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Acute Care PNP - Schools with best reputations?


Specializes in Pediatric Critical Care.

Hi, Im trying to narrow down my list of school options. Ive been looking at cost, location, length of program, etc. But its hard to find a lot of info (especially for acute care PNP) on the reputation of the programs. Does anybody have any insight?

Specifically, I am looking at these programs:

Vanderbilt University

University of Texas - Arlington

University of Alabama - Birmingham

University of South Alabama

Also considering:

Drexel University

Rush University

University of Illinois - Chicago


University of Cincinnati

Any info from graduates of these programs would be appreciated as well. Thanks for any help :)

juan de la cruz, MSN, RN, NP

Specializes in APRN, Adult Critical Care. Has 27 years experience.

Some people refer to the US News rankings. This year, they made some changes to the methodology and it now includes not just a peer assessment score (aka popularity contest between deans), but also selectivity and acceptance rate, mean undergrad GPA, etc (see: Methodology: 2016 Best Nursing Schools Rankings - US News).

This year saw some changes in the general nursing rankings though the Top 10 didn't change as much. Unfortunately, Peds ACNP programs were not ranked and I'm thinking this is because this is a relatively new track since AGACNP programs were not ranked before and now are included in the rankings.

The general nursing rankings are at: Best Nursing School Rankings | Nursing Program Rankings | US News

The Peds Primary Care NP rankings are at: Best Pediatric Nurse Practitioner Programs | Top Nursing Schools | US News Best Graduate Schools

I have a similar question except I want one that is NOT online. Which of these programs are best? Which has highest pass rates or a better reputation? If you know of other schools that do not require online courses for their PNP-AC program please let me know!

I will relocate for the school because I want to do it classroom based and not online based.

I would love to hear from graduates on how they liked the program, how the courses were and how the clinicals were. My email is kelseykelsey4@hotmail.com should anyone not feel comfortable sharing on public forum. I also have private messaging here!

University of California, San Francisco

Emory University

University of Maryland

University of Pennsylvania

University of Cincinnati

Northeastern University (Boston)

Ohio State University

Oregon Health & Science University

Vanderbilt University (I'm not sure if the program is online or not. It says distance-based and I saw one class that seems to be online but the rest seem to not be?)

Edited by kelseykelsey4
weird formatting!

Julius Seizure

Specializes in Pediatric Critical Care.


Ive been looking through all the programs listed as approved curriculums for the PNCB certification exam. (PNCB Recognized Acute Care PNP Programs). I looked at Vanderbilt specifically, and I think it said that it is ONLY offered as the web-based version.

If you are open to a DNP program vs. a MSN program, add University of Florida to your list. They have a DNP for acute care PNP that can be done in person and full time is 3 years. I've heard good things about it.....actually have added it to my short list, too.

Julius Seizure

Specializes in Pediatric Critical Care.

@juan de la cruz

I actually did look at the US News rankings, and some of the schools were STILL hard to find info on! Plus, I am kind of wondering if any of the schools have a bad reputation despite possibly being ranked decently. I guess its probably not across the board gonna be one way or the other on reputation though. Thanks for replying :)