A Simple Guide on How to Become an RN in North Dakota

How to Become an RN in North Dakota featured image

Are you planning to become an RN in North Dakota? Good for you!

There has been a growing demand for registered nurses in the state, which is projected to continue up to 2030!

So if you’re worried that there won’t be enough RN positions, you can put that worry to rest. 

All you need to think about now is how to become an RN in North Dakota. 

How do you start the application process and what are the requirements?

Well, we’re here to help you out!

Read more to see our simple step-by-step guide on becoming a registered nurse in North Dakota and to see some FAQS 

Ready? Let’s begin! 

How to Become a Registered Nurse in North Dakota in 4 Steps

The road to becoming an RN takes a few years, but the application process is not complex. 

There are only four steps you need to follow to become an RN in North Dakota

Here’s what you have to do:

  1. Complete an approved nursing education program
  2. Apply for a license online
  3. Submit a Criminal History Record Check (CHRC) to the Board of Nursing
  4. Pass the NCLEX-RN

In the following sections, we will talk about how to accomplish each step so you don’t get confused about what to do first. 

But before anything else, it’s worth noting that these steps are only for those who are wanting to become RNs for the first time… 

If you are already an RN in another state but want to become an RN in North Dakota, then the steps will differ for you. You can check out the process in the FAQs section.

How to Become an RN in North Dakota Step #1: Complete an Approved Nursing Education Program

A nursing education program is a requirement for all aspiring registered nurses. The nursing education program will teach you what you need to know to become a nurse, plus help you prepare for the NCLEX. 

There are two programs you can choose from – ADN or BSN. 

ADN, short for Associate Degree in Nursing, is a two-year program whose curriculum is focused on technical aspects of nursing. In other words, it focuses on chart monitoring and updating and record-tracking. 

This is not to say that ADN graduates do not do medical procedures; they still do. However, compared to BSN graduates, the former has limited laboratory practice and is not taught a lot of evidence-based research. 

On the other hand, BSN, or Bachelor of Science in Nursing, is a four-year program that teaches the full coverage of the ADN curriculum plus subjects in laboratory, research, and management. 

The main advantage of a BSN degree is that it allows you to pursue research and other management roles in the nursing industry. 

However, the main disadvantage for BSN takers is that they have to complete four years of study. This may be a big difference to the two years of ADN, but the career opportunities of the former can make up for that. 

Choosing between an ADN or a BSN is really up to you… because only you know your own career goals and how much time and money you can spend for a nursing degree.

Just make sure that whatever program you enroll in, it is approved by the North Dakota Board of Nursing. You can find a list of approved programs here

How to Become an RN in North Dakota Step #2: Apply for a License Online

A few weeks before your graduation, you can already start the application process for a registered nurse license. 

Here are the steps to apply for a license online: 

  1. Fill up the online application form for those who are applying for a License by Examination.
  2. Pay the application fee of $130.
  3. Submit your transcript of records to the North Dakota Board of Nursing. Your school should be the one to mail your records to the Board.

Once your transcript of records is received and your application processed, you will be emailed an authorization to test (ATT) which will allow you to take the NCLEX.

How to Become an RN in North Dakota Step #3: Submit a Criminal History Record Check (CHRC) to the Board of Nursing

While waiting for your ATT, you can already start processing your CHRC. 

To do this, contact your law enforcement agency or a private fingerprinting agency. Schedule a fingerprinting appointment. 

If you’re not taking your fingerprint scan at your local law enforcement agency, request the private company to do an FBI Applicant card (FD-258). This is the standard fingerprint scan accepted by the Board of Nursing. 

Once you finish the fingerprint scanning, submit your CHRC along with the form found here to the North Dakota Board of Nursing. Submit this via mail to the following address: 919 S 7th Street, Suite 504; Bismarck, ND 58504.

How to Become an RN in North Dakota Step #4: Pass the NCLEX-RN

While waiting for your CHRC verification by the Board, you can already apply for the NCLEX. 

