The NMC (Nursing and Midwifery Council) in the UK have just announced changes in the way they accept IELTS scores from Overseas Nurses and Midwives.  Whilst the standard is still the same as before – in so much that they require all Overseas Nurses or Midwives who have not trained in the UK or the European Union need to have an IELTS score of Band 7 – they have now decided to accept 2 IELTS certificates as long as the overall pass rate in each element of the test is Band 7.

All non-EU trained applicants to the nurses or midwives part of the register must complete the International English Language Test (IELTS) before sending their application to the NMC.

You must complete the academic version of the IELTS test and achieve:

  • at least 7.0 in the listening and reading sections
  • at least 7.0 in the writing and speaking sections, and
  • at least 7.0 (out of a possible 9) overall.

Applicants may provide two IELTS test certificates to meet the above requirements, but must not have scored below 6.5 in any categories, in either of the test sittings.

The two test sittings must be taken within six months of each other to be considered.

The NMC will not accept applicants who score lower than this standard.

This is good news indeed for Nurses or Midwives who have failed previously because they had a 6.5 in some elements of the test the first time round.  As long as they can improve their results in these element to band 7 or above in their second test and maintain their Band 7 in the other elements so that they have a band 7 pass rate overall then they can use both certificates when they apply for registration with the NMC.

The tests as mentioned above have to be taken within 6 months of each other.  If the time between tests is longer than this then they will not be accepted by the NMC.

I hope this is good news to any Nurses or Midwives who are worrying about taking their second IELTS tests in the near future,

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