Your first step to achieve this incredible career, is applying for a midwifery degree course via UCAS.
According to UCAS there are 52 different providers of midwifery courses in the UK. So how do you decide which courses to apply for?
1. Do your homework
Research is key. Investigate the entry requirements you will need for each of the university midwifery courses as they differ by individual institution.
Decide if there is a specific location in the country you’d like to live. Remember you’ll be studying full time for at least 3 years (or up to 6 years if you study part-time) for a midwifery degree with about 50% of your course time spent out and about in health care settings and not in the university itself. You may want to look at what health care settings are offered to you on the specific course.
It’s vital that if you have a short list of 2 to 3 universities that you’d like to study at, that you go and visit all of them on Open Days and have a tour around the facilities and talk to the tutors on your course.
How you relate to your tutors and the quality of their teaching is as important as where you’ll be living. Read our open day tips on how to make the most of them when you go.
If you really can’t make an Open Day visit (it is worth making the effort, I promise), a secondary option is phoning up the university to speak to the tutors and asking them as many questions about the course as you can.
A fantastic location, awesome tutors and a cool course will inspire you to greatness but also check what the employment prospects and success rates are for graduates from your courses.
If you need more help deciding where to study, take a look at our choosing a university guide.
2. Check the league tables
League tables (love them or hate them, they do at least provide comparisons) show that the best universities in the UK for midwifery differ depending on which league table you choose.
For example the top 5 for WhatUni.com (based on hundreds of actual real-life student reviews) are:
- Swansea University
- Bangor University
- Edge Hill University
- University of Worcester and
- University of Leeds
in that order.
However The Guardian rankings for Midwifery (based on student feedback, NSS (National Student Survey) results, entry requirements, graduate employment rates and staff to student ratios), show the top 5 for 2019 as:
- University of Edinburgh
- University of Swansea
- University of Glasgow
- Coventry University
- University of Huddersfield
Other league tables for midwifery also worth comparing include The Complete University Guide, The Times Good University Guide (please note you will need a subscription to the Times Newspaper to view this) and Unistats, the official government site for comparing universities in the UK.
3. Write an amazing personal statement
As you can imagine the top midwifery courses are immensely oversubscribed, therefore a ‘stand out UCAS application (especially the all-important personal statement) is an absolute must.
Focus on 3 to 5 key points within your personal statement and don’t forget you can only write a maximum of 4,000 characters.
- What work experience can you relate to midwifery, even if your volunteering or work experience hasn’t been in this setting (and this will be the norm for most people). Does it encompass working with people and customer communication or teamwork skills? These are all key attributes for a midwife as well as health skills.
- Show that you know midwifery is much more than just delivering babies; from all stages of a pregnancy to post-natal care.
- Why do you want to be a midwife? Try to make your answer as honest and specific as possible and not generic. This is about you and your experiences.
- Can you show empathy and how to manage stressful experiences? Again these are essential characteristics for a midwife.
- You will be dealing with people across a whole range of faiths, religions, races, ages etc so demonstrate how you can be inclusive, understand diversity and be non-judgmental.
For more useful personal statement advice it’s worth referring to our e-book guide on writing your nursing personal statement.
4. Submit your application on time
Remember that if you want universities to consider your application, you need to submit by the 15th January deadline. If you don't, you might not be offered a place, as any applications received after this date are marked as late.
This means being organised and starting your UCAS application as soon as possible. UCAS accept applications from early September, so many students choose to start working on their personal statement over the summer holidays in July and August.
As this is the core part of your application, you should dedicate as much time and effort as possible to it. This includes asking for feedback from tutors, family and friends, and going through multiple rounds of revisions until you are completely happy with your statement.
Although your personal statement is important, make sure you fill out the rest of the UCAS form correctly too. Admissions tutors won't be impressed with a sloppy application!
This really is the year you should seize the day and apply for midwifery!
For more tips and advice on applying for midwifery, please see: