California offers an abundant assortment of educational opportunities for aspiring nurses. If you live in California and want to become a nurse, there are plenty of schools here to help you do just that. Before enrolling in one of these schools, though, you need to figure out which one is right for you. That is why we have created this list of the top 50 nursing programs in California, based on NCLEX pass rates and total annual cost of attendance. Read on to see if any of these schools has the degree you need.
Featured Nursing Program
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Santa Monica College is located in Santa Monica, CA. It made it to the top of our list because o its incredibly low cost of attendance and equally high NCLEX pass rate. The average in-state tuition for this school is $1, 128 a year, but that increases significantly to $8, 298 a year for out of state students. This school only has a graduation rate of 28%, but it has an average student population of 42, 660. That means that nearly 12, 000 students enrolling in this school make it to graduation each year.
- Total Annual Cost*: $5, 563
- NCLEX Pass Rate: 98%
- Accreditation: ACEN, CBRN
- Nursing Programs: ADN
American River College in Sacremento, CA is a great nursing school for entry level nurses. It has a strong NCLEX pass rate and a low cost of attendance that just about anyone can afford. The average in-state tuition rate here is $1, 104, and the average out of state tuition rate is $6, 096. ARC has a graduation rate of 20% and a student population of 32, 868. If you live in the area and want to become a licensed vocational nurse, registered nurse, or nursing assistant, this school could help you do that.
- Total Annual Cost*: $5, 539
- NCLEX Pass Rate: 95%
- Accreditation: CBRN
- Nursing Programs: Certificate, ADN
Victor Valley College is situated in Victorville, CA. It is one of the few schools in the area that offers degree programs in nursing. The in-state tuition at VVC is $1, 114 on average, and the out of state tuition average is $4, 306. The graduation rate for this school is not great at 14%, but the NCLEX pass rate of 95% indicates that most nursing students from here come out with a license to practice. There is an average of 16, 928 students in this school every year.
- Total Annual Cost*: $5, 549
Golden West College is located in beautiful Huntington Beach, CA. If the scenery around the school does not get you interested in attending, perhaps the cost of attendance will. The average in-state student at GWC pays $1, 142 a year for tuition, and the average out of state student pays $5, 294 a year. This school has a graduation rate of 29% and an average student population of 18, 155.
- Total Annual Cost*: $5, 577
- NCLEX Pass Rate: 92%
San Joaquin Delta College is located in Stockton, CA. It is accredited by one of the most important national accreditation boards in the country when it comes to nursing education. The average in-state tuition rate for SJDC is $1, 082, and the annual average for out of state students is $6, 362. The graduation rate for this school is 26%, and the student population is 26, 015. With 1 out of every four students graduating from this school at the end of their degrees, there is a good chance that you will do well here.
- Total Annual Cost*: $5, 517
Located in Norwalk, CA, Cerritos College is a wonderful school for health science careers like nursing and certified medical assisting. This RN school in California has a low in-state tuition rate of , 104 and a fairly low out of state tuition rate of , 048. The graduation rate for CC averages out to be 22%, with the student population sitting at around 27, 724 students per year. The associate’s degree program here takes less than two years to complete with full-time study.
- Total Annual Cost*: , 539
- NCLEX Pass Rate: 88%
Mission College is located in Santa Clara, CA, and it is home to about 16, 238 students per year. The average in-state student at this school pays , 146 a year in tuition while the average out of state student pays about , 042. This school has a graduation rate of 25%, which means that one out of every four students here comes out with a degree. If you focus hard on your classes, you could soon be part of that graduating class.
- Total Annual Cost*: , 581
- NCLEX Pass Rate: 85%
Solano Community College is nestled in the heart of Fairfield, CA. This school offers low tuition rates and ample living solutions, making it a great place to go if you want an authentic college experience. The average in-state tuition for this school is , 116, and the average out of state tuition is , 026. The graduation rate at SCC is 18%, and the average student population is 16, 207 per year.
- Total Annual Cost*: $5, 551
- NCLEX Pass Rate: 84%
MiraCosta College is located in Oceanside, CA. This school is one of the few on this list to have a 100% NCLEX pass rate, which means that every graduate from here who decides to take their licensure exam passes. Talk about a guaranteed great education! The average in state tuition at this school is $1, 336 a year, and the average out of state tuition is about $5, 228 per year. MCC boasts a graduation rate of 28% for its 21, 722 students.
- Total Annual Cost*: $5, 771
- NCLEX Pass Rate: 100%
Los Angeles Harbor College is located in Wilmington, CA. It has a fantastic NCLEX pass rate with nearly all of the students from the ADN program here passing their licensure exams on the first try. The average price for tuition here is $1, 404 a year for California residents and $7, 104 a year for everyone else. The school’s low graduation rate of 13% may seem scary, but keep in mind that that is for all degree programs, not just nursing. In total, this school has an average student population of 14, 553.
- Total Annual Cost*: $5, 839
Palomar College in San Marcos, CA has a couple different degree programs to choose from as a nurse. Either one could lead you to an entry level position and bigger educational paths in the future. The average price for in state tuition at this school is $1, 444, and the average cost for out of state tuition is $7, 264. The graduation rate here is 27% for a student population of 35, 407. Nearly all the nursing grads from PC end up getting their licenses after graduation.
- Total Annual Cost*: $5, 879
- Nursing Programs: Diploma, ADN
San Diego City College is fittingly located in San Diego, CA. This school has a relatively high student population, but it still manages to keep its prices low. The average in state student here pays $1, 435 a year in tuition, and the average out of state student pays $7, 135 a year. The graduation rate here is 11% and the student population is 24, 688. Most students can complete the ADN program here in less than two years.
- Total Annual Cost*: $5, 870
- NCLEX Pass Rate: 97%