Best Online Master’s in Nurse Practitioner Programs of 2021

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Published on January 29, 2021

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Nursing is one of the fastest-growing fields in the nation, driven primarily by an increased demand for healthcare services for an aging population. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects nurse practitioner jobs will grow by a staggering 28% between 2018 and 2028.

Nurse practitioners, also known as advanced practice nurses, earn a median salary of $107,030, according to the BLS. Comparing that number to the $71,730 median salary of registered nurses with an associate or bachelor's degree, it is no surprise that accredited online master's of nurse practitioner programs are growing in popularity. After obtaining a master's degree, nurse practitioners can find high-paying work in hospitals, outpatient care centers, and a variety of healthcare offices.

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

Some nurse practitioners go on to earn a doctorate in their field. This terminal degree opens the door to employment in upper management and other top positions in the field, with job titles like director of nursing, chief nursing officer, and nursing professor.

Related Programs That Might Interest You

What Are the Best Online Master's in Nurse Practitioner Programs of 2021? Here Are Our Top 10:

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#1 University of Southern California Los Angeles, CA
#2 Texas A & M University-College Station College Station, TX
#3 George Washington University Washington, DC
#4 Georgia College & State University Milledgeville, GA
#5 Samford University Birmingham, AL
#6 Clarkson College Omaha, NE
#7 Maryville University of Saint Louis Saint Louis, MO
#8 Concordia University-Wisconsin Mequon, WI
#9 DeSales University Center Valley, PA
#10 Regis University Denver, CO
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At BestColleges, we believe a college education is one of the most important investments you will make. We want to help you navigate the college selection process by offering school rankings that are transparent, inclusive, and relevant for online students. Our rankings are grounded in a few guiding principles and use the latest statistical data available from trusted sources. Read our Ranking Methodology. We hope our approach helps you find the school that is best for you.

2021 Best Accredited Online Master's in Nurse Practitioner Programs

Prospective graduate students often face immense pressure when selecting their school and program. The stakes -- rooted in career growth and professional success -- are high, and the sacrifices on the table -- major commitments of both time and money -- are not to be taken lightly.

Important factors to consider when looking at online graduate schools include availability and variety of student resources, curriculum components and learning outcomes, and the overall cost and expected duration of each program. With these considerations in mind, we scoured the web and applied our rigorous methodology to bring you a ranked list of the best online nurse practitioner programs available in the U.S.

Each ranking provides a plethora of school and program details that should help narrow down your list of potential schools. If you want to know more about a particular degree option, we encourage you to reach out to an admissions specialist at the school in question.

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University of Southern California View School Profile Los Angeles, CA

Located in Los Angeles, USC offers students the chance to become family nurse practitioners by providing an online master of science in nursing. The program offers students an interdisciplinary education in both nursing and social work.

Registered nurses with at least one year of clinical experience sign up for full- or part-time instruction and receive training in pathophysiology, healthcare management, and community-based research. The curriculum features 784 clinical hours and requires two on-campus intensives in Los Angeles.

USC is regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges Senior Colleges and University Commission

Program Snapshot

Program Name: Master of Science in Nursing
School Status: Public
Tuition: $1,995 per credit
Credit Requirements: 49 credits
Program Length: 21-33 months
Format: Online with two on-campus components
Instruction Style: Mostly asynchronous

Admission Requirements

GPA: 3.0 minimum
Standardized Tests: Not required

Contact the School

More Information
Texas A & M University-College Station View School Profile College Station, TX

Located in College Station, Texas A&M offers an online master of science in nursing with a family nurse practitioner specialization. Nurses residing in Texas and with previous clinical experience can take courses online that work around their schedules. The program requires a limited number of on-campus assessments.

Students take courses in pathophysiology, primary care of families, and advanced health assessment as part of the curriculum. Other courses include prevention and population health and other community-based health practices. The program takes 6-8 semesters to complete, depending on a student's schedule.

