How to Become a Registered Nurse in North Dakota

North Dakota map

The state of North Dakota is not famous for being overpopulated.

However, that is part of the allure for some nursing hopefuls.

If you want to work in rural areas or with a less crowded medical system, North Dakota is a good option.

Becoming a registered nurse in North Dakota is made easier by a plethora of schools that train RNs.

Find out where you can attend school on campus or online at these five ND registered nurse schools.

Additionally, learn about the typical salary you can expect to earn as a registered nurse in North Dakota once you graduate.

5 Registered Nurse Schools in North Dakota

University of Mary

University of Mary Logo

The University of Mary offers an undergraduate program for nursing, as well as several more nursing pathways.

The nursing department hosts traditional routes for registered nurses, including the Bachelor of Science in Nursing.

Additional programs for RNs include a licensed practical nurse (LPN) to BSN track, as well as an accelerated BSN second-degree option.

There is also the RN to BSN program.

The total cost for nursing school at UM is $19,830 a year.

Dickinson State University

Dickinson State University Logo

At Dickinson State University (DSU), the nursing program is extensive.

Enroll in the AASPN or Associate in Applied Science in Practical Nursing, which is a two-year program that leads to certification as a registered nurse.

There is also the four-year Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) program offered at DSU.

The total cost for tuition at this college is $8,122 per academic year.

Minot State University

Minot State University Logo

Nursing students at Minot State University (MSU) in Minot, North Dakota can enroll in a couple of different programs.

There is the on-campus traditional Bachelor of Science in Nursing, as well as an online program.

The 100 percent online course is an RN to BSN completion program.

The total cost of attending MSU for nursing as an undergraduate is approximately $7,896 per academic year.

The BSN program is four years in length.

North Dakota State University

North Dakota State University Logo

At the North Dakota State University (NDSU) School of Nursing, there are alternative and accelerated routes to becoming a registered nurse in ND.

Along with a pre-licensure BSN program that takes four years, there is an online blended program for LPNs who want to earn a BSN.

With a BSN, you are eligible to sit for the NCLEX-RN board to become certified as a registered nurse.

The cost of tuition at NDSU is $10,168 for an academic year.

Bismarck State University

Bismarck State University Logo

At Bismarck State University, students can pursue a degree in nursing in one or two years.

Here you have a few different options not available at other universities in the state.

Enroll in a one-year certificate program, or opt for the two-year Associate in Applied Science (AAS) or an Associate in Science (AS) with the option to transfer for a four-year Bachelor of Science (BSN) at another school.

The cost per academic year is $4,731 for the nursing program at BSU.

Registered Nurse Schools in North Dakota – Summary Table

Top 5 Schools in North Dakota

School NameAddress
University of Mary7500 University Dr, Bismarck, ND 58504
Dickinson State University291 Campus Dr, Dickinson, ND 58601
Minot State University500 University Ave W, Minot, ND 58707
North Dakota State University1340 Administration Ave, Fargo, ND 58105
Bismarck State University1500 Edwards Ave, Bismarck, ND 58506


The average annual salary for registered nurses in the US is $83,200.

This is based on a range of $59,570 to $106,830 a year.

In North Dakota, the cost of living affects the average salary paid to registered nurses.

Expect to earn slightly less as the cost of living in ND is 2 percent less than the national average.

Annual Salary Range:

Average Salary of Registered Nurse (RN)s in North Dakota

City NameSalary
Grand Forks$58,580
West Fargo$62,300
* Salary information last updated 2024

Regional Salary in North Dakota

RegionEmployedAvg. Annual SalaryAvg. Hourly PayTop 10% Annual SalaryBottom 10% Annual Salary
Bismarck, ND2,680$72,770$34.99$83,120$61,550
Fargo, ND-MN4,870$76,130$36.6$93,120$62,260
Grand Forks, ND-MN1,350$72,400$34.81$82,300$60,130
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Registered Nurses, OCC Code 29-1141, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I become a registered nurse in North Dakota?

In North Dakota, the state government requires all registered nurses to attend a program for training.

This includes hands-on clinical practice, as well as coursework.

Clinical experience is necessary for registering for a certified nursing examination, which is required to be certified and available to work.

North Dakota recognizes the NCLEX-RN boards for RNs.

Are nurses in demand in North Dakota?

“Yes,” according to the North Dakota State Government. “[The state] projects increased demand for nurses from 2020-2030.

For example, registered nurses in North Dakota can expect a 16.5% increase in jobs during that time frame.”

How long does it take to become an RN in North Dakota?

The typical timeframe to become an RN in North Dakota includes two years of nursing school followed by time to successfully pass the national NCLEX-RN board.

Some schools offer a traditional BSN program that takes four years to complete, but it is not required to become a nurse in North Dakota.

How long does it take to get a North Dakota RN license?

To get a North Dakota RN license, you must first attend a reputable training program, such as one of the schools listed here.

From there, you need to have time to take a certification board exam, such as the national NCLEX-RN.

You must register for this board exam, which is only offered at certain times.

Scheduling the exam and passing it successfully can take up to a year.

Therefore, expect it to take about five years for you to get a North Dakota RN license–from the time you start to apply to colleges.

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