Nursing is embedded in the history of Canada. For this reason, the nursing profession is highly respected in Canada. So, if you’ve chosen to study nursing in Canada, you’ve made a wonderful decision. However, you will need to take a look at the best schools of nursing in Canada offering the best nursing degree programs.
It is necessary to study at one of the best schools of nursing in Canada because the nursing profession takes only the best. That is why there is a licensing exam. You will have to pass this exam to be able to practice as a nurse, and the assurance of passing the exam is stronger studying in one of the best nursing schools.
Therefore, in this post, we will share with you the best schools of nursing in Canada. This will save you the time you’ll spend scouring the internet or flipping through journals for the best nursing programs in Canada. Also, we will introduce you to the nursing education system in Canada as well as answer some other questions you may be asking already.
Nursing Education in Canada
Formal education is necessary to become a nurse in Canada and every part of the world. You must hold at least a two-to-three years diploma in nursing to begin your nursing career. However, a four-year baccalaureate degree is the ideal minimum requirement for nurses.
Meanwhile, holding a diploma or degree in nursing does not qualify you to practice the nursing profession in Canada. It is only the requirement for you to qualify for writing the licensing examination.
If you have completed a two-year Practical Nursing diploma program in nursing, you can sit for the Canadian Practical Nurse Registration Examination (CPNRE) Computer Based Examination. Passing this exam will make you a Registered Practical Nurse (RPN) in Ontario and Quebec.
On the other, if you have completed a four-year bachelor’s degree in Nursing, you can sit for the National Council Licensure Examination (NCLEX-RN) Computer Based Examination. Passing this exam will make you a Registered Nurse (RN).
Furthermore, you will become a Nurse Practitioner (NP) if you complete a professional master’s degree in Nursing and pass the required nurse practitioner exam.
Nurses in Canada may take further education to specialize in the agency or departments for which they work. Some of these departments include Cardiovascular Nursing, Community Health Nursing, Diabetes Nursing, Medical-Surgical Nursing, Psychiatric and Medical Health Nursing, etc.
Meanwhile, a Registered Psychiatric Nurse (RPN) gains license to practice in only British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and the territories.
On the other hand, a Mental Health Nurse (MHRN) has a license to practice only in Ontario and Quebec.
List of the Best Nursing Schools in Canada
Now that you are aware of how to proceed with your nursing education in Canada, what are the schools to begin your nursing education? In this section, we will give you a list of the best thirteen (13) nursing schools in Canada.
We selected the best school of nursing in Canada based on their global ranking and the number of nursing programs they offer.
Based on these criteria, here are the best nursing schools in Canada.
1. University of Toronto
Address: 155 College St Suite 130, Toronto, ON M5T 1P8, Canada.
Tuition: $9,100.00 (Domestic Students), $51,660.00 (International Students)
The University of Toronto or Utoronto is a very old university in Ontario, Canada. It began operation in 1827 and offers degree programs in a wide variety of discipline to over 60,000 students. his prestigious university has produced three Governor-General of Canada, four Prime Ministers of Canada, and fourteen Justices of the Supreme court.
This Canadian public university does not only produce people in government, however. It also produces the best nurses in Canada. Its Lawrence S. Bloomberg Faculty of Nursing is one of the best school of nursing in Ontario and Canada in general. QS World University ranking ranked this Canada school of nursing 2nd in the world for nursing schools.
University of Toronto’s nursing programs includes a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BScN), Master Programs, Post-Master Nurse Practitioner Diploma (PMNP), Master & Doctoral (Collaborative), and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.).
2. University of Alberta
Address: Edmonton, Alberta T6G 1C9., Canada.
Tuition: $6,207.60 (Domestic Students), $25,978.40 (International Students)
Just like UToronto, The University of Alberta or UAlberta is another popular school in Canada. It began its operation as a public university in Edmonton, Alberta in 1908. The university has thus lived for 111 years. UAlberta has also produced notable alumni like Governor General Roland Michener and Prime Minister Joe Clark. Offering over 400 programs through 18 faculties, UAlberta is a global research university.
Meanwhile, the University of Alberta’s Faculty of Nursing is the second best school of Nursing on our list. It ranked 17th in QS World Ranking for Global Nursing School. UAlberta’s Faculty of Nursing offers a variety of undergraduate and graduate nursing programs. Its undergraduate programs include BScN Collaborative, BScN Bilingual, BScN Honours, After Degree Program, and Registered Psychiatric Nurse to BScN.
On the other hand, UAlberta’s nursing graduate programs are the MN (Master of Nursing), Ph.D. (Doctoral Program), and the Online Ph.D. Cohort.
3. McMaster University
Address: Hamilton, Ontario L8S 4K1, Canada.
