Affordable Nursing Schools In Wisconsin

Last Updated on December 14, 2022

Most Affordable Nursing Degrees in Wisconsin

April 26, 2021 | Staff WritersADVERTISEMENT

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In the nursing profession, current initiatives to raise the general level of college education means a number of things, including more demand for Registered Nurses (RNs), possibly higher average pay, and updated nursing school programs and learning technologies, amongst other positive results.

The initiative to raise the education level of professional RNs comes from the Institute of Medicine (IOM). Their recommendation is that, by 2020, 80% of American RNs have at least a BSN (Bachelor of Science in Nursing) degree, a doubling from the starting point of 40 percent. Nursing programs in Wisconsin have taken heed to this effort. Programs across “American’s Dairyland” have stepped up to the plate to bring only the best of the best to future nursing students.

What kind of Nursing Degree in Wisconsin should you earn?

First thing’s first. We’re looking out for your budget. This particular list hones in on only the most affordable nursing degrees in Wisconsin. Why not maximize your return on investment and attend a quality school at a quality price?

Here’s another thing to keep in mind: The nursing schools who are aligning with the IOM initiative are often offering a traditional four-year BSN program for new nursing students, as well as catering to transfer students, second-degree / second-career students and currently licensed RNs who hold a diploma or associate’s degree in nursing.

Top 10 Most Affordable Nursing Degrees in Wisconsin

1University of Wisconsin-OshkoshOshkosh, WI
2University of Wisconsin-Stevens PointStevens Point, WI
3University of Wisconsin-Green BayGreen Bay, WI
4University of Wisconsin-Eau ClaireEau Claire, WI
5University of Wisconsin-MilwaukeeMilwaukee, WI
6University of Wisconsin-MadisonMadison, WI
7Maranatha Baptist UniversityWatertown, WI
8Bellin CollegeGreen Bay, WI
9Viterbo UniversityLa Crosse, WI
10Silver Lake College of the Holy FamilyManitowoc, WI


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How much money can you make with a Nursing Degree in Wisconsin?

The state of Wisconsin currently has about 55,410 active RNs, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). These RNs earn a mean hourly wage of $32.66, which roughly translates into $67,930 per year.

The BLS also predicts that the RN profession will undergo an impressive 16% growth in job opportunities for RNs across the country, from 2014 to 2024. With great traditional four-year programs and affordable online options, now is a great time to jump into this career.

What are the Most Affordable Nursing Degrees in Wisconsin?

According to data from the NCES (National Center for Education Statistics), 20 nursing schools in Wisconsin were offering BSN programs in the past academic year. We’ve taken that list and removed programs/ schools that are inactive or defunct. The final result is the most affordable BSN programs in Wisconsin, sorted by in-state tuition.

Our data and information comes from college and university websites, the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS), the U.S. Department of Education’s College Scorecard, and U.S. News and World Report. Ready to take your nursing career to the next level? Read on!


See our rankings methodology page.Collapse All Expand All

  1. University of Wisconsin-OshkoshLOCATIONOshkosh, WITUITION$$$$$
  2. University of Wisconsin-Stevens PointLOCATIONStevens Point, WITUITION$$$$$
  3. University of Wisconsin-Green BayLOCATIONGreen Bay, WITUITION$$$$$
  4. University of Wisconsin-Eau ClaireLOCATIONEau Claire, WITUITION$$$$$
  5. University of Wisconsin-MilwaukeeLOCATIONMilwaukee, WITUITION$$$$$
  6. University of Wisconsin-MadisonLOCATIONMadison, WITUITION$$$$$
  7. Maranatha Baptist UniversityLOCATIONWatertown, WITUITION$$$$$
  8. Bellin CollegeLOCATIONGreen Bay, WITUITION$$$$$
  9. Viterbo UniversityLOCATIONLa Crosse, WITUITION$$$$$
  10. Silver Lake College of the Holy FamilyLOCATIONManitowoc, WITUITION$$$$$

The country’s rapidly growing healthcare sector is expected to create many nursing jobs over the next decade. Wisconsin already employs well over 100,000 nurses statewide, including 37,000 certified nursing assistants (CNAs), 10,000 licensed practical nurses (LPNs), and 56,000 registered nurses (RNs). These nurses work in a diverse range of healthcare settings, including local hospitals like Mayo Clinic and Froedtert Hospital. Wisconsin’s aspiring nurses must budget their educational expenses carefully and weigh the various options in order to maximize the return on this investment.

The major expenses for any nursing program are tuition and fees, books and supplies, room and board, and living expenses. Students with a tight budget can take several steps to minimize these costs, including buying used textbooks, rooming with classmates, or even commuting from home if feasible. Two specific decisions carry the most weight in determining a student’s tuition, which is the largest expense category: length of program and type of institution.

FIND A SCHOOLLonger programs of course cost more. For example, CNA certificates require just 8-10 weeks to complete, while a bachelor of science in nursing (BSN) takes four years of fulltime study. However, BSN-educated nurses in Wisconsin earn three times the annual salary of CNAs, so the return on this additional educational investment is clear.

Selecting the type of institution, namely public versus private, carries a more subtle tradeoff. Wisconsin students enjoy in-state tuition at University of Wisconsin and the state’s technical colleges, significantly lowering the cost of education. These public schools do enjoy solid academic reputations. However, some students may prefer the personalized learning environment and enhanced prestige of local private schools like Columbia College of Nursing and Marquette University, despite the higher price tag.

Are you ready to earn your online nursing degree?

Whether you’re looking to get your pre-licensure degree or taking the next step in your career, the education you need could be more affordable than you think. Find the right nursing program for you.

Have a question for a nursing pro?

In our Ask a Nurse series, experienced nurses provide an insider look at the nursing profession by answering your questions about nursing careers, degrees, and resources. Check out the previously answered questions by our nurse partners or ask your own question.Submit A QuestionView Answered Questions

2021 Best Colleges for Nursing in Wisconsin

The Best Colleges for Nursing ranking is based on key statistics and student reviews using data from the U.S. Department of Education. The ranking compares the top nursing schools in the U.S. Read more on how this ranking was calculated.

View On MapCOLLEGE TYPE4-YearPrivatePublic2-YearCommunityTrade/CareerOtherGENERAL AREA OF STUDYSelect an area of study to view top schools for students studying in those general fields.AnyAgricultural SciencesAnthropology and SociologyArchitectureArtArts ManagementBiologyBuilding and ConstructionBusiness and ManagementChemistryCommunicationsComputer ScienceCosmetologyCriminal JusticeCulinary ArtsDental StudiesDesignEconomicsEducationEngineeringEngineering TechniciansEnglishEnvironmental ScienceFilm and PhotographyFinance and AccountingFood and NutritionForeign LanguagesGlobal StudiesHealth Care ManagementHealth ProfessionsHistoryInformation TechnologyInterdisciplinary StudiesInternational RelationsKinesiology and Physical TherapyLegal StudiesMathMechanicsMedical Assistants and TechniciansMusicNursingPerforming Arts/TheaterPharmacyPhilosophyPhysicsPolitical ScienceProtective ServicesPsychologyPublic HealthPublic Policy and Social ServicesReligious StudiesSports Management and Leisure StudiesTrades and Personal ServicesVeterinary StudiesSPECIFIC MAJORSelect a major to filter your search to only schools that offer degrees in that specific major or program. Enter a major before choosing whether you want to study online or on campus.OnlineCampusSee All Majors ONLINE FRIENDLINESSOnline categories are primarily based on the number of majors that can be completed online. For more information view the college’s Niche profile or visit the college’s website.Fully OnlineLarge Online ProgramSome Online DegreesCOST (NET PRICE)Average cost after financial aid for students receiving grant or scholarship aid, as reported by the college.Select a value$STUDENT BODY SIZEEnrollment for full-time undergraduates. Small: Less than 5,000, Medium: 5-15,000, Large: More than 15,000.SmallMediumLargeSPECIALTYLiberal ArtsAll-WomenAll-MenHBCUHispanic-Serving InstitutionsYOUR TEST SCORESSelect a value that matches your actual or expected total score on the ACT or SAT. For the SAT, please choose the sum of your Math and Evidence-Based Reading and Writing scores.Select a valueSelect a valueADMISSIONS PROCESSAnyNo Application FeeAccepts Common AppTest-OptionalOffers Early DecisionOffers Early ActionRolling AdmissionSELECTIVITYSelectivity based on acceptance rate. Extremely Selective: < 15%, Very Selective: 15%-30%, Selective: 30%-60%, Average: 60%-90%, Not Selective: > 90%.Extremely SelectiveVery SelectiveSelectiveAverageNot SelectiveRELIGIOUS AFFILIATIONAnyCatholicChristianJewishGOOD FORA critical mass of the student body falls within the specified group, low and middle income students pay a reasonable net price, the school participates in tuition relief programs for veterans, and the school’s overall Niche Grade is above a B-.VeteransInternational StudentsAdult LearnersLow-Income StudentsMiddle-Class StudentsSTARTING SALARY AFTER GRADUATIONMedian salary of all students at the school employed 2 years after graduation.Any$65,000+$55,000+$45,000+$35,000+$25,000+Nursing

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