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Nursing Schools in Florida


As of November 23rd, 2017 we have programs across 47 nursing schools in Florida. You’ll be able to find different courses that cover an extensive range of topics that include but not limited to Certified Nursing Assistant, MSN and Direct Entry MSN. You can take these and a range of other course/degree options from schools that include Benedictine University Online, Keiser University, University of Southern California - Online. If you’re looking for other states to start or further your studies we cover programs across the U.S. such as Georgia and Alabama.

State Nursing Board: Florida Board of Nursing

State Nurses Association: Florida Nurses Association

State Hospital Association: Florida Hospital Association


Find Nursing Programs in Florida:


The sprawling state of Florida reflects a wide range of healthcare needs. In particular, the state's growing retiree population has many in-depth care needs. That makes this a great place to explore nursing career options. At several schools in Florida, you can take the first or next step in your nursing education. Several institutions even have online study options for busy students. Whether you want to earn an RN, BSN, MSN or doctoral degree, you can explore options here.

Across the state, you’ll find nursing schools in Florida that help aspiring nursing professionals and working nurses take the next step in their career. With training options ranging from one to four years, it’s important to compare Florida nursing programs and choose a degree that aligns with your career goals.

Home of Disney World and NASA's Kennedy Space Center, the Sunshine State was discovered by Ponce de Leon in 1513 in his search for the fountain of youth. The state's sun and surf draw thousands of people to Florida each year. Some experts are projecting the state's population will continue to grow, and a large number of those newcomers may be retirees. A rapidly growing and aging population can increase demand for health care services, and often results in a call for nurses to expand their role within the healthcare workforce. You can start your nursing career at one of the nursing schools in Florida.

Keep reading to learn more about some of the nursing degree Florida options you may discover.

We have compiled a list of all the available nursing schools in Florida to save you time and effort while you search for schools. Simply choose the type of nursing program you are interested in from the choices at the bottom of this page, and follow the link to find schools.

Nursing Education in Florida

Florida offers more than 140 nursing schools, with programs that range from diplomas and associate degrees to doctoral degrees. The Florida Board of Nursing maintains a list of approved and accredited nursing programs on their website, and notes NCLEX pass rates for both LPN and RN populations. Pass rates for LPNs and RNs alike tend to hover around the 70% mark in Florida, according to the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (2014).

Nursing Education & Career Information in your City


2017 Career Outlook for Nursing Professions

Once you’ve finished your training at one of Florida’s registered nursing education programs, the licensure process begins. All paperwork goes through the Florida Board of Nursing, and you may want to start ahead of time to streamline the process.

There’s no doubt that healthcare is a huge industry in Florida. It is, in fact, one of the largest industries in this state. In 2015, Florida hospitals created over 900,000 new jobs (Saint Peters Blog, 2017).

This is obvious when you look at job growth statistics in the field of nursing. In Florida, demand for nurses is growing more quickly than the amount of nurses graduating from approved programs or coming into the state. From 2014 through 2024, demand for licensed practical nurses may increase 22% in Florida (O*Net, 2017). During this same decade, job openings for registered nurses may swell 25% (O*Net, 2017). A staggering 47% jump in job openings is expected for nurse practitioners during this time frame (O*Net, 2017).

Nursing salaries in Florida reflect national averages. You may find that salaries tend to be higher in areas of the state that consistently suffer from a shortage of healthcare providers. This often includes rural areas and those that have an above-average elderly population. If you attend licensed practical nurse education programs, you may be interested to know that the average salary in this field is $42,960 per year (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2017). At the registered nursing level, the average salary is $64,630 per year (BLS, 2017). Nurse practitioners report a mean annual income of $95,650 (BLS, 2017).

Nursing Degree Programs in Florida


Nursing Bridge Programs

Graduate Nursing Programs

Entry Level Nursing Programs

Florida LPN Programs

  • Admissions requirements: High school diploma, good physical health, and no record of felonies
  • Credits required for graduation: 30 to 45 credits
  • Online training unavailable; students must complete several hundred hours of clinical work
  • Licensing exam: NCLEX-PN

Licensed practical nurses work in a variety of settings. This may be an excellent way to get started in your nursing career, since the average LPN program only lasts one year. Upon completion of an LPN degree, you may complete a bridge program to earn an ADN or BSN degree.

