In Wisconsin, seasoned nurses apply critical thinking skills to help structure the best healing environment for patients. As the healthcare industry evolves and becomes more complex, nurses become required to provide an advanced scope of practice beyond the traditional bed setting. However, meeting the objectives that are presented in the nursing industry require nurses to seek out higher education. While an associate’s degree in nursing can get you in the door with foundational skills, a bachelor’s degree will provide all the necessary tools that are needed to meet the challenges head-on.

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

Wisconsin RN Program Comparisons: ADN vs BSN

Compare RN Programs ADN BSN
Number of Nursing Programs 23 25
Average NCLEX Passing Rate 88.78% 89.84%
NCLEX Passing Rate Range 79.53% to 96.50% 78.38% to 96.40%
Average Net Price $10,325.04 $18,318.52
Average Net Price Range $5,252.00 to $20,018.00 $11,557.00 to $31,413.00
Average Student Loan $9,637.33 $19,055.79
Average Student Loan Range $5,499.00 to $24,750.00 $12,000.00 to $29,000.00
See Additional Detail ADN Rankings for Wisconsin State BSN Rankings for Wisconsin State

Best Ranked RN Programs in Wisconsin

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

To create our rankings, we evaluated 18 ADN degree programs and 13 BSN degree programs in Wisconsin. 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 Wisconsin to provide our state rankings. View our methodology


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96.54 ADN Blackhawk Technical College 1 57 Janesville

Blackhawk Technical College is located in Janesville, Wisconsin.  They offer an ADN degree.  They also offer an LPN progression program, which allows the LPN to advance their degree.  The LPN must take a bridge course prior to enrollment, but then is able to join the other students in the third semester of the program.

Public Campus ACEN See School Details
96.30 ADN Fox Valley Technical College 2 63 Appleton

Fox Valley Technical College is located in Appleton, Wisconsin.  FVTC offers a variety of options for its students; they offer an ADN degree but they also offer a pathway for LPNs and paramedics that allows them entrance into the program.  They also offer refresher courses for LPNs and RNs who are out of practice and need to review their skills before returning to the workforce.

Public Campus ACEN See School Details
96.22 ADN Milwaukee Area Technical College 3 65 Milwaukee

Milwaukee Area Technical College is located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  They offer an RN program and an LPN-RN Educational Progression program.  Students opting to apply to the LPN-RN program should know that at least one year of LPN experience is required.  The program begins in August and January each year.

Public Campus ACEN See School Details
95.03 ADN Waukesha County Technical College 4 103 Pewaukee

Waukesha County Technical College is located in Pewaukee, Wisconsin.  They offer an ADN program and an LPN to RN progression option.  Their progression option is reserved for Wisconsin LPNs – students most hold an LPN nursing license in order to enroll.  The LPN also must pass LPN Progression Transition Success Strategies course prior to entering the program.

Public Campus ACEN See School Details
93.95 ADN Mid-State Technical College 5 141 Wisconsin Rapids Public Campus, Online ACEN See School Details
92.81 ADN Moraine Park Technical College 6 184 Fond Du Lac

Moraine Park Technical College is located in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin.  Their nursing program is an “associate degree with a practical nursing exit point.”  The first two semesters prepare the student for a career as a practical nurse; at that point, the student may choose to exit the program and begin their career.  They can also continue for further education and earn their associate’s degree.

Public Campus ACEN See School Details
92.79 ADN Northcentral Technical College 7 185 Wausau Public Campus ACEN See School Details
92.70 ADN Lakeshore Technical College 8 191 Cleveland Public Campus ACEN See School Details
92.27 ADN Northeast Wisconsin Technical College 9 208 Green Bay Public Campus ACEN See School Details
90.44 ADN Nicolet Area Technical College 10 280 Rhinelander

Nicolet Area Technical College is located in Rhinelander, Wisconsin.  They offer an ADN program and an LPN to RN bridge option.  Nicolet Area Technical College originated in 1967, with its first classes being offered in January of 1968.

Public Campus ACEN See School Details
87.70 ADN Southwest Wisconsin Technical College 13 379 Fennimore Public Campus ACEN See School Details
87.30 ADN Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College 14 396 Shell Lake Public Campus ACEN See School Details
86.91 ADN Gateway Technical College 15 413 Kenosha Public Campus ACEN See School Details
86.77 ADN Western Technical College 16 419 La Crosse Public Campus ACEN See School Details
84.49 ADN Madison Area Technical College 17 499 Madison Public Campus ACEN See School Details
84.45 ADN Chippewa Valley Technical College 18 502 Eau Claire Public Campus ACEN See School Details
81.81 ADN College of Menominee Nation 21 567 Keshena

College of Menominee Nation is located in Keshena, Wisconsin.  They offer an ADN program.  Their program allows the student to become an RN within 4-6 semesters, or 2-3 semesters if the student has prior work experience as an LPN.  They have two campuses – one in Keshena, which is on the Menominee Indian reservation, and another in Green Bay.  Students do not have to be American Indians to enroll, although over 80% are descendants of American Indian tribes.

Private Not-For-Profit Campus See School Details
79.16 ADN Herzing University-Madison 22 606 Madison Private For-Profit Campus, Online See School Details
96.98 BSN Carroll University 1 42 Waukesha Private Not-For-Profit Campus CCNE See School Details
96.02 BSN University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh 2 66 Oshkosh Public Campus, Hybrid, Online ACEN, CCNE See School Details
95.11 BSN Wisconsin Lutheran College 3 88 Milwaukee Private Not-For-Profit Campus CCNE See School Details
95.05 BSN Bellin College 4 91 Green Bay Private Not-For-Profit Campus, Hybrid, Online ACEN, CCNE See School Details
94.44 BSN Maranatha Baptist Bible College 5 117 Watertown Private Not-For-Profit Campus See School Details
91.27 BSN Alverno College 6 236 Milwaukee Private Not-For-Profit Campus, Online ACEN See School Details
90.54 BSN Viterbo University 7 257 La Crosse Private Not-For-Profit Campus, Hybrid, Online ACEN, CCNE See School Details
89.77 BSN University of Wisconsin-Madison 8 277 Madison Public Campus, Hybrid, Online ACEN, CCNE See School Details
88.24 BSN University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire 9 315 Eau Claire Public Campus, Hybrid, Online ACEN, CCNE See School Details
87.50 BSN Milwaukee School of Engineering 10 333 Milwaukee Private Not-For-Profit Campus CCNE See School Details
86.79 BSN Marian University 11 356 Fond Du Lac Private Not-For-Profit Campus, Hybrid, Online ACEN, CCNE See School Details
84.75 BSN Cardinal Stritch University 12 399 Milwaukee Private Not-For-Profit Campus CCNE See School Details
78.62 BSN University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee 13 485 Milwaukee Public Campus, Hybrid, Online ACEN, CCNE See School Details