The Best Nurse Practitioner Programs in Texas of 2022

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Updated November 21, 2022

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Are you ready to earn your online nursing degree?

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Choosing to become an NP in Texas through an online program provides registered nurses (RN) the flexibility to learn on their own time for a lower price tag. Upon completion, graduates may benefit from a higher earning potential and more professional opportunities.

You can find all the information you need about Texas nurse practitioner programs on this page. You'll also find guidance on what to look for in a Texas NP program, application procedures, ways to pay for your degree, and careers you can pursue post-graduation.

If you're ready to learn about advancing your nursing credentials and employment opportunities, explore our rankings to learn more.

We use a data-driven methodology to rank the best nurse practitioner programs in Texas, 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.


At a Glance: The Top 10 Texas Nurse Practitioner Programs

  • 1. The University of Texas at Austin
  • 2. Texas Christian University
  • 3. Texas A & M International University
  • 4. University of Houston
  • 5. Texas State University
  • 6. Lubbock Christian University
  • 7. West Texas A & M University
  • 8. Angelo State University
  • 9. Midwestern State University
  • 10. McMurry University


Learn more about the key factors to consider when choosing a program or go straight to our ranking of the best Texas nurse practitioner programs.

Using Our Rankings: What to Look For in a Texas Nurse Practitioner Program

Researching Texas NP programs can feel overwhelming. Focusing on specific metrics may help narrow your choices. These metrics include admission requirements like minimum GPAs and test scores, specialization areas and clinical rotation formats, school and programmatic accreditation, program time lengths, and board certification pass rates.

1. Admission Requirements

One of the first things you want to look at when researching schools is the admission requirements. Make sure that you meet programs' application criteria and have a good chance of being accepted.

2. Program Tracks and Specializations

Advanced practice nursing is all about specialization. Whether you're interested in becoming a family nurse practitioner or are drawn to adult-gerontology, pediatric, or psychiatric nurse practice, make sure the program offers what you're looking for.

3. Clinical Experience

Every NP program requires clinical experience, but factors to consider include whether the format, timing, and location work for your schedule, and whether the school will assist you in securing a clinical placement.

4. Accreditation

Graduating from an accredited NP program is important for several reasons. State licensure and potential employment depends on if you attended an accredited program.

The American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) and the American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) will not grant board certification if you graduated from an unaccredited program.

5. Program Length

Make sure that the programs you're interested in offer the number of credits and clinical hours that meet the Texas Board of Nursing requirements for licensure. Also ensure that the time to completion works for your schedule.

6. School NCLEX Pass Rate

Top programs often list their board certification rates to indicate their success in preparing students for advanced practice nursing. Checking the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX) pass rate can also offer insight into the nursing school's academic effectiveness.

Featured Online NP Programs

Why Is Texas Nurse Practitioner Program Accreditation Important?

When selecting a program in Texas, verify that the institution is appropriately accredited. The Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) and the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE) validate that a program meets the highest of standards. Without confirming the quality of the program, the ACEN and CCNE will not provide an institution with accreditation.

Earning a degree from an accredited program has its benefits. Exclusive programs often accept credits only from other accredited programs, making it difficult for students from unaccredited programs to transfer in.

Institutions are more likely to accept degrees from accredited programs as a prerequisite for graduate program admittance. Accredited degrees can also lead to more lucrative employment positions along with a higher earning potential.

Learn More About the Best Nurse Practitioner Programs & Schools in Texas

See our methodology to learn more about how we create our rankings.

#1 The Best Nurse Practitioner Programs in Texas of 2022

The University of Texas at Austin

  • Austin, TX
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Description:

The University of Texas at Austin offers three nurse practitioner programs: family, primary care pediatrics, or psychiatric mental health. The program is on-campus only. The university's other graduate nursing school offerings include doctor of nursing practice and Ph.D. programs, and the total graduate enrollment in 2022 is 323 students. Learners may choose to complete a specialty Graduate Portfolio Program, a cross-disciplinary study that includes classes and a scholarly paper or project. 

