The Washington Coalition for Nursing has been pushing for legislation for a bachelor’s degree to be the minimal requirement for licensure. Nursing schools in Washington have responded to call and have introduced many different RN and BSN programs to help nurses meet their educational goals. These programs help prepare registered nurses for leadership and the culture shift of modern health care. There was almost a 50% increase of baccalaureate-prepared nurses in the recent years. Now is the optimal time for registered nurses to seek out higher education in order to meet the needs of the constantly evolving career field.

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

Washington RN Program Comparisons: ADN vs BSN

Compare RN ProgramsADNBSN
Number of Nursing Programs3414
Average NCLEX Passing Rate86.86%90.57%
NCLEX Passing Rate Range50.13% to 98.64%86.79% to 93.11%
Average Net Price$6,652.62$17,988.57
Average Net Price Range$3,666.00 to $9,734.00$5,316.00 to $34,340.00
Average Student Loan$8,360.91$19,210.79
Average Student Loan Range$3,800.00 to $21,201.00$8,444.00 to $27,000.00
See Additional DetailADN Rankings for Washington StateBSN Rankings for Washington State

Best Ranked RN Programs in Washington

Best Ranked RN Programs in WashingtonTo 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 Washington and the country. Schools ranked on our list have proven their ability to educate highly competent nurses.

To create our rankings, we evaluated 29 ADN degree programs and 8 BSN degree programs in Washington. 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 Washington to provide our state rankings. View our methodology

WA Rank
US Rank
Offered As:
98.26 ADNPierce College at Puyallup122 PuyallupPublicCampusACENSee School Details
98.15 ADNBig Bend Community College225 Moses Lake

Big Bend Community College is located in Moses Lake, Washington.  They offer a career ladder program.  The program allows students to become a Nursing Assistant – Certified (NA-C) after the first quarter, an LPN after the third quarter and an ADN at the completion of the program.

PublicCampusACENSee School Details
96.49 ADNPeninsula College359 Port Angeles

Peninsula College is located in Port Angeles, Washington.  They offer an ADN program.  They offer advanced placement for LPNs, but only if spaces allow in the program – they do not have spaces available for the 2016-2017 academic year.  Peninsula College offers dozens of scholarships to its nursing students for those that apply.

PublicCampusSee School Details
95.45 ADNColumbia Basin College488 Pasco

Columbia Basin College is located in Pasco, Washington.  They offer an LPN and an ADN program.  The program is designed as a career ladder program – the student first earns their LPN, then can exit it they’d like, or continue for their ADN degree.

PublicCampusACENSee School Details
95.36 ADNEverett Community College589 Everett

Everett Community College is located in Everett, Washington.  They have been educating nurses since 1941.  Graduates from their program earn an AAS-T degree, allowing them to easily transfer to a four-year college, as many will go on to earn their BSN degree.

PublicCampusACENSee School Details
94.68 ADNWenatchee Valley College6112 WenatcheePublicCampusACENSee School Details
94.39 ADNBellevue College7124 Bellevue

Bellevue College is located in Bellevue, Washington.  Their program consists of a Nursing Assistant Certified (NAC) Training Program, an ADN program and an RN to BSN program.  They also offer an RN refresher program, which is available for students who have been out of the workforce and need to brush up on their nursing skills.

PublicCampusACEN, CCNESee School Details
93.57 ADNWhatcom Community College8155 Bellingham

Whatcom Community College is located in Bellingham, Washington.  WCC offers an ADN program.  They are proud to boast that 3 out of the past 4 years, 100% of their graduates have passed the NCLEX-RN on the first time.  Their ADN degree allows students to transfer to any university after graduation and complete their BSN in one year.

PublicCampusACENSee School Details
91.83 ADNSkagit Valley College9224 Mount Vernon

Skagit Valley College is located in Mount Vernon, Washington.  They offer an ADN degree.  They also offer an LPN to RN program.  The LPN to RN program is part-time.  Both degrees are designed to be transfer programs, enabling the nurse to transfer to a four-year college to earn their BSN.

PublicCampusACENSee School Details
91.50 ADNSouth Puget Sound Community College10241 OlympiaPublicCampusSee School Details
91.31 ADNLake Washington Institute of Technology11246 Kirkland

Lake Washington Institute of Technology is located in Kirkland, Washington.  The program offers a practical nursing program and an RN program; the RN program gives the student an AAS-T degree upon completion, which allows the student the ability to easily transfer to a 4-year college in order to ear their BSN.  When space is available, the program accepts working LPNs, although there is currently not space available at this time.

PublicCampusACENSee School Details
91.00 ADNYakima Valley Community College12257 Yakima

Yakima Valley Community College is located in Yakima, Washington.  Their program is a career ladder program; students who complete the first four semesters are eligible to take the NCLEX-PN, and then students who complete all six semesters can take the NCLEX-RN.  It is anticipated that in the near future, YVCC will have a Direct Transfer Agreement (DTA) with one or more universities, which will allow students to quickly progress to earning their BSN degree.

