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The nursing sector in Massachusetts is large and diverse, with a wide variety of roles. The state is home to over 140,000 certified nurses. Registered nurses (RNs) are the largest component of this workforce, numbering almost 80,000. Massachusetts also hosts 40,000 nursing assistants, 17,000 licensed practical nurses (LPNs), and a select handful of ~5,000 advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) in critical specializations like nurse practitioner, midwife, and anethetist.

Each nursing role has its own education path. In Massachusetts, there are a broad range of nursing education programs available at a diverse selection of schools. The state has almost 40 public institutions including large state universities like University of Massachusetts, which offers nursing programs at each of its five campuses. Massachusetts is also home to about 20 private nursing schools which run the gamut from short certificate programs to extensive graduate education.

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Of course, each type of institution has its own merits. Large public universities typically offer lower tuition and fees while promising a greater pool of students with which to interact and learn. Private colleges offer more favorable student-faculty ratios. Medical Professional Institute is one such private college, with a student-faculty ratio of 13 to 1.

Aspiring nurses in Massachusetts truly have no lack of choice for pursuing their education. To help organize the options, we’ve listed below the best nursing schools in Massachusetts, ordered from the largest nursing program to the smallest.

Featured Schools

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Boston metro area

University of Massachusetts Boston
Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 216 students during the 2014 period
Northeastern University
Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 198 students during the 2014 period
Direct Entry MSN: 20 students during the 2014 period
Simmons University
Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 192 students during the 2014 period
Direct Entry MSN: 34 students during the 2013 period
MGH Institute of Health Professions
Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 157 students during the 2014 period
Direct Entry MSN: 94 students during the 2014 period
Laboure College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 151 students during the 2014 period
Quincy College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 127 students during the 2014 period
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 67 students during the 2014 period
Massasoit Community College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 124 students during the 2014 period
Brockton Hospital School of Nursing
Diploma in Nursing: 112 students during the 2014 period
Curry College
Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 112 students during the 2014 period
Salem State University
Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 110 students during the 2014 period
Regis College
Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 105 students during the 2014 period
Direct Entry MSN: 52 students during the 2014 period
Lawrence Memorial / Regis College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 102 students during the 2014 period
Bunker Hill Community College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 100 students during the 2014 period
University of Massachusetts Lowell
Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 99 students during the 2014 period
Boston College
Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 95 students during the 2014 period
Direct Entry MSN: 35 students during the 2014 period
MCPHS University
Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 89 students during the 2014 period
Greater Lowell Technical High School
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 74 students during the 2014 period
Middlesex Community College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 73 students during the 2014 period
MassBay Community College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 64 students during the 2014 period
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 25 students during the 2014 period
North Shore Community College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 55 students during the 2014 period
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 34 students during the 2014 period
Northern Essex Community College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 52 students during the 2014 period
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 26 students during the 2014 period
Shawsheen Valley Technical High School
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 40 students during the 2014 period
Endicott College
Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 39 students during the 2014 period
Blue Hills Regional Technical School
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 36 students during the 2014 period
Assabet Valley Regional Technical High School
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 35 students during the 2014 period
Tri-County Regional Vocational Technical High School
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 30 students during the 2014 period
Bay State College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 28 students during the 2014 period
School Program Class size
University of Massachusetts Boston Bachelor of Science in Nursing 216 students
Northeastern University Bachelor of Science in Nursing 198 students
Direct Entry MSN 20 students
Simmons University Bachelor of Science in Nursing 192 students
Direct Entry MSN 34 students
MGH Institute of Health Professions Bachelor of Science in Nursing 157 students
Direct Entry MSN 94 students
Laboure College Associate's Degree in Nursing 151 students
Quincy College Associate's Degree in Nursing 127 students
Certificate in Practical Nursing 67 students
Massasoit Community College Associate's Degree in Nursing 124 students
Brockton Hospital School of Nursing Diploma in Nursing 112 students
Curry College Bachelor of Science in Nursing 112 students
Salem State University Bachelor of Science in Nursing 110 students
Regis College Bachelor of Science in Nursing 105 students
Direct Entry MSN 52 students
Lawrence Memorial / Regis College Associate's Degree in Nursing 102 students
Bunker Hill Community College Associate's Degree in Nursing 100 students
University of Massachusetts Lowell Bachelor of Science in Nursing 99 students
Boston College Bachelor of Science in Nursing 95 students
Direct Entry MSN 35 students
MCPHS University Bachelor of Science in Nursing 89 students
Greater Lowell Technical High School Certificate in Practical Nursing 74 students
Middlesex Community College Associate's Degree in Nursing 73 students
MassBay Community College Associate's Degree in Nursing 64 students
Certificate in Practical Nursing 25 students
North Shore Community College Associate's Degree in Nursing 55 students
Certificate in Practical Nursing 34 students
Northern Essex Community College Associate's Degree in Nursing 52 students
Certificate in Practical Nursing 26 students
Shawsheen Valley Technical High School Certificate in Practical Nursing 40 students
Endicott College Bachelor of Science in Nursing 39 students
Blue Hills Regional Technical School Certificate in Practical Nursing 36 students
Assabet Valley Regional Technical High School Certificate in Practical Nursing 35 students
Tri-County Regional Vocational Technical High School Certificate in Practical Nursing 30 students
Bay State College Associate's Degree in Nursing 28 students