BSN Programs in Florida

  • Admissions requirements: High school diploma, good physical health, and no record of felonies
  • Credits required for graduation: 120 to 130 credits
  • Online training may be available for general education classes; clinical requirements rule out the possibility of an online program
  • Licensing exam: NCLEX-RN

New high school graduates often choose to earn a BSN from a nursing school in Florida. Some of the best nursing schools in Florida focus on baccalaureate education, since BSN-level nurses may work in many different specialties and care settings. From start to finish, this degree requires about four years of full-time education.

Florida MSN Schools

  • Admissions requirements: Bachelor of Science in Nursing, current nursing license, and one to two years of full-time nursing experience
  • Credits required for graduation: 30 to 50 credits
  • Online training available for those in nursing leadership, nursing research, or nursing informatics
  • Licensing exam: Completed through a national certification agency; agency depends on whether you become an NP, CNS, or CRNA, and which population you work with

After earning a BSN, you might want to expand your scope of practice or move into a more specialized area of nursing study. For many students, a Master of Science in Nursing is the obvious solution. You may go into administrative specialties, such as nursing leadership or informatics. You can also focus on clinical work by becoming a nurse practitioner, nurse anesthetist, or clinical nurse specialist.

DNP and PhD Nursing Programs in Florida

  • Admissions requirements: A Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree, one to two years of nursing experience, and a current Florida nursing license
  • Credits required for graduation: 80 to 100 credits
  • Some courses are available online, but extensive in person experience is mandatory
  • Licensing exam: Dependent on which area of specialty you choose and whether or not you work with patients

The highest level of study in nursing is the doctorate degree. The DNP is primarily aimed toward students who want to go into advanced clinical practice, while the PhD is ideal for those who want to go into research or administration.

Nursing Colleges in Florida with Nursing Bridge Programs

A growing number of Florida nursing schools offer bridge programs for working nurses. You may use your current nursing education to significantly reduce the amount of credits you need for a more advanced degree. If you have a registered nursing Associate’s degree, you may complete a BSN or MSN bridge program. RN to BSN bridge programs last about 18 to 24 months, while RN to MSN programs last roughly three years. With these programs, you can use your time in nursing to work toward an advanced degree in less time.

Accelerated nursing programs in Florida are ideal for students who currently possess a Bachelor’s degree in another area of study. An accelerated BSN program lets you earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing in 12 to 18 months by completing a rigorous curriculum of clinical courses. A direct entry MSN program is another popular option. The direct entry MSN program is designed for students with a Bachelor’s degree in another field. You begin by earning the credits needed for a BSN and earning your license. At that point, you work through a set curriculum of MSN courses. As a result, you may graduate much more quickly than if you went through a standard BSN program and then waited to start your graduate courses.

Tips for Choosing the Top Nursing Schools in Florida

By now, you should know which type of degree you’d like to earn. This makes it easy to narrow down your list of potential schools. You may want to start requesting information from schools at this point. The sooner you start exploring schools, the more time you give yourself to make an informed decision.

One of the most important factors to consider is accreditation. Students who graduate from non-accredited schools may be able to earn their nursing license, but it is not guaranteed. Accredited schools are verified to meet the training standards of the Florida Board of Nursing. The two largest accrediting agencies in the United States are the ACEN and the CCNE.

Most of the time you spend evaluating the best nursing programs in Florida is spent thinking about your personal education needs. You may need to tour multiple nursing schools to figure out which environment improves your learning and empowers you to ask questions and grow. When you tour local nursing schools, spend some time talking to current students and instructors.

What Should I Consider as I Choose a Nursing School?

  • The NCLEX pass rate; this often reflects how well a school prepares its students for the the NCLEX and how much assistance students get
  • Financial aid; many schools have established scholarships for students that meet academic standards
  • Clinical experience opportunities; you may want to work in different settings to decide which career path suits you

Your work opportunities depend on the type of clinical experience you get, the reputation of your school, and how you perform academically. Clearly, the school you choose is an important factor in the future of your career. If you plan on attending a licensed practical nurse degree program, you may want to select a school that works with other programs for transfer credits. Those planning on earning a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree may choose between public and private institutions. If you’re pursuing a Master of Science in Nursing, make sure your school offers plenty of experience in your chosen specialty.

