How to Become a Midwife Without a Nursing Degree: What You Need to Know

How to Become a Midwife without a Nursing Degree

This blog post trolls the world of midwifery, its roles and duties, and the options available for those seeking to become midwives without a nursing degree. Midwifery is a rewarding job in that individuals can become maternal care providers without a nursing degree to care for pregnant mothers pre- and post-childbirth.

What does a midwife do? 

Before delving into the educational options, it’s essential to understand the core responsibilities of a midwife. Midwives are trained healthcare professionals who offer comprehensive care to pregnant individuals. Their duties include:

  1. Prenatal Care: operating regular check-ups, monitoring the health of the pregnant person and fetus, and providing advice on nutrition and well-being.
  2. Education and Counseling: Educating expectant mothers about birthing, childbirth options, and pain relief methods.
  3. Labor and Birth Support: Providing emotional help during labor, helping with pain management, and guaranteeing the well-being of both the mother and the baby.
  4. Natural and Holistic Approach: Emphasizing natural childbirth and minimizing medical interventions when possible.
  5. Medical Interventions: Recognizing complications and emergencies and responding appropriately, sometimes in collaboration with obstetricians.
  6. Postpartum Care: Offering care after childbirth, including assistance with breastfeeding and postpartum recovery.
  7. Family-Centered Care: Involve the family in decision-making and promote their involvement.
  8. Community Health: Some midwives are involved in community health education and outreach, addressing reproductive health and family planning.
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Types of midwives: 

There are various types of midwives, each with unstable levels of training and practice:

  1. Certified Nurse-Midwife (CNM): A Certified Nurse-Midwife (CNM) is a Registered Nurse with a BSN and MSN degree, capable of practicing in different healthcare environments.
  2. Certified Midwife (CM): requires a bachelor’s degree in any field and an MSN. CMs can rehearse in limited states.
  3. Certified Professional Midwife (CPM): Completes an apprenticeship or accredited midwifery program, followed by a board exam. CPMs typically practice in out-of-hospital settings and are recognized in many states.
  4. Lay midwives are often self-taught or have informal training but lack certification.
  5. Doulas: Provide childbirth support but do not have the same medical role as midwives.
How to Become a Midwife without a Nursing Degree
How to Become a Midwife without a Nursing Degree

How to Become a Midwife Without a Nursing Degree: 

For those who wish to follow a midwifery career without a nursing degree, a lot of options are open:

Option 1: Certified Midwife (CM)

  • Obtain a bachelor’s degree in any field.
  • Complete prerequisites and enroll in an accredited master’s-level midwifery program.
  • Pass the National Certification Exam to become a CM.

Option 2: Certified Professional Midwife (CPM)

  • Pursue a CPM credential through the North American Registry of Midwives (NARM) portfolio evaluation process.
  • Alternatively, complete an apprenticeship or enroll in a midwifery education program accredited by MEAC or ACNM for Midwifery Education (ACME).

Option 3: Traditional Midwife or Doula

  • Work as a caregiver through self-study or apprenticeships.
  • Assist pregnant individuals with emotional and informational support and postpartum care. Note that this option does not involve medical procedures.

Minimum Education Requirements: 

A high school diploma and knowledge of science subjects like biology, physiology, microbiology, and human anatomy are essential for understanding midwifery concepts.

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Online Direct-Entry Midwife Programs: 

Several accredited programs offer online direct-entry midwife training, providing flexibility and affordability for aspiring midwives. Institutions like the Commonsense Childbirth School of Midwifery and the National College of Midwifery offer various pathways to midwifery education, including associate, bachelor, and non-degree options.


Midwifery provides holistic care to expectant mothers and their newborns, offering a fulfilling career path for those without nursing backgrounds. Individuals can support families through childbirth by choosing the proper certification and educational program, ensuring a holistic approach to care.

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