Which Schools Offer Nursing Programs in Southern California?

Learn about nursing programs in Southern California. See offered degrees and specializations, program requirements and courses, as well as tuition statistics and program lengths for each school. Schools offering Nursing degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Studying nursing in SoCal can best benefit you since the area has various schools that, collectively, provide degree programs from every level from certificate to master's.

What You Need to Know

Students in southern California interested in the field of nursing may earn a certificate, associate's, bachelor's, or master's degree. Different education levels qualify students to take the national licensure exam at the appropriate level, from vocational to practical to registered nurse. Certificates and degrees are offered by public schools in the region, both two-year and four-year. Individuals applying to a master's degree program must first hold a bachelor's degree in nursing and be licensed to work in California.

Certificate Program in Southern California

Riverside City College

This program includes classroom, laboratory and clinical work. Some clinical work occurs at off-campus hospital facilities. Courses cover topics like nursing communicating, caring for families, role transition, mental health nursing, surgical nursing and nursing fundamentals. Upon graduation, you are eligible to take the NCLEX-PN.

  • Program: Vocational Nursing Certificate
  • Program Length: 1 year, full-time
  • Tuition and Fees: $1,426 per year for in-state and $7,366 per year for out-of-state students per year (2015-2016)
  • Prerequisites: Anatomy, physiology and nursing courses
  • School Type: 2-year, public; 18,547 undergraduate students (Fall 2015)

Associate's Degree Programs in Southern California

MiraCosta College

Required courses in this Associate of Science (A.S.) in Nursing program include contemporary nursing practice, medical/surgical nursing, pathopharmacology, maternal/child nursing and oral communication. During your studies, you must also complete three credit hours of coursework in human studies, such as in general psychology or an introduction to aging. The school also offers an Associate of Arts (A.A.) in Licensed Vocational Nursing as well as A.A. and A.S. LVN to RN degree programs. The former prepares you to take the state licensure exam, while the latter is designed for licensed LVNs seeking RN licensure.

  • Program: Associate of Science in Nursing
  • Program Length: 2 years, full-time
  • Tuition and Fees: $1,152 per year for in-state and $5,952 per year for out-of-state students per year (2015-2016)
  • Prerequisites: Science, math and communications classes
  • School Type: 2-year, public; 14,687 undergraduate students (Fall 2015)

Riverside City College

This program's curriculum is delivered through lectures, labs and clinics, and focuses on teaching you how to handle a variety of patients and their conditions across the age spectrum. Classes cover topics like nursing relationships, nursing concepts and calculations for healthcare. Upon graduation, you are eligible to sit for the NCLEX-RN. The school also offers advanced standing to LVN's seeking to earn an associate's degree.

  • Program: Associate in Science in Registered Nursing
  • Program Length: 2 years, full-time
  • Tuition and Fees: $1,426 per year for in-state and $7,366 per year for out-of-state students per year (2015-2016)
  • Prerequisites: Science and psychology coursework
  • School Type: 2-year, public; 18,547 undergraduate students (Fall 2015)

Bachelor's Degree Programs in Southern California

California State University Channel Islands

This program includes classes in nursing mothers and infants, psychiatric nursing, pathophysiology and community health nursing. Instruction is delivered in both lecture and lab formats. The school also offers a RN to Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program designed for licensed RNs seeking a bachelor's degree, and a fast-track associate's degree to BSN program, which takes 14 months to complete.

  • Program: Bachelor of Science in Nursing
  • Program Length: 3 years, including summer sessions, full-time
  • Tuition and Fees: $6,547 for in-state and $17,707 for out-of-state students per year (2015-2016)
  • Prerequisites: At least a 2.5 GPA in pre-nursing coursework
  • School Type: 4-year, public; 5,677 undergraduate students (Fall 2015)

San Diego State University

This school operates two curriculum plans for its program that are based on the extensiveness of your understanding of chemistry. Required upper-division classes cover topics like community health nursing, health assessment, nursing critically ill patients and electrocardiography. The school requires all nursing students to participate in an international experience. A 30-credit hour LVN program is also available for individuals interested in sitting for the NCLEX-PN exam.

  • Program: Bachelor of Science in Nursing
  • Program Length: 9 semesters and one summer session, full-time
  • Tuition and Fees: $6,976 for in-state and $18,136 for out-of-state students per year (2015-2016)
  • Prerequisites: Science and communication course sequence
  • School Type: 4-year, public; 28,394 undergraduates and 5,089 graduate students (Fall 2015)

Master's Degree Program in Southern California

San Diego State University

In this program, you complete 12 credit hours of study in a core curriculum and 18-45 credit hours in your chosen area of concentration. Within the women's health nursing concentration, you may further specialize in nurse-midwifery, nurse-midwifery and women's health nurse practitioner or women's health nurse practitioner, while within the advanced practice nursing concentration you may further specialize in clinical nurse specialist and nurse educator or nurse practitioner and and clinical nurse specialist preparation. You must either write a thesis or pass a comprehensive exam prior to graduation.

  • Program: Master of Science in Nursing
  • Areas of Concentration: Women's health nursing, advanced practice nursing of adults and the elderly, nursing leadership in healthcare systems
  • Program Length: 30-57 units
  • Tuition: $6,738 for in-state and $15,666 for out-of-state students per year (2015-2016)
  • Admission Requirements: Bachelor's degree in nursing, GRE, RN license, one year of work experience preferred
  • School Type: 4-year, public; 28,394 undergraduates and 5,089 graduate students (Fall 2015)

To sum this information up, to obtain either a certificate or associate's degree in nursing, attend Riverside City College or MiraCosta College, and to obtain either a bachelor's or master's degree, attend California State University (Channel Islands) or San Diego State University.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

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