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Nurse Practitioner Programs in Texas - 2020 Rankings



What are the 11 Best Nurse Practitioner Programs in Texas (Online & Campus) for 2020?


1) West Texas A&M University – Canyon


Programs Offered: MSN and Post-Master's Certificate

Counted among the top nurse practitioner programs in Texas, the nursing school at West Texas A&M University is well known for its innovative and research-focused academic approaches. With an evidence-based curriculum, the school prepares future practitioners to provide holistic nursing care through its MSN and post-master’s certificate program that comes with a specialization in family health. The school's NP graduates, equipped with this training make a significant contribution to Texas’s health care system through innovative research and clinical practices.

MSN Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner

If you are an RN and aspire to become an APRN by specializing in family health, then you can enter this program by applying to the graduate as well as nursing school. The program is offered with online coursework and clinical experiences are arranged at clinical sites in Texas. You will receive training to provide efficient health care services to patients belonging to all age groups. To graduate, you need to complete 46 credits, comprising of core and specialization courses. After completing courses in advanced Pathophysiology, Pharmacotherapeutics, and Advanced Assessment, you take the FNP specific courses. Upon completion, you will be eligible to take the national certification exam and earn the credential of an FNP.

Post-Master's Certificate Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner

With the post-master’s certificate, you can acquire advanced skills and knowledge that are required to become an FNP and gain the eligibility to take a national level FNP certification examination. To complete the program, you are required to finish a 27-credit curriculum. You also undergo a clinical practicum at a healthcare center where you practice advanced nursing skills under the guidance of a preceptor.

2) Texas State University - Round Rock


Programs Offered: MSN

Texas State University trains advanced nurse practitioners through its graduate and nursing school. NP students complete their MSN coursework with the graduate school and progress to the nursing school to take the specialization-specific courses. Both schools are consistent with the university’s student-friendly approach. Grounded in evidence-based knowledge, the curriculum is designed to prepare nurses to offer competent patient care to a larger population.

MSN Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner, and Psychiatric and Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

If you aspire to take up advanced nursing practice then you can consider this MSN program with either the FNP or PMHNP specialization. Courses are offered in a combination of online and on-campus classes. The FNP course requires completion of 48 credit hours while with the PMHNP you must complete 40 credit hours in core and specialty courses. The college accepts applications on a rolling basis, so you can apply through the year. Some of the common core courses included in both the tracks are advanced pharmacotherapetics, advanced health assessment, healthcare leadership, and current issues in advanced practice nursing. The specialty courses that follow, educate you in theoretical and practical skills specific to your chosen domain.

3) University of Texas – Austin


Programs Offered: MSN, Alternate Entry-MSN, and Post-Master's Certificate

The School of nursing at the University of Texas is well-known for its graduate education and also ranks among the top in the nation. When you graduate with the nurse practitioner credential from one of the best NP schools in TX, you will be proficient at advanced nursing practices, applying critical thinking to better patient outcomes, and at playing leadership roles to improve the quality and safety of healthcare. To NP aspirants, the school offers an MSN and post master’s certificate program in various concentrations. Additionally, for non-nursing students who wish a switchover to nursing, there is an alternate-entry MSN with a specialization in mental health.

MSN Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner (FNP), Primary Care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner (PCPNP), and Psych/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Program (PMHNP)

The MSN is offered with specialization options, in family health, pediatrics, and mental healthcare. To be eligible for this program, you must be a registered nurse with either a bachelor’s in nursing or an associate in nursing, in case you hold a bachelor in a non-nursing field. All three tracks require completing anywhere close to 48 credits and aim towards imparting advanced knowledge in nursing science, professional foundations, and modes of systematic inquiry. The program is offered as an on-campus program and takes 1.5 to 2 years to complete. It starts only once in fall every year and is available in both full-time and part-time formats.

Alternate Entry-MSN Concentrations: Psych/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner Program (PMHNP)

Alternate Entry-level MSN concentration can train you for advanced nursing even if you come from a non-nursing background. The program not only helps you earn an MSN but also an APRN credential with specialized skills and knowledge in the nursing care of mental health patients. The training is rigorous and takes around 2.3 to 3 years to complete. Students who prefer working can do so after completing the first year of foundation courses. The 86-credit curriculum comprises of foundation, core, concentration-specific, and APRN courses. While the foundation courses are broad and cover all the areas of nursing, the remaining coursework is aimed towards learning advanced nursing practices and skills in mental health.

