Routes into Nursing

Do you not have the traditional A Levels but still want to become a nurse?

Previously the routes into nursing have been limited, with the university degree being the main way to train registered nurses. The introduction of the nursing degree apprenticeship gives a new opportunity for employers to train nurses.

You can become a nurse if you are a:

  • Graduate (BA or BSc in nursing-related subject)
  • Formerly qualified nurse
  • Healthcare assistant
  • Local school or college student
  • Nursing associate
  • Assistant practitioner
  • Bridging programme participant

routes into nursing, student nurse, nurse and baby

If you are a graduate, you can get a post-graduate diploma over 2 years.

If you are a former qualified nurse, you can enter a training course for up to 6 months. There are over 40 courses over the country, and funding support of up to £1000 available.

If you are any of the other listed, you have two routes. If you do have A Levels in related subjects (e.g. Maths, English and a science)you can enter study at university for a Nursing degree, typically over 3 years.

If you have GCSEs in English and Maths (A-C/4-9), you can do a Nurse Degree Apprenticeship, typically lasting 4 years. Your salary and additional training costs would be paid by employer, unlike on an university course.

You can find university courses on NHS’s Course Finder or UCAS, or apprenticeships on the NHS Jobs website or the Government Find an apprenticeship website.

So as you can see, there are various routes into nursing, so if care is your passion but you’re not straight out of college with A Levels under your belt, your dream is still within your reach!

If you’re a Registered Nurse already, we’re looking for Staff Nurses all over the UK, have a look at vacancies here.

See this NHS infographic about nursing for more — we definitely consulted it.