Careers in Nursing and Midwifery

Applying as a mature applicant

Mature students must be successful in an online assessment test.

If you are over 23 by the January of the year of application, you are eligible to apply as a mature student. This means you are applying on the grounds of mature years and not on examination results. 

If you choose to apply as a mature applicant, you must be successful in the current year at an assessment test. However, due to the number of places available on the programme, success at the assessment test does not guarantee an offer of a place. The onus is on you to apply for the assessment test in addition to your application to the Central Applications Office (CAO). 

Assessment test 2021 update

All candidates who took the recent online assessments for mature entry to pre-registration Nursing and Midwifery degree programmes, 2021, are being asked to retake the ‘Understanding of Basic Instructions’ (commonly referred to as verbal reasoning) test. 

Due to a technical error, all candidates must now retake the ‘Understanding of Basic Instructions’ (commonly referred to as verbal reasoning) test. We apologise for this error and the inconvenience it may cause.
The technical issue in relation to the ‘Understanding of Basic Instructions’ assessment was discovered by Aon Assessment Solutions (Aon) following the closure of the testing window. This error related to the way that information was presented to candidates on screen. 

As the administrator of the assessment, Aon accepts full responsibility and accountability for this error and apologises unreservedly. All candidates are now being asked to retake the ‘Understanding of Basic Instructions’ test to ensure that the testing process is fair and robust and that all candidates are given an equal opportunity to perform to the best of their ability. 

The technical error has now been fixed and there are no additional issues evident within the instrument. Both the Job Simulation and numerical assessments have been rigorously examined and are robust assessment tools containing no errors. 

It is very important to note that ALL candidates must now retake the ‘Understanding of Basic Instructions’ assessment to ensure that results are comparable. If the candidates fail to do so they will have an incomplete set of assessments and they will no longer be eligible to meet the qualifying standard for mature application to pre-registration Nursing and Midwifery degree programmes, 2021. Please note if there are extenuating circumstances which prevent a candidate from retaking the assessment during the testing window, please contact Aon as soon as possible at

There will be a new 7-day testing window for completion of the ‘Understanding of Basic Instructions’ test, opening at 1pm on Thursday, 27 May, and closing at 1pm on Wednesday, 2 June. You are not required to register again for this testing window. 

To assist you in preparing for the test, an updated version of the familiarisation booklet is available below.

On Thursday, 27 May candidates will receive an email directly that will contain login details for completion of the ‘Understanding of Basic Instructions’ verbal reasoning assessment. The email will contain a link to follow, which the candidate can click on or copy and paste into their web browser. The email will also contain a login ID. If the candidate had already sent a copy of your photo identification, then they do not need to send this again. The candidates will be required to take a reference photo for the virtual proctoring, which requires them to have a webcam-enabled device. 

If the candidate has previously advised of a special requirement or disability (and provided your supporting medical/psychologist report), their accommodations have already been implemented and they do not need to contact our support team again. If they have not previously notified us of a disability and require reasonable accommodations/adjustments, they should contact immediately and before starting the online assessments. The deadline for notification of requests for reasonable accommodations is 6.00pm on Sunday, 30 May. A medical/psychologist report will be required to enable the test provider to determine what accommodations will be appropriate. 

If you have any questions, please refer to the FAQ section that has been compiled to answer common queries on the issue or contact us at

Download Image

Assessment Test familiarisation booklet 2021 (2nd Edition)


Testing window

'Understanding of Basic Instructions' testing window

Please ensure that you have read and fully understand the test familiarisation booklet before retaking the 'Understanding of Basic Instructions' test.

You must retake the 'Understanding of Basic Instructions' test between
1.00pm on Thursday, 27 May and 1.00pm on Wednesday, 2 June 2021

Should you need assistance please contact us as soon as possible at the following emails:


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