RN Programs in Washington
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.
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 Programs||ADN||BSN|
|Number of Nursing Programs||34||14|
|Average NCLEX Passing Rate||86.86%||90.57%|
|NCLEX Passing Rate Range||50.13% 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 Detail||ADN Rankings for Washington State||BSN Rankings for Washington State|
Best Ranked RN Programs in Washington
To 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 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.
ADN Programs In Washington
RN programs in the state of Washington are often set up as "transfer" degrees. This means that the schools have articulation agreements with four-year colleges and the prerequisites for the programs ensure that the student will be ready for a four-year education. After graduation, the student can transfer to a four-year college and earn their BSN in one year.
NCLEX Passing Rates for Washington ADN Programs
Big Bend Community College has the highest NCLEX-RN rate in Washington of 98.64%. Attending this stellar school will cost you about $6,629.00 a year.
- ADN Programs Offered in Washington: 34
- Average NCLEX-RN Passing Rate: 86.86%
- NCLEX Passing Rate Range: 50.13% to 98.64%
How Much Do ADN Programs Cost in Washington?
We compiled the net-price costs for RN Programs in Washington so that you can find RN programs to meet your budget expectations.
When comparing ADN vs BSN programs, the average net-price per year for an Associate Degree in Nursing program is considerably less than for a Bachelor Degree in Nursing.
The lowest cost ADN program in Washington is offered by Seattle Community College-Central Campus at about $3,666.00 and has an average NCLEX-RN passing rate of 89.06%. The highest cost ADN program is offered by Heritage University and it will cost about $9,734.00 and has an average NCLEX-RN passing rate of 50.13%.
- Average Net-Price for ADN Programs inWashington: $6,652.62
- Net-Price Range for Washington ADN Programs: $3,666.00 to $9,734.00
Median Student Borrowing for ADN Programs
- Average Student Borrowing for Washington Schools: $8,360.91
- Student borrowing range for ADN programs in Washington: $3,800.00 to $21,201.00
BSN Programs In Washington
Washington state has more than a 30 accredited nursing programs within the state. There are also various online programs offered to meet the need of busy, working nurses. Distance learned also provides nurses with a similar experience to campus-based learning along with the benefit of working around a busy schedule. An associate’s degree can prepare a nurse with a foundation needed to obtain licensure but a BSN program provides the additional support that is crucial to modern nursing. Courses that may be included in a BSN program include nursing research, leadership, diversity, and professional development.
NCLEX Passing Rates for Washington BSN Programs
Pacific Lutheran University wins the highest NCLEX-RN passing rate for BSN programs offered in Washington with a score of 93.11%. Attending this influential program will cost you about $24,489.00 a year.
- BSN Programs Offered in Washington: 14
- Average NCLEX-RN Passing Rate: 90.57%
- NCLEX Passing Rate Range: 86.79% to 93.11%
How Much Do BSN Degree Programs Cost in Washington?
We compiled the net-price costs for BSN Programs in Washington to give you an idea of how much nursing school will cost.
The lowest cost BSN degree program in Washington is offered by Olympic College and will cost you about $5,316.00 and has an average NCLEX-RN passing rate of N/A%. The highest cost BSN degree program is offered by Seattle University and will cost you about $34,340.00 and it has an average NCLEX-RN passing rate of 86.79%.
- Average Net-Price for BSN Programs in Washington: $17,988.57
- Net-Price Range for Washington BSN Programs: $5,316.00 to $34,340.00
Median Student Borrowing for BSN Programs
- Average Student Borrowing for Washington Schools: $19,210.79
- Student borrowing range for BSN programs in Washington: $8,444.00 to $27,000.00
BSN Programs at Public or Private Institutions
- Public Institutions: 7
- Private For-Profit Institutions: 0
- Private Not-for-Profit Institutions: 7
Become an Advance Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) in Washington
RNs who wish to become advanced practice registered nurses will want to pursue any number of avenues to earn Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) degree. Earning a Master of Science in Nursing consists of graduate-level coursework and clinical practice for those nurses who wish to direct patient roles such as a nurse practitioner. You can also pursue indirect patient roles such as teaching or leadership roles, or become involved in policy, state-wide health initiatives or community engagement. There are many clinical and non-clinical avenues that an RN with MSN can pursue.
Become a Nurse Practitioner (NP) in Washington
Learn how to become a Nurse Practitioner (NP) and research schools in Washington offering the following high paying nurse practitioner specialties:
- Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
- Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
- Family Nurse Practitioner
- Neonatal Nurse Practitioner
- Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner
- Acute Care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner
- Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner
Learn about Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) Degree.
Washington RN Licensing Requirements
Washington State Nursing Care Quality Assurance Commission
Department of Health
PO Box 47890
Olympia, WA 98504-7864
Initial licensing fee, RN: $92
License renewal (annual), RN: $101
Continuing Education Requirements:
RNs and LPNs: Seven contact hours in HIV-AIDS education
RN Licensure by Exams
Upon the completion of an approved nursing program, candidates will be required to verify program completion. This must be done before he/she can be granted authorization to take the NCLEX exam. The applicant will be responsible for an $88 nonrefundable application fee. There is a $200 registration fee that will be paid to Pearson VUE to register for the exam. When the candidate has received authorization to test (ATT), he/she will schedule the exam. After this, the candidate will verify the licensure online before receiving a paper copy.
RN License by Endorsement
Nurses who have obtained licensure in one of the other 50 states will be able to obtain licensure in Washington by endorsement. They will be required to submit a criminal background check through fingerprinting. If the registered nurse as an active license, he/she must submit verification of licensure and transcripts from an accredited nursing program. Candidates may work under a temporary permit that will allow them to work while the background check is being processed. Nurses who do not have an active license will be required to take part in a refresher course.
RN License for Nurses Educated Abroad
Registered nurses who obtained licensure outside of the United States will need to have an educational evaluation performed by an approved organization. The applicant will also be required to attest to having had AIDS training.
RN Salaries in Washington
Health care facilities in Washington are pushing for nurses that are baccalaureate-prepared. A lot of nursing schools in Washington work in collaboration with health care facilities to ensure that a high level of education is provided which will ultimately result in well educated and highly skilled nursing workforce. Nurses who have obtained a BSN have the ability to provide education resources for nursing students and newly licensed nurses. Certifications can provide nurses with unique career mobility and independent practice in areas such as oncology and nursing advocacy.
Washington Registered Nursing Salaries
Overall, Seattle has the highest number employed registered nurses along with the highest hourly mean wage and annual median wage.
|Area name||Employment||Hourly mean wage||Annual median wage|
|Bremerton-Silverdale, WA||Estimate not released||$36.45||$74,090|
|Mount Vernon-Anacortes, WA||780||$36.03||$71,200|
|Seattle-Bellevue-Everett, WA Metropolitan Division||23,370||$40.52||$83,690|
|Tacoma, WA Metropolitan Division||6,300||$37.27||$78,580|
|Wenatchee-East Wenatchee, WA||1,080||$35.72||$73,080|
|Northwestern Washington nonmetropolitan area||900||$34.36||$69,150|
|Southwestern Washington nonmetropolitan area||1,130||$33.73||$68,020|
|Central Washington nonmetropolitan area||980||$34.71||$66,130|
|Eastern Washington nonmetropolitan area||1,160||$34.32||$71,300|
Source: http://www.dol.gov/, 2014 Data
Sources: The State Board of Nursing from Each State, U.S. Department of Education: College Scorecard, U.S. Department of Education – OPE, National Center for Education Statistics, Bureau of Labor Statistics
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