2018 Best Schools for a Master's in Nursing

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Nursing-Top Graduate Schools-2018-Badge

This list ranks 16 top online master’s degree programs in nursing based on student ratings. Some of the criteria students scored their degree programs on included instruction, networking opportunities and overall satisfaction. The University of Virginia tops the list with a student rating of 92.31. In the middle of the list, the University of Arizona, the University of California - Los Angeles and Duke University had scores of 85.83, 85.56 and 85.33 respectively.

A University of Virginia student reviewer wrote “The School of Nursing at the University of Virginia provides a well rounded educational program. The faculty is supportive and being part of the UVA system provides a quality network for job hunting. I've been very satisfied with the clinical knowledge I've acquired so far and still feel like I'm challenged academically. A student at the University of Arizona gave high marks for the program rigor; “Very challenging but requires students to demonstrate self-motivation and drive. Workload is heavy, making the program a top priority and often leaving little room for other activities. A student at Duke University left detailed praise about a key course in the program. “My favorite class so far has been the physical assessment class which I feel has prepared me well to go into clinicals. This class not only prepares you to complete a head-to-toe detailed assessment but how to write SOAP notes correctly and efficiently.”

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Rank College Campus Location 2018 Student Score
#1 #1 University of Virginia - Main Campus Campus Location Charlottesville (VA) 2018 Student Score 92.31
#2 #2 University of South Florida - Main Campus Campus Location Tampa (FL) 2018 Student Score 91.11
#3 #3 California Baptist University Campus Location Riverside (CA) 2018 Student Score 90.67
#4 #4 University of Pittsburgh-Pittsburgh Campus Campus Location Pittsburgh (PA) 2018 Student Score 90.00
#5 #5 Spalding University Campus Location Louisville (KY) 2018 Student Score 89.00
#6 #6 Azusa Pacific University Campus Location Azusa (CA) 2018 Student Score 87.96
#7 #7 Mount St. Joseph University Campus Location Cincinnati (OH) 2018 Student Score 87.29
#8 #8 Augusta University Campus Location Augusta (GA) 2018 Student Score 86.20
#9 #9 University of Arizona Campus Location Tucson (AZ) 2018 Student Score 85.83
#10 #10 University of California - Los Angeles Campus Location Los Angeles (CA) 2018 Student Score 85.56
#11 #11 Duke University Campus Location Durham (NC) 2018 Student Score 85.33
#12 #12 University of Alabama at Birmingham Campus Location Birmingham (AL) 2018 Student Score 83.53
#13 #13 University of Washington - Seattle Campus Location Seattle (WA) 2018 Student Score 83.33
#14 #14 University of San Diego Campus Location San Diego (CA) 2018 Student Score 82.55
#15 #15 University of Maryland-Baltimore Campus Location Baltimore (MD) 2018 Student Score 81.67
#16 #16 University of Pennsylvania Campus Location Philadelphia (PA) 2018 Student Score 80.15


Our goal in presenting this school data is to create a standardized and trustworthy method to assess institutions based on reliable statistics. In order for a school to be eligible to be featured on a 2018 Top Programs List, at least five students from that particular degree program must have submitted feedback on their institution. Graduate Programs only considers regionally or nationally accredited, non-profit institutions for our rankings. Aggregated student rating values were multiplied by 20 to create a Student Score out of 100; in the event of a tie, schools were awarded the same rank value.

Together with our internal recommend rate data, which is calculated based on tens of thousands of student reviews submitted to our site, the data used in the school listings were gathered in 2016-2017 from the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). This site is the primary governmental entity for gathering and presenting data related to education. NCES data is updated annually. However, in many cases the most recently available data will not be for the current academic year. Additionally, tuition rates may vary by program, so prospective students should contact a representative from their institution of choice for more details.

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This indicates that a school has an annual tuition of $15,000 or less as reported to the National Center for Education Statistics or based on the school's website.