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Non-EU Overseas Applicants

HomeHelp Centre Non-EU Overseas Applicants
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Non-EU Overseas Applicants

How much does it cost?

For information on our current fees please visit the registration fees section of our website.

How long does it take?

The timelines depend on the type of application. The main factors determining the length of the process are:

  • Having all the correct documents uploaded when you submit your application. The documents need to be valid, current and translated to English. You will need to provide correctly certified copies of certain documents. See Section 9 of the Applicant User Guide for further details. You will also need to upload the forms competed by your college and employers. 
  • The level of checks required to determine if your qualifications meet the standard. All non-EU applications must go through a qualification assessment process.
  • If you are requested to complete a compensation measure. Details are available in Section 10.3 of the Applicant User Guide.

    • Adaptation periods are a minimum of 6 weeks and up to 12 weeks or more if an extension is approved.
    • Aptitude testing is booked up to 17 weeks in advance, the testing itself can be done in approximately a fortnight. 
  • If you have not provided all the required documents and forms your application cannot progress and may ultimately be closed. 

How can I ensure that there are no delays in processing my application?

The single biggest cause for delays in processing applications is the failure to provide all the required documentation from the outset. NMBI cannot complete the evaluation of your application until we have received all required forms and documents which we requested. You can login to the MyNMBI portal to check the status of your application. If you submit an incomplete application, an email will be sent to you showing which documents are outstanding. This will add to the delays in your application.

What do I need to know before preparing my documents?

It is important that you submit valid and translated documents to avoid any delays in processing your application. You will need to obtain certified copies of the documents we list. You will also need to download forms when you apply online and provide these to your college and employers to complete. You must upload all the documents and forms to your application before you submit. 

Please refer to Section 9 of the Applicant Guide for more information.

What qualification documentation do I need to provide?

You will need to enter your qualification details in your online application. This should include your undergraduate qualification and any relevant postgraduate qualification.

You will be asked to download a qualification form in your online application which you will need to send to your college for completion to be returned to you. The qualification form must be completed by the head of nursing or midwifery education, or the registrar. You will also need to ask the college to provide you with a qualification transcript (showing a breakdown of theory and clinical hours) and a qualification parchment if you do not have these already. You will then need to obtain certified copies of the transcript and qualification parchment. This is where an approved authority certifies the photocopy as a true copy of the original (see Question 9). If any of the documents are not in English, you will also need to have these translated. See Section 9 of the Applicant Guide for further details.

You will need to upload the completed qualification form, the certified copy of the transcript and the certified copy of the qualification parchment to your online application. DO NOT proceed to pay the fee and submit your application until you have all the documents and relevant forms uploaded. You will be able to save your draft application and edit later.

What employment information do I need to provide?

When you apply online you will need to enter details of all your relevant employments since qualifying. You will also download an employment form which you will need to send to your current and previous employers to complete. The form must be completed by the director of nursing/midwifery, matron or nurse/midwife manager. Once completed and returned to you, you will need to upload the forms to your online application. These forms will be the evidence of your post qualification experience (PQE) which may be considered if relevant, during the qualification assessment. Please note if you do not upload the employment forms then your PQE will not be considered during the qualification assessment. 

What information do I need to provide about my registrations in other countries?

You will need to provide a Certificate of Current Professional Status (CCPS), otherwise known as a Certificate of Good Standing from all the countries or jurisdictions where you are currently or were previously registered. You will need to obtain these from the relevant competent authorities and then upload to your online application. The issue date on the certificates must be within the 6-month period prior to the submission date of your application. 

What is a certified copy of a document?

A certified copy is a copy of the document which has been certified by an appropriate authority as a true copy of the original. To obtain a certified copy you must bring your original document(s) to one of the approved certifying authorities. The certified copy must be a first-generation copy - i.e. a photocopy of the original document, not a photocopy of a photocopy or a fax. It is important that you make sure that the documents are certified correctly by the authority. Not doing so will delay how quickly NMBI can process your application. 

The documents which must be certified as true copies of the original are:  

  • Proof of identity to include:

    • Current passport or national identity card
    • Evidence of change of name e.g. marriage certificate, birth certificate, deed poll 
  • Evidence of qualifications to include:

    • Qualification Parchment (document showing the award of qualification)
    • Qualification Transcript
    • Certified translation of document

Where do I get a certified copy of a document?

