How to become a midwife
There are two main routes to become a midwife in the UK, the first is studying a degree in midwifery, the second is an apprenticeship. These options are described in detail below.
When choosing a university degree, you will need to ensure that it is approved by the Nursing and Midwifery Council. Typically, your degree will take around three years to complete if you study full-time, and you will also participate in work placements, allowing you to gain real-world experience of a career in midwifery.
To be accepted onto a midwifery degree, you’ll need to meet the following entry requirements:
- Five GCSEs at grades 4 to 9 (A* to C), or equivalent, including maths, English, and science.
- Two or three A Levels, including a science (preferably biology), OR a level 3 diploma, OR an Access to Higher Education Diploma in Health, Science, or Nursing.
- You can also study a midwifery degree is you already hold a degree in a relevant subject.
Midwifery degree apprenticeships have recently been made available, allowing apprenticeship students to gain a midwifery degree and become fully qualified midwives. The programme takes approximately four years to complete and involves a combination of workplace learning and academic study at an approved university. To secure your place on a midwifery apprenticeship, you’ll need four or five GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), and A Levels or the equivalent.
There are plenty of opportunities for career progression and development in midwifery. Once you’re a qualified midwife, you could choose to specialise in an area such as ultrasound or neonatal care. You will also need to renew your Nursing and Midwifery Council registration every three years to demonstrate that you are keeping your knowledge up to date.
As you gain more experience, you could progress to become a ward manager or a team leader. You could even train to become a health visitor or become a director of midwifery of a midwifery consultant. Alternatively, you could consider becoming a lecturer in midwifery at a university to develop the next generation of midwives or explore options in clinical research.
One thing is for sure, a career in midwifery is one of the most rewarding careers out there, meaning you’re bound to feel fulfilled and happy in your work.