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Top Nursing Universities in 2022-2023

Mar 28, 2022

Best Nursing Colleges and Universities in the World

About Nursing

Nursing involves providing care and assistance to patients for treating their health conditions, any illness, or assist in their daily activities due to physical disability. The nursing profession emphasizes the well-being of families and communities to ensure the expected health level and life expectancy. Nurses may work at an organizational level in hospitals, care centers, or at a household level for a particular person or a family. At a corporate level, working in a hospital would include assisting doctors in their tasks, keeping a track record of the patient’s health, and giving patients the necessary medicines or treatments required in a timely manner to ensure their recovery and well-being. Nurses are needed for every significant medical activity, from surgeries to inoculating vaccines. They are the backbone of the health sector (especially during pandemics).

Duties of a Nurse

  • Assist doctors in performing critical operations and surgeries.
  • Provide medications and treatments to the patients in a timely manner.
  • Maintaining and keeping track of patients’ health records.
  • Providing advice, counseling to the patients if required about their health condition.
  • Assisting the hospital administration in conducting essential activities such as vaccine inoculation drives, public health awareness campaigns, and the usage of medical equipment in a safe and appropriate manner.

Qualities of a Good Nurse

Nurses are the backbone of the medical sector and play a pivotal role in ensuring proper healthcare and drug administration. The most essential quality of a nurse is to be good in communication and be empathetic towards patients, as it is necessary to keep the patients optimistic about their health and recovery during their tough time in hospital. Another critical quality expected out of nurses is critical thinking. They may sometimes have to make significant decisions for patients in the absence of a doctor. 

Most importantly, nurses should have a sense of serving society as their work may not be fixed and certain during a particular situation. They may need to work under extreme pressure, work overtime and even work on weekends and holidays during an unprecedented and unexpected crisis (such as the covid-19 pandemic). This might not be possible if one does not desire to serve society and looks at nursing as a typical job for earning money. Nurses should also be able to pay attention to the smallest of the details in the patient’s health record administration of medicine to ensure that medication and treatment are going as per the plan and requirement of the patient.

Popular degrees for pursuing a career in Nursing

 Bachelor’s level

  • Bachelor of Science in Nursing
  • Associate degree in Nursing
  • Bachelor of Health Care in Nursing

  Master’s level

  • Master of Science in Nursing 
  • Master of Science (Nursing education)
  • Master of Science (Healthcare administration)

Ph.D. and doctorate level

There are several specializations that one can choose to work in or research. If one is interested in entering academia and teaching nursery courses or skills, nursing education is the most suitable specialization. To become a faculty and academic advisor, one is expected to complete a Ph.D. in Nursing (general or field-specific).

Specializations under Nursing

Different areas of the medical sector require different types of training and education. After a bachelor’s degree, one is expected to pick a specific area to study and work as a nurse. Some of the specializations under nursery are-

