Careers in Nursing and Midwifery

How to apply as an applicant

If you are applying to the nursing or midwifery degree programme on the basis of examination results, you are considered an applicant. You must meet the education requirements of both the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland (NMBI) and the individual Education Body (EB).

NMBI entry requirements

You are required to have:

  1. Obtained in the Leaving Certificate examination a minimum grade of H5 in two higher level papers and minimum grade O6/H7 in four ordinary or higher level papers in the following subjects:
  • Irish or English.
  • Mathematics.
  • Laboratory science subject (biology, physics, chemistry, physics & chemistry or agricultural science).
  • Three other subjects.


  1. Equivalent minimum educational attainments to the above to be adjudicated upon by the EB.


  1. Meet the minimum educational requirements specified by the EB, provided that such requirements are not of a lower standard than those set out in 1 above.

In addition to the NMBI requirements, you will be required to meet the basic minimum requirements for the EB concerned. It is essential to consult the websites of individual EBs.


Students may also avail of the HEAR and DARE schemes.

HEAR is a college and university admissions scheme offering places on reduced points and extra college support to school leavers from socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds. You must be a school leaver who has completed a Leaving Certificate and under the age of 23 by 1 January of the year entry.

HEAR applicants must also meet a range of financial, social and cultural indicators to be considered for a reduced points place and extra college support. For further information, visit Access College.

DARE is a college and university admissions scheme offering places on reduced points basis to school leavers with disabilities who are under 23 years of age by 1 January in the year of entry.  If you are a school leaver who would like to succeed in higher education but may not be able to meet the points for your preferred course, due to the impact of a disability, please refer to Access College.

Quality and Qualifications Ireland (QQI)

Specific Level 5 and some Level 6 further education and training certificates awarded by QQI (replaced FETAC, HETAC & NQAI) may be considered as an entry route for standard code applicants to nursing/midwifery. These are:

  • Nursing Studies (5M4349).
  • Healthcare Support (5M4339).
  • Community and Health Services (5M4468).
  • Health Service Skills (5M3782).

In all cases, applicants must have achieved distinctions in five components including:

  • Anatomy and Physiology (5N0749 / D20001).
  • Nursing Theory and Practice (5N4325).
  • Human Growth and Development (5N1279) or Biology (5N2746).

You should be aware that while you may meet the eligibility requirements, there is no guarantee that you will be offered a place. Due to a very small number of places available, a random selection system is operated by the CAO.

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