Texas A&M is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Program Snapshot

Program Name: Master of Science in Nursing - Family Nurse Practitioner
School Status: Public
Tuition: $141 per credit
Credit Requirements: 45 credits
Program Length: 2-2.5 years
Format: Online with some in-person assessments
Instruction Style: Asynchronous

Admission Requirements

GPA: 2.0 minimum
Standardized Tests: Not required

Contact the School

More Information
George Washington University View School Profile Washington, DC

Located in Washington D.C., GWU offers students a targeted MSN: adult-gerontology acute care nurse practitioner program. The program gives students experience and training in the high-intensity environment of acute care settings, including urgent care clinics and specialty units. Nurses working in clinical settings located in the District of Columbia, Maryland, or Virginia may apply.

Students take courses in population health, nursing leadership, and genetics for healthcare providers. Students travel to the GWU campus for a hands-on assessment. They also complete a total of 48 credits and 650 clinical hours.

GWU is regionally accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education

Program Snapshot

Program Name: Master of Science in Nursing: Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
School Status: Private
Tuition: $1,395 per credit
Credit Requirements: 45 credits
Program Length: 2-2.5 years
Format: Online with an in-person assessment
Instruction Style: Asynchronous

Admission Requirements

GPA: 3.0 minimum
Standardized Tests: Not required

Contact the School

More Information
Georgia College & State University View School Profile Milledgeville, GA

Located in Milledgeville, Georgia College offers an online master of science in nursing with a family nurse practitioner concentration. Students can take up to seven years to complete the degree, as dictated by their work and life schedules.

Students meet face to face a few times a year during the program. The school offers classes synchronously and asynchronously, and most students complete the requirements in six semesters. Courses include advanced pathophysiology, applied pharmacology, and perspectives of advanced nursing practice. Students must reside in Georgia to satisfy preceptor requirements.

Georgia College is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. This MSN program holds programmatic accreditation from the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

Program Snapshot

Program Name: Master of Science in Nursing - Family Nurse Practitioner
School Status: Public
Tuition: $1,395 per credit
Credit Requirements: 40 credits
Program Length: 2-2.5 years
Format: Online with minimal on-campus components
Instruction Style: Asynchronous and synchronous

Admission Requirements

GPA: 2.75 minimum
Standardized Tests: Not required

Contact the School

More Information
Samford University View School Profile Birmingham, AL

Located in Birmingham, Alabama, Samford offers an online MSN for family nurse practitioners. The program offers two start dates per year.

Students prepare to work in diverse environments and take courses such as pathophysiology, population health and policy, and common diagnostics and procedures. Graduates can transition seamlessly into a doctor of nursing program. Although this program is offered mostly online, students must plan for three on-campus visits.

Samford is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Schools and Colleges Commission on Colleges.

Program Snapshot

Program Name: Master of Science in Nursing - Family Nurse Practitioner
School Status: Private
Tuition: $888 per credit
Credit Requirements: 30 credits
Program Length: 2-2.5 years
Format: Online with three on-campus components
Instruction Style: Asynchronous

Admission Requirements

GPA: 3.0 minimum
Standardized Tests: Not required

Contact the School

More Information
Clarkson College View School Profile Omaha, NE

Located in Omaha, Nebraska, Clarkson College offers students an online master of science in nursing with a family nurse practitioner concentration through an RN-to-MSN bridge program. Registered nurses can enroll, earning a BSN and MSN.

Core MSN requirements include applied statistics, nursing law and ethics, and research design and methods. Students in the family nurse practitioner concentration also take classes like advanced nutrition, advanced pathophysiology, and primary care of women. Theory coursework is delivered entirely online.

Clarkson College is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Program Snapshot

Program Name: RNto MSN - Family Nurse Practitioner
School Status: Private
Tuition: $300 per credit
Credit Requirements: 146 credits total (30 in the family nurse practitioner concentration)
Program Length: 10-14 semesters
Format: Online with limited in-person assessments
Instruction Style: Asynchronous

Admission Requirements

GPA: 3.0 minimum
Standardized Tests: Not required

Contact the School

More Information
Maryville University of Saint Louis View School Profile Saint Louis, MO

Based in Saint Louis, Missouri, Maryville offers a master of science in nursing with a family nurse practitioner concentration. The program requires no campus visits, and students can complete clinical hours at a location of their choosing.

