New healthcare initiatives in Rhode Island have presented nurses with new challenges to face. Some of the challenges that will present themselves include: an aging population, health care reforms, new preventative care initiatives, and the constant evolution of medical technology. There are registered nurses taking the initiative every day and pursuing higher education in order to meet these challenges. An educated nurse is a very powerful member of the healthcare industry. Nurses have busy schedules and life can become more hectic when schooling is added into the mix. Finding the school with the best program can be overwhelming but, at the end of the day, it is worth it.

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

Rhode Island RN Program Comparisons: ADN vs BSN

Compare RN ProgramsADNBSN
Number of Nursing Programs24
Average NCLEX Passing Rate89.56%89.80%
NCLEX Passing Rate Range88.73% to 90.39%86.67% to 93.98%
Average Net Price$15,846.50$20,223.50
Average Net Price Range$5,986.00 to $25,707.00$8,693.00 to $29,404.00
Average Student Loan$12,501.00$21,929.25
Average Student Loan Range$5,002.00 to $20,000.00$16,667.00 to $27,000.00
See Additional DetailADN Rankings for Rhode Island StateBSN Rankings for Rhode Island State

Best Ranked RN Programs in Rhode Island

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

To create our rankings, we evaluated 2 ADN degree programs and 3 BSN degree programs in Rhode Island. 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 Rhode Island to provide our state rankings. View our methodology

RI Rank
US Rank
Offered As:
95.70 ADNNew England Institute of Technology1122 East Greenwich

New England Institute of Technology is located in East Greenwich, Rhode Island.  They offer an ADN program.  They also offer a convenient RN to BSN program.  Their rates for the online program are some of the most affordable in the nation, at $230 per credit.

Private Not-For-ProfitCampus, OnlineACENSee School Details
85.44 ADNCommunity College of Rhode Island2520 Warwick

Community College of Rhode Island is located in Warwick, Rhode Island, although they have 4 campuses throughout Rhode Island.  They offer an ADN program with day and evening programs at their campuses.  They also offer an LPN to ADN option.

PublicCampusACENSee School Details
97.53 BSNRhode Island College153 Providence

Rhode Island College is located in Providence, Rhode Island.  For BSN students, they offer a basic program, an accelerated program for second degree students and an RN to BSN program.  They also offer several post-graduate options for students, after graduating with their BSN.

PublicCampus, HybridACEN, CCNESee School Details
90.55 BSNUniversity of Rhode Island2309 Kingston

University of Rhode Island is located in Kingston, Rhode Island.  They offer a BSN degree and also an RN to BSN online program, as well as on-campus.  They also offer multiple graduate school options, such as MSN with an emphasis in family medicine, acute care and adult/gerontology, a DNP program and a PhD program.

PublicCampus, Hybrid, OnlineACEN, ACME, CCNE, COASee School Details
85.49 BSNSalve Regina University3434 Newport

Salve Regina University is located in Newport, Rhode Island.  They offer a pre-licensure program, for students without prior college education, and a degree completion program, for students already holding their RN license.  Salve Regina has 122 full-time staff; of those staff, 82% hold the terminal degree in their field and 48% are tenured.  The student to faculty ratio is 13:1.

Private Not-For-ProfitCampus, HybridACEN, ACME, CCNE, COASee School Details

Become an Advance Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) in Rhode Island

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 Rhode Island

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

Rhode Island  RN Licensing Requirements

Pennsylvania State Board of Nursing PO Box 2649 Harrisburg, PA 17105-2649 (717) 783-7142 Fees: Initial licensing fee, RN: $35 License renewal (every two years), RN: $65; LPN: $60 Continuing Education Requirements: RNs: 30 contact hours every renewal period; LPNs: None

RN Licensure by Exams

When a candidate has completed an approved nursing program, he/she will be authorized to work as a Graduate Professional Nurse (GN) while waiting to take the NCLEX. A GN permit is only good for 90 days. Before the candidate is able to apply to the Board, he/she must register for the exam and pay the $200 fee. When the candidate has submitted a background check and a transcript he/she will pay the $135 application fee. When authorization to test has been received, the candidate will be able to schedule the exam. The exam may be retaken but it will require additional fees and paperwork.

RN Licensure by Endorsement

Nurses who obtained licensure in one of the other 50 states may apply for licensure in Rhode Island by endorsement. The candidate will be required to provide verification of licensure.

RN License for Nurses Educated Abroad

Nurses who were educated outside of the United States may be eligible for licensure by examination if the credentials have been evaluated and are found to be at an appropriate level. Candidates will be required to pass an English language proficiency exam.

RN Salaries in Rhode Island

Registered nurses who have obtained a BSN will have a wide selection of positions available to them. Nurses are able to work in specialty areas such as executive positions and certified areas. Some career choices that are available to a baccalaureate prepare nurse include:
  • Nursing Educators
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology (OB/GYN)
  • Certified Pediatric Nurses

Rhode Island Registered Nursing Salaries

Area nameEmploymentHourly mean wageAnnual median wage

Providence-Fall River-Warwick, RI-MA