Top Nursing Schools in Texas

Lecturer observing nursing student performing cpr
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The top nursing schools in Texas all have excellent campus facilities, meaningful opportunities for clinical experiences, strong reputations, and winning outcomes on the National Council Licensure Examination.

A total of 134 colleges and universities offer nursing degrees in Texas. A total of 111 of those institutions are non-profit, and of those, 51 offer bachelor's degrees in nursing. This article considers only those programs that offer BSN degrees or higher. This is because a four-year or graduate nursing degree will typically provide far more earning and job advancement potential than an associate's degree.

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Baylor University

Baylor University
Baylor University. Jandy Stone / Flickr

Baylor University's Louise Herrington School of Nursing sits in downtown Dallas, next to the Baylor University Medical Center. The urban location provides students with over 150 sites for clinical experiences. The campus facilities include state-of-the-art instructional delivery technologies, a large 24/7 learning resource center, and a Clinical Simulation Building with laboratories for clinical practice.

Baylor offers a traditional four-year BSN program as well as an accelerated program for students who already hold a bachelor's degree in another field. The university graduates close to 250 BSN students every year. Students have an impressive 94% pass rate on the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX).

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Texas A&M University (Health Science Center)

Texas A&M Health Science Center
Texas A&M Health Science Center.

 Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0

The Texas A&M College of Nursing—located on the university's Health Science Center in Bryan, Texas—can boast of an impressive 99% pass rate on the NCLEX. The college has arrangements with over 300 clinical sites, so students have plenty of opportunities to gain hands-on experiences in real-world settings. Instruction is supported by a healthy 10 to 1 student-to-faculty ratio.

The campus is home to the 24,000 square foot Clinical Learning Resource Center, a space where students in medical professions can train with computer programmed manikins and individuals acting as patients. Outside of the classroom, nursing students stay active in the community through events such as flu clinics, health fairs, and other service projects.

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Texas Christian University

Higher Learning
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With nearly 200 BSN students graduating each year, nursing is the largest major at Texas Christian University. TCU's Harris College of Nursing & Health Sciences is also home to numerous health programs, including kinesiology, social work, and communication sciences and disorders.

In addition to clinical experiences in area health care and home care facilities, nursing students at TCU can gain additional hands-on experience by doing a 10 to 12 week externship in the summer before senior year. Externships allow students to gain direct patient care experience and take patient education classes. TCU offers degree programs at the baccalaureate, mater's, and doctoral levels, and the school has a high 96% pass rate on the NCLEX.

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Texas State University

Texas State University
Texas State University. Rain0975 / Flickr

The St. David's School of Nursing at Texas State University has an amazing 100% pass rate on the NCLEX. The School of Nursing is quite young, having been added to the College of Health Professions in the fall of 2010. This means the facilities are new and include five interactive simulation laboratories and many high fidelity manikins. The campus is located on the Round Rock campus, just north of Austin.

Admission to the traditional BSN program is highly selective and limited to 100 students each year. TCU also has an RN to BSN program for nurses who want to further their educations. The school offers three options at the master's level: a MSN/Family Nurse Practitioner, a MSN/Leadership and Administration, and a MSN/Psychiatric and Mental Health Nurse Practitioner.

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Texas Woman's University

Texas Woman's University
Texas Woman's University.

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The College of Nursing at Texas Woman's University offers a wide range of baccalaureate, master's, and doctoral programs in nursing, including a weekend and evening BSN program to accommodate students with work commitments. Undergraduate nursing students typically spend their first two years on the main campus in Denton, and then their final two years at either the Dallas or Houston campus. The Houston campus is part of the Texas Medical Center with 54 institutions, and the Dallas campus is located in the Southwestern Medical District with four neighboring hospitals. These locations clearly provide a wealth of opportunities for hands-on clinical experiences.

Nursing is by far the university's most popular undergraduate major, and over 500 students graduate with BSN degrees each year. The program has a strong 93% pass rate on the NCLEX.

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University of Texas Arlington

The University of Texas Arlington
The University of Texas Arlington.

 Kllwiki / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0

The University of Texas Arlington's College of Nursing and Health Innovation is home to one of the largest nursing programs in the country. The college graduates nearly 4,000 nurses with bachelor's degrees and roughly 1,000 with master's degrees each year. Even with that massive scale, the school has a 91% pass rate on the NCLEX.

The college is also home to a kinesiology program with degrees in exercise science, athletic training, kinesiology, and public health. The College of Nursing offers a range of degrees at the bachelor's, master's, and doctoral levels, and both online and classroom delivery methods are used. Despite the program's large size, all students work in small groups with an experienced faculty member.

UT Arlington's Smart Hospital is a 13,000-square-foot facility with 60 patient simulators and 40 patient/actors to help students prepare for real-world interactions with patients. The facility includes a 7-bed Emergency Service Unit, 4-bed ICU, 4-bed Surgical Unit, and other pediatric, infant, and neonatal simulators.

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University of Texas Austin

University of Texas at Austin
University of Texas at Austin. Amy Jacobson

As the most selective public university in Texas, it should come as no surprise that the flagship campus in Austin has an excellent School of Nursing. The program is not large, at least by Texas standards, with about 120 BSN and 65 MSN students graduating each year. Another 20 or so earn doctorate's annually. UT's School of Nursing has a 95% pass rate on the NCLEX.

The School of Nursing is home to numerous centers including the BioBehavioral Laboratory, Cain Center for Nursing Research, and Center for Excellence in Aging Services and Long Term Care. The school also houses the NightRest Study, the Children's Wellness Clinic, and the Family Wellness Clinic.

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University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston

The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston
The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston.

 Zereshk / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY 3.0

The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston is a specialized campus offering degrees in the biological and health sciences. The school does not admit students out of high school; rather, students apply after completing at least two years of college level coursework. Admission is selective.

The Cizik School of Nursing offers programs at the bachelor's, master's, and doctoral levels. The popular BSN programs graduate over 400 students a year, and the school has a 96% pass rate on the NCLEX. The Houston location is a big plus for clinical education, and the school has over 200 clinical affiliations.

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University of Texas Medical Branch Galveston

Research Buildings on the UT Medical Branch campus in Galveston
Research Buildings on the UT Medical Branch campus in Galveston.

 Tacovera1 / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 4.0

The UTMB School of Nursing has grown over 100% in the past decade, and the school opened a new Health Education Center that is home to numerous learning facilities including patient simulators. Like the UTHS at Houston, UTMB does not admit students out of high school. BSN students apply after completing two years of college coursework.

The School of Nursing graduates over 300 BSN students annually as well as over 150 MSN students and roughly 25 students at the doctoral level. UTMB has an impressive 97% pass rate on the NCLEX. Along with excellent nursing facilities and clinical opportunities, students get to enjoy a beautiful location on the Texas coast.