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Top Nursing Schools & Best Nursing Programs in the USA

Nursing graduate degrees provide students seeking advanced nursing positions with the education they need to excel. You can learn more about the best nursing schools and nursing degrees here at U.S. News University Directory.

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Nursing Programs Ranked in 2011


#1

Johns Hopkins University

Baltimore, MD

Founded in 1876, John Hopkins is a private school located on a 140-acre campus in Baltimore, Mary. The nursing school was established in 1889, and founders M. Adelaide Nutting, Isabel Hampton Robb and Lavinia Dock established the model for nursing education. In 1983 the School of Nursing became the eighth educational division at John Hopkins. 


#1

University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA

Established inn 1740 in Philadelphia, Penn., the University of Pennsylvania is a private school founded by Benjamin Franklin. The Penn Nursing School offers a number of master's degrees, including a master's acute care, family nurse practitioner, neonatal nursing and pediatric nursing. It also offers a a PhD program aimed primarily at training nurses for a research intensive environment.


#1

University of Washington

Seattle, WA

A public university founded in 1861, the University of Washington is located on a 703-acre campus in Seattle, Wash., just north of downtown. Started in 1922, the School of Nursing was led by Elizabeth Sterling Soule (who is inducted in the American Nurses Association Hall of Fame) and was one of the first nursing programs accredited by the National Organization of Public Health Nurses.  The graduate school fosters leadership and innovation in nursing. 


#4

University of California--San Francisco

San Francisco, CA

The University of California - San Francisco is a public school. The School of Nursing offers a Master's Entry Program in Nursing (MEPN) as well as a master's of science program with specialites in acute care, adult-gerontological care, critical care, advanced practice public health, health policy, family nursing and nurse midwifery, among others.  


#4

University of North Carolina--Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill, NC

The University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill was established in 1789 and is a public school located on a 729-acre campus in Chapel Hill, N.C. The university's School of Nursing offers a master's of science in nursing program, as well as an RN-to-MSN option. They school also offers the first PhD program for nurses in North Carolina. The university is also home to a biobehavorial laboratory.


#6

University of Michigan--Ann Arbor

Ann Arbor, MI

The University of Michigan - Ann Arbor, founded in 1817, is a public school located on a 3,071-acre campus in Ann Arbor, Mich. The School of Nursing offers master's degrees in a number of different specialities, including acute care for pediatric and gerontology, occupational health and nurse midwifery. The university also offers a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree.


#7

Duke University

Durham, NC

A private school founded in 1838, Duke University is located on a 8,709-acre campus in Durham, N.C. The School of Nursing was founded in 1931. The school seeks to offer nursing programs that address global issues and needs in the area of nursing. The university offers a Master of Science in Nursing degree, as well as a post-master's certificate in nursing and a graduate certificate in health informatics. Duke also offers a Doctor of Nursing Practice. 


#7

Oregon Health and Science University

Portland, OR

The Oregon Health and Science University is a public school founded in 1887 in Portland, Ore. The university has a School of Nursing that offers degrees in nursing-aesthesia and nursing-midwifery. The university offers master's degrees in a number of areas, including public health, health systems and organizational leadership and nursing education.  It also offers a Doctor of Nursing and a School of Nursing Doctor of Philosophy degree.


#7

University of Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh, PA

The University of Pittsburgh, founded in 1787, is a public school located on a 132-acre campus near downtown Pittsburgh. Founded in 1939, the university's School of Nursing is divided into three major departments: acute/tertiary care, health and community systems and health promotion and development. The university offers a Master's of Nursing degree, a Doctor of Nursing Practice and a Doctor of Philosophy. 


#7

Yale University

New Haven, CT

Yale University is among the nation's oldest and most prestigious schools, having been founded in 1701 in New Haven, Conn. The university's School of Nursing offers a degree program - the Graduate Entry Prespeciality in Nursing - for those who have a bachelor's degree in other disciplines. Yale offers post Master's certification in acute care nurse practitioner, adult nurse practitioner, gerontological nurse practitioner, pediatric nurse practitioner, oncology nurse practitioner and psychiatric-mental health. The School of Nursing also offers a Doctor of Philosophy Program. 


#11

University of Illinois--Chicago

Chicago, IL

A public university founded in 1965, the University of Illinois - Chicago is located on a 240-acre campus near downtown Chicago. The university's college of nursing is split into three departments: Department of Women, Children and Family Health Science; Department of Biobehavioral Health Science and Department of Health Systems Science. The school offers a Master's of Science in Nursing as well as a Doctor of Nursing Practice.


#11

University of Iowa

Iowa City, IA

Located in Iowa City, the University of Iowa is a public university founded in 1847. The university offers a master's degree as Clinical Nurse Leader that focuses on creating experts who work to improve the quality of patient care helping nurses thrive. The University of Iowa College of Nursing also offers a PhD for nurses and a Doctor of Philosophy in nursing that students may enter after earning a bachelor's and master's degree in nursing.


