Nursing Schools in Austin, Texas with Degree Program Overviews

Research nursing degrees in Austin, which currently has four area colleges and universities offering programs. Read an overview of degree programs, admission info and program requirements for three schools within 20 miles of downtown Austin and decide which program is right for you.

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Austin, Texas, Nursing Schools

Austin, Texas, has three school options for people interested in studying nursing at the undergraduate or graduate level. This article looks at those schools, all within a half-hour of downtown Austin, and the nursing programs they provide. Information such as tuition, school size, graduation rate and the availability of financial aid, are presented in a table that makes it easy to compare these institutions. The name of one other school, a bit more distant, is presented at the end of the article.

  • The University of Texas at Austin, just two miles from downtown, offers several types of bachelor's, master's and doctoral degree programs in nursing.
  • About five miles from the city center, Austin Community College offers an associate's degree program and a vocational nursing certificate program.
  • Concordia University - Texas has a Bachelor of Science in Nursing program. This school is almost 17 miles from downtown Austin.

University of Texas at Austin

Located on a 350-acre campus, the University of Texas at Austin was founded in 1883 and has grown to become one of the largest public universities in the nation, with research centers and satellite campuses throughout Texas. U.S. News & World Report ranked the University of Texas at Austin 13th among the nation's best public schools in 2013.

Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN) to Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN)

The ADN-to-BSN program allows registered nurses with a diploma or associate degree in nursing to extend their education. A bachelor's degree in nursing might qualify holders for advanced nursing positions as well as opportunities to engage in graduate-level studies. Students have the option of completing pre-professional courses through distance learning, while upper-division courses must be taken at the University of Texas at Austin's School of Nursing.

Bachelor of Science in Nursing

This comprehensive course of study combines nursing practice and theory. Students learn to work in clinical settings while completing the groundwork needed to pursue a master's or doctoral degree in nursing. The program consists of both pre-professional and professional credit hours. Upon completion, graduates are eligible to sit for the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN).

Master of Science in Nursing

Students in this program pursue advanced education in specific areas of nursing and related sciences to qualify for specialized professional practice. Applicants must have a BSN or a non-nursing bachelor's degree with either a nursing diploma or associate degree in nursing. They also must be registered nurses (RNs). This program allows enrollees to choose from nine areas of concentration, including public health, pediatric nursing, family nursing, holistic adult health or nurse administration.

Alternate Entry Master of Science in Nursing (AE MSN)

This graduate program is for individuals with degrees in non-nursing fields of study who want to sit for the NCLEX-RN while earning a Master of Science in Nursing. The program requires the completion of nine prerequisite courses prior to enrollment; these span science, sociology and health topics. Once enrolled, students choose from seven concentrations, including child health, family psychology, maternity care and administration. A portfolio of work related to gerontology also must be completed.

Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing

Applicants must hold a master's or bachelor's degree in nursing to qualify for enrollment. Students choose a specific area of study based on their career interests. Topics in this program are determined by the student's area of study, which also serves as a research topic for a dissertation. All students devote studies to nursing research methodology and the importance of health care delivery.

Alternate Entry Doctor of Philosophy in Nursing (AE Ph.D.)

This program is for those with non-nursing graduate or baccalaureate degrees who want to earn a Ph.D. in Nursing. Students prepare for advanced careers in nursing research and leadership. The educational format of this program includes seminar discussions, graduate-level coursework and original dissertation research.

Austin Community College

For more than 36 years, Austin Community College has been providing students with higher education. Enrollees can choose from certificate, degree, adult education and distance learning programs.

Vocational Nursing Certificate

This entry-level nursing program trains students to become licensed vocational nurses (LVNs). These professionals work under the supervision of registered nurses, physicians and physician's assistants. Equivalent to the licensed practical nurse designation, licensed vocational nurse is a title used only in Texas and California. Students in this program complete 44 credit hours consisting of laboratory work, clinical training and classroom lessons. Upon completion, graduates receive a vocational nursing certificate and are qualified to sit for state and national licensing exams.

Associate of Science in Nursing

Students who choose to complete the traditional track associate degree program must take 33 credit hours of non-nursing courses and 38 credit hours of nursing courses. Courses are offered both online and on campus. This degree program is for those who do not have a nursing license.

Alternate Entry Associate of Science in Nursing

Alternate-entry students must be graduates of the Austin Community College vocational nursing program. Students complete 24 prerequisite credit hours and 61 credit hours of nursing courses.

Concordia University - Texas

Founded in 1926, Concordia University now encompasses five university centers: Northwest Austin, San Antonio, Houston, Fort Worth and Central Austin. It has four colleges with 22 undergraduate majors and boasts an 18:1 student-to-teacher ratio.

Bachelor of Science in Nursing

This undergraduate program takes four years, as well as a summer semester, to complete. Students are required to take pre-nursing courses as freshmen and sophomores and then a professional sequence of courses as juniors and seniors. Nursing coursework might include global health, patient-centered adult health, health assessment, family-centered care and community health.

Comparison of Schools

The following table presents information about the schools that could be useful to aspiring nursing students.

University of Texas at Austin Austin Community College Concordia University - Texas
School Type 4-year, public 2-year, public 4-year, private not-for-profit
Total Enrollment (2011-2012) 51,112* 45,100* 2,658*
Campus Setting Large city Large city Rural fringe
Tuition & Fees (2012-2013) $9,790, in-state; $33,128, out-of-state* $2,340, in-district; $7,200, in-state; $9,720, out-of-state* $23,600*
% of First-Year Students Receiving Any Form of Financial Aid (2010-2011) 66%* 53%* 90%*
Acceptance Rate (2012-2013) 47%* N/A - Open admissions* 49%*
Retention Rate (2010-2011) 92%* 53%* 54%*
Undergraduate Graduation Rate (2011) 81%* 4%* 35%*

Source: *NCES College Navigator.

Other School Option

Texas State University - San Marcos, located about 32 miles from downtown Austin, offers a BSN program for aspiring registered nurses.

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