Course Overview

The Higher Diploma in Midwifery is for registered general nurses who wish to pursue a career in midwifery. The programme builds on students’ prior professional, academic and personal experiences. Following successful completion of the programme, students are competent to fulfil the role of the midwife as outlined by the International Confederation of Midwives and are eligible to apply to register as a midwife with Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland (NMBI).

*Next intake will be February 2024–September 2025, and the one after that will be September 2025–March 2026. 

Applications and Selections

See for application details.

Prospective students are required to complete an online application form and those who meet the eligibility criteria are invited for interview. 
 The course is advertised on the HSE website, in social media, newspapers, and information is provided on the School of Nursing and Midwifery, University of Galway website. 

Who Teaches this Course

  • Caroline Keegan
Prof Declan Devane
Professor of Health Research Methodology
School of Nursing and Midwifery
Aras Moyola
University of Galway
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Ms Miriam Brennan
RGN, RM, RNT, BNS, M.Sc (Nursing)
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Dr Linda Biesty
M.Sc. B.Sc. PgDip
Senior Lecturer
School of Nursing and Midwifery
NUI Galway
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Dr Patricia Healy
Lecturer Above The Bar
Room 235, 1st Floor
Aras Moyola
Central Campus
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Requirements and Assessment

Key Facts

Entry Requirements

Applicants must be registered on the General Division of the Register of Nurses maintained by the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland. A minimum of six months’ experience as a registered general nurse, within the last three years, is required at the time of application. (NOTE: July 2023—this requirement has now been removed by HSE; this is being noted here on our website, but cannot be updated in printed prospectus, in circulation.)



Additional Requirements

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL)

Recognition of Prior Learning for module exemptions is not available on this programme due to external professional accreditation requirements. 


80 weeks, full-time

Next start date

*See under "Course Overview", Next intake info.

A Level Grades ()

Average intake

Intake 17

QQI/FET FETAC Entry Routes

Closing Date

31 May 2024

NFQ level

Mode of study

ECTS weighting




Course code


Course Outline

The Higher Diploma in Midwifery is of 80 weeks duration. The programme is provided by the School of Nursing and Midwifery at University of Galway in partnership with the Saolta Group Maternity Services. The course consists of 54 weeks  of clinical practice and 26 weeks of theoretical content. Clinical practice is located at the Maternity units in the Saolta Hospital group  and consists of placements in Antenatal, Intranatal, Postnatal, Midwife-led Placements, Gynaecology, Theatre & Recovery and Neonatal Unit. Theoretical content consists of the following modules: Anatomy and Physiology Applied to Midwifery, Midwifery Care I & II, Woman with Complications in Childbirth I & II, Care of the Well Neonate, The Neonate Requiring Specialised Care, Research, Psychology and Sociology applied to Midwifery, Professional Issues and an Elective Placement for Midwifery.  

Curriculum Information

Curriculum information relates to the current academic year (in most cases).
Course and module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Glossary of Terms

You must earn a defined number of credits (aka ECTS) to complete each year of your course. You do this by taking all of its required modules as well as the correct number of optional modules to obtain that year's total number of credits.
An examinable portion of a subject or course, for which you attend lectures and/or tutorials and carry out assignments. E.g. Algebra and Calculus could be modules within the subject Mathematics. Each module has a unique module code eg. MA140.
Some courses allow you to choose subjects, where related modules are grouped together. Subjects have their own required number of credits, so you must take all that subject's required modules and may also need to obtain the remainder of the subject's total credits by choosing from its available optional modules.
A module you may choose to study.
A module that you must study if you choose this course (or subject).
Required Core Subject
A subject you must study because it's integral to that course.
Most courses have 2 semesters (aka terms) per year, so a three-year course will have six semesters in total. For clarity, this page will refer to the first semester of year 2 as 'Semester 3'.

Why Choose This Course?

Career Opportunities

There are career opportunities for midwives to work in various practice settings including hospitals, midwife-led care units, clinics or in the community, across different models of care.  There are also opportunities to specialise in areas within clinical practice, or to focus more on education or research related to midwifery. For midwives who wish to work in another EU state, they must undertake a year of clinical midwifery practice in Ireland before they can register with any other EU Member State and practice in that country.

Who’s Suited to This Course

Learning Outcomes

Transferable Skills Employers Value

Work Placement

Study Abroad

Related Student Organisations

Course Fees

Fees: EU

Fees: Tuition

Fees: Student levy

Fees: Non EU

This programme is sponsored by the HSE.

Find out More

Dr Patricia Healy
T +353 91 495 421

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