The basics
THE UK: Subject Guides

Course Info: Nursing

If you feel passion for helping others, Hotcourses gives you a guide to this rewarding profession in the UK


Nursing is a highly demanding but uniquely rewarding profession. Furthermore, the knowledge gained from nursing education can lead to many other career opportunities both in the National Health Service (NHS) and in private hospitals, with a large variety of specialisations.  Our editor Lilya, is here to expand on the subject.

The nursing profession is an emotionally demanding career. Prospective students are required to be humane and kind-hearted as well as firm and capable of great endurance. An interest in medicine, sciences and the human body is also required. Nurses provide help and support to people experiencing health problems as well as assisting doctors and other medical professionals.

Course description

Different nursing positions in hospitals require different skills and levels of responsibility, so qualification levels vary. The diploma qualification allows you to work in hospitals under the supervision of a registered nurse. Diploma courses usually last 1 – 2 years depending on the university and can serve as a first step into the profession.

Bachelor degrees in nursing usually last 3 years and allow the graduates to work in a variety of clinical contexts and apply for a nursing registration.  Nursing graduates have higher levels of technical and clinical decision making skills. During their studies, students can choose their specialisation. Some of these are as follows:

  • adult nursing
  • mental health nursing
  • children health
  • learning disabilities

Depending on the specialisation, nursing students learn the basics of anatomy, physiology, biochemistry and other medicine related sciences. Many course providers find it necessary to accentuate the fact that the fundamental element of nursing profession is the “human being”. That is why teaching the basics of human behaviour and communication with people is a priority during the degree.

At the end of the programme, students usually have the opportunity to apply their knowledge and practice at local hospitals. In some universities such practice also counts as a part of the degree.

Entry Requirements

If English is not your first language, you will have to demonstrate competency through an IELTS exam - Read more how to prepare for IELTS exam. Typically universities require grade 6.5 or above. Additionally, many universities will ask you to submit a personal statement and attend an interview for entry.

Career opportunities

Those who choose nursing will benefit from a significant market demand. One of the most common career pathways is in the NHS; hospitals and clinics always need additional staff with different levels of qualifications. What is more, the NHS often subsidises fully or partially the education of their current or potential employees. You can read more about nursing NHS scholarship programmes by following the link.

 Hospitals and clinics, however, are not the only places where nurses can work. Nurses can find jobs almost everywhere: in voluntary organisations, ships, in military sector, universities, schools and in elderly care.

Further information

If you are looking for a nursing course, check the Hotcourses list and look at the universities rakings on your chosen field.

Read more about Medicine and Biomedical Sciences courses as well as the experiences of a prospective medicine student in the US.

If you want to find out more about health services available to students like you, read out article about the subject.

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About Author

Лилия приехала из Москвы на учебу в Лондон. Окончила Royal Holloway, University of London и сейчас работает в Pearson Education.


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