School Comparison

Top Nursing Schools In Canada Rankings 2021

Farmers could boast of feeding nations, Lawyers could pride themselves in fighting for human rights, and lots of other professions contribute one way or the other to the growth, development, and betterment of Nations. Perhaps, some might even argue that their profession is better than others. Nevertheless, only a few of these professions experience, on a daily basis, an inexplicable joy from within their profession, and a nexus of job satisfaction and nobility. One of the few professions that meet these requirements is Nursing and Midwifery.

Globally, the need for nurses and midwives is on the exponential increase and the profession, according to the latest publication by the World Health Organization, accounts for 50% of the health workforce worldwide. According to Annual Gallup Survey (2017), nursing is rated, for 16 consecutive years, as the most-trusted profession worldwide. If you have a passion for saving lives, you want to help the sick to be hale and healthy, and you have compassion for others irrespective of their race, gender, age, or religion, Nursing and Midwifery is your best bet.

However, if you want to study Nursing in Canada – the second largest country and one of the most promising and convenient countries to live in the world, you will find this article indispensable as it will guide you through the process of selecting the right institution for your prospect.

You can now clinch a glass of water, relax, and take a look at the top 20 Nursing Schools in Canada.


20. Conestoga College

The minimum requirement for nursing registration with the College of Nurses of Ontario is a baccalaureate degree in nursing. This is why Conestoga College (in collaboration with McMaster University and Mohawk College) is working to meet this requirement. Coming last in the league of top 20 nursing schools in Canada, the Conestoga College offer a wide range of nursing curriculum, which leads to a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BScN) degree.

The institution often encourages all prospective nursing students to carefully look through the abilities and requisite skills for practicing nursing as in Ontario as outlined by the College of Nurses of Ontario (and the core requirements for study in baccalaureate nursing programs in Ontario as stated by the Council of Ontario University Programs in Nursing) before considering a nursing career.


19. Northern College

The Northern College is a significant partner in the Laurentian University BScN Collaborative Program. This position helps the nursing students at the Northern College to complete all four years of their nursing program at Northern College in a serene environment with labs equipped with integrative simulation equipment.

Learning experience at this nursing school in Canada is enhanced through new technologies like web-based tools and specialized software packages, consultation, and cooperation with peers and faculty via shared activities. All these are put in place to provide an excellent learning opportunity (and experience) for nursing students.


18. Mohawk College

The BScN program at Mohawk College is unique in the sense that it makes use of problem-based learning approach, which entails self-directed and small group learning that is based on independent learning, interpersonal skills, and leadership qualities. This does not however exclude the study of nursing, psychological, physiological and social sciences, and humanities.

Studying at this top-ranking nursing school in Canada expose students to:

  • How to provide holistic nursing and person-centered care across the life span
  • How to critically evaluate and gather research to provide evidence-based practice and promote critical thinking
  • How to develop the necessary skills to work in interdisciplinary healthcare teams
  • How to develop the competence needed to meet the Registered Nurses Entry to Practice Standards as stated by the College of Nurses of Ontario.


17. George Brown College

If caring for other people makes you feel fulfilled and you want to study in one of the best nursing schools in Canada, be sure that George Brown College is a good pick to become a nurse who works in a field that is experiencing continuous growth. The Sally Horsfall Eaton School of Nursing at George Brown College provides interested students with degree programs, diploma, and certificate programs alike which can launch students into research, teaching, sales, and also healthcare administration.

Students will be made to study in the state of art Daphne Cockwell Center for Health Sciences located at the Waterfront Campus where they will learn the necessary skills from faculty members who are active in the field of healthcare services. Also, the institution enhances student’s learning experiences via a high-tech Simulation Center where they apply all they have learned in true-to-life practice situations on high-tech mannequins.


16. St Clair College

The Nursing degree program at St Clair College helps graduates work within the scope of nursing practice as well as in compliance with the regulations of the College of Nurses of Ontario. This implies that those who study at this leading nursing school in Canada will be able to properly take care of groups, individual patients, family members, and others.

Also, graduates will be eligible to sit for the National Council Licensure Examination- Registered Nurse (NCLEC – RN) to achieve the desired professional status of Registered Nurse in Canada. Upon successful completion of the Practical Nursing diploma program, graduates can also sit for the Canadian Registered Practical Nurse Examination (CRPNE) that is administered by the College of Nurses of Ontario (CNO).


15. Ryerson University

At Ryerson University, the nursing program is designed to provide students with solid opportunities and theoretical foundations. This is made possible via research and learning experience during their four years of study where students are exposed to knowledgeable and dedicated instructors (who possess strong clinical engagements both in Canada and globally.

At this top-ranking nursing school in Canada, students are also taught to take a critical approach to the present healthcare challenges for families, individuals, and communities. This in turn help students acquire the required ability and knowledge to help them make a cognitive change in their societies.


