Best Indiana Nurse Practitioner Programs

Updated November 23, 2022

Individuals interested in enrolling in nurse practitioner programs in Indiana can refer to this page to learn more about the opportunities available to them in the state.
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Nurse practitioners (NPs) are in demand and enjoy lucrative salaries and high levels of professional autonomy. If you are looking at the many NP programs Indiana offers, it can be hard to choose the right one for you.

This guide explores the best NP schools in Indiana, how to apply and pay for your degree, and answers to frequently asked questions about these programs.

We use a data-driven methodology to rank the best nurse practitioner programs, making it easier for you to find a program that works for you. Our methodology is based on metrics that we believe matter most to students, including: academic quality, affordability, reputation, and program offerings.

Keep reading to learn more about nurse practitioner programs, or go straight to our list of the best NP programs in Indiana.

What Can You Do With a Nurse Practitioner Degree?

Nurse practitioners are licensed to assess patients, diagnose conditions, and prescribe treatments. Most NPs become family nurse practitioners (FNPs), but there are a variety of specialties and career options. Unlike physicians, NPs focus on a particular population during their schooling, such as family, pediatric, psychiatric mental health, or adult care.

  1. 1

    Family Nurse Practitioner

    This is the most common specialty for NPs. Family NPs are primary care providers for patients of all ages. The median salary for this specialty, according to the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP), is $107,000.

  2. 2

    Acute Care Nurse Practitioner

    Acute care NPs treat acute conditions, that is, short-term immediate health needs such as injuries or illnesses. They often work in hospitals and urgent care centers. According to Payscale data from May 2022, the median salary for acute care NPs is $105,450.

  3. 3

    Pediatric Nurse Practitioner

    Pediatric NPs specialize in treating children and younger adolescents. They focus on either psychiatric mental health, acute, or primary care. Payscale data from May 2022 shows a median pediatric NP salary of $93,360.

Featured Online MSN Programs

What To Look For in an Indiana Nurse Practitioner Program

When looking at NP school in Indiana options, decide whether you want to attend a larger or smaller institution or if you want a secular or faith-based program. Also consider if you prefer to take classes online or on campus.

Other factors, such as program quality and reputation, curriculum, and cost are easier to measure objectively.

  1. 1

    Admission Requirements

    Admission requirements tell you how likely you are to be admitted. They also indicate a school's culture and values and what it considers the most important backgrounds for successful students.

  2. 2

    Program Curriculum

    Unlike medical school, NP programs require students to select a specialty upon admission. After completing a core curriculum, you focus on this specialty. If you think you might change your specialty preferences, it is easier to transfer programs within the same school.

  3. 3

    Clinical Experience

    If attending an online NP program, consider clinical requirements and logistics and how to get clinical placement in your community. Some schools provide placement or extensive placement assistance, while others leave it up to students.

  4. 4

    Accreditation

    Accreditation is vital to getting your state license and board certification. This is why this guide only lists the nurse practitioner schools in Indiana that are accredited.

  5. 5

    Program Length

    Consider the program length and structure and how it works with your schedule and existing responsibilities. Some programs expect or require full-time attendance, while others design the program for working students. Many schools offer part-time enrollment options.

  6. 6

    School NCLEX Pass Rate

    Even for graduate schools, NCLEX-RN pass rates indicate a nursing school's overall quality and reputation. Be aware that this is most meaningful for medium and larger schools, as just one or two students can skew a smaller program's rates.

  7. 7

    School Graduation Rate

    The graduation rate, especially combined with the board pass rate, is an excellent indicator of program quality and whether students succeed in the program once admitted.

Applying to a Nurse Practitioner Program in Indiana

Now that you have selected some NP school in Indiana options, make sure you give yourself plenty of time to prepare your application. Talk to a recent graduate. Have a trusted mentor review your application, both for errors and to make sure it reflects your potential. Let your references know to expect a request and if there is anything you would like them to emphasize.

  • Admission Materials

    Current and unencumbered RN license valid where you will be performing clinical experiences, college transcripts, a resume or CV, at least two references, and a completed application with an essay or personal statement

  • GPA Requirement

    Most schools require a 3.0 GPA, but if your score is borderline, talk to an admissions counselor. Some schools admit students on a probationary basis, or you may have other qualifications that offset your lower GPA.

  • Other Requirements

    Most schools require or strongly prefer at least one year of full-time experience (or equivalent part-time experience) as an RN. If you have an associate degree in nursing (ADN) but not a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN), some schools offer a registered nurse-to-master of science in nursing (RN-to-MSN) bridge program.

Why Is Nurse Practitioner Program Accreditation Important?

During accreditation, an objective board reviews every facet of a program that affects its quality and the ability of its graduates to safely practice nursing. The review includes student outcomes (graduation rate, exam pass rates), faculty and staff background and qualifications, policies and procedures, curriculum and teaching approaches, and the technology and equipment in use.

  • States require a degree from an accredited school for licensing.
  • Boards do not certify graduates of non- accredited programs.
  • Employers almost never even consider graduates of non-accredited programs.
  • Accredited programs almost never accept transfer credits from non-accredited schools.
  • With so many accredited Indiana NP schools, why risk your time and money on an non-accredited program?

