Top 10 Best Nursing Schools in Ohio

In terms of nurse employment, Ohio is among the best in the nation with 125,380 employed nurses. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), Ohio employs 23.15 nurses for every 1,000 residents. For comparison, California only employs 17.32 nurses for every 1,000 residents. This means that Ohio is one of the top per-capita employers for nurses, which is good news if you’re looking to get your nursing career started.

Find Ohio Nursing Programs

Before you can become a nurse, you’ll need to get licensed and become a registered nurse (RN). However, many hospitals prioritize nurses that have a BSN, and they’re willing to pay for them. 

According to the BLS, nurses with a BSN earn over $30,000 more than nurses with an associate degree in nursing (ADN). So, a BSN is a great way to increase your chances of finding a high-paying nursing job.

Methodology

This is a nurse panel-reviewed selection based on a number of factors including,

  • Reputation
  • NCLEX pass rate
  • Tuition
  • Acceptance rate, when available
  • Only ACEN or CCNE accredited schools are eligible 

Nurse Panel

Our selection panel includes 5 Registered Nurses with over 55 years of combined nursing experience and 7 nursing degrees.

  • Tracy Everhart, MSN, RN, CNS
  • Tyler Faust, MSN, RN
  • Chaunie Brusie, BSN, RN
  • Kathleen Coduvell Gaines, BSN, RN, BA, CBC
  • Leah Helmbrecht, BSN, RN

Because nursing careers take different forms, the top 10 Arizona nursing schools are ranked in no particular order.

Top 10 Nursing Schools in Ohio 

Not only will these schools satisfy the requirements to become a registered nurse in Ohio, but they also have connections with local hospitals, increasing your chances of finding a job right out of college.

Case Western Reserve University

Annual Tuition: $50,450 | NCLEX Pass Rate: 97.30

Traditional: Yes

Online: Yes

Accelerated: Yes

Bridge: Yes

Not only is this one of the top BSN programs in the nation, but Case Western Reserve University also puts students on a nursing fast-track. Nursing classes and clinicals begin in the first month of freshman year for nursing students, so you’ll get exposed to nursing very early on. The price is steep, but Case’s nurses graduate with over 1,300 clinical hours, a high NCLEX pass rate, and an excellent undergraduate education. Oh, and you’ll get to enjoy living in Cleveland, one of the biggest cities in Ohio. 

Ursuline College

Annual Tuition: $33,120 | NCLEX Pass Rate: 96.43%

Traditional: Yes

Online: No

Accelerated: No

Bridge: Yes

Ursuline is a small, private school in Pepper Pike that specializes in liberal arts programs, business and, most importantly, nursing. The traditional BSN matches the quality of other great schools, but Ursuline prepares their students for life after college by sending them to national conferences for networking and real-world nursing education. After finishing their degree and passing the NCLEX, 100% of their nurses find work – a great prospect for anyone worried about finding a job after college.

Ohio University

Annual In-State Tuition: $12,192 | NCLEX Pass Rate: 95.97%

Traditional: Yes

Online: Yes

Accelerated: No

Bridge: No

Ohio University may be a public school, but their 17:1 student-to-faculty ratio can make it feel much more like a small, private college. This means that extra attention is paid to students, a huge bonus for students interested in earning a BSN. The tuition rate for Ohio residents is great, as is the high NCLEX pass rate for past nursing classes. Maybe the only downside is that clinicals aren’t available in Athens, where Ohio University is located. This means you’ll be needing to commute to different cities for clinicals; fortunately, they aren’t too far away. 

University of Cincinnati

Annual In-State Tuition: $11,000 | NCLEX Pass Rate: 87.20%

Traditional: Yes

Online: Yes

Accelerated: Yes

Bridge: Yes

Nothing beats tradition and history, and the University of Cincinnati has both. As one of the first ever schools in the US to offer a BSN, Cincinnati has one of the most established nursing programs in the nation. Of course, the quality of the program today is what matters most. Today, Cincinnati offers one of the best BSN programs in Ohio, all at a very reasonable in-state cost. This is an excellent school for students interested in a career related to pediatrics or trauma. 

