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Average Tuition Costs for Online Nursing School

Many colleges and universities offer online nursing programs at the graduate level, though a few feature online undergraduate programs. The cost of these programs varies greatly and may depend on several factors, including state residency, previous education and nursing experience.

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Nursing has been a growing career field for decades and students looking to get into this health care profession have a lot of schools and programs they can choose from. Several things prospective nursing students need to take into consideration are cost, programs and whether to take classes online or on campus.

Average Tuition Cost for Online Nursing Schools

Nursing programs differ greatly, and students are encouraged to research precise requirements and fees for a program prior to enrollment. Very few schools offer a discount for programs completed online rather than on campus and the majority include many fees, such as:

  • Clinical
  • Application
  • Documentation

Based on the findings of U.S. News & World Report, average 2015-2016 per-credit tuition rates for in-state students ranged between $50-$1,639. The tuition for out-of-state students ranged from $177-$2,042.

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Online Nursing Program Duration

Programs vary in length and require 10-53 credits for completion, depending on the school, program, concentration or degree type. Applicants are usually required to have a bachelor's degree and be licensed with the state. Some online master's degree programs allow students to specialize:

  • Nursing administration
  • Education
  • Family practice
  • Anesthesia

Online programs offer flexibility to students by allowing part-time studies, and students can work at their own pace. Many online master's degree programs in nursing may be completed in 3-5 semesters. Some schools may require on-site practicums and lab work, or they may allow working nurses to count their professional experience towards course credit.

Program Overview

Students interested in a career as a registered nurse or licensed nurse practitioner must complete an accredited nursing program and receive state licensing. Typically, undergraduate programs require on-campus studies, though there are some exceptions. The majority of online nursing programs are at the master's level, which may include online-only coursework or a blend of online and on-campus studies.

Students wanting to enter the nursing profession have many things to consider, such as the tuition cost, an online or on-campus program format, and the level of degree desired.

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