Details:

  • Program(s): MSN - family nurse practitioner, primary care pediatrics nurse practitioner, psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner
  • Campus: Austin, TX
  • Type: Public
  • Accreditation(s): Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
  • Tuition: $1,148 per credit for Texas residents; $2,035 per credit for out-of-state students
  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor's degree (either a BSN or a bachelor's in another subject and an ADN); 3.0 in upper-class work and any graduate studies; GRE within the last five years; current and unencumbered Texas or NLC RN license; at least one year of experience for the FNP program, two years for the PCPNP program.
  • Minimum Time Commitment: 1.5-2 years
  • On-Campus Requirements: Yes
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 94.8%
  • Median Earnings Two Years After Graduation: $84,653 for master's graduates, according to College Scorecard
Average Tuition
In-state
$10,824
Out-of-state
$38,326
Retention Rate
96%
Admission Rate
32%
Students Enrolled
51,090
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
25% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#2 The Best Nurse Practitioner Programs in Texas of 2022

Texas Christian University

  • Fort Worth, TX
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Description:

Texas Christian University's doctor of nursing program provides both a BSN-to-DNP and a postgraduate path. Nurse practitioner students can enroll in the family, adult-gerontology acute care, or psychiatric mental health programs. Many students work during their studies, but students may not be able to work a full-time job during clinicals. The program is primarily online with some on-campus requirements. 

Details:

  • Program(s): Doctor of nursing practice - family nurse practitioner, adult-gerontology acute care nurse practitioner, psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner
  • Campus: Fort Worth, TX
  • Type: Private
  • Accreditation(s): Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
  • Tuition: $1,790 per credit hour
  • Admission Requirements: BSN with 3.0 GPA; three references; current RN license valid in Texas or state where you will perform your clinical hours; one year of RN experience for FNP and PMHNP programs, two years for AGACNP; current CPR certification
  • Minimum Time Commitment: 36 months 
  • On-Campus Requirements: Yes
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 96.2%
  • Median Earnings Two Years After Graduation: $157,472 for doctoral graduates, according to College Scorecard
Average Tuition
In-state
$49,160
Out-of-state
$49,160
Retention Rate
91%
Admission Rate
47%
Students Enrolled
11,024
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
3% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#3 The Best Nurse Practitioner Programs in Texas of 2022

Texas A & M International University

  • Laredo, TX
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Description:

The Texas A & M International University's master of science in nursing - family nurse practitioner program emphasizes serving diverse local, national, and international populations. The program requires 48 credits for completion. One of the best Texas nurse practitioner programs, nearly 96% of TAMIU students receive financial aid. 

Coursework takes place in a primarily hybrid format, with on-campus requirements for an assessment class. Students take two classes per term, except for a single course in the second-year summer term. The main campus is in Laredo, but the main nursing campus is in Bryan/College Station, Texas, approximately three miles west. 

Details:

  • Program(s): Master of science in nursing - family nurse practitioner
  • Campus: Laredo, TX
  • Type: Public
  • Accreditation(s): Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
  • Tuition: $805 per credit hour for Texas residents; $1,335 per credit hour for out-of-state students
  • Admission Requirements: BSN with 2.7 GPA and 3.0 GPA for upper-level nursing classes; current and unencumbered Texas RN license; at least one work of hospital experience as an RN; undergraduate statistics course
  • Minimum Time Commitment: 36 months
  • On-Campus Requirements: Yes
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 99.3%
Average Tuition
In-state
$3,818
Out-of-state
$13,946
Retention Rate
79%
Admission Rate
54%
Students Enrolled
8,305
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
46% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#4 The Best Nurse Practitioner Programs in Texas of 2022

University of Houston

  • Houston, TX
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Description:

The University of Houston's master of science in nursing (MSN) program is based at the Katy, Texas, campus and online. The MSN offerings include nurse education and nurse administration, as well as the family nurse practitioner program. 

