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Navigating the Nursing Profession in Texas

Updated: May 16, 2022



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

  • Popular hospitals in Texas

  • Nursing associations in Texas

  • 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. You can also visit the Texas licensing page to know more details.



Texas allows nurses to hold multi-state licenses because it is one of the nursing compact states in the country.

*Fees may change without any notice.


 

Licensing Renewal Process

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

  2. Before your license expires, make sure that you have completed the requirements for continuing education.

  3. Apply for your renewal process by going to the Texas 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 Texas, you can not apply for a licensure in Texas because it is a compact state. You must declare that Texas 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 Texas.

  • For RN/LPN, your renewal is biennially. You must obtain the following:

  • complete 20 contact hours of continuing nursing education (CNE) related to nurse’s area of practice; OR

  • evidence of the achievement, maintenance, or renewal of a Board-approved national nursing certification related to nurse’s area of practice

  • For APRN, you are required to renew every 2 years. The following are requirements for renewal:

  • complete 20 contact hours of continuing nursing education (CNE) related to nurse’s area of practice appropriate to the advanced practice role and population focus area recognized by the Board; OR

  • proof of achievement, maintenance, or renewal of a Board-approved national nursing certification in the nurse’s area of practice; AND

  • meet the applicable targeted continuing education requirements

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

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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. Roughly you will spend 4-5 years to earn this degree. For those who already have ADN, there are certain programs that lead you to BSN and it will only take you 12-18 months. There is also an RN to BSN program that will take one year for you to earn the degree. The said programs will let you save a bunch of money and time and you can easily take chances to be on your dream job.


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.

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Job and Salary Expectations of Nurses in Texas

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 $76,800

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


 

Popular Hospitals in Texas

Still not decided on whether to work as a nurse in Texas 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 Texas. Here are some of them:

  • Houston Methodist Hospital – (Houston, TX):

  • ✔regionally ranked #1 in Texas and in Houston

  • ✔ranked No. 16 on the Best Hospitals Honor Roll

  • ✔ nationally ranked in 10 adult specialties

  • ✔rated high performing in 17 adult procedures and conditions

  • ✔general medical and surgical facility and a teaching hospital

  • ✔part of the Magnet Recognition Program®

  • ✔Some specialties of the hospital include Cardiology & Heart Surgery (#15 in the nation), Diabetes & Endocrinology (#16 in the nation), and Cancer (#23 in the nation)

  • UT Southwestern Medical Center – (Dallas, TX):

  • ✔regionally ranked #2 in Texas and #1 in Dallas-Fort Worth

  • ✔nationally ranked in 9 adult specialties

  • ✔rated high performing in 1 adult specialty and 14 procedures and conditions

  • ✔general medical and surgical facility and a teaching hospital

  • ✔Some specialties of the hospital include Cardiology & Heart Surgery (#11 in the nation), Rehabilitation (#17 in the nation), and Neurology & Neurosurgery (#19 in the nation)

  • Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center – (Houston, TX):

  • ✔regionally ranked #3 in Texas and #2 in Houston

  • ✔nationally ranked in 5 adult specialties

  • ✔rated high performing in 2 adult specialties and 13 procedures and conditions

  • ✔general medical and surgical facility and a teaching hospital

  • ✔part of the Magnet Recognition Program®

  • ✔Some specialties of the hospital include Cardiology & Heart Surgery (#13 in the nation), Gastroenterology & GI Surgery (#24 in the nation), and Cancer (#25 in the nation)

  • Memorial Hermann Greater Heights Hospital – (Houston, TX):

  • ✔regionally ranked #6 in Texas and #4 in Houston

  • ✔rated high performing in 5 adult specialties and 9 procedures and conditions

  • ✔general medical and surgical facility

  • ✔Some specialties of the hospital include Colon Cancer Surgery, Heart Attack & Heart Failure, Diabetes, Gynecology, Nephrology, Stroke, Knee Replacement and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).

  • Memorial Hermann Memorial City Medical Center – (Houston, TX):

  • ✔regionally ranked #6 in Texas and #4 in Houston

  • ✔nationally ranked in 1 adult specialty

  • ✔rated high performing in 11 adult procedures and conditions

  • ✔general medical and surgical facility

  • ✔Some specialties of the hospital include Colon Cancer Surgery, Cardiology & Heart Surgery, Nephrology, Stroke, Hip & Knee Replacement, Pneumonia, and Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).

*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 Texas

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 Texas.

Texas Nurses Association: “This nursing group aims to empower nurses in the state to improve the quality of their profession.”

Texas Emergency Nurses Association: “The main objective of this association is to lead in patient safety and excel in emergency nursing practice.”

Texas Association of Nurse Anesthetists: The mission of this association is “advancing patient safety and the profession of nurse anesthesia.”

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



 

Contact Details

Texas Board of Nursing

Phone: (512) 305-7400

Fax: (512) 305-7401

Website: https://www.bon.texas.gov/

333 Guadalupe

Suite 3-460

Austin, TX 78701-3944