For our 2021 rankings of ADN programs, the research team at Nursing Schools Almanac compiled an extensive database of student performance on the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN). Aspiring registered nurses in the United States must pass this examination before they may commence practice. Thus, student performance on the NCLEX-RN exam provides an excellent benchmark for comparing the relative quality of associate’s degree programs.

We used our database to calculate each program’s NCLEX-RN pass rate among first-time test-takers. This is the standard program assessment metric reported by the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation’s Division of Professional Regulation, as well as by the test’s administrator, Pearson Vue. Whenever possible, we calculated this first-time NCLEX-RN pass rate over an extensive period of time, typically the past decade of student performance. We then used this metric to rank all of Illinois’s ADN programs accordingly.

#1: Southeastern Illinois College
3575 College Road
Harrisburg, IL 62946
https://www.sic.edu

96.8% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 25 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#2: McHenry County College
8900 US Highway 14
Crystal Lake, IL 60012
https://www.mchenry.edu

96.7% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 24 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#3: John A. Logan College
700 Logan College Road
Carterville, IL 62918
https://www.jalc.edu

94.7% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 59 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#4: Joliet Junior College
1215 Houbolt Road
Joliet, IL 60431
https://www.jjc.edu

94.7% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 143 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#5: Harper College
1200 West Algonquin Road
Palatine, IL 60067
https://www.harpercollege.edu

93.4% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 99 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#6: Oakton Community College
1600 East Golf Road
Des Plaines, IL 60016
https://www.oakton.edu

93.0% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 80 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#7: Kishwaukee College
21193 Malta Road
Malta, IL 60150
https://www.kish.edu

92.6% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 59 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#8: Kankakee Community College
100 College Drive
Kankakee, IL 60901
https://www.kcc.edu

91.9% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 49 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#9: Southwestern Illinois College
2500 Carlyle Avenue
Belleville, IL 62221
https://www.swic.edu

91.4% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 70 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#10: Ambria College of Nursing
5210 Trillium Boulevard
Hoffman Estates, IL 60192
https://www.ambria.edu

90.3% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 46 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2012 through 2020


#11: Black Hawk College
6600 34th Avenue
Moline, IL 61265
https://www.bhc.edu

90.2% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 51 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#12: Lincoln Land Community College
5250 Shepherd Road
Springfield, IL 62794
https://www.llcc.edu

90.2% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 96 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#13: Waubonsee Community College
2060 Ogden Avenue
Aurora, IL 60504
https://www.waubonsee.edu

90.0% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 83 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#14: Elgin Community College
1700 Spartan Drive
Elgin, IL 60123
https://www.elgin.edu

89.9% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 98 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#15: Illinois Valley Community College
815 North Orlando Smith Avenue
Oglesby, IL 61348
https://www.ivcc.edu

89.3% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 60 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#16: Rock Valley College
3301 North Mulford Road
Rockford, IL 61114
https://www.rockvalleycollege.edu

88.8% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 48 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#17: Heartland Community College
1500 West Raab Road
Normal, IL 61761
https://www.heartland.edu

88.7% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 31 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#18: Prairie State College
202 South Halsted Street
Chicago Heights, IL 60411
https://www.prairiestate.edu

88.6% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 48 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#19: Kaskaskia College
27210 College Road
Centralia, IL 62801
https://www.kaskaskia.edu

88.5% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 71 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#20: Moraine Valley Community College
9000 West College Parkway
Palos Hills, IL 60465
https://www.morainevalley.edu

88.2% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 73 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#21: Parkland College
2400 West Bradley Avenue
Champaign, IL 61821
https://www.parkland.edu

87.8% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 83 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#22: Lake Land College
5001 Lake Land Boulevard
Mattoon, IL 61938
https://www.lakelandcollege.edu

87.6% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 65 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#23: Richland Community College
One College Park
Decatur, IL 62521
https://www.richland.edu

87.6% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 44 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#24: Triton College
2000 Fifth Avenue
River Grove, IL 60171
https://www.triton.edu

87.0% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 62 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#25: College of Lake County
19351 West Washington Street
Grayslake, IL 60030
https://www.clcillinois.edu

86.5% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 83 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#26: Sauk Valley Community College
173 Illinois Route 2
Dixon, IL 61021
https://www.svcc.edu

85.9% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 38 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#27: Shawnee Community College
8364 Shawnee College Road
Ullin, IL 62992
https://www.shawneecc.edu

85.5% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 34 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#28: Spoon River College
23235 North County Highway 22
Canton, IL 61520
https://www.src.edu

85.0% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 23 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#29: College of DuPage
425 Fawell Boulevard
Glen Ellyn, IL 60137
https://www.cod.edu

85.0% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 112 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#30: John Wood Community College
1301 South 48th Street
Quincy, IL 62305
https://www.jwcc.edu

84.5% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 28 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#31: Lewis & Clark Community College
5800 Godfrey Road
Godfrey, IL 62035
https://www.lc.edu

82.9% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 96 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#32: Highland Community College
2998 West Pearl City Road
Freeport, IL 61032
https://www.highland.edu

82.6% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 41 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#33: Danville Area Community College
2000 East Main Street
Danville, IL 61832
https://www.dacc.edu

81.9% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 45 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#34: City Colleges of Chicago
1900 West Jackson Boulevard, Suite 3100
Chicago, IL 60612
https://www.ccc.edu

80.9% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 280 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#35: Illinois Central College
5407 North University Street
Peoria, IL 61614
https://www.icc.edu

80.9% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 75 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#36: Illinois Eastern Community Colleges
305 North West Street
Olney, IL 62450
https://www.iecc.edu

80.5% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 96 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#37: Morton College
3801 South Central Avenue
Cicero, IL 60804
https://www.morton.edu

80.2% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 52 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#38: Rend Lake College
468 North Ken Gray Parkway
Ina, IL 62846
https://www.rlc.edu

80.2% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 54 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#39: South Suburban College
15800 South State Street
South Holland, IL 60473
https://www.ssc.edu

79.9% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 32 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#40: Rasmussen University - Romeoville / Joliet
1400 West Normantown Road
Romeoville, IL 60446
https://www.rasmussen.edu

79.7% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 184 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2015 through 2020


#41: Carl Sandburg College
2400 Tom L. Wilson Boulevard
Galesburg, IL 61401
http://www.sandburg.edu

78.6% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 45 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2011 through 2020


#42: CAAN Academy of Nursing
4747 Lincoln Mall Drive, Suite 420
Matteson, IL 60443
https://www.caanacademy.org

60.0% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 10 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2020 through 2020


#43: Northwestern College
7725 South Harlem Avenue
Bridgeview, IL 60455
https://www.nc.edu

56.8% first-time NCLEX pass rate
Associate's Degree in Nursing
Average of 54 students graduated per year
Data analyzed from 2012 through 2020