The state of Alabama has taken its fair share of abuse over the years, reduced to a punchline or used as a shorthand for backwardness. But that attitude insults the many people working tirelessly to improve life for the people of one of the nation’s poorest states – and nurses are consistently on the front lines of that effort. Healthcare has long been one of Alabama’s struggles, particularly the challenges of reaching remote and rural areas with adequate care, and Bama is one of the states with the most serious need for qualified, experienced nurses.
But the best nursing schools in Alabama are working to make sure there are enough well-prepared nursing professionals to make a difference. One of the most important initiatives for closing the gap is developing online RN to BSN programs that help working nurses increase their education and training, and to take on leadership roles for the next generation of nurses. Nearly every Alabama nursing school, from the big public research institutions to small colleges, is working to reach out with online programs.
How We Ranked the Best Online Alabama Nursing School Programs
To rank the best online RN to BSN programs in Alabama, TopRNtoBSN editors researched all nursing schools in the state, focusing on those offering fully online or hybrid BSN programs. From there, we ranked programs according to three crucial factors: Cost, Reputation, and Employment. Data was drawn from IPEDS, Niche, and College Scorecard. With these three points in mind, busy working nurses can be assured that their investment will be worth their time and money, and provide a real return in their career.
1. University of Alabama in Huntsville – Huntsville
When you’re looking for the best nursing schools in Alabama for your bachelor’s degree, you will want to consider the online RN to BSN program at University of Alabama in Huntsville. The degree program is 100 percent online and allows nursing students to complete their bachelor’s degree within 12 months if they already have an associate’s degree from an accredited program. The University of Alabama at Huntsville is a fully online program with accreditation from the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education, or CCNE. The accredited program allows students to focus on their career goals.
The University of Alabama at Huntsville stands out from online RN to BSN programs at other Alabama nursing schools by focusing on research and evidence-based nursing practices. It ensures that students understand the appropriate ways to handle challenges within their career and allows students to work at their own pace. As a fully online program for the nursing classes, students can obtain their degree when they are available and can continue working as a registered nurse.
2. Auburn University – Auburn
The online RN to BSN program from Auburn University allows students to advance in their career by developing the leadership skills and the technical skills they need for their career. The CCNE accredited program is fully online and allows students to start working on their degree when it fits their plans. You can focus on spring or fall admissions to work on classes when it fits your schedule and your plans.
Auburn University is an Alabama nursing school that stands apart from other programs by offering a flexible and affordable bachelor’s degree online for working nurses; Auburn allows students to study online when it fits their needs. Since it focuses on the needs of nurses who are already working and plan to return to school for a higher level of education, it is a good choice when you need a flexible education program to fit your long-term goals.
3. University of Alabama at Birmingham – Birmingham
The University of Alabama at Birmingham offers an online program for students who want to work on their education while working as a registered nurse. The flexible online program is CCNE accredited and meets the standards set by the commission in relation to ethics, technical skills, and patient care. The degree program is a pathway for students who have completed an associate’s degree or a diploma to start their career as a nurse. It is an advanced placement program that works around a complex work schedule.
A key way the University of Alabama at Birmingham stands apart as one of the best nursing schools in Alabama by offering a flexible and accelerated online program for students who want to obtain their bachelor’s degree in nursing. Students can complete their degree in three to five semesters. It also offers an opportunity to move forward with a higher level of education if students decide to pursue new opportunities in the future.
4. University of Alabama – Tuscaloosa
The University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa offers a CCNE accredited RN to BSN program that is partially online for your convenience. While it is not a fully online program and you will need you to some courses at a community college, it does offer most classes online for the convenience of registered nurses who are working in a full-time position and need flexible hours for their degree. It also offers an accelerated option for students who decide to pursue further studies to take on a leadership role in their career.
One of the best nursing schools in Alabama, the University of Alabama allows students to focus on their degree while working in their field. It recognizes that you may need to work around a busy schedule and allows you to focus on flexible hours that fit your needs. While it is not fully online, you can expect most classes to take place online and allow you to focus on your goals, whether to advance in your career or improve your knowledge of patient care and nursing ethics.
Format: Partially Online – some courses must be taken at community college
5. University of North Alabama – Florence
When you’re looking for the best nursing schools in Alabama, the University of North Alabama in Florence offers an innovative online degree program that is approved by the Alabama Board of Nursing. The UNA online RN to BSN program is designed around the needs of working nurses who may have complex or challenging work hours. By providing a fully online program, the school allows students to work on their courses when they are available. It gives you greater flexibility to maintain your career goals while improving your level of education.
The University of North Alabama stands apart from other Alabama nursing schools by providing high-quality education from enthusiastic faculty members. You will have support from faculty while working on the online courses and you will be able to focus on your long-term plans for your career. It also allows students to maintain their current position by giving you flexible options for your studies. The University of North Alabama is approved by the state’s board of nursing and have CCNE accreditation to help you feel confident in the quality of your education.
6. Troy University – Troy
When you are looking for an Alabama nursing school with flexible hours, the online program at Troy University offers a solution. The fully online RN Mobility Track program at Troy is designed for registered nurses with an associate’s degree or an appropriate diploma in nursing. It is a method of providing a higher level of education to help with your long-term career goals. Emphasis is placed on advanced care expertise and leadership experience, preparing nurses to take on higher positions.
Troy University differs from other programs by providing flexible online classes that work around your career and personal obligations. It is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing, or ACEN, so you can feel confident in the high standards set by the college for your degree. Troy makes the online RN to BSN available in as many states as possible.