The program requires 47 credit hours and 675 clinical hours and includes a capstone project. Upon admission, students must complete the Annual Clinical Passport (ACP) and repeat it each year. The school provides assistance with clinical placement but does not guarantee it. 

Details:

  • Program(s): Master of science in nursing - family nurse practitioner
  • Campus: Katy, TX
  • Type: Public 
  • Accreditation(s): Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
  • Tuition: $619 per credit hour for Texas residents; $1,108 per credit hour for out-of-state students
  • Admission Requirements: BSN with at least a 3.0 GPA; current and unencumbered Texas nursing license; one year experience as an RN; two references; current CPR certification
  • Minimum Time Commitment: 24 months
  • On-Campus Requirements: Yes
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 98.7%
Average Tuition
In-state
$8,219
Out-of-state
$20,747
Retention Rate
85%
Admission Rate
65%
Students Enrolled
46,148
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
43% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#5 The Best Nurse Practitioner Programs in Texas of 2022

Texas State University

  • San Marcos, TX
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Description:

Texas State University's family nurse practitioner program's hybrid format requires on-campus, weekend intensives in Round Rock. Texas State only opens this master of science in nursing program to students who live in Texas and have a Texas RN license. 

The family nurse practitioner program requires 48 credits and 705 clinical hours. The school provides assistance with clinical placement. It is one of the more affordable family nurse practitioner programs, especially for Texas residents. 

Details:

  • Program(s): Master of science in nursing - family nurse practitioner
  • Campus: San Marcos, TX
  • Type: Public
  • Accreditation(s): Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
  • Tuition: $357 per credit hour for Texas residents
  • Admission Requirements: BSN with minimum 3.0 GPA and 3.0 in nursing and any graduate coursework; upper-level statistics course with a "C" grade; current and unencumbered Texas RN license; at least one year of experience as an RN; three references
  • Minimum Time Commitment: 20 months
  • On-Campus Requirements: Yes
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 100%
  • Median Earnings Two Years After Graduation: $104,192 for master's graduates, according to College Scorecard
Average Tuition
In-state
$8,052
Out-of-state
$19,868
Retention Rate
76%
Admission Rate
81%
Students Enrolled
38,187
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
30% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#6 The Best Nurse Practitioner Programs in Texas of 2022

Lubbock Christian University

  • Lubbock, TX
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Description:

Lubbock Christian University's family nurse practitioner program is available in both master of science in nursing and postgraduate options. The program requires 46 credits and 720 clinical hours and combines online and on-campus elements. The curriculum emphasizes developing and applying Christian values to nursing. In both 2020 and 2021, the completion rate and board pass rates were both 100%. 

Details:

  • Program(s): Master of science in nursing - family nurse practitioner; postgraduate - family nurse practitioner
  • Campus: Lubbock, TX
  • Type: Private
  • Accreditation(s): Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN)
  • Tuition: $595/credit
  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor's degree (BSN preferred) with 3.0 cumulative GPA or 3.0 in the last 60 hours; two years experience as an RN; current and unencumbered Texas RN license; three references, including one from an FNP or physician; basic life support (BLS) certification 
  • Minimum Time Commitment: 24 months
  • On-Campus Requirements: Yes 
  • Median Earnings Two Years After Graduation: $80,779 for master's graduates, according to College Scorecard
Average Tuition
In-state
$23,130
Out-of-state
$23,130
Retention Rate
71%
Admission Rate
91%
Students Enrolled
1,770
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
27% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#7 The Best Nurse Practitioner Programs in Texas of 2022

West Texas A & M University

  • Canyon, TX
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Description:

West Texas A & M University's family nurse practitioner program is available in a hybrid format, but students must complete their clinical experience in Texas. The program requires 48 credits and includes either a thesis or a comprehensive examination. Students must maintain a 3.0 GPA and complete their degree within six years of admission. 