University of Mount Union

Annual Tuition: $31,300 | NCLEX Pass Rate: 100%

Traditional: Yes

Online: No

Accelerated: Yes

Bridge: No

The University of Mount Union, often referred to as Mount, takes a lot of the stress out of applying to colleges and nursing school. Students will find out if they’ve been accepted into the nursing school upon being accepted into Mount, making the process of picking the right school that much easier. Mount’s first-ever nurses graduated in 2017, so this program is relatively new. That being said, all of their graduates have passed the NCLEX pass rate, something that not every school can boast.

The Christ College of Nursing and Health Sciences

Annual Tuition: $16,637 | NCLEX Pass Rate: 100%

Traditional: Yes

Online: Yes

Accelerated: No

Bridge: Yes

The Christ College of Nursing and Health Sciences is exactly what it sounds like – a school for nursing and health sciences. They’re among the best at their specialty, too. The traditional BSN program has a perfect NCLEX pass rate for recent grads, and the tuition is affordable for students from across the nation. The final year of clinicals can be intense, but the outcome is a degree from a nationally recognized nursing school. For current RNs, their RN-BSN program can be completed in just three semesters, which can be as little as one year if you choose to study during the summer.

Otterbein University

Annual Tuition: $31,874 | NCLEX Pass Rate: 100%

Traditional: Yes

Online: Yes

Accelerated: No

Bridge: Yes

Founded by the Church of the United Brethren, Otterbein University has always been one of the most inclusive schools in the nation. While inclusivity doesn’t directly affect the quality of their BSN program, the culture permeates through all of Otterbein’s programs. Regardless, this is an excellent nursing program, and all recent grads passed the NCLEX on their first try. Admission can be tough, but some high school applicants can gain guaranteed admission into the nursing school. Guaranteed admittance comes with its own set of requirements. 

Mount Carmel College of Nursing

Annual Tuition: $21,573 (Average over 4 years)| NCLEX Pass Rate: 95.56%

Traditional: Yes

Online: Yes

Accelerated: Yes

Bridge: Yes

Mount Carmel College of Nursing is a private school, but you wouldn’t know it looking at their nursing program. Over 1,000 undergraduate nurses currently study at Mount Carmel, which means it can be easier to get into than more restrictive programs. Despite the high attendance, the BSN is still among the best in Ohio, and they have connections with local health systems that nursing students can take advantage of. As a private school, no in-state tuition is available, but 80% of students receive some form of financial aid.

The Ohio State University

Annual In-State Tuition: $10,726 | NCLEX Pass Rate: 95.40%

Traditional: Yes

Online: Yes

Accelerated: No

Bridge: Yes

THE Ohio State University is consistently ranked as one of the best public schools in the nation and is often considered the best all-around school in Ohio. Unsurprisingly, the quality of OSU extends to their traditional BSN degree. While they aren’t perfectly clear with their acceptance rate, the majority of applicants from last year’s pre-nursing track were admitted into the school of nursing. Ohio residents also get to take advantage of a low tuition rate – but it’s safe to say that anyone living in Ohio has already seriously considered OSU.

Mercy College of Ohio

Annual Tuition: $13,696 based on 16 credits per semester | NCLEX Pass Rate: 86.13%

Traditional: Yes

Online: Yes

Accelerated: No

Bridge: Yes

The Toledo-based Mercy College of Ohio is currently experiencing growth, and they’ve been increasing the number of students they admit into their pre-licensure nursing program. This is excellent news for any applicants that are worried about tight admission standards. Mercy College is also a private, Catholic school, so students can take advantage of smaller class sizes. One great aspect of Mercy College is that they have a relatively low tuition rate despite being a private school.