Springfield

University of Massachusetts Amherst
Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 119 students during the 2014 period
College of Our Lady of the Elms
Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 76 students during the 2014 period
American International College
Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 75 students during the 2014 period
Springfield Technical Community College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 67 students during the 2014 period
Holyoke Community College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 39 students during the 2014 period
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 10 students during the 2014 period
Westfield State University
Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 21 students during the 2014 period
School Program Class size
University of Massachusetts Amherst Bachelor of Science in Nursing 119 students
College of Our Lady of the Elms Bachelor of Science in Nursing 76 students
American International College Bachelor of Science in Nursing 75 students
Springfield Technical Community College Associate's Degree in Nursing 67 students
Holyoke Community College Associate's Degree in Nursing 39 students
Certificate in Practical Nursing 10 students
Westfield State University Bachelor of Science in Nursing 21 students

Worcester

MCPHS University - Worcester
Accelerated Second Degree BSN: 107 students during the 2014 period
Quinsigamond Community College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 106 students during the 2014 period
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 42 students during the 2014 period
Mount Wachusett Community College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 105 students during the 2014 period
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 35 students during the 2014 period
Worcester State University
Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 52 students during the 2014 period
Fitchburg State University
Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 43 students during the 2014 period
Becker College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 36 students during the 2014 period
Montachusett Regional Vocational Technical School
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 32 students during the 2014 period
University of Massachusetts Medical School
Direct Entry MSN: 29 students during the 2014 period
Blackstone Valley Regional Vocational Technical High School
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 26 students during the 2014 period
Bay Path Regional Vocational Technical High School
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 24 students during the 2014 period
School Program Class size
MCPHS University - Worcester Accelerated Second Degree BSN 107 students
Quinsigamond Community College Associate's Degree in Nursing 106 students
Certificate in Practical Nursing 42 students
Mount Wachusett Community College Associate's Degree in Nursing 105 students
Certificate in Practical Nursing 35 students
Worcester State University Bachelor of Science in Nursing 52 students
Fitchburg State University Bachelor of Science in Nursing 43 students
Becker College Associate's Degree in Nursing 36 students
Montachusett Regional Vocational Technical School Certificate in Practical Nursing 32 students
University of Massachusetts Medical School Direct Entry MSN 29 students
Blackstone Valley Regional Vocational Technical High School Certificate in Practical Nursing 26 students
Bay Path Regional Vocational Technical High School Certificate in Practical Nursing 24 students

Other Massachusetts cities

University of Massachusetts Dartmouth
Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 98 students during the 2014 period
Cape Cod Community College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 80 students during the 2014 period
Bristol Community College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 71 students during the 2014 period
Diman Regional Vocational Technical High School
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 56 students during the 2014 period
Upper Cape Cod Regional Technical School
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 44 students during the 2014 period
Berkshire Community College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 43 students during the 2014 period
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 26 students during the 2014 period
Greenfield Community College
Associate's Degree in Nursing: 41 students during the 2014 period
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 31 students during the 2014 period
Southeastern Regional Vocational Technical High School
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 41 students during the 2014 period
Bristol-Plymouth Regional Technical School
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 26 students during the 2014 period
McCann Technical School
Certificate in Practical Nursing: 23 students during the 2014 period
School Program Class size
University of Massachusetts Dartmouth Bachelor of Science in Nursing 98 students
Cape Cod Community College Associate's Degree in Nursing 80 students
Bristol Community College Associate's Degree in Nursing 71 students
Diman Regional Vocational Technical High School Certificate in Practical Nursing 56 students
Upper Cape Cod Regional Technical School Certificate in Practical Nursing 44 students
Berkshire Community College Associate's Degree in Nursing 43 students
Certificate in Practical Nursing 26 students
Greenfield Community College Associate's Degree in Nursing 41 students
Certificate in Practical Nursing 31 students
Southeastern Regional Vocational Technical High School Certificate in Practical Nursing 41 students
Bristol-Plymouth Regional Technical School Certificate in Practical Nursing 26 students
McCann Technical School Certificate in Practical Nursing 23 students