Skip to main content

The Nursing Care Quality Assurance Commission (NCQAC) protects the public's health and safety by regulating the competency and quality of licensed practical nurses, registered nurses, advanced registered nurse practitioners and nursing technicians. The commission is continually improving access and utilization of available data to inform policy decisions, evidence based regulatory practice, and research. Some key evidence to inform decisions is provided and compiled for ease of access.

Licensing Data Dashboard

Workforce Data Dashboard

Nursing Workforce Reports

Collecting and supplying demographic data for the nursing profession in Washington state is essential to answering the fundamental questions on supply, demand, and distribution of the nursing workforce. Applicants and licensees must complete all demographic data elements and attest to the completion of the data elements as part of their licensure requirements [WAC 246-840-015]. Analysis of the survey results are provided below for licensed practical nurses (LPNs), registered nurses (RNs), and advanced registered nurse practitioners (ARNPs).

Washington State's 2019 Workforce Reports
Washington State's 2021 Workforce Reports

Annual Education Program Reports

The Nursing Care Quality Assurance Commission (NCQAC) requires all nursing education programs to provide information annually [WAC 246-840-554(4)]. This report summarizes academic year survey data from approved Washington state nursing programs and out-of-state distance learning programs, highlighting selected data trends.

The Washington Center for Nursing, in collaboration with the nursing commission, has also developed a nursing education report. The report provides a trend summary across pre-licensure programs, post-licensure programs, and nurse faculty over six academic years starting in 2014 to the 2019-2020 year. Data includes trends in the number of applicants by program and provides demographic and diversity data of students and faculty. While the nursing commission delivers an annual nursing program report every year, this report provides additional nursing education data and provides six-year trends across programs, students, and faculty. The main source of data was from the annual education survey collected by the nursing commission from Washington State-approved nursing programs, includes supporting data from nursing commission resources, and the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN) with more details described in the Methodology and Limitations section later in the report.

You can view other Reports, Publications and Data from the Washington Center for Nursing on their website.

Current Research Projects

Responding to a Critical and Urgent Need: Informing Evidence-Based Regulation of Simulation in Pre-licensure Registered Nursing Education

To inform evidence-based regulatory decisions about what is the most appropriate ratio to “count” hours spent in simulation towards required clinical hours for pre-licensure registered nursing education programs, this study aims to:

  1. Compare learning and patient care performance outcomes between students who participate in 4 hours of traditional clinical activities, 2 hours of mannequin-based simulation activities, or 2 hours of virtual simulation activities.
  2. Examine how each type of experiential learning (traditional clinical, mannequin-based simulation, and virtual simulation) meets pre-licensure registered nursing students' learning needs by answering the following questions:
    • How do students make clinical judgments during patient care, how do they know (or not know) the correct action to take during patient care, and how will each experiential learning activity inform their nursing care when they encounter similar patient care situations in the future?
    • How do pre-licensure registered nursing students perceive each experiential learning activity meets their learning needs?
  3. Conduct a cost-utility analysis comparing traditional clinical, mannequin-based simulation, and virtual simulation.

Data collection is scheduled for Sept. 2021 - June 2022 and results are anticipated by Sept. 2022. Please direct questions to the project's Principal Investigator: Katie Haerling at

Research Subcommittee's Work Plan

Questions? Email: