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Navigating the Nursing Profession in Oklahoma

Updated: Oct 6, 2022

Let us help you land on your dream job here in Oklahoma! Read on this article to know more about the licensing process in Oklahoma, and more!


Through this article, you will be able to know the following:

  • Fees for the licensing

  • Licensing renewal process (step-by-step)

  • Requirements for Continuing Education in Nursing

  • Licensing and certification

  • Job and Salary Expectations of Nurses in Oklahoma

  • Popular hospitals in Oklahoma

  • Nursing associations in Oklahoma

  • Contact details


Fees for the Licensing

The table below shows the required payments for the licensing, whether you are a first-time nurse, applying by endorsement, or renewing your license. For more information, visit the Oklahoma licensing page.

As a nursing compact state, Oklahoma lets nurses obtain multi-state licenses.

*Fees may change without any notice.

**A background check is required in most states, but prices are not usually indicated.


Licensing Renewal Process

  1. Check when your license expires by visiting the Oklahoma Board of Nursing website. Oklahoma has a Verification page for you to verify your license.

  2. Complete all your continuing education requirements BEFORE your license expires.

  3. Apply for your renewal process by going to the Oklahoma Board of Nursing. You may check on the Renewal Information page for more specific information. Be reminded that if your Primary State of Residency is not Oklahoma, you can not apply for a licensure in Oklahoma because it is a compact state. You must declare that Oklahoma is your Primary State of Residency to be able to do so.


Requirements for Continuing Education in Nursing

The following are the Continuing Education Requirements for nurses in Oklahoma.

  • For RN/LPN, you must have 24 contact hours every 2 years; or

    • Provide an evidence that you are employed in a position that requires RNs/LPNs to verify 520 work hours every two years; or

    • Provide an evidence of certification in a nursing specialty area; or

    • Finish refresher course that is Board-approved; or

    • Obtain at least six credit hours in nursing coursework that is related to the nurse’s current level of licensure or higher

  • For APRN, you are required to complete 24 contact hours every 2 years in which 15 hours should be in pharmacotherapeutic; and

  • 2 hours of education in pain management or in opioid use or addiction

  • Must maintain national certification

APRN CE will provide you more specific details about certain requisites for renewal.

The Oklahoma Board of Nursing accepts courses that are ANCC accredited.


Licensing and Certification

Step 1: Education

To earn an Associate Degree in Nursing (ADN), you must attend an accredited institution that offers ADN for 18-24 months. You can also take a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) Degree in an accredited institution. These programs typically take 4 to 5 years to complete. If you have an ADN but you wanna pursue your bachelor’s, there are certain programs that let you earn your BSN in 12 to 18 months. There is also an RN to BSN program that will take one year for you to earn the degree. Said programs let you save on time and money as you work towards advancing your career.

Step 2: Licensing

Six weeks before your graduation, you can start the process of your application for the NCLEX-RN exam. This exam is composed of 75-265 items and you will be given a limit of 5 hours to finish all of it. Failing the exam does not necessarily mean that you do not have the chance anymore. After your first try, you just have to wait for 45 days and you can apply again.

The scope of NCLEX includes questions about: (1) health promotion and maintenance; (2) safe and effective care environment; (3) physiology and integrity; and (4) psychology and integrity.

Step 3: Experience

This time, you must learn how to take the opportunities in gaining first-hand experiences in dealing with patients, with colleagues and superiors, and with the different situations that you might face. These invaluable experiences will make you more attractive to bigger employers in the future.

Step 4: Certification

Your last step is to obtain certifications for your chosen career. There are different requirements for earning a certification, depending on your preferences so it is important to check with the governing provider for information. You can attend several trainings, seminars or workshops in varied institutions for this purpose.


Job and Salary Expectations of Nurses in Oklahoma

Shortage of healthcare professionals, specifically nurses, has been a perennial issue in the country. This makes nurses highly in demand during this period of time. This profession will increase by about 9% from 2020 to 2030. The average annual salary is $68,180.

Let us help you check out average wages of nurses to help determine if Oklahoma is the right place for you.


Popular Hospitals in Oklahoma

Still not decided on whether to work as a nurse in Oklahoma or not? This list of the best hospitals in the state will surely help you make that decision to go in the right direction. U.S. News and World Report made a list of the best and popular hospitals in Oklahoma. Here are some of them:

  • St. Francis Hospital Tulsa – (Tulsa, OK):

    • Regionally ranked #1 in Oklahoma and in Tulsa

    • Rated high performing in 10 adult procedures and conditions

    • General medical and surgical facility

    • Specialties include Colon Cancer, Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Repair, Diabetes, Stroke, and Maternity Care (uncomplicated pregnancy)

  • Ascension St. John Medical Center-Tulsa - (Tulsa, OK):

    • Regionally ranked #2 in Oklahoma and in Tulsa

    • Rated high performing in 7 adult procedures and conditions

    • General medical and surgical facility

    • Specialties include Colon Cancer, Heart Attack, Kidney Failure, and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)

  • Integris Baptist Medical Center - (Oklahoma City, OK):

    • Regionally ranked #3 in Oklahoma and #1 in Oklahoma City

    • Rated high performing in 6 adult procedures and conditions

    • General medical and surgical facility

    • Part of the Magnet Recognition Program®

    • Specialties include Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Repair, Heart Attack, Diabetes, and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD)

  • AllianceHealth-Durant - (Durant, OK):

    • Rated high performing in 1 adult procedure or condition

    • General medical and surgical facility

    • Specialties include Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), among other fields.

  • Ascension St. John Broken Arrow Hospital - (Broken Arrow, OK):

    • Rated high performing in 3 adult procedures or conditions

    • General medical and surgical facility

    • Specialties include Orthopedics, among other fields.

*The American Nurses Credentialing Center (ANCC) awards Magnet Status to Hospitals that apply and meet certain criteria. This award is also considered as the “gold standard” for excellence in nursing practice and care.


Nursing Associations in Oklahoma

Becoming a member of a nursing association opens a lot of opportunities to your career growth. It gives you the advantages of varied job offers and networking, and a bunch of information and experiences shared between you and your fellow nurses. Through these organizations, learning and professional growth never stop. Listed below are just a few of the nursing organizations that you can find and join once you are in Oklahoma.

Association of Oklahoma Nurse Practitioners “This institution lives in the belief that providing better networking to members will advocate best-standards of healthcare and improve the identity and sustainability of nurse practitioners.”

Oklahoma Nurses Association “Members of this organization work together as professional nurses in varied specialties and practices. They focus on issues that nurses encounter everyday.”

Indian Nurses Association of Oklahoma “This nurses’ group is for all registered professional nurses and nursing students from India. They create the best standards in nursing practice and healthcare by cooperation and networking, and advocating professional growth.”

For more information about the nursing associations, you may visit the comprehensive list of national organizations as well.


Contact Details

Oklahoma Board of Nursing

Phone: (405) 962-1800

Fax: (405) 962-1821


2915 Classen

Suite 524

Oklahoma City, OK 73106

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