Details:

  • Program(s): Master of science in nursing - family nurse practitioner
  • Campus: Canyon, TX
  • Type: Public
  • Accreditation(s): Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
  • Tuition: $8,085 per year for Texas residents; $15,755 per year for out-of-state students
  • Admission Requirements: Current and unencumbered RN; 3.0 bachelor's degree GPA; two references
  • Minimum Time Commitment: 27 months 
  • On-Campus Requirements: Yes
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 97.0%
Average Tuition
In-state
$5,554
Out-of-state
$6,960
Retention Rate
68%
Admission Rate
69%
Students Enrolled
9,970
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
59% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#8 The Best Nurse Practitioner Programs in Texas of 2022

Angelo State University

  • San Angelo, TX
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Description:

Angelo State University's family nurse practitioner program takes place primarily online but includes some on-campus requirements. The FNP is available as both a master of science in nursing program and as a postgraduate certificate. Family nurse practitioner students must be Texas residents, and all clinical experiences must be completed in the state. Students must pass a final comprehensive examination. 

Details:

  • Program(s): Master of science in nursing - family nurse practitioner; post - family nurse practitioner
  • Campus: San Angelo, TX
  • Type: Public 
  • Accreditation(s): Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
  • Tuition: $232 per credit hour
  • Admission Requirements: BSN with 3.0 GPA; "C" grade in an undergraduate statistics class; current and unencumbered Texas RN license; three references; one year of recent experience as an RN; American Heart Association CPR certification (as of first clinical course)
  • Minimum Time Commitment: 24 months
  • On-Campus Requirements: Yes
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 95.2%
Average Tuition
In-state
$4,332
Out-of-state
$14,460
Retention Rate
69%
Admission Rate
77%
Students Enrolled
10,568
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
41% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#9 The Best Nurse Practitioner Programs in Texas of 2022

Midwestern State University

  • Wichita Falls, TX
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Description:

Midwestern State University's family nurse practitioner program requires 48 credits and 512 clinical hours. It is available as both an MSN and a postgraduate program. The program is hybrid but requires some on-campus immersion components. Students must complete a capstone project. The majority of clinical hours must be completed in a family or general nursing setting. 

Details:

  • Program(s): Master of science in nursing - family nurse practitioner; postgraduate - family nurse practitioner
  • Campus: Wichita Falls, TX
  • Type: Public 
  • Accreditation(s): Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
  • Tuition: $9,310 per year
  • Admission Requirements: BSN with 3.0 GPA in last 60 hours; current and unencumbered Texas RN license; one year of experience in family/general nursing 
  • Minimum Time Commitment: 24
  • On-Campus Requirements: Yes
  • School NCLEX-RN Pass Rate: 87.7%
  • Median Earnings Two Years After Graduation: $119,061 for master's graduates, according to College Scorecard
Average Tuition
In-state
$5,567
Out-of-state
$7,516
Retention Rate
67%
Admission Rate
79%
Students Enrolled
5,969
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
52% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#10 The Best Nurse Practitioner Programs in Texas of 2022

McMurry University

  • Abilene, TX
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Description:

McMurry University's Patty Hanks Shelton School of Nursing is a consortium of Hardin-Simmons University and McMurry University. The master of science in nursing - family nurse practitioner program focuses on Christian faith-centered teaching and values. Students take two courses per semester to enable nurses to work while studying. Learners receive personalized assistance in clinical placement. The family nurse practitioner program is fully online as of 2022. 

