Applying for a degree in Nursing in 2017

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Having a degree in Nursing will lead you on to an exciting and rewarding career that could take you all over the world. There is also a lot of opportunity for career progression and you could find yourself working in a highly specialised role.

There are four full time nursing degree options available:

  • Adult nursing
  • Children’s nursing
  • Mental health nursing
  • Learning disability nursing

All courses last three years and are offered at universities across the UK. You may also find some universities offer dual courses in two areas of nursing, for example adult and mental health nursing. These courses usually take four years of full time study.

What do the courses involve?

All nursing courses will give you a good grounding both theoretical and clinical experience providing you with an academic and professional qualification.

During your time in university you’ll begin with a general overview of nursing and develop your observational, communication, and caring skills.

Supervised nursing practice accounts for 50% of the course and you’ll spend that time in hospital and/or community settings.

What qualifications do I need to study Nursing?

There aren’t any national minimum academic requirements to study nursing so each university sets their own entry requirements.

Generally you’ll need 5 GCSEs at grade C or above and two A Levels or equivalent. Some universities may also ask for extra A Levels, so it’s important to check with each university you apply to.

What about extra-curricular activities?

Having any clinical work or volunteering experience will help to demonstrate that you have a genuine interest in a career in nursing.

This experience could be in a hospital, doctor’s surgery, pharmacy, care home, or other clinical or community setting.

Your personal statement is your chance to show how passionate and knowledgeable you are about nursing and a caring profession. Read our dedicated Personal Statement section for advice on writing the ultimate nursing personal statement.

Will I need to attend an interview?

Unlike many purely academic subjects you’ll usually need to attend an interview or selection day as part of the application process for a degree in Nursing.

This is because there are many skills and values you’ll need to be a successful nurse – it isn’t just about your academic achievements.

You can find out more about the skills and values needed to be a nurse on the NHS Careers website.

What about Clearing?

If you’re not successful during the first round of applications then you may be able to try again during UCAS Extra.

If it’s too late for Extra, or you don’t get the grades you need on A Level results day, you’ll be eligible for Clearing.

Although Nursing is a popular course and many universities run waiting lists some of the top universities will still have vacancies.

Courses fill up quickly, so you’ll need to be prepared if you’re going to get into university. Read our Ultimate Guide to Clearing so that you’re ready to pick up the phone as soon as Clearing officially opens.