Tuition: $6,042.60(Domestic Students), $35,634 (International Students)
McMaster University is a public university in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. It is also one of the oldest universities in Canada. It began operating in 1887 and has been offering renowned programs in a wide variety of discipline to its students. McMaster has over 30,000 students and has also produced alumni who have taken government positions as well as business leaders.
Meanwhile, McMaster’s school of nursing is one of the nest in Ontario, Canada, and the world in general. QS ranked it as the 19th school of nursing globally in its 2018 World University ranking. Additionally, the 2020 Times Higher Education ranking, placed the University as the 72nd internationally respected university.
At McMaster’s school of nursing, you can offer the Basic (A) Stream BScN degree if you haven’t had a nursing education before. You can also take the Accelerated (F) Stream, or the Post RPN (E) BScN undergraduate degrees. Meanwhile, for graduate study, you can study either the MSc thesis Based, MSc Course-Based, MSc Course-Based PHCNP, PHCNP Graduate Diploma, or the Ph.D. degree programs
4. University of British Columbia
Address: T201-2211 Wesbrook Mall. Vancouver, BC Canada V6T 2B5, Canada.
Tuition: $179.97/per credit (Domestic Students), $1,270.79/per credit (International Students)
The University of British Columbia (UBC) is another public university in Canada with the best nursing school. UBC is British Columbia’s oldest university and it has produced great alumni including Canada’s first female prime minister, Kim Campbell. Additionally, UBC offers accredited degree programs to over 63,000 students from Canda and other parts of the world.
Meanwhile, the University of British Columbia’s nursing school has lived for 100 years. And it has consistently offered one of the best undergraduates and graduates nursing programs to its students. QS World University ranking ranked its nursing school 20th in the world in 2018.
UBC’s school of nursing offers a BSN program for undergraduates; MSN, P.hD., MN-NP, and MHLP for gradates, and Summer programs. The purpose of these programs is to produce nurses who will make a difference in the world.
5. McGill University
Address: 680 Sherbrooke West, Suite 1800, Montreal, QC, Canada.
Tuition: $7,940.10 (Domestic Students), $ $20,229 (International Students)
McGill University is another top university in Canada. It began operation as a public university in Montreal in 182 and presently offers degrees and diploma programs in over 300 academic discipline. Also, just like UToronto and UAlberta, McGill has also produced notable alumni. It has produced five astronauts, the current prime minister of Canada, and the current Governor-General of Canada.
Meanwhile, its Ingram school of nursing began in 1920 and has been providing world-class nursing education ever since. To uphold its mission of training future nurses and optimize the quality of health, the Ingram School of Nursing offers a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BScN) and a Bachelor of Nursing (Integrated) BNI for undergraduate students.
Master’s students, on the other hand, can apply for either the MSc(A) Direct Entry, MSC(A) Nurse Bachelor Entry, MSc(A) Nurse Practitioner, and Global Health Studies. Also, Ingram School of Nursing offers a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Nursing as well as postdoctoral studies.
6. University of Ottawa
Address: 451 Smyth Rd, Ottawa, ON K1H 8M5, Canada.
Tuition: $499/per credit hour
The University of Ottawa (uOttawa) is another university in Canada with the best school of nursing. It began operation as a public university in Ottawa, Canada in 1848 and now has a student population of over 41,000 students. uOttawa is a comprehensive university that offers a large number of degree programs in various fields of study in both English and French. In fact, it is the largest bilingual university in the world, and it boasts of a graduate employment rate of 97%
Also, among the quality programs uOttawa offers is its nursing programs. It offers it through the University of Ottawa School of Nursing which is under the faculty of Health Sciences. This school of nursing in Canada is 30 years old but yet produces one of the best nursing degree programs in Canada. QS World University Ranking ranked uOttawa’s School of Nursing 41st in the world.
For undergraduates, the Ottawa School of Nursing offers the Honours Bachelor in Nursing. However, for graduates, this Canadian nursing school offers the Master of Science in Nursing, <aster of Science Nursing/Diploma Primary Health Care for Nursing Practitioners, Master of Science Nursing Specialization in Women’s Studies, and Doctorate in Philosophy Nursing.
7. Queen’s University at Kingston
Address: 92 Barrie Street Kingston, Ontario K7L 3N6, Canada.
Tuition: $7,333.58 (Domestic Students), $48,077.78 (International Students)
Queen’s University at Kingston is another university in Canada with one of the best school of nursing. Queen’s is an old public university in Canada. It began its operation in 1841 and presently offers accredited programs to over 28,000 students. Also, Queen’s University at Kingston maintains a rich history. It was the first university west of the maritime provinces to admit women. Today, it has produced alumni who are government officials, academics, and business leaders.