PublicCampusACENSee School Details
90.97 ADNOlympic College13259 BremertonPublicCampusACEN, CCNESee School Details
90.22 ADNWalla Walla Community College14288 Walla Walla

Walla Walla Community College is located in Walla Walla, Washington.  They offer a practical nursing program and an ADN program.  The program is a transfer degree program, where the degree transfers to certain universities and the student will only need to complete one year of schooling in order to earn their BSN.

PublicCampusACENSee School Details
89.10 ADNCentralia College15323 CentraliaPublicCampusSee School Details
88.11 ADNShoreline Community College16359 Shoreline

Shoreline Community College is located in Shoreline, Washington.  They offer an ADN program with 2 options – a six-quarter option and a ten-quarter option.  The six-quarter option means that the student graduates in six semesters and the 10-quarter option means the student graduates in ten semesters.  The 10-quarter option is ideal for students who have other obligations or have not done well in a full-time nursing program.

PublicCampusACENSee School Details
87.74 ADNHighline Community College17378 Des MoinesPublicCampusACENSee School Details
87.42 ADNLower Columbia College18390 LongviewPublicCampusACENSee School Details
87.23 ADNGrays Harbor College19398 Aberdeen

Grays Harbor College is located in Aberdeen, Washington.  They offer an ADN program.  Students in the program who take the course “Personal and Vocational Relationships” within the program are eligible to take the NCLEX-PN while in the program.  There also is an LPN to RN program, but only if there is space available in the program.

PublicCampusACENSee School Details
85.98 ADNBellingham Technical College20452 BellinghamPublicCampusACENSee School Details
85.80 ADNClark College21458 VancouverPublicCampusACENSee School Details
85.24 ADNSeattle Community College-Central Campus22472 SeattlePublicCampusSee School Details
83.76 ADNNorth Seattle College23518 Seattle

North Seattle College is located in Seattle, Washington.  They offer an LPN program or an LPN-RN Career ladder program.  Students in the LPN program do not need to reapply for the RN program if they successfully pass the NCLEX-PN; the program is designed so that the LPN can work part-time and attend school for their RN.

PublicCampusACENSee School Details
82.72 ADNTacoma Community College24549 TacomaPublicCampusACENSee School Details
79.70 ADNSpokane Community College25597 SpokanePublicCampusACENSee School Details
71.49 ADNClover Park Technical College26692 LakewoodPublicCampusSee School Details
68.63 ADNRenton Technical College27697 RentonPublicCampusSee School Details
93.49 BSNWalla Walla University1154 College Place

Walla Walla University is located in College Place, Washington.  They offer a BSN degree.  Although they do not offer specific career ladder programs, they offer individualized options for students interested in an RN to BSN degree or an LPN to BSN degree.

Private Not-For-ProfitCampusCCNESee School Details
93.23 BSNNorthwest University2162 Kirkland

Northwest University is located in Kirkland, Washington.  They are a Christian university, so they require bible and theology classes for their curriculum.  Their BSN program is unique because they offer their students the opportunity to study abroad in Kazakhstan, Kenya, Taiwan, Vietnam, India and Mexico.

Private Not-For-ProfitCampusCCNESee School Details
92.96 BSNGonzaga University3172 Spokane

Gonzaga University is located in Spokane, Washington.  They offer a BSN degree.  For RNs seeking advancement, they also offer an online RN to MSN degree.  They also offer several other online post-graduate nursing options.  They offer a Doctor of Nurse Anesthesia Practice (DNAP), which readies the nurse with a BSN degree to become a certified registered nurse anesthetist (CRNA).

Private Not-For-ProfitCampus, Hybrid, OnlineACEN, CCNESee School Details
92.35 BSNPacific Lutheran University4194 Tacoma

Pacific Lutheran University is located in Tacoma, Washington.  They offer a BSN degree, in addition to several graduate degree options.  They also offer an LPN to BSN degree option.  Highly qualified high school seniors may apply for freshman entry into the program.

Private Not-For-ProfitCampus, HybridACEN, CCNESee School Details
91.29 BSNUniversity of Washington-Seattle Campus5235 Seattle

University of Washington is located in Seattle, Washington.  They offer a BSN program and an accelerated BSN program; for students seeking an advanced education, they also have several lucrative post-graduate nursing options.  Their nursing department has been in existence since 1918, with their BSN program beginning in 1923.

PublicCampusACEN, CCNESee School Details
88.51 BSNWashington State University6309 PullmanPublicCampus, HybridACEN, CCNESee School Details
86.34 BSNSeattle University7369 SeattlePrivate Not-For-ProfitCampus, HybridACEN, CCNESee School Details
84.65 BSNSeattle Pacific University8401 SeattlePrivate Not-For-ProfitCampusACEN, CCNESee School Details