7. University of South Alabama – Mobile
The University of South Alabama is a fully online RN to BSN program that allows students to complete their degree with six courses in nursing. This CCNE-accredited degree program is designed to work around your schedule as a registered nurse and it recognizes that you may need flexible hours to finish your degree. With a focus on collaboration, teamwork, and advanced practice nursing, graduates are qualified for positions in a wide range of facilities and settings.
What the University of South Alabama brings to Alabama nursing schools is the accelerated pace of the program. You can complete the course within two semesters, which allows you to start improving your opportunities in your career when you are finished with your degree from one of the best nursing schools in Alabama.
8. Jacksonville State University – Jacksonville
Jacksonville State University’s online RN to BSN program comes from one of the best nursing schools in Alabama when you want to complete your bachelor’s degree and keep up with your responsibilities as a registered nurse. The online program is flexible and convenient for students, and it does not have a waiting list. That allows you to focus on completing your degree when it fits your schedule.
Jacksonville State University in Jacksonville stands out by offering admissions in spring, summer, and fall. It is an accredited program with fully online classes that allow you to work at your own pace. It also allows students to take full-time or part-time classes to fit their situation and goals.
9. Auburn University–Montgomery – Montgomery
Auburn University-Montgomery is an Alabama nursing school with options for your RN to BSN degree. The program allows you to take a fully online or a hybrid class schedule. The online program allows you to work at your own pace without actively attending the college in person. A hybrid program partners with hospitals for further training and in-person coursework, which may help with your career goals.
The way Auburn University in Montgomery stands out is its focus on allowing you to work around your goals. Auburn University differs from other programs by offering hybrid and online courses for your goals. The flexible program is ideal for registered nurses with a complicated work situation. Students have options to fit their goals and learning style.
Format: Online or Hybrid
10. University of Mobile – Mobile
The University of Mobile offers an RN to BSN program online to fit your schedule and goals. The rolling admission process allows you to pick up on your classes when it fits your situation and gives you the opportunity to improve your knowledge and skills. The program builds on your previous education and training, as well as the work you perform as a nurse.
The way that the University of Mobile differs from other programs is its rolling admissions and its commitment to education. Students have a flexible schedule that works around their work and personal obligations. The program recognizes that students are already working as a nurse and builds on your skills.
How Do I Become an RN in Alabama?
People wishing to join this highly respected field of nursing in Alabama as a Registered Nurse will have to complete certain requirements. Becoming an RN in Alabama is a 3-step process:
2. Pass the NCLEX-RN exam for the state of Alabama
3. Achieve an Alabama nursing license from the state of Alabama Board of Nursing (1)
To achieve step one, attend and complete an accredited Alabama nursing license program that prepares students to take the NCLEX-RN exam from the Alabama nursing board. Options include getting a nursing diploma, associate degree (ADN), or bachelor’s degree (BSN or LPN to BSN). Then when students are ready, they can apply to the Alabama board of nursing to become an RN. The Alabama Board of Nursing accredits and approves of these programs. Those interested in preparing to take the NCLEX-RN exam from the Alabama nursing board as soon as possible may be interested in applying to accelerated nursing programs in Alabama. There are plenty of online nursing programs in Alabama, as well as accelerated nursing programs in Alabama, and night and weekend nursing programs in Alabama available to promising nursing candidates. Now is the perfect time to apply.
Students can further their career quickly and with schedule flexibility when they apply to the Alabama Nursing Board after completing accelerated nursing programs in Alabama, online nursing programs in Alabama, or night and weekend nursing programs in Alabama. Curious about Alabama nursing license by endorsement? It is possible to apply for an Alabama nursing license by endorsement. Now is the perfect time to apply to accredited accelerated nursing programs in Alabama, and online nursing programs in Alabama are especially convenient for those busy with work and family responsibilities.
How is the Job Market for Nursing in Alabama?
Nurses are in demand throughout the US, and RN jobs in Alabama are prevalent. Nursing in Alabama is a distinguished professional that gains people respect wherever they go. Nursing jobs in Alabama are concentrated in the 4 metropolitan areas: Birmingham, Mobile, Huntsville, and Montgomery, and about 44,000 registered nurses are employed in the state of Alabama. RN jobs in Alabama and nursing jobs in Alabama continue to proliferate, especially as the Baby Boomer generation ages.
Alabama nursing jobs and RN jobs in Alabama offer excellent salaries and a comparatively low cost of living compared to other states. Nursing in Alabama is a wise career choice. Alabama nursing jobs, as well as RN nursing jobs in Alabama, are always sought-after. Alabama nursing jobs continue to proliferate as the population ages, health challenges like diabetes continue to proliferate, and new babies are born every day. In fact, Alabama has the highest diabetes rate of any state in the United States, so nursing in Alabama is valued and respected.
How Much Do Nurses Make in Alabama?
A nursing career is a lucrative proposition in Alabama, with tremendous job security. A typical RN salary in Alabama is $57,890 on average, which is about 80% of the national average. Nurses with a BSN salary in Alabama can expect about to earn nearly $64,000 per year. Those wondering, “How much do nurses make in Alabama?” will be comforted to know that they make an really comfortable living. Whether nurses have a BSN salary in Alabama or some kind of other nursing degree that allows them to earn an RN salary in Alabama, they will be glad they chose a nursing career in this gorgeous, welcoming state.
Those earning a BSN salary in Alabama will be so glad they made the investment of time, energy, and money to serve the people of this grand state. Acquiring an RN salary in Alabama is always a smart choice, and those with careers in this field appreciate the unique opportunities to serve in the workplace every day. In Alabama, an important question is, “how much do nurses make in Alabama?” and another one that should closely follow is, “how much of a difference can nurses make in Alabama?” The answer is simple – they can make a tremendous difference.