NMC Registration is complex and time-consuming. We are here to offer you support with the NMC Registration. In order to work as a Registered Nurse in the United Kingdom. The NMC (Nursing & Midwifery Council) checks and verifies that an applicant is capable of practicing safely and effectively in the UK as a nurse or a midwife, and they assess the applicant’s qualification, training and experience against the UK NMC standards. NMC will check whether the applicant has undertaken the necessary post-qualifying practice and experience in each area of nursing or midwifery as required for the part of the Register for which they are applying.
Working as a nurse or midwife in the UK
All nurses and midwives who want to work in the UK must register with the NMC. NMC register consists of three parts.
- Specialist community public health nurses (SCPHN)
The nurse part of the register is divided into four fields of practice.
- Adult nursing
- Mental health nursing
- Learning disabilities nursing
- Children’s nursing
You can apply to be on the nurses or midwives parts of the register, as long as you meet our standards. If you’ve trained as a general nurse, you should apply for registration with NMC as an adult nurse. If you want to register on more than one part of the register or field of practice, you should apply for each part/field at the same time. Once you’re registered, you can work in the National Health Service (NHS) or private health care.
You need to have successfully completed at least 10 years of school education before starting your post-secondary education nursing or midwifery training programme, which lead to registration. This must be atleast a three year full time programme.
English language requirements
When you apply to register with the NMC they need whether to know you can communicate effectively in English. Communication is defined as speaking, reading, listening and writing. You must demonstrate competence in these four skills. Detailed guidance is given below.
International English Language Test System (IELTS)
Nurses who have completed an IELTS academic examination must provide an IELTS certificate that confirms:
- at least 7.0 in the listening reading and speaking
- at least 6.5 in the writing
- at least 7.0 overall
Nurses can also take two IELTS tests, in which case the scores in both sittings are above 6.5 and they achieve 7.0 or higher in all four fields when the results of both sittings are viewed together. Both tests must be within 6 months.
As per the new NMC Update on 28/11/2018: Nurses and midwives will still be required to achieve a minimum overall level of 7 in the test. However, a level 6.5 in writing will be accepted alongside a level 7 in reading, listening and speaking.
Occupational English Test (OET)
Nurses who have completed an OET examination must provide a certificate that confirms:
- at least a B grade in listening and reading, and
- at least a B grade in writing and speaking.
We will only accept results from OET tests taken from and after February 2016.
For nurses who take the OET, all grades in both sittings should be above grade C+ and they must achieve a grade B or higher in all four fields when the results of both sittings are viewed together. Both tests must be within six months and they must complete all sections on each test.
Nurses must score individual 7 band in general academic or UKVI academic version of IELTS, in a single or two attempts within 6 months (Clubbing) OR you must score a minimum B grade in OET (Occupational English Test) in a single or double attempt.
A recent Pre-registration Nursing or Midwifery qualification which was taught and examined in English
Nurses who wish to rely on evidence that they have been recently trained in English, they must be able to provide evidence that:
- The course was taught and examined in English.
- The programme demonstrates their ability in reading, writing, speaking and listening in a range of environments.
They will need to provide us with the following:
- A university transcript of training
- A letter of reference from your training institution (or the training institution can complete sections 8a and 8b on the form to accompany their transcript of training).
The evidence must confirm that the programme was composed of at least 50 percent clinical interaction. At least 75 percent of that must be with patients, service users, their families and other healthcare professionals must have taken place in English.
Please note, by recent, we mean evidence related to English language competence that is less than two years old at the point of making an application to the NMC. The British council recognizes two years as the accepted period for an individual to remain proficient in English if the language is used regularly. Proficiency in English deteriorates after two years if it is not used on a regular basis.
NMC is currently reviewing this route, we encourage nurses to use evidence 1 route for NMC registration.
Registration and practice of at least one year in a country where English is the first and native language and an English language assessment was required for registration.
List of accepted English speaking countries
Nurses who wish to rely on evidence that they have registered and practiced in English, they must be able to provide evidence that:
- They have completed an English language assessment or examination as part of their registration in the country.
- They have one year post registered practice in an English speaking setting
If the registration is in a country where English is the first and native language. Nurses will need to provide the following:
- A letter of good standing from their licensing authority
- Details of the English language assessment that they undertook as part of their registration, and
- A supporting reference from their employer.
Please note, if we are unable to identify whether the nurse completed an English language assessment as part of their registration then we will require additional confirmation of the registration requirements from the licensing authority where they are registered.
Overseas trained nurses working in native English speaking countries will be eligible to register with NMC if they have registration and one year of practice in the country. They must provide proof that they have completed an English language assessment or examination as part of their registration in the country.
For example, Indian or Filipino nurses working as a Registered Nurse in Australia will be eligible to register with NMC if they can prove that they have completed an English language assessment as a part of their registration in Australia.
Non-EU nursing working in Ireland will be able to register through this route
The application process
This is the first stage of the application process. You’ll need to complete an online self-assessment, which will confirm if you’re eligible to apply. As part of this, you’ll be asked to confirm that you meet our minimum requirements including good health and good character. You’ll also need to confirm that you understand you will be asked to provide us with supporting documents later in the process.
If you complete these declarations and can’t provide any supporting evidence later on, we won’t progress your application and any costs you’ve incurred won’t be refunded.