Details:

  • Program(s): Master of science in nursing - family nurse practitioner
  • Campus: Abilene, TX
  • Type: Private
  • Accreditation(s): Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE)
  • Tuition: $830 per credit hour
  • Admission Requirements: BSN with 3.0 GPA and 3.0 GPA in nursing courses; current and unencumbered Texas RN license; one year of experience recommended; ACLS certification; three references
  • Minimum Time Commitment: 24
  • On-Campus Requirements: No
Average Tuition
In-state
$27,834
Out-of-state
$27,834
Retention Rate
70%
Admission Rate
45%
Students Enrolled
1,175
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
36% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

Paying for Nurse Practitioner Programs in Texas

Most students need assistance paying for their NP programs. Your need for financial assistance may depend on the cost and length of the program, whether you're a Texas state resident, or whether you can continue working while you study. There are many resources to help.

Financial aid sources include public and private loans, grants and scholarships, and loan repayment or forgiveness programs. Scholarships are available for specific schools, community affiliations, and specialty areas.

Government loan repayment programs cover the cost of a percentage or dollar amount toward the outstanding debt in exchange for service within their agency. Many major private employers may also offer loan forgiveness, tuition remission, or tuition reimbursement for RNs who pursue APRN careers.

Applying to a Nurse Practitioner Program in Texas

After deciding to apply to an online NP program in Texas, prospective students must determine enrollment prerequisites. While specific prerequisites may vary from one institution to the next, many programs want their applicants to fulfill certain general requirements.

1. Admission Materials

Transcripts from previous academic programs, GRE scores, completion of a college-level statistics course, reference letters, resume or CV, personal statement, proof of clinical hours (MSN-to-DNP)

2. GPA Requirement

3.0 GPA or higher

3. Other Requirements

Applicants must either already hold a BSN or be willing to enroll in an RN-MSN program. They must also possess an active RN license.

What Can You Do With a Degree from a Texas Nurse Practitioner Program?

Texas nurse practitioner programs award either a master of science in nursing (MSN) or a doctor of nursing practice (DNP), which often take about two years to finish.

Currently, an MSN is the minimum degree required to become an NP, but, in anticipation of a change to a DNP as the minimum degree, programs increasingly offer NP doctorates.

Graduates apply for board certification in their specific specialty, where they must sit for and pass a national certification exam. Popular specializations include acute care, adult-gerontology, family, neonatal, pediatric, and psychiatric-mental health.

Graduates can then apply for their advanced practice registered nursing licenses from the Texas Board of Nursing.

According to the BLS, the average annual NP salary in Texas is $117,890. The highest-paying metro areas are Wichita Falls and Midland, where NP wages average more than $125,000 per year.

Employment growth rate projection is also high in Texas, at 66% for 2020-2030, making the Lone Star state the 5th fastest-growing state for NPs.


Frequently Asked Questions About Nurse Practitioner Programs in Texas


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

An MSN program averages two years. You will first need to earn your undergraduate nursing degree to become a registered nurse. An associate degree in nursing (ADN) program often takes two years, and a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) spans four years. Most NPs can expect to spend at least six years in nursing school.

How do I become a nurse practitioner in Texas?

To become an NP in Texas, the typical path includes earning a BSN, becoming a licensed RN after passing the NCLEX, enrolling in an MSN program, and passing the national certification exam in their chosen specialties. Students who decide to earn their ADN first can either go back to school for their BSN or enroll in an RN-MSN program, which allows them to earn both degrees simultaneously.

Is becoming a nurse practitioner in Texas worth it?

Job opportunities, career advancement, and salaries increase significantly between RNs and NPs. The median salary for Texas RNs is $77,320, while NPs earn $121,010. Projections Central lists the 2020-2030 projected employment growth rate for Texas RNs at 17% and the NP rate at 66%.

What financial aid options are available for NP schools in Texas?

Texas NP students can access financial aid resources that include loans, grants and scholarships, work-study, loan repayment and forgiveness programs, and employer reimbursements. These funding options may be need-based, academically based, or in exchange for service within a government agency, underrepresented community, or rural area.


Page Last Reviewed: November 7, 2022

Note: The ranking list and school descriptions on this page were created and reviewed independently by our Rankings Team.


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