Paying for a Nurse Practitioner Program in Indiana

Especially if you still have undergraduate loans, paying for your nursing degree can be expensive. Factors to consider include direct costs, such as tuition, fees, books, travel expenses for on-campus requirements, whether you qualify for in-state tuition, and whether you plan to work while studying.

Financial aid can make your dream school a reality. Nonprofits, such as foundations and associations, corporations, local government, and even your school, offer scholarships and grants. You may be eligible for loan forgiveness if you work in an under-served area, for the military, or for other government agencies after graduation.

Learn More About the Top NP Programs in Indiana

#1 Best Indiana Nurse Practitioner Programs

Goshen College

  • Goshen, IN
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

The family nurse practitioner degree at Goshen College is a well-established program that attracts many students interested in this field. The MSN with a family nurse practitioner track enjoys top-ranking for academic rigor and is delivered on the Goshen, Indiana, campus. The graduate school’s programs include six master's degrees.

The program accepts applicants with a bachelor's degree in nursing or a related field, but other degree-seekers may meet the entry requirements. Enrollees study advanced concepts in the MSN program and undertake original research. In a tight job market, candidates with a master's degree often do better than their peers with just a bachelor’s.

The school costs $28,858 for graduate students living in Indiana or out of state. Grants and scholarships provide an important stream of financial aid for many learners. Some prospective students will turn to loans to pay for their education, using scholarships and grants as secondary funding.

Average Tuition
In-state
$34,540
Out-of-state
$34,540
Retention Rate
76%
Admission Rate
63%
Students Enrolled
907
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
7% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#2 Best Indiana Nurse Practitioner Programs

University of Indianapolis

  • Indianapolis, IN
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

The University of Indianapolis, a private college, is located in Indianapolis, Indiana. Learners can choose from the institution’s 26 master's degrees. They benefit from rigorous academic programming that is among the best in the nation.

The primary care family nurse practitioner program is a top-ranked degree for people interested in becoming a family nurse practitioner. Graduates are prepared for a variety of careers as specialists in this field. Degree-seekers take intensive classes that examine key issues in the field in more depth than a bachelor's program.

Residents of Indiana and their out-of-state peers pay $37,514 a year in tuition. According to the school, 100% of the school’s learners use loans, scholarships, and other forms of financial aid to fund their education. One of the reasons people like this program is the 60% school graduation rate.

Average Tuition
In-state
$29,844
Out-of-state
$29,844
Retention Rate
73%
Admission Rate
93%
Students Enrolled
5,801
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
25% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#3 Best Indiana Nurse Practitioner Programs

Indiana University South Bend

  • South Bend, IN
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Anyone with a bachelor's degree in nursing should explore Indiana University South Bend for affordable degrees. The college is located in South Bend, Indiana, and offers an MSN program with a family nurse practitioner track, which includes high-quality instruction and career preparation. Many use financial aid programs to fund their education here.

Graduate tuition costs students from the state of Indiana about $7,264 per year. With the use of scholarships and other forms of financial aid, approximately 93% of degree-seekers pay less for tuition. School data show that about 45% of enrollees receive loans, another popular option.

A master’s degree builds on bachelor’s-level knowledge, producing highly skilled family nurse practitioners. The degree provides graduates with a great credential for leadership roles. Another option is a Ph.D. or other terminal degree.

Average Tuition
In-state
$6,895
Out-of-state
$19,346
Retention Rate
68%
Admission Rate
78%
Students Enrolled
5,092
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
48% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#4 Best Indiana Nurse Practitioner Programs

University of Saint Francis

  • Fort Wayne, IN
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Prospective students with a nursing major should consider the University of Saint Francis's master of science in nursing program. Enrollees receive advanced training that equips them for higher pay and more career opportunities as a family nurse practitioner. Graduates can use the master’s-level knowledge for managerial and research jobs in different industries.

The private school offers programs on the Fort Wayne, Indiana, campus. Graduate students here can choose from a catalog of 12 different master's degrees that include the MSN program for nursing bachelor's degree-holders. Benefits of graduate school include advanced instruction, faculty mentorship opportunities, and research experience.

The overall college acceptance rate stands at about 96%, but graduate programs are often more selective. Enrollees study in courses that focus on advanced topics in the subject and training more specialized jobs. The school helps students succeed with resources like tutoring and career advisors, and degree-seekers can work with the financial aid department to identify funding opportunities.

Average Tuition
In-state
$30,380
Out-of-state
$30,380
Retention Rate
69%
Admission Rate
96%
Students Enrolled
2,249
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
45% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

Common Questions About Nurse Practitioner Programs


How much do nurse practitioners make in Indiana?

In Indiana, the average NP salary is $113,490. This is considerably higher than the average registered nurse salary of $82,750 and more than twice the average $58,260 for all workers, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Are nurse practitioners in high demand in Indiana?

While it is not one of the highest demand states, Indiana has a shortage of primary care providers. NPs can help to fill this need.

How long does it take to become a nurse practitioner in Indiana?

For students with a BSN, it typically takes two years of full-time study to earn an MSN in Indiana. Students with an ADN, or those attending on a part-time basis, may take three years or longer.

Can nurse practitioners practice independently in Indiana?

Indiana is a reduced practice state for NPs, and they must work in collaboration with a physician. NPs need an explicit written agreement with the physician that outlines the details of their collaboration and the physician's supervision.


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