14. Trent University

The Trent/Fleming School of Nursing is one of the top nursing schools in Canada that emphasizes a holistic approach to healthcare. Graduates of these compressed and collaborative programs are usually known and recognized in the nursing industry as deep thinkers and analysts whose opinions and scientific knowledge are deeply rooted in the values of social and professional responsibility.

In respect of its accreditation by the Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing, the program spread across a wide range of nursing contexts. Starting their first year with practice, theory and development required skills through seminars, lectures, simulation labs, case studies, clinical practice, and online coursework; students would have practiced nursing in a range of community and hospital settings before their final year which usually prepare them for a fulfilling nursing career.


13. Ontario Tech University

One of the interesting courses that have been gaining the attention of the general public is nursing. Understanding this is why Ontario Tech University makes itself a top choice and one of the best universities to study nursing in Canada for both local and international students.

The nursing program at Ontario Tech University comes dynamically. The institution commits to leading-edge technology, state of art practice, and practical know-how to help students position themselves into the nursing career (even while they are yet students).

Offered in collaboration with Durham College, the four-year bachelor of science in nursing program will get students acquainted with the scientific practice of nursing via:

  • Clinical skills
  • Community care
  • Group care
  • Family care
  • Individual care


12. York University

Coming next among the top leading nursing schools in Canada is York University. Known for its innovation and leadership in nursing and healthcare, the York’s School of Nursing has helped the communities by training students who in turn become professionals in the field of nursing.

The institution believes that every individual (and patients) has their personal story, which is why the institution has devised a teaching approach to help students respect patients’ choices and values about quality of life and health. Students are made to understand this via reflective thinking, dialogue, practice, modeling, and experiential group process.


11. University of New Brunswick

The four-year Bachelor of Nursing program at the University of New Brunswick provides students with the requirements to meet the world’s future and present healthcare needs.

As a top choice when in search of the best universities to study nursing in Canada, the University of New Brunswick offer hands-on clinical experience to students in their first year. Therefore, students graduate from this nursing school with the merit of more clinical practice, experience as well as one on one attention from their professors.

Other merits of studying in the university’s nursing school include

  • Small class sizes
  • First-year hands-on experience
  • Support for Indigenous nursing students
  • Our 12-week practicum in the final year of study
  • Most clinical courses offer a 7:1 student-to-faculty ratio
  • Peer support from the Nursing Society


10. Queen’s University



Since 1841, Queen’s University has been making waves in the educational industry, from making outstanding researches and innovations to producing notable alumni who are world-renowned leaders, academics, researchers, business tycoons, among others. Its Nursing School, known as Kingston’s School of Nursing, never falls below Queen’s standard in delivering high-quality nursing education and producing experts in the highly respected profession. It is never a hyperbole that the Queen’s University Kingston School of Nursing competes heavily with the other Ivy League institutions in the QS World Ranking for Nursing Schools.   

Its courses span across BNSc and an Accelerated Standing Track (BNSc), Masters of Nursing programs, Doctoral degree programs, and Post-NP certifications.


9. University of Ottawa

Situated in the heartbeat of Canada’s capital city, the University of Ottawa’s Nursing School has distinguished itself by offering high-quality nursing education in both English and French Languages. Not only that, the interconnections of the Nursing School with the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario and the Ottawa Hospital avails the Nursing students, and other medical students, with the opportunities to learn on the job and have hospital experiences.

University of Ottawa’s Nursing School offers diploma, degree, masters, and doctoral programs. The Masters and Diploma Students can also opt for online/distance learning modalities. 

 Moreover, Consortium national de formation en santé (CNFS) offers financial aids and additional privileges to the French-speaking citizens living in minority communities of the West and East coasts of Canada alongside their territories. 

The school also has Algonquin College as its affiliates and students can now undergo Bachelor of Science in Nursing program at the University of Ottawa’s Nursing School (Main Campus), Algonquin (Pembroke Campus), and Algonquin (Ottawa Campus).


8. Western University

Western University is one of the Canadian Universities known for its excellent medical programs. The professors at this university call students by their names, giving credence to the fantastic student-lecturer relationship. Perhaps, this might be one of the reasons that the Western University’s Nursing Students co-publish journals with their professors while in school. 

The Western-Fanshawe Collaborative Nursing Program also helps international students to earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BScN) easily. You can come to either the main campus or the Fanshawe College in London for lectures. The school is also doing well in international rankings.  

Moreover, the school also collaborates with some prominent hospitals in London to facilitate clinical opportunities, world-class practical training, internships, and job placements.

“The professors at my site are REALLY nice. I feel like i could talk to them about anything, and they seem to really care about the students. They are also super approachable”, gushes a Fanshawe-based BScN Student of Western University, on Uthink online platform.


7. Dalhousie University

Dalhousie University’s Nursing School has focused, since its inception in 1949, on producing highly skilled Nursing Professionals that have both the maximum understanding of their profession and leadership skills. 