The curriculum includes 745 clinical hours and 15 courses. Students participate in classes that cover evidence-based practice, health promotion/disease prevention, and advanced pathophysiology. The program takes four semesters, and students can choose from six different entry points throughout the year.

Maryville is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Program Snapshot

Program Name: Master of Science in Nursing - Family Nurse Practitioner
School Status: Private
Tuition: $813 per credit
Credit Requirements: 47 credits
Program Length: 2 years
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Asynchronous

Admission Requirements

GPA: 3.0 minimum
Standardized Tests: Not required

Contact the School

More Information
Concordia University-Wisconsin View School Profile Mequon, WI

Based in Mequon, Concordia offers an online MSN for aspiring nurse practitioners who want to consider nursing from a faith-based approach. The program boasts flexible enrollment and spring and fall clinical rotations.

Students can expect to learn the foundations for good nursing practice. The degree program features 41 credits designed to advance knowledge related to pathophysiology, policy, and evidence-based practice. Participants must attend a one-day orientation in person, but the remainder of courses are offered solely online.

Concordia is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Program Snapshot

Program Name: Master of Science in Nursing - Nurse Practitioner
School Status: Private
Tuition: $760 per credit
Credit Requirements: 41 credits
Program Length: 2 years
Format: Online (with one in-person orientation)
Instruction Style: Asynchronous

Admission Requirements

GPA: 3.0 minimum
Standardized Tests: Not required

Contact the School

More Information
DeSales University View School Profile Center Valley, PA

Based in Center Valley, Pennsylvania, DeSales offers students an online master of science in nursing degree with an adult-gerontology acute care nurse practitioner endorsement. Students study the complex needs of acute care patients and learn to diagnose critical cases.

The program teaches advanced pharmacology topics and a nursing core, including procedures in advanced nursing practice and applied research. Students receive clinical support in advanced topics. The curriculum and 675 clinical hours cover core topics and provide the practical experience students need to succeed in healthcare.

DeSales is regionally accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

Program Snapshot

Program Name: Master of Science in Nursing - Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
School Status: Private
Tuition: $885 per credit
Credit Requirements: 50 credits
Program Length: 2 years
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Asynchronous and synchronous

Admission Requirements

GPA: 3.0 minimum
Standardized Tests: Not required

Contact the School

More Information
Regis University View School Profile Denver, CO

Located in Denver, Colorado, Regis offers an online master of science in nursing with a neonatal nurse practitioner endorsement. This highly specialized field offers nurses career advancement opportunities.

Students can complete the program in five semesters. The program boasts 630 mentored clinical hours (completed during the final semester), courses covering topics like primary and acute care, and two on-campus intensives. Nursing students gain the knowledge needed to care for at-risk infants and children in neonatal intensive units.

Regis is regionally accredited through the Higher Learning Commission.

Program Snapshot

Program Name: Master of Science in Nursing - Neonatal Nurse Practitioner
School Status: Private
Tuition: $910 per credit
Credit Requirements: 44 credits
Program Length: 5 semesters
Format: Online (with two in-person intensives)
Instruction Style: Asynchronous and synchronous

Admission Requirements

GPA: 2.75 minimum
Standardized Tests: Not required

Contact the School

More Information
Olivet Nazarene University View School Profile Bourbonnais, IL

Located in Bourbonnais, Illinois, ONU offers an online master of nursing - family nurse practitioner program for students seeking to further their careers. Classes meet in eight-week sessions, and students can complete the program in 24 months.

The college offers students the chance to blend faith-based understandings with practical training in the nursing field. Courses include pathophysiology, advanced pharmacology, and nursing informatics, and each course is grounded in theory and practice. Although taught mostly online, students must meet onsite for some intensives.

ONU is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Program Snapshot

Program Name: Master of Science in Nursing - Family Nurse Practitioner
School Status: Private
Tuition: $690 per credit
Credit Requirements: 52 credits
Program Length: 24 months
Format: Online (with in-person intensives)
Instruction Style: Asynchronous and synchronous

Admission Requirements

GPA: 3.0 minimum
Standardized Tests: Not required

Contact the School

More Information
Saint Joseph's College of Maine View School Profile Standish, ME

Based in Standish, SJC offers an online master of science in nursing with two nurse practitioner concentrations: adult gerontology acute care nurse practitioner and family/individual across the lifespan nurse practitioner. Students can prepare for a career caring for individuals across their lifetimes, concentrating on the area of practice that suits them best.

Students can take up to five years to complete the program. Courses offered include ethics, pathophysiology, and informatics. Participants also complete a final capstone project. The program includes core courses common to each specialty and 24 credits directly in a student's concentration area.

SJC is regionally accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.

Program Snapshot

Program Name: Master of Science in Nursing - Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner or Family/Individual Across the Lifespan Nurse Practitioner
School Status: Private
Tuition: $663 per credit
Credit Requirements: 52 credits
Program Length: 24 months
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Asynchronous

Admission Requirements

GPA: 3.0 minimum
Standardized Tests: Not required

Contact the School

More Information
Bradley University View School Profile Peoria, IL

Located in Peoria, Illinois, Bradley offers an online master of science in nursing - family nurse practitioner. Students learn online with no residency requirements, and they complete clinical hours locally with chosen preceptors.

Students take courses such as research in nursing, statistical procedures, and primary care across the lifespan. Students engage in 700 clinical hours and can complete program requirements in eight semesters. The program boasts flexibility and allows students from across the country to achieve education goals, regardless of location.

Bradley is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Program Snapshot

Program Name: Master of Science in Nursing - Family Nurse Practitioner
School Status: Private
Tuition: $663 per credit
Credit Requirements: 52 credits
Program Length: 24 months
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Asynchronous

Admission Requirements

GPA: 3.0 minimum
Standardized Tests: Not required

Contact the School

More Information
Duquesne University View School Profile Pittsburgh, PA

Located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Duquesne provides an online master of science in nursing with an adult-gerontology acute care nurse practitioner concentration. Students learn with a cohort of 10-15 peers and receive personalized support from mentors and faculty.

The program includes 12 courses and 42 credits, including classes that cover healthcare ethics in practice and policy, adult-gerontology, and clinical prevention and population-based health promotion. Students learn from experienced faculty and never need to come to campus to complete program requirements.

Duquesne is regionally accredited by the Middle State Commission on Higher Education.

Program Snapshot

Program Name: Master of Science in Nursing - Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner
School Status: Private
Tuition: $1,509 per credit
Credit Requirements: 42 credits
Program Length: 3 years
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Asynchronous

Admission Requirements

GPA: 3.0 minimum
Standardized Tests: Not required

Contact the School

More Information
Sacred Heart University View School Profile Fairfield, CT

Based in Fairfield, Connecticut, Sacred Heart offers an online master of science in nursing - family nurse practitioner. As part of their degree requirements, students complete a clinical component, which requires them to find and secure their own clinical site.

The 42-credit curriculum includes three core courses in theory and professional roles, healthcare policy and ethics, and principles of healthcare research. Students also take seven specialization courses that focus on clinical strategies and health assessment.

Sacred Heart holds regional accreditation from the New England Commision of Higher Education. Its master's program in nursing is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education.

Program Snapshot

Program Name: Master of Science in Nursing - Family Nurse Practitioner
School Status: Private
Tuition: $955 per credit
Credit Requirements: 42 credits
Program Length: 3 years
Format: Online
Instruction Style: Asynchronous

Admission Requirements

GPA: 3.2 minimum
Standardized Tests: Not required

Contact the School

More Information

Want to know more? Visit our complete degree page for more information about nurse practitioner programs, including average cost, program length, and typical admission requirements.

Get ready to take your career to the next level. Uncover details about the high-demand jobs you can pursue after completing an online nurse practitioner program.

As master's degree programs have grown in popularity, graduate student loan debt has increased substantially. An MBA can open the door to many high-paying jobs in the business field. Learn about the best MBA jobs in 2021, from accountant to product marketing manager. This landing page acts as an introduction and overview of online college planning resources for students.

BestColleges.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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