10 Best Neonatal Nursing Colleges | Programs and Tuition

Most nursing programs provide a variety of electives within the nursing field, allowing students to concentrate their knowledge in a particular area. Neonatal Nursing is one such vital branch in the nursing field. Hence, we will understand the best neonatal nursing colleges in 2023; their Programs, and tuition.

Nurses who want to specialize in a particular environment, such as: As neonatal care, are looking at the school for additional opportunities.

This may include volunteering, applying for a summer internship after starting the clinical rotation or applying for a job in the faculty during the graduate clinic before graduating. New nurses who start in an intensive care unit receive a comprehensive orientation with continuous education and on-the-job training.

In this particular exhaustive writing, we promise to unravel every single detail you need to be aware of concerning the best neonatal nursing colleges; their programs, and tuition, which will aid you in making a well-informed choice about your nursing career.

What is Neonatal Nursing?

Neonatal care is a branch of healthcare that focuses on caring for babies born prematurely or having health problems such as birth defects, infections, or heart defects.

Nurses for newborns are registered nurses who specialize in working with these young, vulnerable patients. Many neonatal nurses work in neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) and provide highly specialized medical care for vulnerable neonates.

Do Neonatal nurses work with babies?

Newborn nurses mainly work with infants under one month, although they may work with children until infancy. Many of their patients are brought to intensive care due to premature birth or serious illness.

Neonatal nurses are well-versed in the subtleties of infant care, including special procedures for intravenous infusion, blood draws and oxygen administration.

Neonatal nurses handle various tasks, from changing diapers to administering medications. In each ICU shift, they handle one to four babies with different needs and challenges.

Many works with the same babies until they are released, but some may offer home care. Those with advanced certification work as part of an operation team or help in high-risk work and delivery situations.

Neonatal nurses work with newborns with various problems such as congenital defects, premature babies, surgical problems and other body malformations. The spectrum of a neonatal nurse ranges from minimal supportive care to highly complex intensive care.

Neonatal Nurses are health professionals who can handle newborns during the first four weeks of life. They can work either in the community or in specialized neonatal departments. This field’s specialization can vary in Level I, Level II, and Level III.

Stage II is reserved for newborns who have been prematurely delivered or have a disease requiring immediate care. These newborns usually require special treatment, e.g. Intravenous fluid delivery, special feeding, oxygen therapy, and medication. They usually take time to mature and grow before being released.

Stage III neonatal care refers to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU). Nurses for newborns of this grade care for very sick newborns, often with congenital problems or small premature babies. Newborns may need intensive care, such as incubators, ventilators, surgical procedures, and other aids.

What are the educational requirements for the study of Neonatal Nursing?

To become a newborn nurse, you must first enroll in a recognized nursing school. You must complete both the Bachelor’s and Master’s degree programs.

An Associate Degree in Nursing prepares students for a nursing career with courses in pharmacology, anatomy, communication, patient care, and nursing principles. In this course, you will need to work with the patient’s family members to apply the skills you have learned in the classroom.

Bachelor’s programs in nursing (BSN) often aim to assist working nurses in successfully completing the program. The BSN program often comprises course topics such as intensive care, nutrition, physiology, health assessment, and microbiology.

To work as a neonatal caregiver, you must have a Master of Science degree in Nursing Care. This specialization includes courses in neonatal care, child pharmacology, fetal physiology, and health system fundamentals.

Newborn nurses must pass a certification exam by gaining two years or up to 2,000 hours of clinical experience as neonatal nurses.

Are there skills needed for neonatal nursing?

Besides the general skills imperative for nurses to possess (e.g., commitment, compassion, care, competence, courage, and communication), neonatal nurses should have:

  • Excellent interpersonal skills
  • Kindhearted understanding for the parents, guardian, and family members
  • Natural interest in newborn infants
  • Deep understanding of the psychological and physiological needs of a newborn
  • Ability to work in a highly technical work environment
  • Ability to work effectively along with a healthcare team

Regardless of the nursing level, the nurses must also work with the baby’s parents. It is one of their duties to inform parents about the proper care of newborns.

The neonatal nurse helps parents to bathe, feed, and care for while the baby is in the hospital. As a rule, they form a bridge between the specialist and the parents when they work with the newborn.

How much are Neonatal Nurses paid?

A neonatal nurse’s work is precious; infants in precarious medical situations depend on their survival knowledge. Although the rewards far exceed the money, the financial incentive is still a consideration for those intending to continue this career.

While the Bureau of Labor Statistics does not provide specific data on the incomes of neonatal careers, it provides information for general care professionals.

In May 2014, the registered average nurse’s annual average income was $66,640, while those in the 90th percentile earned $98,880 annually. People who earn certifications or a higher degree may earn even more.

Neonatal nurses can also work as a nurse. The average starting salary of a neonatal nurse is between $50,000 and $67,000 per year.

The salary can increase if he or she earns considerable experience as a neonatal nurse. Neonatal Nurses earn an annual average of $80,000 to $100,000.

Studies have shown that the demand for neonatal nurses over the next decade is expected to increase due to the emerging technology that allows premature or very sick babies to survive during the neonatal period.

Can I do a Neonatal Nursing degree online?

Most neonatal programs offer an online format that allows newborn nurses to continue their work while earning a higher degree. The average compensation for an NNP is $107,550 per year.

In the United States, the need for NNP and neonatal nurses is higher than ever, and with the right certification, employment prospects are high.

List of Colleges offering Neonatal Nursing

Most programs assume you are already a well-educated and practicing neonatal nurse with a minimum of 3.0 in your college career. Programs prepare students for a challenging career in the neonatal department and help those who need to go through these units with their premature babies.