#11

University of Maryland--Baltimore

Baltimore, MD

Located in west Baltimore near the Inner Harbor, the University of Maryland - Baltimore is a public institution that first opened its doors in 1807. The 61-acre campus includes more than 65 buildings. The university's School of Nursing is located with the schools six other professional schools on the Baltimore campus - dentistry, law, medicine, pharmacy, social work and the graduate school. The school focuses on creating a research environment. The university offers master's degrees in a variety of areas, including an RN-MS program, a Clinical Nurse Leader master's degree and a dual degree program offering a Doctor of Nursing Practice and a MBA; a master's in Health Services Leader and a MBA and master's degree in science and public health.


#11

University of North Carolina--Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill, NC

Founded in 1789, the University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill is a public institution located in a suburban area of Chapel Hill. The School of Nursing was founded in 1950 and was the first in the state to offer a four-year baccalaureate nursing degree, a nursing master's degree and the first to initiate continuing education for nurses. The School of Nursing offers an RN-to-MSN degree, a Master's of Science in Nursing degree and a PhD in Nursing.


#15

Case Western Reserve University

Cleveland, OH

Founded in 1826 in Cleveland, Ohio, Case Western Reserve University is a private school founded in 1826. The university's Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing was founded in 1923. The university offers a Master of Science in Nursing, a Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP)and a Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing )PhD). Case Western also offers a dual degree in both the DNP and PhD. 


#15

Indiana University-Purdue University--Indianapolis

Indianapolis, IN

Founded in 1969, Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis is a public institution that is the state's largest urban university. The School of Nursing offers degrees and certificates for graduate students in four areas - a Master of Science in Nursing, an RN to MSN degree, graduate certificates and post-master's options. The university also offers a Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing and a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree. 


#15

Rush University

Chicago, IL

A private school founded in 1972, Rush University is located in Chicago and focuses on educating students for careers in health care. The Rush University College of Nursing offers a variety of  graduate degrees. The Direct Entry Master's for Non-Nurses: Generalist Entry Master's prepares students to be graduate registered nurses with an emphasis on clinical leadership. Rush University also offers a Master's of Science degree that focuses on clinical nurse leadership.


#15

University of Colorado--Denver

Denver, CO

Founded in 1912, the University of Colorado - Denver is a public institution located near downtown Denver. The university's College of Nursing offers a master's degrees with 11 speciality options, five of which focus on the urban underserved population. Others include adult-gerontology, family nurse, family psychiatric mental health, nurse-midwifery and health care informatics. The school also offers a a Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing and a Doctor of Nursing Practice. 


#15

University of Virginia

Charlottesville, VA


#15

Vanderbilt University

Nashville, TN

Located in Nashville, Tenn., Vanderbilt University is a private institution founded in 1873. The university offers a Master of Science in Nursing, a Doctor of Nursing Practice and a PhD in Nursing Science. Vanderbilt also offers a post-doctoral program that offers a two-year program which allows students a chance to deepen their knowledge in specific research areas, conduct interdisciplinary research projects and enhance communication skills.


#21

Arizona State University

Phoenix, AZ

Founded in 1885, Arizona State Uiniversity is a public institution located in Tempe, Ariz. The school has the largest undergraduate population of any school in the nation. The Arizona State University College of Nursing & Health Innovation offers several degrees: a Master of Healthcare Innovation, a Master of Science, Clinical Research Management and a Master of Science, Nurse Educator. The school also offers a Doctor of Nursing Practice and a Phd in Nursing and Healthcare Innovation.


#21

Boston College

Chestnut Hill, MA

Founded in 1863, Boston College is a private institution located in suburban Chestnut Hill outside Boston. Boston College's William F. Connell School of Nursing offers graduate degrees in different specialities, including adult-gerontology, community health, family nurse, nurse anesthesia, pediatric primary care and psych/mental health. The PhD in Nursing program focuses on three core areas: nursing knowledge development, research methods and substantive nursing content.


#21

Columbia University

New York, NY

Founded in 1754, Columbia University is a private school located in the Manhattan burough of New York City. The Columbia University School of Nursing offers a master's degrees in acute care nurse practitioner, adult, family, neonatal, nurse anesthesia, nurse midwifery, pediatric and psychiatric/mental health. Columbia also offers sub-speciality subjects, including addictive behaviors, genetics in advanced practice, HIV/AIDS, oncology and end of life care. Columbia also offers a Doctor of Nursing Practice and a Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing degree.


#21

Emory University

Atlanta, GA

A private school founded in 1836, Emory University is located in Atlanta, Ga. The university's Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing offers a Master of Science in Nursing and dual program Master of Science in Nursing and Master of Public Health. The school also offers an accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing and Master of Science in Nursing program as well as a PhD in Nursing.


#21

New York University

New York, NY

A private school founded in 1831, New York University is located in the Manhattan burough of New York City, in Greenwich Village. The NYU College of Nursing offers a Master of Science in Nursing degree, as well as Doctor in Nursing Practice degree. NYU also has a PhD Program in Nursing Research and Theory Development, with a curriculum designed to provide a foundation in the philosophy of scientific inquiry. 



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