RN Programs in Pennsylvania – Schools, Salary, and License Info

RN Programs in Pennsylvania

They say: ‘’Everything is difficult until it becomes easier’’.

At first, finding the right RN school in Pennsylvania may seem a big deal.

But this perception is only a result of uncertainty.

Perhaps you don’t know what type of program you want.

Or maybe, you don’t know where to locate.

These things may cause a mess.

But you don’t have to continue like this for long.

I will not let you.

I will tell you the secret to find the right school in the state in just a few clicks.

It’s called the opportunity of licensure.

The minute you discover an RN school offers you that, you should definitely apply in its program.

The easiest way to discover this fact is to check the NCLEX-RN student passing rates.

The state is known for 78 RN programs functioning in its areas.

So basically, the top 30 programs were chosen as an object to this analysis.

All the programs are ones through which you will secure an Associate Degree in Nursing.

Programs such as BSN, ASN, ADN, or MSN ought to be mentioned.

In fact, these will be talked about in this article too.

So follow me for more about Registered Nursing in Pennsylvania.

With so many nursing degrees in the state, there is enough room for new skilled nurses.

With these degrees, nurses will have a successful nursing career in Pennsylvania and a high income too.

Isn’t this what we’re all looking for?

The state has in total a need for 4,800 nurses per year.

All of them, within the year, earn an average of $67,550 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

For RN bridge programs check:

  • RN to BSN Programs in Pennsylvania
  • RN to MSN Programs in Pennsylvania

ADN Programs in Pennsylvania

An ADN degree is a common degree in Pennsylvania, but it is worth it.

It is worth it since you can finish it in a little of two years.

So if you don’t have the time of the world to devote to it, there is no problem.

This program is best for you.

And if you wonder where you can find it, check technical colleges and junior schools.

And also check the total of 25 schools offering this program around the entire state.

What to Look For in an ADN Program in Pennsylvania

Some of the most important characteristics an ADN program should have are probably known to you.

However, repetition is the mother of learning.

So let’s check them again below.


The first thing to check about an ADN program is accreditation.

If a school has it, you know you’re applying for a quality program.

In Pennsylvania, you have two accrediting bodies to consider.

You can contact either the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (AECN).

Or else, you have the American Association of Colleges of Nursing’s Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education (CCNE).

The third one is the Pennsylvania Board of Nursing.

This organization is in charge of approving nursing programs.


Once you’re done with an ADN program in the state, the next thing to look forward to is Licensure.

This procedure takes place with the NCLEX-RN exam take.

That’s the path you have to pursue to apply for it.

In Pennsylvania, nursing licensure has been sought since 2015.

In that very year, according to the American Association of Colleges of Nursing 7,481 people took the exam.

On the other hand, 87% of new nurse graduates got licensed as a result of this exam take.

Program Outcomes

Some of the program outcome characteristics to check-in ADN programs in Pennsylvania are these:

  • Graduation rate
  • Passing rate per Licensure exam
  • Graduate satisfaction
  • Employment rate

With these characteristics, you can find the Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences in Lancaster.

This school is a role model one of an accredited ADN program in the state.

ADN Program Admission Requirements in Pennsylvania

Simply saying, being admitted to an ADN program in Pennsylvania is a matter of meeting a few requirements.

In general, you will be asked to meet these:

  • High school algebra of two years with a grade of C or higher than that
  • Send TEAS V test results
  • A minimum of GPA of 3.0

Tuition and Costs of ADN Programs in Pennsylvania

ADN costs in Pennsylvania will always be of two kinds.

First, there is tuition.

And second there come additional fees.

In the latter, you will usually have to cover payment for uniforms, textbooks, lab fees, and similar expenses.

The board and room are then separate costs.

If you’ve started having an interest in the general cost in the state, I will land you a hand of help.

For instance, you can check the Reading Area Community College in Reading.

Its cost of tuition per semester is $2,655.

This cost applies to a student who lives in Berks County.

While for a non-resident, the cost goes around $4,560.

Advantages of ADN Programs

If you’re asking about ADN advantages, here are the main two.

It’s the flexibility of length and the cost.

The 2 years of study, first of all, are best for students rushing to enter nursing and start work.

The shorter the length, the closer the opportunity in the state.

With 2 years’ length, ADN programs are easily found in community colleges of the state.

So if you’re concerned about your educational cost in nursing, choose this degree and sleep calmly.

LPN to RN Programs in Pennsylvania

A Registered Nursing degree can as well be attained from A Licensed Practical Nurse too.

If you’re one of them, you can do so by LPN to RN transition programs in the state.

This is the shortest pathways you can take in this direction.

LPN to ADN/BSN Programs

LPN to RN programs have two possible options in Pennsylvania.

The basic ones are the LPN to ADN and the LPN to BSN program.

The first program path can easily be found in Harrisburg Area Community College.

This program is relatively short, with only a few semesters length.

While the case is not the same as the LPN to BSN path.

This one takes longer to complete and through it, you can earn a BA degree in nursing.

The program is accessible at the Indiana University of Pennsylvania.

