Guide to Studying Midwifery

What is Midwifery?

A midwife acts as a professional companion during pregnancy, labour and the postpartum period.

As an autonomous practitioner, the midwife is the lead professional for all women with uncomplicated pregnancies. Midwives have the expertise to facilitate the normal psychological processes of childbirth.

Midwives also have a role in public health, aiming to meet the challenges of reducing inequalities and improving the wellbeing of women and their families.


Why study Midwifery?

Midwives are passionate about women's rights, working as their advocate, to facilitate and uphold informed choices.

Midwives have to be responsive to the needs of women in a fast, paced ever-changing environment, with challenges such as an increasing birth rate and advances in research and technology. It is intellectually, physically and emotionally engaging.

Coursework, assessment and exams

Courses are approximately 50 per cent theory and 50 per cent practice. Theory time will include academic sessions and opportunities to practise clinical skills. Practice placements can include community and low-risk birth centres and hospital allocations.

You can be assessed through academic essays, written and clinical examinations, case studies, research critiques, presentations and a dissertation. Students are required to pass all elements of the course and demonstrate professional behaviour throughout.

What degree can I get?

  • Midwifery Practice
  • Midwifery Sciences
  • Midwifery (Pre-Registration)
  • Midwifery with NMC registration

What qualifications do I need?

You will normally need at least five GCSEs at grade C or above. These will need to include English, Mathematics and Science, in addition to three A Levels or equivalent. Always confirm the entry requirements for the particular university and course you are interested in. 

You will also usually need at least six months of work experience, which can include voluntary work.

What are the postgraduate opportunities?

Midwifery graduates are required to commit to continuing professional development throughout their careers. Graduates can go on to study a master's or doctorate-level programme. This will usually be required should they choose to progress to a career as a consultant midwife, senior manager, educationalist or researcher.

What are the job opportunities?

Upon qualification midwives may choose to work within the NHS or privately, within the hospital or community environment. 

NHS midwives will usually commence their career as a Band 5 midwife. They will have the opportunity to progress to Band 6 after completing post-qualification competencies (which usually take one year to complete).

Midwives can then progress to more senior roles such as team leader, specialist midwife or manager. This provides the opportunity to move further up the salary bands.

Midwifery at De Montfort University

Midwifery DMU
DMU was awarded a gold ranking in the
national Teaching Excellence Framework

As a Midwifery student at DMU you will be taught by registered midwives who are passionate about their profession and the progression of their students. It is this passion that ensures teaching on the course is delivered to the very highest standard, as recognised by UNICEF – which awarded DMU Baby Friendly Accreditation, a globally recognised quality award for breastfeeding education.

Our students can also benefit from an international experience through the #DMUglobal initiative. Leicester remains one of the most ethnically diverse cities in the UK which enables students to experience a wide range of cultural practices pertaining to childbearing.

You will also get the opportunity to take a working caseload in the third year of the programme, where you will provide continuity of care to a select group of women to develop competence and confidence, smoothing the transition to the role of newly qualified midwife.

98 per cent of students from the Faculty of Health and Life Sciences at DMU begin work or further study within six months of qualification (DLHE survey 2015-16). DMU's strong links with the local NHS trust has ensured that graduates wishing to work locally have gained employment there.

To find out more, see the campus and speak to current students and academics about the course, book your place at an open day, or take a virtual tour of the campus.