Test of competence part one: the computer based test (CBT)
Once you’ve passed the eligibility stage, you’ll be asked to sit for the CBT. This is a test of your theoretical practice-based knowledge. The test format is a multiple choice test and can be taken in test centres around the world. You’ll have two attempts at this test and you’ll need to pass within six months of completing your eligibility. If you’ve not completed the CBT within six months of completing your eligibility it will expire and you’ll need to complete the online self assessment again. If you’re unsuccessful in both your CBT attempts, you’ll need to wait six months in order to restart the application process. Our test provider, Pearson VUE, administers their own test fee in agreement with us. You’ll need to contact Pearson VUE directly to book and pay for your test.
Stage 1 - Computer Based Test (CBT) – at Pearson VUE Test centres around the world
- Multiple choices
- 120 questions
- 4 hours to complete
- 60% score overall to pass
- 90% of critical questions must be answered correctly (related to patient safety)
- Maximum 2 re-sits
After you’ve passed the CBT, you’ll be asked to provide your supporting documents for your application. You’ll need to upload copies of the following documents to us are:
- Your current valid passport
- Your birth certificate
- Your formal qualification certificates for each qualification you’re submitting as part of your application.
- Your registration certificates from each country where you’ve practised and/or been registered. If the country operates state level registration, then you’ll need to have registered in each state where you’ve practised.
- A full, national police clearance certificate for every overseas country you’ve lived in or visited for more than three months, since the age of 18. You’ll need to submit these within three months of the date of issue.
- If you’ve lived in the UK for more than three months, you’ll need to provide us with a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) certificate. You’ll need to submit this within three months of the date of issue. You’ll also need to download and print the following forms from your online portal and have them completed:
- Registration verification from each country where you’ve practised or where you’ve been previously registered. Again, if the country operates state level registration, you’ll need to have been registered and provide verification forms from each state you’ve practiced in. These forms need to be completed by the relevant authority and we need to receive them within three months of the date it was signed.
- A completed form to accompany transcript of training (FATT) form and a full transcript of your training for all relevant nursing or midwifery qualifications you’re submitting as part of your application. These forms need to be completed by your education provider.
- A good health declaration from your general practitioner or the occupational health department at your place of work. They’ll be asked to confirm that they’ve seen you within the last six months of the date they’re completing the form and we must receive the form within three months of the date it’s been completed. The individual completing your good health declaration must not be a member of your family or your direct employer. All of the relevant forms required are available to download from your online portal once you reach the assessment stage, but not before. You’ll need to send the relevant forms to the correct authorities to be completed and they must be posted back to us. We do need the original forms that the referee or relevant authority has completed; please don’t send photocopies or scans, as these won’t be accepted. All forms must be completed in full and be signed, stamped and dated. Once we’ve received all the necessary documents, your application will be assessed by a member of the International Registrations Team. We aim to assess applications within 60 calendar days of receiving all your supporting evidence. 13 If we need to ask you for more information following our assessment, we’ll assign you a case officer, who will be your point of contact going forward. Once we confirmed you’ve met our registration requirements, your application will be progressed to the next stage, which is the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE).
Test of competence part two: the objective structured clinical examination (OSCE)
The OSCE will assess your clinical knowledge and can only be completed in the UK. The test will be administered by one of our approved university test centres who will administer their own test fee in agreement with us. You’ll need to contact the university directly to book and pay for your test. The OSCE simulates a clinical environment and patient scenarios which all registered nurses and midwives are likely to encounter when they assess, plan, implement and evaluate care. The OSCE contains nursing or midwifery scenarios along with separate skill stations. Each separate clinical examination is known a ‘station’ and you’ll circulate through all the stations within a set timeframe. Each of the six stations has standardised marking criteria against which everyone is assessed. Everyone is assessed by a panel of examiners and will be filmed for quality assurance purposes. Both the CBT and OSCE are based on current UK pre-registration standards. If you started your application before 6 April 2017, you’ll have two attempts at the OSCE as part of one application. Should you be unsuccessful following your second attempt, your application will close. You’ll need to start a new application, but you won’t be able to sit the OSCE again for a minimum of six months. If you started your application on or after 6 April 2017, you’ll have three attempts at the OSCE, as part of one application. Should you be unsuccessful in your first OSCE, then you must wait a minimum of 10 working days before your next attempt. If you’re unsuccessful in your second OSCE attempt, you must wait a minimum of three months from the date of your second attempt before you can take your next attempt. If you’re unsuccessful on your third attempt, your application will close. You’ll need to submit a new application but will not be able to sit the OSCE again for a minimum of six months.
Stage 2 – Objective Structured Clinical Examination(OSCE)
Currently at University of Northampton, Oxford Brookes University, Ulster University, UK
- 6 OSCE stations
- 20 minutes per station with 5 minutes familiarization
- 4 stations are scenario based, related to holistic patient-centered nursing and midwifery care
- 2 stations are focused on practical clinical skills
- Unique 20 criterion based assessment sheet for each station
- Maximum 2 re-sits
A face-to-face ID check will take place at the OSCE location on the same day as your OSCE exam. You’ll need to bring all of the original documents that you uploaded as part of your application. This includes your passport, registration certificates, police clearances and UK DBS. You can find a checklist on the back of your OSCE letter, which is downloadable from your portal. 14 If for any reason you don’t have all of your original documents on the day, you will still be able to sit your OSCE exam. However, you’ll be asked to book in an appointment, either at our office in London or at one of the OSCE locations, to complete your ID check. If this is the case, you won’t be able to progress to the last stage of the registration process until you’ve attended your follow up ID check.
Once we have received notification that you’ve successfully completed your OSCE and the ID check, you’ll be asked to complete your final declaration and make your registration payment via your portal. Once you’ve completed both, we’ll send you your registration number (Pin).