In all its grandeur achievements, Queen’s University as Kingston also offers a variety of nursing programs for undergraduates and graduates. Its school of nursing is one of the best in Ontario, Canada, and the world. QS World ranking places Queen’s University at Kingston’s School of Nursing around the 51st to 100th in the world, making it a nursing school you should definitely love to attend.
Queen’s University’s nursing undergraduate programs include the Bachelor of Nursing Science (BNSc) and BNSc – Accelerated Standing Track. On the other hand, it’s graduate programs are the Ph.D. in Nursing, Master of Nursing Science, Master of Nursing (MN(PHCNP)), Master of Nursing (Post-NP Certificate), and PHCNP Diploma.
8. University of Calgary
Address: 2500 University Drive NW Calgary, AB, Canada.
Tuition: $3,231.54 (Domestic Students), $11,003.04 (International Students)
The University of Calgary or UCalgary is another notable university in Canada that offers one of the best nursing programs. Although it is not as old as most of the universities on this list, UCalgary has 14 faculties and over 85 research institutes and centers. This public university began in 1944 as the Calgary branch of the University of Alberta before it became a separate university in 1966. Nonetheless, the University of Calgary has a total student population of over 25,000 students who study a wide variety of accredited programs in a good number of department and faculties.
Meanwhile, UCalgary’s school of nursing is one of the best in Canada. QS World University ranking ranked it between 51-100 school of nursing in the world. This nursing school in Calgary, Canada offer an undergraduate nursing degree program and several graduate degree program. UCalgary’s undergraduate degree in nursing is the Bachelor of Nursing program at medicine Hat college.
On the other hand, UCalgary’s graduate programs are the Stackable Certificate MN program, Doctoral Program (Ph.D.), Master of Nursing: Thesis-based (MN), Master of Nursing: Course-based (MN), Master of Nursing – Nurse Practitioner (MNNP), Post-Master’s Nurse Practitioner (PMNP), and Master of Nursing/Master of Business Administration (MN/MBA).
9. Université de Montréal
Address: CP 6128, Succursale Centre-ville, Montréal, QC H3C 3J7, Canada.
Tuition: $1,195 per session (Domestic Students), $8,186 per session (International Students)
The Université de Montréal or the University of Montreal is another university in Canada with offering quality nursing programs. This public higher institution in Canada began its operation as way back as 1878 and has over 46,000 students. Meanwhile, at inception, The University of Montreal began as a Satellite Campus of the Universite Laval. However, in 1920 it became what it is today and moved to its present location in Mount Royal. This Canadian comprehensive university offers over 650 undergraduate and graduate programs through its 13 faculties and two affiliated schools.
Among the University of Montreal’s faculties is the faculty of Nursing. This faculty ranks 51-100 in QS World Universities ranking for Nursing Schools in the world. However, the University of Montreal’s faculty of Nursing offers only graduate programs. You can take a Master of Science (MSc) in Nursing, a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Nursing as well as Graduate diplomas in the university of Montreal’s faculty of Nursing.
Another shortcoming of the university is that it offers its degree programs in French. Hence, International students must understand the language perfectly well.
10. The University of Western Ontario
Address: London, Ontario, Canada, N6A 3K7.
Tuition: $6,050.00 (Domestic Students), $39,836.00 (International Students)
The University of Western Ontario (UWO) is a public university in London, Ontario. It began operating as a university as far back as 1878 but rebranded to Western University in 2012. The university boasts of over 35,000 students which take accredited programs in its 11 faculties and schools. However, UWO’s school of nursing is one of the best in Ontario and Canada as a whole.
Western University’s school of nursing ranks 51-100 in QS World University’s School of Nursing World Ranking, 2018. This Canadian nursing school of nursing provides you the knowledge to practice as a Nurse both in Canada and globally.
At Western’s Arthur Labatt Family School of Nursing, you can either take the Western-Fanshawe Collaborative BScN or the Compressed Time Frame (CTF) BScN as an undergraduate nursing student.
11. Dalhousie University
Address: P.O. Box 15000, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, B3H 4R2.
Tuition: $10,857.06 (Domestic Students), $21,071.06 (International Students)
Dalhousie University or Dal is another old university in Canada. It began operating as a public university in 1818 and offers over 4,000 courses and 180 degree programs in 12 faculties to both undergraduate and graduate students. Dal has a total student population of over 20,000 students and it offers one of the best nursing programs in Canada.
Although it doesn’t rank as one of the top 100 schools in QS World University Global School of Nursing, Dalhousie university’s school of nursing has global excellence. Also, this Canadian University’s school of nursing offers undergraduate, graduate, and certificate programs to its nursing students.