To get a certified copy of your document, you must bring your original document(s) to one of the certifying authorities listed below: 

  • Solicitor or Lawyer
  • Notary Public
  • Peace Commissioner
  • Justice of the Peace
  • Commissioner for Oaths
  • Post Office (United Kingdom only)

It should be noted that the certifying authority must confirm they have seen the original document.
They must state their full name and profession and stamp, sign and date the photocopy of the document.

Do I need to provide proof that I am able to speak English?

All applicants must satisfy NMBI that they have the necessary knowledge of English to communicate effectively in their practice. This is a requirement of the registration application process (after qualifications are recognised). Language competence is a critical aspect of patient safety.  

There are three pathways: 

  1. Completed nursing or midwifery training in a NMBI recognised majority English speaking country.
  2. Registered and practised in a NMBI recognised majority English speaking country for three years within the last five years. 
  3. Completed IELTS (Academic) or OET English language test to the minimum levels accepted by NMBI. The test must be less than 2 years old at the date you submit your application for registration. We only accept one test result (sitting) and do not accept combined results.

Further information on NMBI’s English language requirements can be found in Section 11 of the Applicant User Guide

I qualified outside the EU/EEA and don’t meet the minimum requirements for English language competence. What should I do?

You should not apply for registration with NMBI until you meet the English language competence requirements. Find out more about the three pathways to meet our English language requirements on our website.

Do I need to provide translated documents?

Yes, NMBI will need a certified English translation of any document which is not written in English. 

The translation must be

  • Carried out by a qualified translator
  • Signed and stamped by the translator

The translator must confirm, in the English language, that the translation is an exact translation of the original document. The translation must be in writing and must include the translator’s professional contact details (telephone number, address and email address).

Who pays for the cost of translating documents?

Applicants must pay the cost of translating these documents. You will need to factor this into the cost of the application process.

What is an administrative assessment?

Your application will undergo an administrative assessment to ensure that all the required documentation is submitted and correct. You will be advised by email if any additional information is required. NMBI will also verify all your documentation. If your application is complete it will proceed to qualification assessment.

What is a qualification assessment?

The transcripts of your training will be assessed by a specialised Education Assessor. The Assessor will examine in detail whether the clinical and theory content of your qualifications meets EU Directive and NMBI requirements. If relevant, courses additional to your graduate and post-graduate qualifications and work experience will be considered. The qualification assessors may require further information from you in certain cases such as a syllabus or course handbook. 

In your online application you will need to enter details of your relevant employments since qualifying. You will also need to provide employment forms completed by your employer as evidence of your post qualification experience (PQE), which the qualification assessors may take into account. Please note that if you do not submit the employment forms then your PQE cannot be considered.  

The assessor will consider the duration and type of your education programme(s), the quantitative requirement (combined hours as per transcript), qualitative Clinical Placement Component (CPC) requirement, theoretical and clinical instruction content, and also post qualification experience (PQE) where relevant, to address deficits identified in the education programme.

What are the possible outcomes of an assessment of my application?

Following the assessment of your application, NMBI will inform you of one of the following assessment outcomes:       

  1. Your qualifications have been recognised or 
  2. Further information is required or 
  3. Provisional refusal to recognise qualifications. This means that there are significant deficits in theory or/and clinical content of your training compared to NMBI requirements or 
  4. You are required to successfully complete a compensation measure, which refers to a period of adaptation or an aptitude test that needs to be successfully completed before we can recognise your qualifications.

This decision is taken: 

  • If the theory and clinical content or hours of your overall nursing or midwifery education and training falls short of NMBI requirements, and
  • You have enough hours or appropriate content to allow you to complete compensation measure(s).

Your qualifications need to be recognised first in order to proceed to the next stage (applying for registration). This happens when:

  • NMBI informs you that the clinical and theoretical components of your education and training meets the NMBI standard (meaning no compensation measure is needed), or
  • You have successfully completed a compensation measure - a period of adaptation or an aptitude test - as requested by NMBI.

What is a compensation measure?

A compensation measure refers to either a period of adaptation or an aptitude test that needs to be successfully completed before your qualifications will be recognised in Ireland. They are mechanisms which allow you to demonstrate that you have met the required standard in the gap or shortfall areas that have been identified in your qualifications when compared to NMBI standards. 

