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How many years does it take to become a Certified Nurse Midwife?

My main question is how many years of schooling are required to become a Certified Nurse Midwife. I'm overwhelmed with all the research I've been doing about schooling and I just need straightforward answers. I want to do the least amount of schooling possible in order to become a CNM. I'm also curious what courses or classes I would have to take in college in order to reach my goal. #nursing #college #midwife

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Sue’s Answer


Unfortunately, there are no short cuts to becoming a CNM. The research you are doing is important so that you have all of the necessary information needed to make an informed choice about this career field, where you go to school and where you want to practice. Each state has different regulations you need to be aware of. It might be best to decide where (the state(s)) you want to work in when you are done and research the requirements for those states.

It can take at least eight years to become a CNM: four years for a bachelor’s degree, one year of nursing experience, and three years in a nurse midwifery program. Certified nurse midwives have master’s degrees in nurse midwifery, and to enter a nurse midwifery program, one must typically have a bachelor’s degree in nursing and some experience working as a registered nurse. Certified nurse midwifes are advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs), a category that requires nurses to hold a graduate degree. Course work includes clinical training and courses in anatomy, nursing, chemistry, and microbiology, among others.

Good luck to you.


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M. Cristina’s Answer

Sue's answer is on point; that's the nature of the industry. Becoming a Nurse Midwife is a lengthy process, as you'll need an advanced degree in order to begin practicing. If the length of time in school is a deciding factor, you can also consider being a Labor and Delivery Nurse, which also requires becoming an RN but doesn't necessarily require additional schooling beyond the BSN, though it would be helpful to get a certification that focuses on Obstetrics because L&D is very competitive.

M. Cristina recommends the following next steps:

Obtain a BSN or ABSN (typically 4 years)
Gain relevant work experience (at least 1 year)
Apply to an advanced nursing degree program
Complete advanced nursing program (2-3 years, depending)