Best Nursing Schools in Columbus Ohio in 2023 (Online & On-Campus)

Best Nursing Schools in Columbus Ohio in 2023 (Online & On-Campus)

Nursing Schools in Columbus Ohio

Looking for great nursing schools in Ohio? Then there’s no better place than Columbus. Television shows like Chicago Med, ER, and The Resident paint an image of nursing that is exciting, dramatic, and not entirely accurate. Life and death moments are not a constant source of tension and drama, complex romantic entanglements are not clogging up every storage closet, and it is highly likely that a nurse will go an entire shift without a single dramatic pause. What they do have is a quality education like that which can be found at the nursing schools in Columbus Ohio.

One thing that is not made up, however, is the importance of the profession, the essential component that nurses serve in helping those who are in need of help find solutions, comfort, and healing. For while nursing may not be as dramatic as television makes it appear, there are moments that will be life altering, heartbreaking, and filled with joy.

Nurses provide preliminary medical and triage services as well as emotional support for those in need of physical, psychological, and emotional services. They are found in hospitals, physician offices, treatment centers, urgent care facilities, etc.

But first, you have to get the right education.

There are a number of various levels of nursing education. They include:

  • Basic introductory certifications that get students working in the nursing field like State Tested Nursing Assistant (STNA) and Licensed Practical Nursing (LPN) programs.
  • Programs that transition you from this level to the next; LPN to ASN, LPN to AASN, LPN to RN, and LPN to BSN bridge programs for example.
  • Undergraduate degree programs that prepare students to take the NCLEX-RN test for certification as Registered Nurses (RNs) like Associate of Applied Science in Nursing (AASN), Associate of Science in Nursing (ASN), and Traditional or Accelerated Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN).
  • Graduate programs like Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) and Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP).
  • Post-graduate certification for specialization.

Nursing careers are all showing growth at a rate that is higher than that of most other careers in the United States. According to US Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Outlook Handbook, the projected growth from 2016 to 2026 for LPNs is 12 percent and for RNs it is 15 percent while the average growth rate for all occupations is only 7 percent. In addition, the annual median salary for nurses ranges from $45,000 for LPNs to $70,000 for RNs. Whether you’re looking for a BSN program in Ohio or another type of nursing program, you’ll be sure to find an option here.

Here are the top nursing schools in Columbus Ohio

1. Ohio State University

ohio state university nursing schools in columbus ohio

The main campus of Ohio State University calls Columbus home. They offer a number of nursing degree programs that include a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN), RN to BSN bridge, Master of Science in Nursing (MSN), and Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP). Their nursing programs are offered on campus as well as online.

Their campus offers students all the amenities of college life including a wide variety of clubs and organizations. Furthermore, the campus offers sporting, cultural, and entertainment options to round out an educational experience.

  • Per Credit Hour Tuition: $405 per credit hour (THIRD)
  • Student to Faculty Ratio: 19 to 1
  • NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 91.11% (SECOND)
  • Graduation Rate: 83.5% (FIRST)
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission (HLC) & Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)

2. Capital University

The Columbus school Capital University came in a distant second on this list; only its high ranking on the NCLEX-RN pass rate metric helps it to stand out. A smaller school than OSU, Capital University offers small class sizes and personalized instruction. Their nursing department offers degree programs including a traditional BSN program, an accelerated BSN program, MSN, and postgraduate studies that include specialized certifications like Adult-Gerontology.

  • Per Credit Hour Tuition: $475 per credit hour
  • Student to Faculty Ratio: 11 to 1
  • NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 92.94% (FIRST)
  • Graduation Rate: 59%
  • Accreditation: HLC & CCNE

3. Mount Carmel College of Nursing

Third on the list of best nursing schools in Columbus Ohio is Mount Carmel College of Nursing which is centrally located in the city. They provide small class sizes and excellent test scores for their nursing programs. The nursing programs offered at Mount Carmel are RN to BSN, MSN degrees focused in Administration and Education, MSN to FNP, and DNP.

  • Per Credit Hour Tuition: $617 per credit hour
  • Student to Faculty Ratio: 10 to 1
  • NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 87.44%
  • Graduation Rate: 78% (THIRD)
  • Accreditation: HLC, CCNE, & Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing, Inc. (ACEN)

4. Columbus State Community College

The nursing programs at Columbus State Community College are offered at the lowest per credit hour tuition rate. However, they also offer the lowest graduation rate among schools on this list. In addition to course offerings that prepare students for the NCLEX-RN test, CSCC provides options for practical nursing that provide students with the skills to take the NCLEX-PN test with a pass rate of 92 percent for that test. They offer LPN certification, STNA certification, and an ASN-RN program.

  • Per Credit Hour Tuition: $136 (FIRST)
  • Student to Faculty Ratio: 19 to 1
  • NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 86.9%
  • Graduation Rate: 19.8% (LAST)
  • Accreditation: HLC & ACEN

5. American Institute of Alternative Medicine

American Institute of Alternative Medicine is located on Doubletree Avenue in Columbus. Their nursing program was established in 2010 and offers multiple degrees and certificate options. Their LPN program is 59 credit hours and has a pass rate of 41.46 percent. They also offer a 90-credit hour LPN to RN program and an AASN-RN degree option that is 109.5 credit hours in length.

  • Per Credit Hour Tuition: $299 per credit hour (SECOND)
  • Student to Faculty Ratio: 17 to 1
  • NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 49.23%
  • Graduation Rate: 75%
  • Accreditation: Accrediting Commission of Career Schools & Colleges (ACCSC)

6. Chamberlain University – Ohio

Chamberlain University has several locations across the United States. Their Ohio campus is in Columbus. Here, they offer education and training for nursing students at a number of distinct levels. Their nursing programs include a three-year BSN (129 credit hours), an RN to BSN option, BSN-RN to MSN bridge, an MSN, MSN to FNP bridge, and DNP programs. Additionally, they offer several post-graduate certifications in areas such as nursing leadership, family nurse practitioner (FNP) specialization, and nursing education among others.

  • Per Credit Hour Tuition: $675 per credit hour
  • Student to Faculty Ratio: 8 to 1
  • NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 88.33% (THIRD)
  • Graduation Rate: 48%
  • Accreditation: HLC & ACEN

7. Felbry College School of Nursing

Felbry College School of Nursing offers those who dream of helping others the education to begin an exciting career in nursing. Their program offerings include an LPN program with a 75 percent pass rate on the NCLEX-PN test. They also offer an LPN bridge program and an AASN (Associate of Applied Science in Nursing) degree option.

  • Per Credit Hour Tuition: $730 per credit hour (LAST)
  • Student to Faculty Ratio: 10 to 1
  • NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 33.33% (LAST)
  • Graduation Rate: 81% (SECOND)
  • Accreditation: Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES), Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges & Schools (ACICS), & Ohio Board of Nursing


The schools on this list were ranked based on criteria that were available and comparable for all. If there is a school in the Columbus area that provides nursing courses but for some reason does not have one of the determining metrics available, they did not make this list. In addition, schools that are not clearly accredited are not listed here.

The factors used to rank these schools include their per credit hour tuition rate, graduation rate, and NCLEX-RN pass rate.

Per Credit Hour Tuition

This amount is calculated for each school to represent a per credit cost for tuition. All figures are based on full-time attendance. For those that are provided as “per term” or “per year” totals, the per credit amount is determined via a formula that uses the national averages of 2 semesters per year with 15 credits taken per semester. Schools were then rated on their per credit cost of tuition from the least expensive to the most expensive.

NCLEX-RN Pass Rates

These rates indicate how many students who take the NCLEX-RN test at the specific institution passed the test the first time. It can be used as an indicator of how well prepared the school in question is at supplying students with the information that they need to know to become professional nurses. For this list, schools were ranked from highest pass rate to lowest.

Graduation Rates

Graduation rates are not only indicative of how well a student does but also how well the school is doing. Factors such as student support, ease of access, and career guidance affect this statistic as much as the educational quality of the school. For this list, the higher the graduation rate the better the ranking.

After the schools have been ranked within each of these categories, their rankings were added together to determine an overall position. By utilizing identical metrics for evaluation, these schools can be confidently ranked to show those that provide the best environment for nursing education overall. The specifics of each school – location, degree options, etc. – can then fine tune each individual search for the perfect fit.

As far as this list is concerned, those schools that have a lower per credit hour tuition cost, higher graduation rate, and higher NCLEX-RN pass rate will float towards the top. Meanwhile, those with lower NCLEX-RN pass rates and graduation rates coupled with higher per credit hour tuition costs will sink to the bottom.

If you feel that your school should be considered for evaluation and included in this list or have edits you would like to suggest, feel free to contact us and let us know.

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