MSN Programs from Florida Schools

Listed below are all of the nationally accredited MSN programs with campus locations in Florida.

Online programs may not be available in all areas

Traditional On Campus Programs:

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Florida

Adventist University (Orlando, FL)
Program Name: Master of Science in Nurse Anesthesia
Accreditation: AANA/CANAEP accredited
Barry University (Miami Shores, FL)
Program Name: Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, Master of Science in Anesthesiology, MSN/MBA, Nurse Administrator, Nurse Educator
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (Tallahassee, FL)
Program Name: Adult/Gerontological Nurse Practitioner, Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner
Accreditation: ACEN accredited
Florida Atlantic University (Boca Raton, FL)
Program Name: Administrative and Financial Leadership (online), Adult Nurse Practitioner, Advanced Holistic Nursing, Clinical Nurse Leader, Family Nurse Practitioner, Gerontological Nurse Practitioner, Nurse Educator
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Florida Gulf Coast University (Fort Myers, FL)
Program Name: Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Clinical Nurse Leader, Nurse Anesthesia, Nurse Educator, Primary Health Care Nurse Practitioner
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Florida International University (Miami, FL)
Program Name: Adult Nurse Practitioner, Anesthesiology Nursing, Family Nurse Practitioner, Nursing Administration, Pediatric Nurse Practitioner
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Florida Southern College (Lakeland, FL)
Program Name: Clinical Nurse Specialist, Nurse Educator
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Florida State University (Tallahassee, FL)
Program Name: Nurse Educator (online)
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Jacksonville University (Jacksonville, FL)
Program Name: Family Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner/Emergency Nurse Practitioner, MSN/MBA
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Keiser University (Fort Lauderdale, FL / Orlando, FL / Sarasota, FL / Tallahassee, FL / Tampa, FL)
Program Name: Master of Science in Nursing, Master of Science in Nursing - Family Nurse Practitioner (Tallahassee), Master of Science in Nursing - Family Nurse Practitioner (Sarasota), Master of Science in Nursing (online only) - Orlando (online), Master of Science in Nursing (online only) - Tallahassee (online), Master of Science in Nursing (online only) - Tampa, Master of Science in Nursing, Family Nurse Practitioner - Fort Lauderdale, Master of Science in Nursing, Family Nurse Practitioner (Orlando), Master of Science in Nursing, Family Nurse Practitioner (Tampa)
Nova Southeastern University (Fort Lauderdale, FL)
Program Name: Education (online), Health Systems Leadership, Public/Community Health Nursing
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
The University of Tampa (Tampa, FL)
Program Name: Adult Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner
Accreditation: ACEN accredited
University of Central Florida (Orlando, FL)
Program Name: Adult Nurse Practitioner, Clinical Nurse Leader (online), Clinical Nurse Specialist, Family Nurse Practitioner, Leadership & Management (online), Nurse Educator (online), Pediatric Nurse Practitioner
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
University of Florida (Gainesville, FL)
Program Name: Clinical Nurse Leader, Neonatal Nurse Practitioner, Nurse Midwifery, Psychiatric-Mental Health CNS/NP
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
University of Miami (Coral Gables, FL)
Program Name: Acute Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, Nurse Anesthesia, Nurse Educator
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
University of Phoenix (Multiple Locations)
Program Name: Nurse Practitioner (online)
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
University of South Florida (Tampa, FL)
Program Name: Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Adult Nurse Practitioner, Certified Nurse Anesthesia Program, Clinical Nurse Leader (CNL), Family Nurse Practitioner, Gerontological Nurse Practitioner, Nursing Education, Occupational Health Nursing dual degree with the College of Public Health (MS/MPH), Oncology Nurse Practitioner, Pediatric Nurse Practitioner, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Accreditation: CCNE accredited
Wolford College (Naples, FL)
Program Name: Master of Science
Accreditation: AANA/CANAEP accredited