Post-Master's Certificate Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner, Psych/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, and Primary Care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner

If you have completed an MSN or DNP and are keen on becoming an APRN, or have already earned it and aspire to specialize in another area, this post-master’s certificate program has got you covered. You can choose from family health, mental health, or primary pediatric care nursing, depending on your interests. In a full-time format, students usually complete this program in 1.5 to two years. To graduate you must complete 24 credits in required courses and 645 clinical hours in practical experience. Upon completion, you become eligible to take the national certification examination in your chosen specialization.

4) Baylor University – Dallas


Programs Offered: DNP

Baylor’s school of nursing with its rich history of more than 100 years offers excellent nursing practitioner education that is grounded in Christian values of care and community service. Its many NP graduates have not only served patients towards better health and wellness but also earned recognition for their professional competence with the local employers. If you aspire to become a nurse leader who is professionally and spiritually prepared, then Baylor’s DNP with three concentration options can, well fit the bill.

DNP Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner, Neonatal Nurse Practitioner, and Pediatric Nurse Practitioner Track

This DNP can be completed with an APRN credential in family health, neonatal nursing care, or pediatrics. The program is open for students who already have completed either a BSN or MSN in nursing. The BSN to DNP pathway requires completion of around 75 credits and takes over three years to complete. Whereas if you enter the program after completing an MSN, you must earn around 31 to 37 credits, depending on the concentration you have chosen and finish the program in two years. All the courses are offered online, so you can continue working as an RN and visit the campus only for the immersions. The curriculum is well-rounded and covers in-depth specialized knowledge. Students are also provided with diverse clinical experiences at a variety of clinical sites that often translate into placements.

5) University Of Texas-Arlington


Programs Offered: MSN and Post-Master's Certificates

The nursing school at University of Texas-Arlington is the largest non-profit nursing school in the nation, greatly contributing to the NP workforce in Texas. The online nurse practitioner programs at UTA are delivered by expert faculty who are actively involved with innovative research. The college is known for its excellent education and is one of the few nurse practitioner schools in Texas to be recognized as an NLN Center of Excellence. Advanced nursing practice offers rewarding career opportunities across the globe and if you are contemplating taking the next step in your nursing career, the college offers an MSN and post master’s certificate programs with several concentration options.

MSN Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner, Family Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, Neonatal Nurse Practitioner, Pediatric Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, and Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner

The MSN program comes with seven specialization options and prepares you for the national certification exam in your chosen area of interest. The curriculum comprises of core and specialization courses and also includes clinical learning at a local healthcare facility. Depending on the track you choose, you must complete anywhere close to 46 credits and around 720 clinical hours. All tracks include courses in evidence-based practice, advanced pathophysiology, advanced pharmacology, advanced health assessment, and principles of research in nursing. If you opt for full-time coursework, you can complete the program in two years.

Post-Master's Certificate Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner, Family Psychiatric/Mental Health Nurse Practitioner, Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Adult Gerontology Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, Neonatal Nurse Practitioner, Pediatric Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, and Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner

You can expand on your MSN by completing a post-master’s certificate in any of the seven concentrations offered by the college. While six tracks can be taken either in the online or on-campus mode, depending on what works for you, the specialization track in psychiatric mental health is available only in the on-campus format. The coursework for all the tracks is individualized based on a gap analysis of your MSN transcript and past nursing experience.

6) University of Texas Health Science Center - Houston


Programs Offered: MSN and Post-Master's, RN to MSN, and BSN to DNP

The nursing school at the University of Texas has received acclaim and ranks highly for its graduate education according to the U.S. News & World Report. The school aims at training healthcare professionals who are prepared to offer holistic nursing care. With an MSN, post-master’s certificate, RN to MSN, and BSN to DNP program on offer depending on your past nursing education you can enroll in the pathway that helps you reach your career goals. The DNP graduates, in particular, have earned the distinction of playing impactful leadership roles in various healthcare organizations to improve patient care outcomes.

