The Best Arizona Online Nurse Practitioner Programs and Requirements

June 3, 2020 | Staff Writers

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This page details nurse practitioner programs in Arizona, including requirements and employment trends. Those who want to become a nurse practitioner (NP) can pursue graduate education at the master’s or doctoral levels.

Students can explore a variety of resources to learn more about pursuing a master of science in nursing (MSN), including online opportunities, accelerated formats, and reasons to consider a master’s degree in the field.

Doctor of nursing practice (DNP) students can learn more about online programs, salary data, and the highest-paying careers. The length of time it takes students to complete their degree varies depending on their educational and professional background.

Licensed registered nurses (RNs) who complete a bachelor’s degree in nursing and have completed 400-1,000 clinical hours can often complete their master’s degree requirements in one year. In addition, bachelor’s degree-holders with active RN licenses can earn professional certification along with state advanced practice registered nurse (APRN) licensure in 1-2 years.

Read on to explore the best nurse practitioner programs in Arizona along with NP requirements in the state.

Read about our ranking methodology here.
Advertisement NurseJournal.org is an advertising-supported site. Featured programs and school search results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other information published on this site.

Featured Online Programs

Best Arizona Online Nurse Practitioner Program

1. Northern Arizona University – Flagstaff, AZ


  • Northern Arizona University

    At Northern Arizona University, distance learners can enroll in the school’s online master of science in nursing with a concentration in family nurse practice. The program consists of 48 credits and focuses on family primary care in rural settings. Courses cover topics like advanced pathophysiology, advanced pharmacology, and rural theory and health policy.

    Although students do not need to attend campus for courses, they must complete a number of supervised clinical practicum hours at a healthcare facility. The final clinical course also counts as a capstone. In addition, students can choose to complete a thesis or individualized research.

    Campus Flagstaff, Arizona
    Type Public
    Accreditations Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
    Tuition $3,750 per six months
    Admission Requirements Bachelor’s degree in nursing with a minimum 3.0 GPA; current RN license; three recommendation letters
    Minimum Time Commitment Varies, but students must complete within six years
    On-Campus Requirements No
    Program Program(s): MSN – Family Nurse Practitioner
    School site Tuition | Financial aid

Requirements to Become a Nurse Practitioner in Arizona

Aspiring NPs can follow the steps below to become a nurse practitioner in Arizona:

  • Obtain a graduate degree approved by the state licensing board and accredited by a U.S. Department of Education agency. National accreditation agencies for advanced nursing programs include American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC), American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP), American Association of Nurse Anesthetists, and a variety of other certifying agencies.The Arizona State Board of Nursing (AZBN) requires students completing graduate programs in nursing to satisfy at least 500 hours of clinical practice. Graduate programs must also include courses focused on the application of evidence and theory in advanced practice nursing, along with coursework in advanced health assessment and advanced pathophysiology.Individuals become eligible for prescriptive authority if their program includes 45 contact hours of pharmacology coursework or coursework in the clinical management of drug therapy within three years of their application date. APRNs can focus their licensure on a variety of specialization areas. Arizona’s most in-demand NP specializations include geriatrics, behavioral/mental health, and primary care.Students must complete their advanced practice registered nursing education within five years of the time they file for APRN certification.
  • Earn national certification in one of the four categories of APRN acknowledged by the AZBN. Individuals must become nationally certified in their desired nursing specialty. Each nursing specialty features regulations from an independent national certification organization. Students can choose to become certified in one specialty or multiple specialties.The AZBN acknowledges the following APRN designations: clinical nurse specialist, registered nurse practitioner, certified registered nurse anesthetist, and certified nurse-midwife.The AZBN accepts APRN candidates who hold national certification from the ANCC, the Pediatric Nurse Certification Board, the AANP, the American Midwifery Certification Board, the National Certification Corporation for Obstetric, Gynecologic, and Neonatal Nursing Specialties, the National Board of Certification and Recertification of Nurse Anesthetists, and the American Association of Critical-Care Nurses.
  • Individuals must apply for certification in accordance with Arizona state law, providing documentation of citizenship status and the appropriate documentation for application. Different nursing specialties require applicants to adhere to specific processes, including paying application fees, submitting fingerprints, providing verification of credentials to the board, submitting official transcripts, and sending a copy of national certificates from the American Association of Nurse Anesthetists Council on Certification.

In-Demand Nursing Specialty Eligibility Requirements in Arizona

Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner Certification (AGPCNP-BC)

Years of Experience

: None, but professionals need an active and current RN license

Clinical Hours Required: Minimum of 500 clinical hours supervised by a faculty member in the adult-gerontology primary care NP role

Continuing Education: N/A

Other: Three graduate-level courses focused on advanced health assessment, advanced pharmacology, and advanced physiology/pathophysiology

Psychiatric-Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Certification (PMHNP-BC)

Years of Experience

: None, but individuals need an active and current RN license

Clinical Hours Required: Minimum of 500 clinical hours supervised by a faculty member in a psychiatric mental health NP program

Continuing Education: N/A

Other: Three graduate-level courses focused on advanced pharmacology, advanced health assessment, and advanced physiology/pathophysiology

Adult-Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner (A-GNP)

Years of Experience

: None, but practitioners need a current RN license

Clinical Hours Required: Minimum of 500 clinical hours supervised by a faculty member in the adult-gerontology NP role

Continuing Education: N/A

Other: To become certified, professionals must pass a certification examination

Salary and Career Information

The national mean salary for NPs is $75,510 with a projected job growth rate of 14.8%. NPs who base their careers in Arizona experience higher mean salaries and rapid projected job growth. NPs in the Grand Canyon State earn a mean salary of $77,000 and a job growth rate of 37.3%.

NPs in Arizona, similar to RNs, experience higher salary opportunities and projected job growth rates than the occupation’s national figures. Arizona reports a mean salary of $110,750 compared to the national mean salary of $110,030. The projected job growth for NPs in Arizona is 57.7%, while the nation’s projected job growth is 36.1%.

NPs seeking the highest-paying job opportunities in Arizona can look to the state’s metropolitan areas. NPs in Yuma earn the most, with a mean salary of $142,650. The Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale metropolitan area highlights the highest employment level of 2,370.

RN vs. NP Salary and Projected Job Growth in Arizona
  Registered Nurse Nurse Practitioner
Arizona Mean Salary $77,000 $110,750
U.S. Mean Salary $75,510 $110,030
Arizona Job Growth 37.3% 57.7%
U.S. Job Growth 14.8% 36.1%

Source: BLS, Projections Central

Arizona Metropolitan Areas With the Highest Mean NP Wages
  Salary Employment
Yuma, Arizona $142,650 90
Prescott, Arizona $133,110 60
Lake Havasu City – Kingman, Arizona $119,700 50
Phoenix – Mesa – Scottsdale, Arizona $108,070 2,370
Flagstaff, Arizona $105,190 170

Source: BLS

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