fbpx

Best 26 Nurse Practitioner Programs in California in 2021

April 12, 2021 | Staff Writers

Degree Finder
BestValueSchools.org is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

1. California State University, Fullerton

California State University, Fullerton takes the top spot on our list because of its affordable tuition and high-quality nursing practitioner program. CSUF offers a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree to aspiring nurse practitioners. BSN and MSN degrees are also available.

  • Tuition per year: $6,924 in-state; $18,804 non-resident
  • Graduation rate: 83%  

2. California State University, Los Angeles

California State University, Los Angeles is well-known for its graduate nursing programs. Various Nurse Practitioner tracks are offered at the MSN level. MSN tracks are also offered in CNS specialties.

  • Tuition per year: $6,768 in-state; $18,468 non-resident
  • Graduation rate: 76% 

3. California State University, Dominguez Hills

California State University, Dominguez Hills is a Hispanic-serving institution in Carson. It offers an MSN degree with several different specializations, including Family Nurse Practitioner. The other tracks include CNS Parent-Child, Educator, and Administrator.

  • Tuition per year: $6,946 in-state; $18,826 non-resident
  • Graduation rate: 76% 

4. San Francisco State University

San Francisco State University offers a top-notch nurse practitioner program at an affordable price. Its nursing practitioner program is a Family Nurse Practitioner track within the MSN program. The MSN program also offers tracks in CNS, Administration, and Public Health.

  • Tuition per year: $7,266 in-state; $19,146 non-resident
  • Graduation rate: 79%

5. California State University, Long Beach

California State University, Long Beach is well-known for its nurse practitioner program. As with many programs, its nurse practitioner degrees are offered as specializations within the MSN program. These specializations include Adult-Geriatric, Family, Pediatric, Psychiatric-Mental Health, Adult-Gerontology Acute Care, and Women’s Health.

  • Tuition per year: $6,834 in-state; $18,714 non-resident
  • Graduation rate: 68%     

6. California State University, Stanislaus

California State University, Stanislaus is one of the lesser-known campuses in the CSU system, but it still offers a top-notch nurse practitioner program. The MSN program at the school offers a Family Nurse Practitioner concentration. There is also a general MSN available.

  • Tuition per year: $7,542 in-state; $19,422 non-resident
  • Graduation rate: 80%

7. California State University, Fresno

California State University, Fresno is one of the leading nursing schools in central California. It offers two nurse practitioner programs. The MSN offers a Primary Care Nurse Practitioner specialization, while a DNP program is available at the doctoral level.

  • Tuition per year: $6,589 in-state; $18,469 non-resident
  • Graduation rate: 57%

8. California State University, Bakersfield

California State University, Bakersfield is a public university with a world-class nurse practitioner program. Its MSN degree offers a Family Nurse Practitioner focus. BSN and RN-to-BSN programs are also available.

  • Tuition per year: $7,419 in-state; $19,299 non-resident
  • Graduation rate: 65%

9. San Jose State University

San Jose State University offers one of the top nurse practitioner programs in Northern California. It actually offers two nurse practitioner programs, one at the master’s level and one at the doctoral level. The MSN degree has a Family Nurse Practitioner track, while the DNP is available at the doctoral level.

  • Tuition per year: $7,852 in-state; $19,732 non-resident
  • Graduation rate: 62%

10. Sonoma State University

Sonoma State University offers another top nurse practitioner program in Northern California. Sonoma State’s MSN degree actually does not include a nurse practitioner track. The Family Nurse Practitioner certificate is a post-MSN program.

  • Tuition per year: $7,880 in-state; $19,760 non-resident
  • Graduation rate: 61%

11. University of California, Los Angeles

The University of California, Los Angeles, better known as UCLA, offers a leading nurse practitioner program. Its MSN program offers several nurse practitioner specializations. CSN specializations are also offered.

  • Tuition per year: $13,240 in-state; $42,994 non-resident
  • Graduation rate: 91%

12. Brandman University

Brandman University is the first private university on our list. It offers a well-respected nurse practitioner program at an affordable price. The specializations available include Adult-Gerontology Primary Care, Family Health, Pediatric Acute Care, Adult-Gerontology Acute Care, and Psychiatric/Mental Health.

  • Tuition per year: $12,440
  • Graduation rate: 81%

13. University of California, Irvine

The University of California, Irvine is one of the most prestigious public institutions in the region. Its nurse practitioner program is offered at the doctoral level. The DNP program offers a Family Nurse Practitioner track.

  • Tuition per year: $13,387 in-state; $43,481 non-resident
  • Graduation rate: 87%  

14. University of California, Davis

The University of California, Davis is a public institution with a solid nurse practitioner program. Its MSN offers a Family Nurse Practitioner track. Students in this track can also study to be physician’s assistants at the same time.

  • Tuition per year: $14,495 in-state; $44,249 non-resident
  • Graduation rate: 85%

15. Charles R. Drew University

Charles R. Drew University is a historically black institution that focuses on health sciences programs. Its MSN program offers a Family Nurse Practitioner track. An entry-level MSN is also available.

  • Tuition per year: $13,972
  • Graduation rate: 61%

If you’re looking for the best nurse practitioner programs in California, our site can help you find the right school. 

16. National University

National University offers a wide range of graduate nursing programs. It offers a traditional MSN and a Nurse Anesthesia MSN. The Family Nurse Practitioner post-graduate certificate is available online.

  • Tuition per year: $13,320
  • Graduation rate: 13% 

17. West Coast University

West Coast University offers a top nurse practitioner program in Los Angeles. As with some other schools on this list, its Family Nurse Practitioner program is a post-graduate certificate. It is not integrated into the MSN degree.

  • Tuition per year: $26,645
  • Graduation rate: 75% 

18. Loma Linda University

Loma Linda University is well-known for its world-class medical school, but it also has a strong nurse practitioner program. Its nurse practitioner program is offered at the doctoral level. Loma Linda also offers a Ph.D. in addition to its DNP degree.

  • Tuition per year: $35,180
  • Graduation rate: 90% 

19. Fresno Pacific University

Fresno Pacific University offers nursing degrees at several different levels. It offers an MSN and an MSN-to-FNP pathway. FNP students have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience through practicums.

  • Tuition per year: $32,950
  • Graduation rate: 72%

20. California Baptist University

California Baptist University is one of the top California-based private institutions for nursing. It is a Christian university, but students of all faiths can attend. It offers BSN, MSN, and DNP degrees.

  • Tuition per year: $34,882
  • Graduation rate: 58% 

21. Samuel Merritt University

Samuel Merritt University offers a unique and innovative nurse practitioner program. Several specializations are offered within the MSN degree, including Family Nurse Practitioner. Specializations are also offered in Case Manager and Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist.

  • Tuition per year $50,138
  • Graduation rate: 98%

22. Azusa Pacific University

Azusa Pacific University has an advanced nurse practitioner program. Four nurse practitioner specializations are offered at the MSN level. APU also offers a DNP degree.

  • Tuition per year: $40,220
  • Graduation rate: 70% 

23. Western University of the Health Sciences

The Western University of the Health Sciences offers one of the leading nurse practitioner programs in the area. It offers a unique online FNP program. A DNP program is also offered.

  • Tuition per year: $44,065
  • Graduation rate: 69% 

24. University of San Diego

The University of San Diego is one of the most prestigious private universities in Southern California. It offers a DNP program with two entry points. Students can enter after their BSN degree or after their MSN degree.

  • Tuition per year: $51,186
  • Graduation rate: 78%

25. University of San Francisco

The University of San Francisco is a leading private university in Northern California. It offers a unique DNP program. This program was designed to be completed by nurses who are working full-time

  • Tuition per year: $50,282
  • Graduation rate: 71%

26. Touro University California

Touro University California has an excellent nurse practitioner program. Its nurse practitioner degree is a DNP rather than an MSN. Graduates of the DNP program are eligible to take the FNP licensure exam.

  • Tuition per year: $56,860
  • Graduation rate: 78%

Our Ranking Methodology

We used our proprietary formula to rank the nurse practitioner programs on this list. We took two vital statistics (yearly tuition rate and graduation rate) and put them into our formula to come up with a rating. If the school is a public institution that charges varying tuition based on a student’s residency, we looked only at the resident rate. Our formula takes the tuition rate and adds a multiplier that is equivalent to the percentage of students who did not graduate from the school. The resulting rating is used to rank schools from #1 (lowest rating) to #26 (highest rating). Here’s an example: ABC University has a yearly tuition rate of $30,000 and a graduation rate of 80%. Its rating would be 36,000 (30,000 x 120%). 

Students looking for the best nurse practitioner programs in California can find what they’re looking for on our site.

Representatives of the schools on this list can contact us if they need to make changes or request corrections.

Scroll to Top