  • Cardiac Nurse: Heart disease is one of the top causes of death in the world today. With the increasing number of patients suffering from heart diseases, the demand for cardiac nurses continues to rise. As a cardiac nurse, one will be involved in surgical operations such as bypass, angioplasty, pacemaker surgery, etc.
  • Infection Control Nurse: Requires nurses to be registered. These nurses work to prevent the spreading of highly infectious viruses, identify cases, maintain surveillance and track the health of infected patients. Such nurses have been in high demand due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The healthcare sector required specialized workers to maintain case count of infections, monitor isolation of patients, and record their recovery status & health complications arising out of the disease.
  • ER (Emergency Room) Nurse: An ER nurse may be required to perform an array of tasks at any point in time. Some of the primary functions are evaluating the patient’s condition providing proper medication and treatment to stabilize the patient’s health.
  • Pediatric Nurse: A pediatric nurse is specialized in the treatment and taking care of children. They assist in providing medical care for children from newborns to adolescents. Even their demand increased during the covid-19 pandemic as it was uncertain how the virus would react after infecting children. At least 10% of the worldwide covid-19 cases were amongst children under 16.
  • Nurse Administrator: The primary responsibility of a nurse administrator within a hospital is to coordinate and oversee the different units of nursing teams. To become a nurse administrator, one is expected to have good organizational management skills. They are responsible for making crucial decisions related to nurses, such as staffing, budgeting, and working policy.
  • Palliative Nursing: Palliative care nursing involves assessing, diagnosing, and treating human responses to actual or potentially life-limiting disease, and it needs a dynamic, caring interaction with the patient and family to alleviate suffering. Patients’ homes, residential hospice centers, clinics, long-term and skilled care facilities, and acute in-patient institutions are all places where palliative care nurses work. Palliative nurses should adapt to fulfill patients’ and their families’ physical, emotional, social, and spiritual needs.
  • Nursing Midwifery: A nurse-midwife assists women through the process of pregnancy, childbirth, and during the postpartum phase. They conduct physical examinations, diagnose and treat medical ailments, and may even issue prescriptions in some cases. Nurse-midwives work in different set-ups such as hospitals, clinics, birth centers, and private households.
  • Geriatric Nursing: Geriatric nursing is concerned with taking care of old people. Geriatric nurses are trained to understand the complex health issues of old people, both physical and mental. Geriatric nurses are expected to be experienced and skilled in patient care, treatment planning, education, mental health, and rehabilitation.
  • Trauma Nursing: Trauma nurses are trained to treat and diagnose traumatic injuries or diseases that put their patients’ bodies and lives in immediate danger. Given the severity of critical patients, trauma nurses must be skilled in a wide range of advanced life support equipment and medically stabilizing techniques.

Average salary of Nurses

After the emergence of the Covid-19 pandemic, the demand for nurses has increased worldwide. Hospitals have been facing shortages of health workers. Due to the same reason, the government has been providing more incentives and security to nurses to encourage more people to join the profession. Hospitals, too, have increased nurses’ salaries to retain existing ones and hire new ones, as it’s uncertain when the covid cases may start to rise and when the pandemic will be reduced to an endemic.

The following are the average salaries of nurses in different countries as of 2022:

  • USA-  USD 81,410 per year. (US Bureau of labor statistics)
  • UK- USD 44,500-47,300 per year. (takes into account the average amount of experience of a UK nurse, and data collected on major job boards)
  • Canada-  USD 69, 740 per year. (Economic Research Institute)
  • Australia- USD 56, 800 (Australia Talent)

Duration for completing Nursing education

Country Bachelor Master Ph.D/Doctorate
USA & Canada 4 years 2 years 3-5 years
UK & Australia 3-4 years 2-3 years 3-5 years
Others 3-4 years 2-3 years 3-6 years

