Midwifery MSc

Start date
2 years, full-time
Course Type
Postgraduate, Taught

Full funding for tuition fees and salary provided by NHS England

More details for fees and funding

Our new MSc Midwifery offers current Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) registered adult nurses a route to a shortened two-year postgraduate programme leading to registration as a midwife. The NHS needs another 2000 midwives to ensure a safe, personalised maternity service and to achieve ambitions set out in the Better Births (2016) publication. The University of Birmingham has responded to this workforce shortage by launching this new programme.

Scholarships for 2024 entry

The University of Birmingham is proud to offer a range of scholarships for our postgraduate programmes. With a scholarship pot worth over £2 million, we are committed to alleviating financial barriers to support you in taking your next steps.

Each scholarship has its own specific deadlines and eligibility criteria. Please familiarise yourself with the information on individual scholarship webpages prior to submitting an application.

Explore our scholarships

We are now welcoming applications for October 2024 entry following approval by the Nursing and Midwifery Council.

There will be funding available for up to 300 students per year in England to include salary support and tuition fee contributions up to £9,250 per year as part of the NHS England funding scheme. The University of Birmingham's School of Nursing and Midwifery have 20 of those funded places available.

This programme, which has been developed in line with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) 2019 Standards for Midwifery, is the ideal opportunity for current registered adult nurses to expand on their existing skills and knowledge, and join the midwifery profession.

Being a midwife is highly rewarding but brings responsibility for ensuring that childbirth occurs in a safe and positive environment. At the University of Birmingham, we will provide you with the best possible training opportunities and you will benefit from interprofessional learning opportunities both within the School of Nursing and Midwifery and across the College of Medical and Dental Sciences. You will undertake your placements with local maternal health providers, including Birmingham Women's Hospital (one of only two trusts in the UK specialising in women's health care – located next to the University of Birmingham Medical School).

Baby resuscitation

Our Masters uses a blended learning model, meaning you will have some of your teaching on campus, and some which can be accessed remotely. Both are supported with enhanced and interactive digital media to develop your knowledge. Remote learning will include scheduled webinars, video lectures and podcasts and a wide range of digital resources and directed activity. On campus teaching will be at the University of Birmingham Medical School and include problem-centred and simulated based learning, and some teaching. Our maternal and neonatal simulation facilities will allow you to develop your clinical skills in a safe environment before using them in practice.

A unique feature of the Birmingham MSc Midwifery will be your engagement with your allocated virtual case load. This will assist you in developing your skills in providing relationship-based, holistic care, creative and flexible planning, accurate clinical assessment and high-quality decision-making. 

At Birmingham, we work with a vibrant public engagement in midwifery group who have helped us ensure that the MSc Midwifery programme takes a woman and family centred focus. Our close links with placement partners ensures you will be supported and exposed to a range of specialist placements tailored to your needs. Together, these features will ensure you develop clinical midwifery and research, leadership and management skills which will facilitate your future career journey as a midwife.

Midwifery in practise

Why Midwifery?

Current workforce data shows that the NHS needs another 2000 midwives to ensure a safe, personalised maternity service and to achieve ambitions set out in the Better Births (2016) publication.

Our course has been developed in partnership with practice partners, service users and advocacy groups in response to these workforce shortages identified in the NHS. The NHS needs highly skilled midwives to deliver a safe and compassionate service that meets women’s needs, so this is a fantastic opportunity to join this rewarding profession with lots of job opportunities regionally and nationally.

Midwifery Teaching

Why Birmingham?

Birmingham offers many opportunities for those wanting to pursue a career in midwifery. Over the next ten years the regional birth rate is predicted to rise for Birmingham (Office for National Statistics), and to support local and national quality improvement measures, numbers of midwives educated needs to proactively increase.

Birmingham is the youngest city in Europe, with 40% of the population 25 or under and projections for birth rates are rising. Located in a city of great diversity, and with a wealth of healthcare providers in the region, you can be certain of access to a large variety of learning and development opportunities. Your time at the University of Birmingham will also allow you to access a broad range of activities and student societies to ensure that you maximise your time studying with us.

The University is uniquely placed in the West Midlands to offer high quality, effective placements that will help translate learning into practice. The University is a founding member of Birmingham Health Partners, a strategic alliance of five organisations who collaborate to bring healthcare innovations through to clinical application.  

Why study this course?

  • NHS England funded places mean University of Birmingham MSc Midwifery students will undertake their placements at, and be employed by, one of three trusts serving the population of Birmingham for the duration of the programme:
    • University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust
    • Birmingham Women's and Children's Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
    • Sandwell & West Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust
    • South Warwickshire University NHS Foundation
    • University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust

If you wish your placement to take place in a Trust outside of the Birmingham or Dudley area, please contact us at midwiferyadmissions@contacts.bham.ac.uk to discuss this and we will work with the hospital trust to explore if this is possible.