You may be required to successfully complete a compensation measure if gaps have been found between your professional qualifications and experience, compared with the required Irish standards and requirements.  

For more information, please refer to the compensation measures section of our website. 

Why are compensation measures imposed?

Compensation measures may be imposed if: 

  • your education programme covers significantly different matters to the undergraduate education provided in Ireland; 


  • the nursing or midwifery profession in Ireland comprises one or more regulated professional activities which do not exist in the corresponding profession in the applicant’s home State, and the education required in Ireland covers substantially different matters from those covered by the applicant’s attestation of competence or evidence of formal qualifications.

What is an aptitude test?

The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland’s (RCSI) Faculty of Nursing and Midwifery coordinates and manages an aptitude test for applicants qualified outside the Republic of Ireland. The aptitude test option is only available to those applying to the general nurse division. The test is composed of two parts:

  • Part 1: Theory or knowledge test or Multiple-Choice Questions (MCQ), which must be successfully completed before part 2 can be attempted.
  • Part 2: Practical or Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) test

Please refer to this link for full details on this Test. 

The process to complete the test is:

  • Complete RCSI’s online application form. 
  • RCSI will send you a confirmation email with an invitation to the test.
  • You might need a visa to travel to Ireland to complete the test. NMBI has no role in organising or answering visa related queries. For more information, please contact INIS.

Once you complete the test, you can inform NMBI of the result through MyNMBI.

What is a period of adaptation?

A period of adaptation is a period of supervised practice and is subject to an assessment. The supervised practice is under the responsibility of a qualified member of the profession. The period of adaptation may, by a decision of the NMBI, be supplemented with additional independently assessed academic education. 

Periods of supervised practice must be undertaken at an approved Irish healthcare facility. You will be able to choose from a list of hospitals matched to the division of the Register you are applying to and approved by NMBI. A list of approved healthcare facilities is available on our website. 

The training during the adaptation period should be provided through a combination of theoretical and clinical modules. The minimum timeframe to complete the clinical learning component of an adaptation period is 6 weeks (in addition to any introduction and other theoretical learning). The period to complete the clinical component may be extended to 12 weeks and beyond if required. 

For more information, please see Section 10.3 of the Applicant User Guide.

Can I choose which compensation measure to take?

If you are applying to the general nurse division, then you will be offered a choice of completing an adaptation period or an aptitude test. For all other divisions, the applicant only has the option of an adaptation period. A person can decide to change his/her mind after selecting a compensation measure. However, if an applicant for general nursing fails to successfully complete either an aptitude test or adaptation period, he/she cannot then decide to commence the alternative to the failed test. 

What happens at the end of the period of adaptation?

At the end of your placement, the Director of Nursing or the Director of Midwifery will be asked to recommend whether or not you are eligible for recognition of your qualifications.

How do I prepare for an aptitude test?

Before starting the aptitude test, you should familiarise yourself with the structure of the test and the method used for testing your skills, knowledge and competences. 

The Royal College of Surgeons currently provides aptitude tests for those seeking registration as general nurses in Ireland. For further information on the structure and format of the test please visit the RCSI website.  

When will I get the results of the aptitude test?

Results of the theory test are issued via email on the day of the test. If you are successful in the theory test, you are invited to the OSCEs/practical test. Unless specifically requested, you do not need to bring any documentation with you. 

Results of OSCEs/practical test are issued via email by following the test. If you pass then your results are sent to the NMBI, where you can then progress with your registration. 

If either part of the test is failed on the first attempt, then a proposed date for the repeat is offered. If an applicant fails either part of the test on the second attempt, then the NMBI is informed and qualification recognition will be refused.  

An applicant may appeal a decision to refuse qualification recognition following a failed aptitude test. The Registration Committee will consider all the information provided by the applicant and the report provided by the aptitude test centre (and from the NMBI assessor) where provided.  

If however there are no mitigating factors for which evidence is provided by the applicant or confirmed by the test centre, the committee will have no option other than to uphold the decision to refuse qualification recognition.   

How can I track the progress of my application?

You can view the current processing stage of your application on MyNMBI. To check the status of your application, please click on ‘My Applications’. You will be able to see the application status and the date the application status was last updated.

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