The striking thing about this nursing school is how students freely relate to their professors. The academics at the Dalhousie University’s Nursing School are supportive and have raised, over the years, several award-winning Nurses. It is safe to say that Dalhousie’s Nursing School is recognized globally and has bagged numerous awards.

The school offers undergraduate, postgraduate, and certificates programs to students. Its Bachelor of Science in Nursing’s (BScN) Program has several options, including Arctic Nursing. The Dalhousie University’s Nursing School offers Certificate programs in Mental Health, Oncology, Public Health, and Acute/Critical Care Nursing. Besides, the school also offers Master of Science in Nursing (MScN), Master of Nursing (MN), and Doctor of Nursing programs.


6. McGill University

Celebrating a century this year, the McGill University’s Nursing School, popularly known as the Ingram School of Nursing, is a top player in training highly qualified, well-skilled, and versatile Nursing professionals, to meet the ever-increasing needs of these noble professionals globally. 

Many thanks to its Health Center worth a whopping sum of $1.6 billion, McGill’s Nursing Students now have access to state-of-the-art research facilities, unprecedented hands-on practical experiences, and clinical simulations.

In partnership with five prominent Montreal hospitals, McGill’s Nursing Students have numerous clinical opportunities, practicums, internships, and job placements. It is worth noting that more than 75% of its graduates have high scores in professional examinations.


5. University of Calgary

Research, academic excellence, and professional development are just a few to mention when it comes to what the University of Calgary is capable of doing. University of Calgary’s Nursing School does not deviate, not even an inch, from the university’s footprints as its excellent state-of-the-art clinical simulation modules and in-depth experiential learning make the student fully equipped with the necessary skills and knowledge needed in the noble profession. 

Although the university is just a little above 50 years, its nursing school is a big-league player in the nursing institution globally. Additionally, the University of Calgary’s Nursing Students have practicums in their third and fourth year at hospitals and other relevant organizations. Thus, exposing them to great job opportunities and most students even get hired during their practicum placement.


4. McMaster University

Founded in 1887, McMaster University is a public institution located in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. Its Nursing School is a big name among the nursing institutions in the world. It occupied the 19th seat in the 2018 QS World Rankings for Global Nursing Schools. Its verve for health programs is outstanding. Situated at the heartbeat of Hamilton, the city hospitals provides graduates of the McMaster University’s Nursing School with numerous job opportunities.

“Apart from the amazing clinical opportunities McMaster has to offer, it is the small class sizes and curriculum that make the Nursing program absolutely incredible. You will work in small groups to learn in ways similar to the inter-professional collaboration you’ll need as a new graduate nurse.  The people in the program will make your experience unforgettable – I’ve made lifelong friendships, important connections with faculty and healthcare professionals, and lasting relationships with the McMaster community…” says Nikki Berza, a BScN Graduate and a Registered Nurse at the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at McMaster Children’s Hospital.


3. University of British Columbia

UBC Nursing school

What can you expect from an institution that has produced seven Nobel laureates if not excellence? With its world-renowned alumni, like first female Prime Minister of Canada, Kim Campbell and the present Prime Minister of Canada – Justin Trudeau, which the University of British Columbia has, it is clear that the university has strong leadership, academic, and professional curriculum. UBC’s Nursing School, which has been in existence for over a century, is placed 20th on the 2018 QS World Rankings for Global Nursing Schools.

The lecturers that teach BSN, MSN, doctoral, MN-NP and summer programs at the UBC’s Nursing School are highly experienced and willing to teach students wholeheartedly.  

Moreover, students have many clinical opportunities and thereby, have hands-on experiences. The UBC Nursing Students always perform excellently in professional examinations.


2. University of Alberta

University of Alberta offers excellent Nursing program and was ranked 16th in the 2018 QS University World Rankings for nursing categories. Many thanks to its highly experienced professors who have made impacts in research and innovations, and are committed to sharing knowledge with their students. The Nursing Simulation Center and the fully equipped Heritage Medical Research Center at the University of Alberta avail the nursing students with the opportunity to have hands-on experience and intensive practical classes.

All undergraduate and postgraduate courses at the University of Alberta’s Nursing School are endorsed by both the Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing and the Nursing Education Program Approval Board (NEPAB). Additionally, the University of Alberta’s Nursing School is the only Canadian school that has membership with the Hartford Centers for Gerontological Nursing Excellence.


1. University of Toronto

University of Toronto (U of T) is a highly recognized public institution in Canada that has clinched numerous awards in research, teaching, and student support services. Its Nursing school has etched for itself a top-ranking position in the QS World University Rankings, as it is placed sixth globally in the nursing category. Amazingly, the University of Toronto is the only Canadian university that has secured a comfortable seat in the big-league of top 20 universities that offer the best nursing program globally.

The academics at the U of T Nursing School are highly renowned. Moreover, the department has a strong connection with hospitals, organizations, and research centers. Thereby, enhances job placement opportunities, internships, and practicums for its students.