LPN to RN programs may have the following admissions requirements:

  • Graduate from an approved LPN program
  • Have a current, active LPN license
  • Complete any prerequisite courses

BSN Programs in Pennsylvania

We never like being second, right?

But who knows what hides behind something!

A BSN degree, however, is different.

Though it is your second choice of nursing education, it is in fact a higher level of it.

Indifference to the ADN, this degree can be found in large universities across the state.

The program is perfect for nurses who want to work and earn high.

The RN to BSN program path is also available in the state.

This one is ideal for LPNs who want to make progress in their nursing career.

Are you one?

If not, check the 40 and more BSN programs in entire Pennsylvania and choose your favorite type.

What To Look For in a BSN Program in Pennsylvania

The variety of BSN programs means variety in their content as well.

Some of the key elements you need to check in BSN programs in Pennsylvania are accreditation, cost, program outcomes, and so on.

Another important element can be located too.

Since you would like to attend the program as close to your home as possible.

Depending on your previous education, you can look for the BSN program in the state.

For instance, if you have a BA degree in another working industry, there is nothing wrong to switch to nursing.

An accelerated BSN program would be ideal for you.

Being an ADN or LPN nurse, an RN to BSN program would be okay too.

As you can see, you have many program choices.

While you can find the three of these options at Wilkes University in Wilkes-Barre.

What more do you want, all in one!

BSN Program Length in Pennsylvania

Time is your greatest capital.

Therefore, you would like to spend it wisely in every aspect of life.

A BSN education will usually take 4 years from you.

Be them much or less, you have to consider this length.

However, the case is different if you choose an accelerated BSN program.

This one usually takes 16 months to complete.

While RN to BSN ones take 2 years.

So length is an important factor in your studies.

For this reason, you should check the school you apply in previously, in order for the time to be worth it.

BSN Program Admission Requirements in Pennsylvania

Whatever the issue, I prefer to go in simple terms.

Here are some of the key requirements you need to meet as you apply for a BSN program in Pennsylvania:

  • At least 1450 combined SAT score (or ACT score of 21 or higher)
  • Send a Letter of recommendation
  • Attach official high school or university transcripts with GPA

Tuition and Costs of BSN Programs in Pennsylvania

Many a time money becomes a source of stress.

But it does not have to be such.

A BSN education will generally consist of payment for tuition and other fees such as lab and books.

The additional fees are generally separate from the tuition, and each nursing school will inform you of that.

However, to give you a general sum of the cost in Pennsylvania, consider the University of  Pennsylvania School of Nursing.

Its BSN program costs $57,250.

Housing is not part of this cost.

Advantages of BSN Programs

Do you want a better job?

Perhaps a higher salary too?

A BSN program then is best for you.

Present in the largest universities in Pennsylvania, it a perfect educational experience to go for.

But the traditional BSN program is not the only one in the state.

There are other paths to it too.

These are the BSN accelerated program and the RN to BSN.

MSN Programs in Pennsylvania

An advanced nursing degree to be found in Pennsylvania is definitely a Masters of Science in Nursing.

This degree is the ticket to other advanced specialties in the field such as Nurse Practitioner, Clinical Nurse Specialist, and Certified Nurse Midwife.

If you ask me what comes along with these titles, it’s definitely a higher pay.

In the state, there are more than 25 MSN programs available so far.

MSN Program Length in Pennsylvania

A typical MSN program takes two or three years to finish.

The length is a matter of school.

It fits busy working nurses who want to make this career move at the same time.

If you’re one of them, you will make out easily.

To your advantage, you can choose either night or online courses to make both ends meet.

MSN Admission Requirements in Pennsylvania

Admission requirements for an MSN program in Pennsylvania include these:

  • A Minimum of 3.0 undergrad GPA
  • Send official transcript that verifies you have completed a BSN degree
  • Send copies of a current resume as well as a functional RN license
  • Write an admission essay

Tuition and Costs of MSN Programs in Pennsylvania

MSN program costs differ from school to school.

But as always, you have two types of costs to pay.

It’s the tuition cost and additional expenses.

If you’re worried about any of them, check an example.

For instance, if you attend the Chatham University in Pittsburgh, you have to pay $32,508 tuition.

For NP programs you can see:

  • Pennsylvania DNP Program
  • Pennsylvania FNP Program
  • Pennsylvania Nurse Practitioner Programs
  • Pennsylvania Post-Graduate Certificate Nursing Programs

Getting a Pennsylvania Nursing License

I talked about the nursing license in the beginning, but now it’s the best time to do so.

You know why?

It’s because I will let you know of the ways you can secure it.

Basically, there are two ways to achieve a nursing license

The first way is through taking an exam.

And the second is by the help of endorsement.

As far as the exam is concerned, you will need to complete the necessary application and provide these documents to get licensure:

  • Having registered the NCLEX exam – and successful completion of it
  • Proof of your education – sent directly from the school to the state Board
  • Criminal History Records Check

When applying by endorsement you have to send the following:

  • Verify education – official transcripts sent directly to the Board via the school
  • Verify Licensure
  • Criminal History Records Check

Accelerated Nursing Programs in Pennsylvania

There are various accelerated BSN or MSN programs in Pennsylvania.

