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KU School of Nursing ranks 22nd on U.S. News Best Colleges ranking

September 14, 2021

By Anne Christiansen-Bullers

Three nursing students wearing masks practice skills in the Skills Lab
Nursing students pursuing their Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) practice many hands-on skills in the KU School of Nursing's lab. U.S. News and World Report recently ranked the school 22nd among all public schools surveyed offering a BSN.

U.S. News and World Report has ranked the University of Kansas School of Nursing in its top-25 best undergraduate nursing programs in the nation

Its Best Colleges Rankings for 2022 placed the KU School of Nursing 22nd among other public colleges and universities. The nursing school tied for 31st overall among all higher education institutions. In total, 694 programs offering a Bachelor of Science in Nursing were judged.

First-ever undergraduate nursing list

Even though U.S. News and World Report has provided college rankings yearly since 1983, this was the first year that undergraduate nursing programs were ranked.

"The nursing faculty, staff and students can be excited by such a national acknowledgement of their hard work and dedication to quality," said Sally Maliski, Ph.D., RN, F.A.A.N., dean of the KU School of Nursing. "We've had some experience with rankings in some of our graduate programs, but for the undergraduate program to debut this high on the new list - it's a great feeling."

For the academic year 2020-21, the online Master of Science degree in nursing ranked 47th among all public colleges and universities offering graduate nursing programs. In that same year (and also for the academic year 2019-20), the Nursing-Midwifery program within the KU School of Nursing was ranked 11th overall among the public institutions. Both of these School of Nursing programs are graduate level, and U.S. News & World Report releases its graduate-school rankings each spring and its undergraduate ranks in the fall.

Comparison of peer institutions

The School of Nursing worked with the University of Kansas Medical Center's Office of Enterprise Analytics to complete surveys sent to them by U.S. News and World Report. Though the surveys are time-consuming and detailed, Maliski said, it does offer the School of Nursing a side-by-side comparison of peer institutions.

"And in this case, it tells us we're on the right track," Maliski said.

Cynthia Teel, Ph.D, RN, F.A.A.N., associate dean of academic affairs for the KU School of Nursing, said she thought the ranking was a validation of the school as a national leader in undergraduate nursing education.

"People want to be students in the KU School of Nursing because they know they will receive an outstanding education that prepares them for the demanding and in-demand profession of nursing," Teel said. "The pandemic has shown us how important nurses are to the health care system, and our graduates are ready to face the challenge."

The list was released Sept. 13, 2021. For more information, visit

Last modified: Sep 14, 2021