MSN and Post-Master's Concentrations: Adult/Gero Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Adult/Gero Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, and Family Nurse Practitioner

The MSN and the post-master’s certificate program come with specializations in acute and primary care in gerontology and family health. Both programs are offered in fall, spring, and summer. While completing an MSN in your chosen specialization requires earning about 41 credits in the core, APRN, and specialization specific courses, the post-master’s certificate requires around 29 to 30 credits. The post-masters can help you expand on your MSN and specialize in another advanced area of practice nursing. Both programs include clinical experiences at a variety of healthcare settings that help you master professional skills in a real-world environment.

RN to MSN Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner

The RN to MSN pathway is open to registered nurses who have also completed one year of clinical work experience as a nurse. The pathway is ideal if you aspire to gain specialized knowledge in the nursing care of individuals and families across the lifespan. The program starts in the spring semester and can be completed either in an online or hybrid format, depending on your personal preference. The 54-credit curriculum starts with bridge courses and then progresses to the core, advanced practice, and specialty-specific courses. The program is integrated which means there is no exit route available after completing the BSN. You are not required to come to campus regularly, except for evaluation and fulfilling other academic criteria, an occasional visit is required. Financial aid and merit-based scholarships are available for this program, so ensure you contact the college to know whether you are eligible to apply.

BSN to DNP Concentrations: Nurse Practitioner

The BSN to DNP track can help you earn the terminal nursing degree in a seamless manner. After you complete your BSN, by enrolling in this program you will earn dual degrees of an MSN and DNP along with the APRN credential in the NP concentration of your choice. The program starts in fall each year and is offered on a full-time and part-time basis. Moreover, with hybrid coursework, you may be able to continue with your current job. The 79-credit curriculum builds upon knowledge and does not allow an exit post completing the MSN courses. The evidence-based DNP coursework is offered with specialization options in adult/gerontology primary care, mental health, and nursing care of individuals and families across the lifespan.

7) Texas Christian University - Fort Worth


Programs Offered: BSN to DNP, and Post-Graduate Certificate

NP graduates of Texas Christian University’s nursing school are equipped with evidence-based knowledge that enables them to innovate, lead, and transform healthcare. Through its BSN to DNP and post-graduate certificate programs, the college contributes towards better healthcare not only in Texas but for a large global population. Small-sized classes and a supportive environment provide for an enriching learning experience as students can closely interact with an expert faculty comprising of scholars, clinicians, and nurse leaders.

BSN to DNP Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, and Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

The BSN to DNP is open to BSN graduates who hold an active RN license and have the work experience of a nurse. The pathway comes with three concentration options, allowing you to specialize in an area of your interest. The coursework is offered online, however, requires limited visits to the campus for orientation and intensives. Graduating from this nurse practitioner program in TX requires completing anywhere close to 66 credits and 1000 clinical hours, the exact number depending on the track you choose. Clinical practicum takes place in your geographic location, saving you the hassle of travel. With a doctoral degree and an APRN credential, you will be able to play pivotal roles in a variety of healthcare settings. Depending on your life schedule, you can choose to complete this program either on a full-time or part-time basis.

Post-Graduate Certificate Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner

The post-masters certificate with an FNP credential is ideal for those seeking to specialize in family health. If you have already completed advanced practice nursing courses along with an MSN, then you require completing 25 credit hours to graduate and if this is not the case, then you must complete an additional nine credit coursework. These nine credits are to be completed in advanced pathophysiology, advanced health assessment, and advanced pharmacotherapeutics. Upon completion of this program, you will be eligible to take the FNP certification exam.

8) Texas A&M University - Corpus Christi


Programs Offered: MSN

Texas A & M University’s nursing school is committed to the success of its nurse practitioner students and provides them with a well-rounded MSN program to excel in the healthcare of a diverse population, particularly the underserved. The college actively engages in research and innovation to improve health and wellness by removing hurdles that come in the way of quality healthcare across all sections of the population. This environment can prove to be conducive for NP students, enriching them with valuable learning experiences.

MSN Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner

This MSN program prepares you for the nursing care of individuals and families across the lifespan. The coursework can be completed on a part-time or full-time basis, with the former taking eight semesters, while the latter spans across six semesters. The 48-credit coursework comprises of courses in advanced pathophysiology, advanced pharmacology, health assessment, prevention and population health, health informatics, leadership & policy and primary care of families.

9) Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center – Lubbock


Programs Offered: MSN, BSN to DNP, and Post-Master's Certificate

The school of nursing at Texas Tech University offers three pathways to nurse practitioner aspirants. This Texas NP program is designed in tune with the latest trends in healthcare and come with specialization options to equip you with skills and knowledge in an area of your interest. By offering nurse practitioner education since 1981, the college has produced competent advanced nurses who effectively help the state meet its shortage of primary care providers.

MSN Concentrations: Acute Care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, and Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

The college offers an MSN with specialization options in acute ad primary pediatric care, adult gerontology acute care, mental health, and nursing care of individuals and families across the lifespan. Depending upon the specialization, you must earn credits hours between 48 and 51. All concentrations induct students in both fall and spring terms except Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner wherein admissions happen only once in the spring session. Besides, only the Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner is available in both full-time and part-time formats.

BSN to DNP Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner, and Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

Beginning once a year during the fall semester, the course is available only in a full-time format and spans three years with each year containing a total of three semesters. The course is delivered in a combination of online and in-person modes. The number of credit hour requirements is between 74 and 76 while on the clinical front, you need to complete at least 1,000 clinical hours in a real-world healthcare setting. You will be working under the guidance of an experienced mentor and conduct research to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of the complex health care system. The training also makes you skilled in planning, analyzing, and improvising clinical processes for better output and efficiency. The program is rigorous and demands a high level of commitment from students.

Post-Master's Certificate Concentrations: Acute Care Pediatric Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, Family Nurse Practitioner, Pediatric Primary Care Nurse Practitioner, and Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

To be eligible for this certificate program you must hold an active RN license and must have completed your MSN from and regionally accredited college. Except for the Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner that starts once a year in spring, all other four specializations begin in fall, spring, and summer semesters. The number of credit requirements differs as you have to complete anywhere between 28 semester credit hours and 39 semester credit hours.

10) Texas Woman's University – Denton


Programs Offered: MSN, and Post-Master's Certificate

The school of nursing at Texas Woman’s University offers nurse practitioner aspirants an MSN and a post-master’s certificate program with several concentration options. Through rigorous didactic classes and clinical training, an expert faculty prepares you for evidence-based nursing practice. NP graduates are well trained in balancing the art of patient care with nursing science, no wonder they excel at their workplaces and are preferred by employers.

MSN Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner, Pediatric Nurse Practitioner, Women's Health Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner

Depending on your interest, you can choose any of the five nurse practitioner tracks and earn an MSN along with the APRN credential. The curriculum comprises of around 46 credits, the exact number depending on the track you enter. The program includes core, APRN, and specialty-specific courses and takes about three years to complete.

Post-Master's Certificate Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner, Pediatric Nurse Practitioner, Women’s Health Nurse Practitioner, Adult-Gerontology Nurse Practitioner, Adult Gerontology Acute Care Nurse Practitioner

The post-master’s certificate is meant for those who have completed an MSN and are keen on earning the APRN credential. Regardless of the program, you enter, you will take the coursework online and complete the courses at a pace convenient to you. Usually, students complete this program in over two years and acquire evidence-based skills and knowledge to practice advanced nursing.

11) University of Texas Rio Grande Valley – Edinburg


Programs Offered: MSN, and Post-Master's Certificate

This nurse practitioner program in Texas offered by the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley aims to upgrade the healthcare practices through research and evidence-based practice. NP students are trained to provide holistic nursing care to a culturally diverse population. To prepare you for the promising field of advanced nursing, the college offers an MSN and a post-master’s certificate program.

MSN Concentrations: Family Nurse Practitioner

This MSN comes with a specialization in family health and requires completing 48 credits. Depending on your life schedule, you can choose to complete this program either on a full-time or part-time basis. The curriculum includes an externship where you will be working under the expert guidance of a mentor. Throughout the coursework, you will focus on health promotion, disease prevention, and patient education in various types of healthcare settings.

Post-Master's Certificate Concentrations: Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner

To be eligible for this certificate program you must have completed an MSN. The program trains you to provide nursing care to mental health patients of all age groups. The program starts in summer and requires completion of 18 credits in courses that include theoretical & clinical diagnosis for mental and substance abuse disorders, diagnosis and management of mental illness, and a clinical practicum. The course admits students only in the summer semester.

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