Become a nurse

How to become a nurse

Working as a nurse is challenging, but rewarding at the same time. It is often referred to as “a calling” and every country in the world needs nurses, which means that you can work anywhere you want to.

Do you have what it takes?


If you want to be a nurse, you need to think about whether you’ve got what it takes to be a good one. You should be good with people, good at communicating, good at solving problems and be organised. As a nurse you’ll need to communicate with patients as well as the team that you’re working in.

What do you want to specialise in?

As a nurse, you will specialise in one specific area. While there will be certain things that every nurse will learn, you will be required to specialise in a specific area: adults, children, learning disabilities or mental health. You need to decide this before you apply for training, though some universities offer the flexibility to choose after you’ve started the course.

Training

To work in the UK as a nurse, you need a degree in nursing. You can work your way up from a healthcare assistant and apply for a place on a degree course, but you will still need to meet the entry requirements for UCAS. A degree will normally take around three years, during which time you’ll get lots of practical experience in nursing. The type of practical experience on placement that you’ll receive will depend on the speciality that you’ve chosen. There is also the option to gain a masters in nursing, with courses such as this online msn course.

While you’re studying, you will be able to work for the nurse bank.

You can also choose between part time or full time courses, though if you want to study part time, you usually need to be already working in the health sector, and it will take twice the amount of time.

Jobs

There are plenty of opportunities for you to work in nursing and to progress your career to managing teams or even running wards. There is such a variety of different roles available on the jobs market to work as a nurse.

Working life

If you work in the NHS, then your working hours will be very flexible and you’ll have lots of opportunities to progress up the career ladder. However, you don’t have to work for the NHS, you can work for private healthcare providers, charities, as a teacher or in the armed forces, to name a few other options.

Do you have any more questions about how to become a nurse? Ask us below and we’ll give you some advice!

Photo: Dr. Farouk / Flickr

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