A) 90.50%
  • Programs: Registered Nursing
  • Award Levels: Associate

University Information

  • Total Faculty: 164
  • In-State Undergraduate Tuition: $3,336
  • Book and Supplies: $7,344
  • Percent Received Aid: 83%
  • Average Grant or Scholarship: $3,587
  • Percent Admitted: N/A
  • Percent Admitted who Enrolled: N/A
  • Graduation Rate: 23%

Nurses graduating from the College of Western Idaho can effectively provide patient care, patient and community education, and emotional support to family members regardless of work setting. They are apt in providing patient, and family education regarding post-treatment home care needs like diet, nutrition, excise programs, self-administration of medication, and physical therapy. Graduates of the College of Western Idaho not only manage illness but are also actively involved in promoting the general health of the public.

Nursing instructors at the College of Western Idaho demonstrate exceptional integrity, dedication, and knowledge that they impart to their students as well. The students are actively involved in both theoretical and practical classes by gaining a combination of theory and laboratory instruction as well as clinical experience in multiple healthcare facilities across the area. These experiences prepare the graduates to practice safe, competent, and patient-centered care in an ever-changing healthcare system. The college aims to expand in individual advancement, develop nursing leaders, and contribute to Idaho’s development.

Undergraduate Programs: The Associate of Science in Nursing program prepares care providers and nurse leaders who make a positive and strong impact in the healthcare scenario of Idaho and even the world. This course prepares RNs in critical thinking, clinical judgment, and integration of best evidence into practice upon passing their NCLEX-RN examination.

There is also a Practical Nursing Program designed to prepare students to take their NCLEX-PN examination and practice as LPNs upon completion. The students learn to serve in a variety of settings through caring, excellence, and respect for diversity.

Northwest Nazarene University

College of Nursing

88.72% 3-Year
Pass Rate
  • 623 S. University Blvd., Nampa, ID - 83686-5897
  • (208) 467-8011
Nurse Admin: Linda C. Valenzuela, DNP, MSN, MPH, RN
Title: Dean
  • NCLEX Passing Rate: (B) 88.72%
  • Programs: Registered Nursing
  • Award Levels: Bachelor, MSN, RN to MSN

University Information

  • Total Faculty: 100
  • In-State Undergraduate Tuition: $1,264
  • Book and Supplies: N/A
  • Percent Received Aid: 100%
  • Average Grant or Scholarship: $20,442
  • Percent Admitted: 77%
  • Percent Admitted who Enrolled: 13%
  • Graduation Rate: 62%

Northwest Nazarene University aims to prepare a community of nurse leaders, guiding professional nurses and advanced practitioners who are committed to professional ideals, lifelong learning, and meaningful practice. The graduates are apt at practicing in an increasingly technological healthcare system both within the country and internationally. 

The graduates of the nursing program learn how to advocate for high-quality, evidence-based, safe practice care as a member of the inter-professional and intra-professional teams to optimize patient outcomes. They become skilled leaders with good communication skills who can effectively implement patient safety and quality improvement initiatives within the context of the inter-professional team in a variety of settings. The students are engaged in rigorous coursework which also includes hands-on experience through the state-of-the-art labs and clinicals at a variety of healthcare facilities throughout the Treasure Valley. 

Undergraduate Programs: The Bachelor of Science in Nursing Program is designed in such a way that the graduates are able to use critical thinking and clinical judgment to implement evidence-based care. There is also an RN to BSN degree that provides RNs with coursework that helps them enhance their critical thinking, communication, and leadership skills.

Graduate Programs: Northwest Nazarene University’s Master of Science in Nursing, Family Nurse Practitioner program is designed to prepare RNs for the role of an NP in the family healthcare setting. There is also an online MSN degree that offers two tracks: Leadership and Education or FNP. Both bachelor’s and associate-level nurses are eligible to enroll in this degree.

Carrington College

86.10% 3-Year
Pass Rate
  • 1122 N. Liberty St., Boise, ID - 83704-8742
  • (208) 377-8080
  • NCLEX Passing Rate: (B) 86.10%
  • Programs: Registered Nursing
  • Award Levels: Associate

University Information

  • Total Faculty: 21
  • In-State Undergraduate Tuition: N/A
  • Book and Supplies: $1,055
  • Percent Received Aid: 100%
  • Average Grant or Scholarship: $3,282
  • Percent Admitted: N/A
  • Percent Admitted who Enrolled: N/A
  • Graduation Rate: 60%

Carrington College offers nursing degrees that are affordable and can be completed in as few as two years. Nursing courses at this highly accredited institution equip students with the skills and knowledge that employers actively seek.