If you’ve already finished Step 2, you should have an ATT by now. Once you have this, do the following steps: 

  1. Go to NCLEX.com.
  2. Create an account at PearsonVue.
  3. Choose your schedule and testing venue.
  4. Pay the exam fee of $200 online using a credit or debit card.

After paying the fee, you will receive a confirmation of your testing date and venue via email. 

Take the test and make sure to keep an eye out in the next 4-6 weeks for the results. 

If you don’t pass the first time, North Dakota allows you to retake the exam. You just have to reapply after 45 days from your last exam date. 

Frequently Asked Questions About Becoming a Registered Nurse in North Dakota

Now that you already know how to become an RN in North Dakota using our simple guide, it’s time to answer some common questions. 

How much does it cost to become an RN in North Dakota?

The online application fee is $130 for those applying for a license by examination. The NCLEX-RN is another $200. 

As for the fingerprint scan, this cost varies depending on where you will take your scans. 

How do I get a nursing license in North Dakota?

You may start applying for a Board-approved nursing education program taking either ADN or BSN. After graduation, you can apply online for your license, take the NCLEX-RN, and complete a criminal history record check. 

How long is the nursing program in North Dakota?

For those studying full-time, the ADN will be two years, and the BSN will be four years. It may take longer for part-time students. 

The application, however, takes a few weeks starting from the online application to the receiving of your NCLEX-RN results. 

Can I apply for an RN license if I am already an RN in another state?

Yes. If you hold an active RN license in another state, you may apply for a License by Endorsement. 

You may check the requirements and process here

Is North Dakota a nursing license compact state?

Yes, it is. This means that you can have a multistate RN license that allows you to practice as an RN in another nursing compact state. 

Just make sure you comply with all the requirements for a multistate license. 

Helpful Resources for North Dakota RNs

List of Associate Degree Programs (ADNs) in North Dakota

Here’s a list of ADN programs approved by the North Dakota BON:

Bismarck State College
Dakota Nursing Program Consortium
PO Box 5587
Bismarck ND 58506-5587
Phone (800) 445-5073

Dakota College at Bottineau
Dakota Nursing Program Consortium
105 Simrall Boulevard
Bottineau ND 58318-1159
Phone (800) 542-6866

Lake Region State College
Dakota Nursing Program Consortium
1801 N College Dr
Devils Lake ND 58301
Phone (701) 662-1569

Williston State College
Dakota Nursing Program Consortium
PO Box 1326
Williston ND 58801-1326
Phone (701) 774-4290

North Dakota State College of Science
800 6th St N
Wahpeton ND 58075-3602
Phone (701) 671-2967

Visit the North Dakota BON website for updates.

List of Baccalaureate Degree Programs (BSNs) in North Dakota

Here’s a list of BSN programs approved by the North Dakota BON:

Dickinson State University
291 Campus Dr
Dickinson ND 58601-4896
Phone (701) 483-2133

Minot State University
500 University Ave W
Minot ND 58707
Phone (701) 858-3101

Rasmussen University
4012 19th Ave S
Fargo ND 58103
Phone (701) 277-5604

North Dakota State University
Department of Nursing – Dept 2670 PO Box 6050/136 Sudro Hall Fargo ND 58108-6050
Phone (701) 231-7772

NDSU Nursing at Sanford Health
512 N 7th St
Bismarck ND 58501-4494
Phone (701) 323-6271

University of Jamestown
6010 College Lane
Jamestown ND 58405
Phone (701) 252-3467 Ext 5497

University of Mary
7500 University Dr
Bismarck ND 58504
Phone (701) 255-7500

University of North Dakota
430 Oxford St Stop 9025
Grand Forks ND 58202-9025
Phone (701) 777-4553

Visit the North Dakota BON website for updates.

In Summary

From this guide, we know that the application process to be a registered nurse in North Dakota is not complicated. All it takes are four steps and a few years to complete your nursing education program. 

So in order to pursue your career in nursing, we suggest that you start by enrolling in an RN program now!

We wish you all the best and hope you found this helpful!

If you have any other questions, leave us a comment below.

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