  • Study in our School of Nursing and Midwifery and work alongside senior, experienced academics, researchers, clinical midwives, and experts in their fields exploring relevant issues to women, their families and newborns.
  • Our research centres include the WHO Collaborating Centre for Global Women’s Health, the Tommy’s National Centre for Miscarriage Research, Maternal and Child Health, and Risk, Abuse and Violence and we are developing, testing and implementing solutions to protect and save women’s lives across the world by improving their standards of care during pregnancy and childbirth.
  • We are part of a vibrant Public Engagement in Midwifery Group and work with service users and advocacy groups, and are committed to working with them to ensure our programme and resources position service-users' needs at its core.
  • You will develop skills in leadership and the delivery of high-quality personalised midwifery care.
  • Our strong partnerships across the West Midlands and beyond mean we can offer you high-quality, effective placement education that will help you translate your learning to practice.
  • You will enjoy working with and learning from our community representing a wide range of backgrounds and cultures in one of the UK's largest healthcare regions.

Degree Apprenticeship

In addition to the MSc in Midwifery, for learners who are currently employed in an appropriate clinical role, we now offer a BSc Midwifery Degree Apprenticeship. This represents a new and exciting opportunity for learners to gain an BSc in Midwifery funded by an employer’s apprenticeship levy. This route requires the support of employers and brings together university study and the invaluable on-the-job training typical of an apprenticeship. Please get in touch with our Apprenticeships Team if you think this opportunity might be right for you.


Year one

  • Professional midwifery practice (10 credits)
  • Creating and applying evidence (20 credits)
  • Universal midwifery care across the childbearing continuum (20 credits)
  • Exploring additional health needs in a maternity system (20 credits)
  • Safe and effective midwifery care (20 credits)
  • Newborn and Infant Health Assessment (10 credits)
  • The midwife as a developing practitioner (non-credit bearing)

Year two

  • Enhancing midwifery care for complex cases (20 credits)
  • Leading and managing a caseload (20 credits)
  • Advanced Practice Research project (40 credits)
  • The midwife as a skilled practitioner (non-credit bearing)


Annual tuition fee for 2023/24:

UK: £9,250 per year for two years.


NHS England are funding up to 300 students in England to undertake this shortened Midwifery course covering salary and tuition fees. The University of Birmingham’s School of Nursing and Midwifery have 20 of those funded places available. Please contact us at midwiferyadmissions@contacts.bham.ac.uk and we can guide you through the application process and discuss the range of placement providers available to you.


Postgraduate Loans for Masters students

As a UK resident you can apply for a government loan for postgraduate Masters study. This is a contribution towards the costs of study and whether the loan is used towards fees, maintenance or other costs will be at the discretion of the student.

Find out more about the Postgraduate Loan

How To Apply

How to Apply for a Postgraduate Degree - Taught programmes

Making your application

NHS England are funding up to 300 students in England to undertake this shortened Midwifery course covering salary and tuition fees.  The University of Birmingham’s School of Nursing and Midwifery have 20 of those funded places available.

We appreciate that taking on this career change may be daunting and complex.  We are very happy to support you with any queries and information, so please contact us and we can explain your placement options across our range of providers and guide you through the application process.  Contact us at midwiferyadmissions@contacts.bham.ac.uk

Please note that we are unfortunately unable to accept applications from international students at this time due to the need to be registered with the UK's Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) for the duration of the programme. Further information about the registration requirements can be found on the NMC website.

How to apply

To apply for a postgraduate taught programme, you will need to submit your application and supporting documents online. We have put together some helpful information on the taught programme application process and supporting documents on our how to apply page. Please read this information carefully before completing your application.

Apply now

Our Standard Requirements

  • Current NMC registration as a nurse (first level, adult)
  • You will also need one of the following:
    • A Bachelors degree in Nursing (adult field), normally with 2:1 Honours or above
      A Bachelors degree in a non-nursing subject, normally with 2:1 Honours or above, plus a certified qualification in adult nursing (Postgraduate Diploma, Pre-Registration Diploma or equivalent)
  • GCSE: Grade C/4 or above in English Language or Literature and Mathematics or equivalent 
  • Evidence of recent academic study within the last five years
  • A minimum of 12 months of clinical experience as an adult nurse
  • An ability to meet the requirements for NMC revalidation as an adult nurse for the duration of the programme
  • Self-declaration of health and character, satisfactory Disclosure and Barring Service and occupational health assessment/BBV clearance
  • Access to IT and digital literacy to enable engagement with the programme
  • A suitable reference that supports claims made on your personal statement. This should include an academic reference.

Applicants whose first language is not English should have an overall IELTS score of 7.0 overall and with 6.5 in writing and 7.0 in all other sections to ensure compliance with Standard 1.5.6.


Our MSc Midwifery is a blended learning programme. You will spend 50% of your time in practice, completing 1,800 hours on placement across the two years.

This will be supplemented by virtual and in-person teaching at the University of Birmingham campus. Teaching will be delivered in weekly blocks, which is anticipated to be six to eight weeks in year one and four weeks in year two.