Here are the majority of schools providing neonatal care: some of them also offer an online degree

University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing

Tuition fees: $41,134 per year

The University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, is a private research university that will be ranked first in the list of best pediatric nurse programs in the US and World Report in 2023.

The same source named the School of Nursing as the third-best US graduate school for nursing and the eighth-best national university in 2023.

The University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing offers two newborn and MSN neonatal programs. These are both on-campus programs.

The Nursing Nurses Master’s program is open to Registered Nurses (RNs) with over two years of experience in the neonatal intensive care unit. The one-year program offers courses in high-risk neonatal treatment and theory, pediatric pharmacology, and developmental physiology.

Program: BSN, MSN, neonatal care

School Portal

Vanderbilt University School of Nursing

Tuition fees: $45,610 per year

Vanderbilt University in Nashville was voted number 4 in the list of top pediatric nursing schools, and the School of Nursing ranked number 8 in the national ranking of the academic nursing program in 2023.

This private research university offers a program for neonatal nurses, leading to a post-master certificate.

Applicants must have MSN and at least two years of high-risk neonatal experience. Graduates of the program are qualified to work in neonatal, interim, and neonatal intensive care units.

The program is also offered in a distance learning format over the weekend and online courses.

Program: MSN, Doctorate in pediatric nursing

School Portal

University of Arizona College of Nursing

Tuition fees: $11,769(In-state students), $34,967(Out-of-state students) per year

University of Arizona College of nursing in Tempe offers a BSN-DNP program for prospective nurses. This program combines classroom training with hands-on experience in Phoenix medical facilities and is offered full-time or part-time.

Students also receive simulated clinical training on the school’s simulation and learning resources (SLR).

ASU’s hybrid online and in-person program offers over 500 clinical sites to help you complete your program. The program stipulates that students only meet twice per semester to meet the housing requirements.

It offers a part-time program that is both online and personal. Admission requires that the applicant is already a practicing nurse.

Program: RNP, BSN, DNP program

School Portal

University of Texas Arlington College of Nursing and Health Innovation, Arlington, TX

Tuition fees: $19,500 per year

The University of Texas-Arlington Neonatal Nurse Practitioner Program offers a wide range of options, including online and private lessons and part-time and full-time courses.

Students can perform their clinical rotations at their place of residence and only need to travel to campus twice during the program to meet their housing requirements.

Admission requires the presentation of previous certificates and admission as a current nurse.

Program: BSN, MSN in neonatal care

School Portal

UMKC School Nursing and Health Studies, Kansas City

Tuition fees: $20,426 per year

The University of Missouri Kansas City School Nursing and Health Studies – Kansas City program not only focuses on caring for newborns but also on their families during the difficult time they spend in the hospital.

They teach things like kindergarten theory, research, cultural diversity, and more. This comprehensive program ensures the nurses are able to take care of any problems they encounter while working in the neonatal ward.

Admission requires experience and the equivalent of 2 years of clinical practice within the last five years as an RN in the ICU

Program: BSN

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College of Nursing – Chicago Nursing School | Rush University

Tuition fees: $1066 per credit hour

Rush University offers a purely online program for neonatal nurses with clinical rotations organized on-site for those who already have a nursing profession. Rush University offers one of the best accredited online neonatal nurse programs in the US.

The part-time online program usually takes 2.5 to 3.5 years. Graduates leave school to practice in the normal neonatal, intensive, and intermediate levels.

This program is perfect for those who want a great program that is comprehensive and that helps to prepare nurses for all eventualities they might come in contact with.

They use a case study format and have small class sizes for the best possible single program.

Admission requires that you already have experience in neonatal care

Program: BSN, MSN

School Portal

University of Connecticut School of Nursing, Storrs, CT

Tuition fees: $2,475 per 3-hour credit

The University of Connecticut offers both an online and an on-campus program for those who want to choose between different delivery methods.

The online program is the most popular and offers students the opportunity to graduate while attending courses that are innovative, interesting, and provide a comprehensive education.

Admission Requirements: At least two years experience at full-time RN level in a neonatal setting

Program: Baccalaureate degree, master’s degree, Doctor of Nursing Practice program, and post-graduate APRN certificate program

School Portal

Nell Hodgson Woodruff School of Nursing – Emory University, Atlanta GA

Tuition fees: $46,314 per year

The Neonatal Nurse Practitioner program at Emory University is the only program in Georgia and offers a hybrid format for students.

Program graduates have the experience they need to find work in a neonatal hospital easily. The program requires students to take personal classes, online content, and 700 hours of direct patient care.

Program: BSN, MSN, Accelerated BSN

School Portal

Louise Herrington School of Nursing | Baylor University, Waco, Texas

Tuition fees: $1,650 per credit hour for full-time students

Louise Herrington School of Nursing at Baylor University offers a fully online program, the DNP Neonatal Nurse Practitioner Program. The program is online and can be completed with two different online immersions. It offers courses that take on average three years.

Program duration or credit hours 75 credit points and 1,125 internship hours

Program: MSN

School Portal

Bouve College of Health Sciences, Northeastern University

Tuition fees: $59.684 per year

This online program, run by the Bouve College of Health Sciences, offers a program to help nurses prepare for the challenges posed by NNP.

This program is fully online and is perfect for students who already have a Nursing Job and would like to receive further certification, but may not have the time to attend an on-campus program.

The curriculum focuses on advancing, advanced nursing knowledge and includes topics such as common life-threatening neonatal diseases, neonatal pharmacology, early detection and evaluation of high-risk newborns, and advanced physiology and pathophysiology.

In the first semester of the second year, students start their internship.

School Portal


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