As an undergraduate, you can choose between the BScN (Arctic Nursing) program and Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BScN) program. Meanwhile, you can also take certificate programs in Oncology, Public Health, Mental Health, and Acute/Critical Care Nursing as an option to undergraduate nursing degrees. Additionally, Dal offers a Master of Nursing (MN), Master of Science in Nursing (MScN), and Doctor of Nursing (Ph.D.) to nursing graduates.
12. University of Manitoba
Address: 89, Curry Place, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB R3T 2N2, Canada.
Tuition: $5,700 (Domestic Students), $19,100 (International Students)
The University of Manitoba or UM is a prestigious university in Canada. And it houses one of the best nursing schools in Canada. This public university began operation as a university in Winnipeg, Manitoba in 1877 and has a total student population of over 30,000 students. It is the largest university in the province of Manitoba offering a wide range of degree program to domestic and international students.
The University of Manitoba has a College of Nursing in the Rady Faculty of Health Sciences that offers quality nursing programs to nursing students. The programs you can take at UM includes Bachelor of Nursing, Aboriginal Nursing Cohort Initiative, Master of Nursing|Nurse Practitioner, and Ph.D. in Nursing.
13. Université Laval
Address: 89, Curry Place, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB R3T 2N2, Canada.
Tuition: $8,852.28 (Domestic Students), $20,370.78 (International Students)
Université Laval is one of the oldest universities in Canada. It began its operation as a public university in 1663 in Quebec, Canada and has over 43,000 students. The university ranks among the top ten universities in Canada based on research funding and holds the history of the first North American University to offer tertiary education in French. Meanwhile, this French, North American university offers accredited degree programs to its students through its 19 faculties.
One of these faculties is the Université Laval Faculty of Nursing which has been offering quality nursing education to both domestic and international students for 50 years. Université Laval nursing school may not rank the top hundred globally, but it offers some of the best nursing programs in the country with its practical training and modern infrastructure.
Université Laval’s nursing programs include Bachelor of Science in Nursing, Master’s degree in nursing (professional master’s degree, Master of Science in Nursing – with MSc (Master’s Research), Master’s degree and DESS in Adult Client Care (IPSSA), MSc and DESS in Primary Care (IPSPL), and Master of Public Health. This prestigious Canadian nursing school also offers a Doctorate degree program in Nursing and a Doctorate degree program in Community Health.
How much is nursing school in Canada?
The tuition cost of nursing school in Canada will vary according to your preferred nursing school as well as the degree program. The University of Calgary charges as low as $3,231.54 (Domestic Students) and $11,003.04 (International Students) for its Bachelor’s of Nursing program. On the other hand, University of Toronto charges as high as $9,100.00 (Domestic Students) and $51,660.00 (International Students). So, you can estimate the tuition cost of studying an undergraduate nursing degree in Canada within this range.
How do I become a nurse in Canada?
To become a nurse in Canada, you must either complete a two-year diploma program as a Practical nurse, or a four-year bachelor’s degree in Nursing as a Registered Nurse. Afterward, you must sit for and pass the nursing licensing exam to be able to practice as a nurse in Canada.
Is NCLEX accepted in Canada?
Yes, NCLEX is now being accepted in Canada as with nine other countries in the world. So, if you’re a Canadian students or graduate, or international applicant seeking licensure/registration in Canada, you can take the NCLEX at any Pearson VUE test center within Canada, throughout the mainland U.S., and at select test centers internationally.
How many years of schooling is required to be a nurse in Canada?
The minimum number of years it will take you to become a Registered Nurse in Canada is four years, after which you may have to take specialized programs that span for a year or two to become a better practitioner. Meanwhile, some nursing schools in Canada complete their bachelor’s program in three years. Also, you can become a Registered Practical Nurse (RPN) after two years of completing a nursing diploma course and aceing the licensing exam.
How hard is nursing school in Canada?
Nursing, like many other professional discipline, is hard to pull through in College. However, your passion for the profession would most likely keep you in College. Also, Nursing Colleges in the US and Canada are recording a high student retention rate, which means that students complete their program, be it as it may. Meanwhile, if you are concerned about how difficult it is to get into a nursing school in Canada, worry no more. Most nursing schools in Canada have fairly high acceptance rates. However, there are several universities in Canada offering nursing programs where you can switch to if one fails.
Studying a Nursing program in Canada is one of the best decisions you will ever make. In addition to the quality of education you will receive, you will also get the opportunity to help people stay healthy through working in the Canada nursing school’s clinics. However, you may have to first decide the kind of nurse you’ll want to be (especially if you’ll be practicing in Canada) because of the regional restriction to some certain nursing specializations in Canada. Also, if you have decided to attend one of the best nursing programs in Canada, you will definitely need to use this post as a guide to select the school that’ll save cost for you. You can watch the full video below for more details