The average length of each is usually a maximum of 18 months.

The length is such even if it is offered on a full-time class, which is the case with some colleges inside the state.

However, a BSN is different from an MSN one.

The latter may be prolonged to a period of five years, with either part-time or full-time lessons.

The only way to shorten a program is to complete prerequisite courses before.

While cost and fees are to be considered for this type of program as well.

Although they are separate.

  • Pennsylvania Accelerated BSN Programs
  • Pennsylvania Accelerated MSN Programs

Latest Pennsylvania NCLEX-RN Pass Rates and Statistics

  • State Approved Schools Number: 78
  • Test Takers Number in 2019: 7,827
  • Pennsylvania NCLEX-RN Average Pass Rate in 2019: 91.7%

The Best RN Schools in Pennsylvania

I always think the best school for you is the one that fits best with your criteria.

Here are some of the best RN schools in the state.

In them, you have all types of RN programs.

All you have to do is compare and choose what you need.

School NameAddress
Saint Francis University117 Evergreen Drive, Loretto, PA 15940
Geisinger Lewistown Hospital School of Nursing400 Highland Ave, Lewistown, PA 17044
Aria Health School of Nursing3 Neshaminy Interplex, Trevose, PA 19053
Carlow University3333 Fifth Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15213
Cedar Crest College100 College Dr, Allentown, PA 18104
Messiah College1 College Ave, Mechanicsburg, PA 17055
Eastern University1300 Eagle Rd, St. Davids, PA 19087
Waynesburg University51 W College St, Waynesburg, PA 15370
Bloomsburg University400 E 2nd St, Bloomsburg, PA 17815
Pennsylvania College of Technology1 College Ave, Williamsport, PA 17701
Drexel University1601 Cherry Street, Philadelphia, PA 19102
Allegany College of Maryland18 N. River Lane, Everett, PA 15537
Roxborough Memorial Hospital5800 Ridge Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19128
Misericordia University301 Lake Street, Dallas, PA 18612
West Chester University700 S High St, West Chester, PA 19382
DeSales University2755 Station Ave., Center Valley, PA 18034
Alvernia University400 Saint Bernardine St, Reading, PA 19607
Villanova University800 E. Lancaster Ave, Villanova, PA 19085
Pennsylvania State University201 Nursing Sciences Building, University Park, PA 16802
Ohio Valley Hospital School of Nursing25 Heckel Rd, Kennedy Township, PA 15136
Northampton Community College3835 Green Pond Rd, Bethlehem, PA 18020
University of Pennsylvania418 Curie Blvd, Philadelphia, PA 19104
Mount Aloysius College7373 Admiral Peary Hwy, Cresson, PA 16630
Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences850 Greenfield Rd, Lancaster, PA 17601
Mansfield University31 South Academy St, Mansfield, PA 16933
Duquesne University600 Forbes Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15282
Robert Morris University6001 University Blvd, Moon Township, PA 15108
Community College of Allegheny County808 Ridge Ave, Pittsburgh, PA 15212
University of ScrantonThe Estate, Scranton, PA 18510
La Salle University1900 W Olney Ave, Philadelphia, PA 19141

RN Salaries in Pennsylvania

When it comes to the RN salaries, we’re all ears.

Because we just want good pay, don’t we?

But let’s meet the right criteria for that first.

These criteria that impact a salary are skills, work experience, location, and definitely your educational degree.

The more qualified you are, the better the salary you will get.

Annual Salary Range:

Annual Salary by Location:
LocationAvg. Annual Salary
Upper Darby$68,368
Lower Merion$63,284

Regional Salary in Pennsylvania

RegionEmployedAvg. Annual SalaryAvg. Hourly PayTop 10% Annual SalaryBottom 10% Annual Salary
Allentown-Bethlehem-Easton, PA-NJ9,270$81,410$39.14$97,720$64,740
Altoona, PA1,670$73,430$35.3$91,380$60,810
Bloomsburg-Berwick, PA2,600$75,230$36.17$98,410$62,170
Chambersburg-Waynesboro, PA1,130$82,660$39.74$104,290$61,990
East Stroudsburg, PA890$73,480$35.33$92,100$56,760
Erie, PA2,700$72,790$35$92,890$58,480
Gettysburg, PA530$74,310$35.73$94,300$58,740
Harrisburg-Carlisle, PA8,260$79,850$38.39$96,700$63,780
Johnstown, PA1,220$71,430$34.34$80,220$59,070
Lancaster, PA4,570$77,290$37.16$95,110$61,340
Lebanon, PA1,230$80,660$38.78$102,650$61,570
Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD69,370$87,830$42.23$105,300$65,840
Pittsburgh, PA27,580$76,230$36.65$96,790$60,720
Reading, PA3,560$80,360$38.64$95,040$63,770
Scranton--Wilkes-Barre--Hazleton, PA5,100$73,530$35.35$92,090$56,380
State College, PA1,120$74,770$35.95$95,210$49,970
Williamsport, PA1,240$78,560$37.77$96,390$61,740
York-Hanover, PA3,630$76,540$36.8$91,850$61,650
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Registered Nurses, OCC Code 29-1141, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

USA RN Programs by State

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