This programme has been designed in close collaboration with women and pregnant people who use the service, as well as representatives from groups who support and advocate for women and their families and practice partners. The central philosophy of this programme is to prepare midwives to offer a safe, personalised care experience, who work effectively as a member of the multidisciplinary team and who advocate for women’s needs when this is required. Our graduates will be confident practitioners and future leaders, who understand and use research and evidence to inform their practice.

Your learning journey will include a mixture of online learning and on campus skills, simulation and team building activities, as well as blocks of time in practice placement, learning under the supervision of registered midwives and, on occasion, with other registered practitioners. 

Online learning

Your online learning will include synchronous activities such as live lectures and seminars, interactive workshops, small group tutorials and whole class activities. You will also have access to pre-recorded sessions and activities to support a flexible approach to study. Experts in their field will contribute to your learning experience and to your development as a midwife who not only has insight into different aspects of practice but who also feels confident to be a member of the multidisciplinary team. 

To prepare you for registered, autonomous and safe practice as midwives, you will study mostly in small groups using enquiry-based learning to enable you to develop as independent learners and proactive, critical thinkers and decision makers. We will offer you structured support to learn in this way.

Our programme has a strong emphasis on ensuring that you are able to work safely and effectively in continuity of care teams when you qualify, so you will carry a small virtual caseload which you will be expected to manage. The virtual midwifery caseload has been developed in partnership with women and their families to give you an authentic experience.

Practice based learning

You will complete a newborn and infant health assessment module which will enable you to practice as a NIPE practitioner once qualified. You will also study modules that focus on the universal care that all women and newborn’s need, but also the additional care that some women, their newborns and families require. You will be prepared to work with women experiencing complications in their pregnancy, birth and postnatal period as a member of the wider multidisciplinary team to ensure your practice is safe and effective.

There is an emphasis on developing our learners to be future researchers. You will share learning on your research modules with students on the advanced clinical practice programme and will have access to our maternal health research team to enable you to see research in action. You will also have weekly research tutorials to support you to develop skills in critical appraisal of research to support your practice as an evidenced based midwife.  

Our skills and simulation days will usually precede placement blocks. They will focus on cases from the virtual midwifery caseload and will be organised around following the journey of women and newborn’s through maternity services. You will have the opportunity to learn about and practise key midwifery skills as well as having the opportunity to undertake simulations of practice with colleagues from our interactive studies unit https://www.birmingham.ac.uk/schools/haps/teaching/isu/index.aspx and to work with our gynaecological teaching associates learning about how to undertake pelvic examinations https://www.birmingham.ac.uk/schools/haps/teaching/ISU/GTA.aspx

Academic assessors, practice supervisors, practice assessors and practice placement managers will support your practice learning and confirm your achievements. Whilst on placement, you will spend time in each of the clinical areas that support maternity services. You will engage in caseloading activity and will carry a very small caseload in year two. During this experience, you will follow the women you are working with to their appointments and, when possible, you will be present at their birth. In year two, you will undertake a seven-week specialist placement block. Here you will select an area of focus and will work with specialist midwives, practitioners, agencies, charities, as well as researchers, midwifery leaders and managers. 

To ensure you feel part of a community of practice, you will have regular opportunities to connect with other learners on your course and those from other professions, as well as researchers and members of our public engagement in midwifery group. Members of this national group are service users and representatives from advocacy groups. You will also be offered regular opportunities to collaborate with the teaching team to enhance the programme and will be supported in your studies by your allocated personal academic tutor and dedicated services designed to support your academic study and your wellbeing.


Assessment includes practical exams, patchwork text, essay, case study, development of a digital resource, presentations, student engagement. We use the midwifery ongoing record of achievement (MORA) for practice assessment

Assessment Methods

Modules will be assessed through essays, assignments, exams, oral presentations and computer based problem-solving.


Successful completion of all aspects of this programme will enable you to register with the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) as a midwife.

Midwifery graduates can expect a high level of employment and this programme will prepare you to work in all maternity settings, including in hospitals and in the community. You will also be equipped for roles in traditional and continuity of care teams.

The knowledge, skills and values you will develop whilst a student at the University of Birmingham will also provide you with the foundation from which to progress to advanced clinical, leadership, management, research and education roles in midwifery.

University Careers Network

Preparation for your career should be one of the first things you think about as you start university. Whether you have a clear idea of where your future aspirations lie or want to consider the broad range of opportunities available once you have a Birmingham degree, our Careers Network can help you achieve your goal.

Our unique careers guidance service is tailored to your academic subject area, offering a specialised team (in each of the five academic colleges) who can give you expert advice. Our team source exclusive work experience opportunities to help you stand out amongst the competition, with mentoring, global internships and placements available to you. Once you have a career in your sights, one-to-one support with CVs and job applications will help give you the edge.

If you make the most of the wide range of services you will be able to develop your career from the moment you arrive.