Nursing University Interview Questions

There are many different questions you may be asked at your nursing university interview, so we've provided a comprehensive list of those commonly asked by nursing admissions tutors at UK universities.

As well as the example questions below, you can find further help in our University Interviews Guide.

Background & motivation

  1. Tell us about yourself.
  2. Talk us through your personal statement.
  3. Why do you want to be a Adult/Child/Mental Health nurse?
  4. What have you done to prepare yourself for a career in Nursing?
  5. What strengths do you have that will help you deal with all the work involved?
  6. Why do you want to be a nurse, rather than another profession that is caring or intellectually challenging, such as a doctor or surgeon?
  7. What do you think a nurse does, apart from treat patients?
  8. What branch of nursing interests you most and why?
  9. What are you looking forward to most about becoming a nurse?
  10. What contribution do you hope to make to the field of nursing?
  11. How do you think nursing differs from other health professions?
  12. What element of healthcare attracts you to nursing?
  13. If you were to become a nurse, how would you like your patients to describe you and why?
  14. How do you know whether you really do want to become a nurse?
  15. Do you have any life experiences that you think may help your career in nursing?
  16. What skills do you have to become a nurse?
  17. What qualities do you think make a good nurse?
  18. Discuss a time when you had to convey an important message to someone - describe how you did this and what the end result was.
  19. How do you cope with stress?
  20. How do you manage your time?


  1. What do you know about the Nursing and Midwifery Council?
  2. What is the role of a Children’s Nurse?
  3. What is the role of an Adult Nurse?
  4. What is the most demanding aspect of the study programme, and how would you overcome this?
  5. What can you tell me about the Nursing Code of Practice?
  6. If you had £1 million to spend on healthcare, what would you spend it on and why?
  7. Where does Nursing take place?
  8. What do you know about current Nursing issues in the media?
  9. What challenges affect Nursing in the UK?
  10. What does confidentiality mean and why is it important?
  11. What do you know about consent?
  12. What might a typical day on a ward involve for a Nurse?

Empathy & patient care

  1. Give an example of a situation where you have supported a friend in a difficult social circumstance. What issues did they face and how did you help them?
  2. What does the word empathy mean to you. How do you differentiate empathy from sympathy?
  3. Is it right for nurses to 'feel for their patients'?
  4. How do nurses sometimes react negatively to stress?
  5. A friend has asked your advice on how to tell her parents that she intends to drop out of university and go off travelling. How you respond?
  6. How would you cope with the death of a patient?

Teamwork & communication

  1. What is teamwork and why is it important in Nursing?
  2. Why is communication vital in Nursing?
  3. Give us an example of when you worked as part of a team?
  4. Can you think of a team situation where your communication skills have been essential? Tell us more about the situation and how you contributed.
  5. Tell us about a group activity you have organised. What went well and what went badly? What did you learn from it?
  6. What have you learned about yourself and successful team-working?
  7. Who do you think will be the most important people you will work with as a nurse?
  8. Describe a time when you had to lead a team of people?
  9. What are the advantages and disadvantages of being in a team? Do you believe teams need leaders?
  10. What do you think of nurses taking on tasks previously done by doctors?
  11. What do you think are the advantages and disadvantages of nurses replacing doctors as the first contact person in primary care?
  12. Do you think humour can help a team? Give an example.


  1. What do you think about parents smoking in front of their children?
  2. What do you think about a disabled couple having a child?
  3. Is it better to give health care or aid to impoverished countries?
  4. Do you think nurses should ever go on strike?
  5. Do you think we should find out more about patients’ views of their nurses, their illness or their treatments? How would you set about this?
  6. What do you think are the major sorts of problems facing a person with a long-term health problem, such as difficulty breathing?
  7. What are the differences between length of life and quality of life?
  8. Is there a moral case against drug companies becoming as large and powerful as the market allows them to be?
  9. What are the arguments for and against the decriminalisation of drugs such as cocaine?
  10. Should alternative or complimentary medicine be funded by the NHS, and why?
  11. Should the NHS fund the treatment of self-inflicted diseases?
  12. With the growing problems of overpopulation should the NHS fund IVF treatment?
  13. How do you think nurses should treat injury or illness due to self-harm, smoking or excess alcohol consumption?
  14. What is your feeling about euthanasia?
  15. What do you think about the use of animals for testing new drugs?
  16. How do you respond and what do you feel when you see a beggar in the street?
  17. Do you think that Class A drugs should be legalised?
  18. Would being religious, and therefore potentially having a more positive view to death, be detrimental in your role as a nurse?
  19. A man refuses treatment for a potentially life-threatening condition. What are the ethical issues involved?
  20. What would you do if you discovered a patient had been given a double dosage?

Career plans & your future

  1. Do you have any career aspirations?
  2. How will university benefit your future?
  3. Where do you see yourself in 10 years' time?
  4. If you had to take a gap year, what would you do?

Further information

For more tips and advice on university interviews, please see: