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Careers in Nursing & Midwifery

HomeCareers in Nursing & Midwifery Becoming a Nurse / Midwife

A step-by-step guide to becoming a nurse or midwife

If you are considering a career as a nurse or midwife, you need to understand the application process and use the resources that have been created to help applicants. Follow this step-by-step guide.


Step 1: Decide if it’s the career for you

Firstly, you need to establish your suitability for career as a nurse or midwife. If you haven’t done so already, you should take the Student Nurse / Midwife Self-Assessment Questionnaire. It checks if your interests, abilities and expectations match the role of a student nurse or midwife.

Next you need to do your research about the degree programme. You should visit the websites of Higher Education Institution (HEI) which offer nursing or midwifery programmes and also review any literature you have; or that your career guidance counsellor may be able to give you.

You should also talk to your career guidance counsellor and any nurses or midwives you may know.

Step 2: Apply for nursing / midwifery degree programme

All applicants must firstly apply for their preferred courses through the Central Applications Office (CAO). It is important that you carefully read the CAO handbook so that you fully understand the application process. 

Mature applicants only must apply for and sit an assessment test in addition to applying to the CAO. This test is run by the Public Appointments Service (PAS) on behalf of the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland (NMBI).

Step 3: Remember the application deadlines

Applicants need to ensure that they adhere to the application deadlines. Check out the deadlines in the key dates page.

Step 4: Make a decision based on your CAO offer

The CAO will issue offers to mature applicants in early July, to Further Education and Training (FET) applicants in early August and to standard applicants in mid-August. If you have been offered a place, please refer to the CAO handbook for details on what to do next.

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