Top 50 Universities for Nursing based on various rankings

QS Rankings Shanghai Rankings US World News Rankings University Country Bachelors Programs Masters Programs
1 1 3 University of Pennsylvania USA Click here Click here
2 14 NA King’s College London UK Click here Click here
3 3 1 Johns Hopkins University USA Click here Click here
4 24 6 University of Washington USA Click here Click here
5 15 NA University of Manchester UK Click here Click here
6 8 9 University of California, San Francisco USA Click here Click here
7 23 17 Yale University USA Click here Click here
8 7 6 University of North Carolina USA Click here Click here
9 9 NA University of Southampton UK Click here Click here
10 28 3 Duke University USA Click here Click here
11 11 NA University of Technology Australia Click here Click here
12 17 NA University of Toronto Canada Click here Click here
13 10 NA University of Sydney Australia Click here Click here
14 41 NA University of Alberta  Canada Click here Click here
15 NA NA McMaster University Canada Click here Click here
16 6 NA Monash University Australia Click here Click here
17 38 11 University of Michigan USA Click here Click here
18 46 5 Columbia University USA Click here Click here
19 20 2 Emory University USA Click here Click here
20 4 NA Karolinska Institutet Sweden Click here Click here
21 NA NA University of Pittsburgh USA Click here Click here
22 38 NA The Chinese University of Hong Kong Hong Kong Click here Click here
23 34 NA National University of Singapore Singapore Click here Click here
24 29 12 New York University USA Click here Click here
25 2 NA Griffith University Australia Click here Click here
26 NA The University of Edinburgh UK Click here Click here
27 51-75 NA University of British Columbia Canada Click here Click here
28 76-100 16 University of California, Los Angeles USA Click here Click here
29 35 NA University of Turku Finland Click here Click here
30 30 NA Deakin University Australia Click here Click here
31 5 NA Queensland University of Technology Australia Click here Click here
32 76-100 NA McGill University Canada Click here Click here
33 49 NA The University of Melbourne Australia Click here Click here
34 51-75 9 The Ohio State University USA Click here Click here
35 51-75 NA The University of Auckland New Zealand Click here Click here
36 26 NA The University of Newcastle Australia Click here Click here
37 51-75 NA University of Nottingham UK Click here Click here
38 151-200 NA Seoul National University South Korea Click here Click here
39 5 NA The University of Queensland Australia Click here Click here
40 76-100 NA The University of Hong Kong Hong Kong Click here Click here
41 101-150 NA Ulster University UK Click here Click here
42 18 NA Australian Catholic University Australia Click here Click here
43 101-150 24 Pennsylvania State University USA Click here Click here
44 48 NA The Hong Kong Polytechnic University Hong Kong Click here Click here
45 51-75 18 University of Illinois USA Click here Click here
46 101-150 NA Trinity College Dublin, University of Dublin Ireland Click here Click here
47 32 NA Lund University Sweden Click here Click here
48 101-150 8 Vanderbilt University USA Click here Click here
49 51-75 NA University College Cork Ireland Click here Click here
50 151-200 NA University of Calgary Canada Click here Click here

Top Nursing Universities in USA

University QS Rankings US World News Rankings Bachelors programs Masters Programs
University of Pennsylvania 1 3 Click here Click here
Johns Hopkins University 2 1 Click here Click here
University of Washington 3 6 Click here Click here
University of California, San Francisco 4 9 Click here Click here
Yale University 5 17 Click here Click here

Top Nursing Universities in Canada

University QS Rankings Maclean’s Rankings Bachelor’s Programs  Master’s Programs
University of Toronto 1 3 Click here Click here
University of Alberta 2 1 Click here Click here
McMaster University 3 5 Click here Click here
University of British Columbia 4 2 Click here Click here
McGill University 5 4 Click here Click here

Top Nursing Universities United Kingdom

University Nursing Times Rankings QS World Rankings Bachelor’s Programs Master’s Programs
King’s College London 1 1 Click here Click here
University of Manchester 2 2 Click here Click here
University of Southampton 3 3 Click here Click here
University of Edinburgh 4 4 Click here Click here
University of Nottingham 5 5 Click here Click here

Top Nursing Universities in Australia

Universities QS Rankings Shanghai Rankings Bachelor’s Programs Master’s Programs
University of Technology 1 2 Click here Click here
University of Sydney 2 3 Click here Click here
Monash University 3 4 Click here Click here
University of Melbourne 4 5 Click here Click here
Griffith University 5 1 Click here Click here

Academic requirements for studying Nursing in a top-ranked university

Bachelor’s level

Requirements for studying bachelors in nursing may vary from country to country, university to university. However, in all top-ranked universities, the minimum requirements for studying bachelors are:

  • Completed senior secondary school
  • Minimum 80% or 3.0 GPA on a 4.0 scale in 12th class (varies with the university)
  • Studied chemistry, English, and biology at the senior secondary level.
  • Proof of English proficiency through recognized tests (TOEFL-90-100, IELTS-6.5-7).
  • A strong Statement of Purpose (SOP)
  • Although work experience is not mandatory and expected, universities may prefer students who have worked in the healthcare sector through volunteering, internships, etc.

Different universities may have different requirements of GPA and subjects required to be studied before applying to their programs. Some universities also offer nursing courses with a foundation year, where basics are taught to those students who want to become nurses but did not study the required subjects before college. 

Master’s level

For the Master’s degree as well, the requirement varies depending on the eligibility criteria set by the universities. But the commonly demanded requirements by top-ranked universities are as follows:

  • A transcript of a Bachelor’s degree.
  • Official transcript of scorecards
  • A minimum GPA of 2.5 at bachelor’s level. The higher the GPA, the greater is the chance of getting into top-ranked universities.
  • Updated resume with relevant work experience in the field of nursing.
  • GRE score (varies with different universities).
  • Current license to practice as a registered nurse.
  • The minimum work experience preferred by top universities in nursing is 1 year.
  • IB (International Baccalaureate) score (if required)-at least 30 points.

Entrance exams to be passed for becoming a registered nurse or a practicing nurse

  • National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX)

The NCLEX is a national level examination held in the USA, Canada, and Australia for the purpose of licensing nurses in the countries. It was introduced in the USA in 1982, then recognized by Canada in 2015 and by Australia in 2020. It is a computerized test developed and regulated by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN). There are two types of exams under NCLEX:

  • NCLEX-RN (Registered Nurse)
  • NCLEX-PN (Practical Nurse)

The NCLEX exam is conducted at Pearson Professional Centre. Each candidate’s exam will be unique. Each question relies on the previous question’s answer. A candidate can be asked anywhere between 75 and 265 questions. Only the first 60 of the exam’s 75 questions will be counted, with the remaining 15 questions retained for future assessment. The exam is divided into three levels:

  1. Tests candidates’ knowledge and understanding
  2. Tests candidates’ analysis and application
  3. Test candidates’ qualitative aptitude.

Syllabus for NCLEX

The syllabus is not fixed and exhaustive and continuously changed. The questions asked depend on the specialization of the candidate. Some of the common topics on which questions occur are

  • Safe and effective care environment.
  • Coordination of care.
  • Safety and infection control.
  • Health promotion and maintenance.
  • Psychosocial integrity.
  • Physiological integrity.
  • Basic care and comfort.
  • Pharmacological and parenteral therapies.
  • Reduction of risk potential.
  • Physiological adaptation.

  • Nursing and Midwifery Council Exam (UK)

To become a practicing nurse in the UK, one must be registered with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC). The registration process involves a computer-based test, which can be taken from anywhere in the world. The test comprises 120 multiple choice questions, and the duration is 4 hours. The test pattern is as follows:

  • 50 questions will be from generic nursing concepts.
  • 50 questions will be the generic application of nursing concepts to the specific field of nursing for which the candidate has applied (pediatric nursing, cardiac nurse, etc).
  • 20 questions will be the specific application of nursing concepts of the specific field of nursing for which the candidate has applied.
Frequently Asked Questions

The most preferred countries for studying Nursing are the UK, Australia, the USA, and Canada.

The countries where nurses receive the highest salaries (per year) are

  • Luxembourg: USD 91,000
  • Denmark: USD 87, 436
  • USA: USD 81,410
  • Canada: USD 69,740
  • Australia: USD 56, 800
  • UK: USD 44,500-47,300

Minimum score expected is 6.5. For getting into top-ranked universities, a score of 7+ is required.

Expenditure depends on different countries. Some countries like Norway offer free education. However, studying nursing in top renowned private  universities may cost around USD 30,000-40,000.

  • At bachelor’s level:3-4 years.
  • At Master’s level: 2-3 years
  • Ph.D/doctorate level: 3-6 years

Nurses can work in different setups as per their specialization. They can work in hospitals, clinics, community health centers, birthing centers, and in households as family nurses.

One should have completed senior secondary school and studied chemistry, English & biology at the senior secondary level. GPA may vary from university to university. The minimum GPA expected is 2.5 and above 3 for top-ranked universities.

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