The nursing graduates provide care in a variety of settings including hospitals, doctors’ offices, clincils, home healthcare services, and more. The instructors are highly qualified and they lead hands-on classes to provide students with the much-needed real-world experience. Students can also learn at their convenient locations owing to the different campuses as well as online classes. The nursing course primarily focuses on communication skills, English composition, mathematics, science, and social sciences, in addition to the technical coursework so that the students are prepared in every way possible to lead a successful professional nursing career. 

Undergraduate Programs: Carrington College offers an Associate Degree in Nursing program that prepares students to take their NCLEC-RN examination and become compassionate care providers in all kinds of healthcare settings to all kinds of patients. 

In addition to all the educational resources and low tuition, the college also helps students with career search in terms of resume writing to job search support to interview tips.

Best Nursing Schools (BSN) in Idaho

In our Idaho RN program guide, find rankings for both ADN and BSN Degree programs, tuition costs, NCLEX passing rates, and more. Research key Idaho 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 Idaho, 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.

Become an Advance Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) in Idaho

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 Idaho

Learn how to become a Nurse Practitioner (NP) and research schools in Idaho offering the following high paying nurse practitioner specialties:

Learn about the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Degree.

Idaho  RN Licensing Requirements

Idaho adopted the Nurse Licensure Compact on July 1, 2001. This allows nurses who reside in a Compact state the ability to practice in other states without holding additional licenses. Nurses only hold a valid license in only one compact state and that is their primary state of residence. The other compact states include: Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Iowa, Kentucky, Maine, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, and Wisconsin. If your new state of residence is a member of the Compact, your Idaho license will become invalid when you are granted a new license.

Idaho State Board of Nursing

280 N. 8th Street, Suite 210
PO Box 83720
Boise, ID 83720
(208) 577-2476

Initial licensing fee, RN: $90
License renewal (every two years), RN: $90

RN Licensure by Exam

Nursing candidates may request for licensure by examination to the board via telephone, fax, or mail. Provide the following information with your request:

  • Name, Telephone number
  • Mailing Address
  • Date of Graduation
  • School of Graduation
  • The type of application you are seeking

Please contact the Board office to check qualification status if you are applying for licensure through examination. You will also need to contact the Board office for a Fingerprint Card.

RN Licensure by Endorsement

Licensure through endorsement can be achieved the same way. The application processing may take about 4-6 weeks and a temporary license will be issued when the application has been completed with the appropriate fees being paid. The fee for an endorsement is $110. Candidates must also pay for fingerprinting and a refresher course if they have not actively practiced within three years.

RN Salaries in Idaho

There are 12,800 Registered Nurses in the state of Idaho who have a compact nursing license. This is an advantage when nurses are contemplating traveling or relocation after graduation. It is predicted by the Bureau of Labor and Statistics that there will be a 26% increase in need for nurses from 2018 to 2028. This means nurses are becoming part of a growing profession.

The table will show that Lewiston area has the highest hourly mean wage. The same area also has the highest annual median wage. Boise City- Nampa, Idaho has the largest number of registered nurses employed.

CityEmploymentHourly WageAnnual Salary
Coeur d'Alene1,000$37$77,800
Idaho Falls1,390$31$65,300
Northwestern Idaho Nonmetropolitan890$34$70,070
Southeast-Central Nonmetropolitan1,210$32$66,780
Twin Falls1,030$32$67,010

Nursing Salaries in Idaho by Experience Level

OccupationEmployment1 to 4 Years5 to 9 Years10 to 19 Years20+ Years
Nursing Instructors250$50,330$63,110$90,000$108,620
Registered Nurses12,800$53,700$60,560$81,450$95,480
Nurse Anesthetists210$136,840$142,950$163,260$178,260
Nurse Midwives30$37,650$46,600$83,100$117,180
Nurse Practitioners810$50,640$91,190$132,120$163,830
LPN / LVN2,520$35,070$42,090$54,920$62,070
Nursing Assistants6,600$22,270$25,460$32,460$38,070

Projected Need for Nurses in Idaho

Occupation20182028Change%ChangeAvg. Annual Openings
LPN / LVN2,5503,07052020.450
Nurse Anesthetists66088022033.320
Nurse Practitioners78097019024.420
Nursing Assistants7,5308,8901,36018.1140
Nursing Instructors3704104010.80
Registered Nurses14,24017,0702,83019.9280



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