Keep in mind that colleges and universities reserve the right to change tuition rates at any time. The yearly tuition rates listed here will vary for each individual student depending on various factors including,

  • Transfer credits
  • Completed competency exams
  • Amount of credits taken per year
  • Financial aid awards

Check with the specific school for current tuition rates.

4 Key Factors That Affect Nursing School Tuition

Keep in mind that colleges and universities reserve the right to change tuition rates at any time. The yearly tuition rates listed here will vary for each individual student depending on various factors including,

  1. Transfer credits
  2. Completed competency exams
  3. Amount of credits taken per year
  4. Financial aid awards

Check with the specific school for current tuition rates.

Nurse Salary and Job Outlook

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)

  • Nurses employed in Arizona make an annual mean wage of $66,820,
  • In terms of nurse employment, Ohio is among the best in the nation with 125,380 employed nurses. Ohio employs 23.15 nurses for every 1,000 residents. For comparison, California only employs 17.32 nurses for every 1,000 residents. This means that Ohio is one of the top per-capita employers for nurses, which is good news if you’re looking to get your nursing career started.

Find Ohio Nursing Programs

Next Steps:

The first step to beginning nursing school is to create a short list of schools that meet your criteria. After, you’ll want to:

  • Get in touch with admissions offices. Every school has an admissions office, and their job is to help you get into their school. The admissions office will tell you what materials are needed to apply, as well as the minimum requirements for both the university and the nursing program. This step could further narrow your list of potential schools.
  • Prepare to apply. Most schools are going to require that you take the ACT, SAT, or both. Many schools also require that you submit at least one letter of recommendation, as well as a personalized college entrance essay. And, of course, you’ll need to submit your high school grades.
  • Submit your applications. Yes, you should be submitting multiple applications to different schools, just in case one school offers you a deal you can’t pass up. Keep in mind that some schools have strict application deadlines. Also, some schools use the Common App, which can be a huge time saver.

Important considerations when comparing schools 

Public or private, large or small, rural or urban, in-state or out-of-state… there are plenty of things you’ll want to consider when picking which school to attend.

If choosing the right nursing school came down to one factor, then nobody would care about the rest. With that in mind, you shouldn’t choose a nursing school just because it has a high NCLEX pass rate or a high acceptance rate. Consider multiple factors prior to choosing your school, including:

  1. The school’s accreditation (regional and national) 
  2. Tuition cost
  3. The acceptance rate to the university
  4. The acceptance rate to the nursing program
  5. NCLEX pass rate

You should also check to see that schools are offering exactly what you’re looking for. Remember, the program you choose could alter the trajectory of your future nursing career. 

Why you should care about the nursing program’s accreditation

Nursing students who complete their studies at a non-accredited university will not be able to sit for the NCLEX. Therefore, they will face immense challenges in securing stable, well-paying jobs. Why? Because students who do not take the NCLEX are not eligible to work as Registered Nurses. 

The two nursing program accrediting organizations are,

The Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN)

The Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)

These accrediting bodies ensure that all accredited nursing programs adhere to the same standard and criteria.

Every school on our list is accredited by one of these, as are dozens of other Ohio schools. If you’re unsure whether a school is accredited or not, ask an admissions counselor or contact either of the accrediting institutions. 

Getting a License in Ohio

Ohio isn’t as strict as other states when it comes to getting licensed, and you’ll be able to satisfy most your needs when you earn a BSN in Ohio. Requirements include:

  • Taking the NCLEX-RN (you’ll be eligible after earning your BSN)
  • Completing a criminal background check
  • Submitting your fingerprints (this step can sometimes be waived)

After passing the NCELX and submitting your information, you’ll be ready to start your nursing career in the great state of Ohio!

Conclusion 

Ohio is a top employer for nurses, making it an excellent place to begin your nursing career. Ohio is also rich with nursing schools, some of which are among the top in the nation. To become a nurse in Ohio, the best thing to do is earn your BSN through a school in the state. From there, you just need to pass the NCLEX and then find the best place to start working!

References:

BLS

Common App

Nursinglicensure.org

Nurse.org

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