Naval Nurse (Student)

Service:Surface Fleet
Hands on
Humanitarian aid

The role at a glance

What you’ll do

The Royal Navy is only as good as its people, and their health is of the utmost importance to us. You could find yourself at the scene of a natural disaster providing essential care as part of a Role 2 Afloat Surgical Team or delivering medical care to support our personnel on deployment anywhere around the world. From an Ebola Crisis in Sierra Leone to supporting the United Nations peacekeeping mission in South Sudan. Wherever you are in the world, once you’ve qualified as a Naval Nurse you’ll play a key part in the provision of both Primary and Secondary care. Unparalleled diversity, opportunities, training, teamwork and experience. It’s all there for a Nursing Career in the Royal Navy.

Your role

  • Complete your BSc in Adult Nursing at Birmingham City University – paid for by us
  • Continue to develop your skills in challenging environments all over the world
  • Maintain clinical skills working alongside the NHS within a Joint Hospital Group Unit 
  • Make the most of opportunities to carry out specialist courses in areas including Intensive Care, Emergency Medicine, Trauma and Orthopaedics, Primary Care and many more
  • Become part of a world-class medical service that’s respected far beyond the Armed Forces

What you’ll get

Skills for life

Qualifications you'll gain

  • BSc (Hons) in Adult Nursing at Birmingham City University
  • Registration with the Nursing and Midwifery Council
  • You could have the opportunity for further post-graduate study in specialist clinical areas
  • Civilian recognised leadership and management qualifications

Skills you'll develop

  • Command, leadership and management skills and experience
  • Clinical mentorship roles
  • Ability to work outside your comfort zone in unfamiliar and challenging environments

Career progression

What you'll need


  • If you take your A-levels after the start of 2017, you need 120 UCAS points including two non-overlapping subject areas; before 2017, you need 300 UCAS points
  • If you take your GCSEs after the start of 2017, you need 3 grades 9 – 4 including English Language and Maths and a science subject; before 2017, you need 3 grade C or above
  • You must be aged 17 to 39
  • You need to be within the healthy range for Body Mass Index (BMI)
  • You must be a British or Irish national, or a Commonwealth citizenwho has lived in the UK continuously for the 5 years prior to applying, or a dual national

Skills and interests

  • Enthusiastic with an eagerness to learn
  • Quick thinking and calm under pressure
  • A caring and compassionate nature
  • A team player
  • An adventurous spirit

Check Eligibility

Starting your career

Joining process

Once you’ve confirmed your eligibility, the joining process is as follows:

  • Submit an application

    Once you’ve registered your interest and have satisfied the basic eligibility criteria, you will be sent an online application form

  • Naval Service Recruitment Test (NRST)

    You’ll be tested on general reasoning, verbal ability, numeracy and mechanical comprehension

  • Interview

    A formal interview to talk through your suitability for the role

  • Medical and eye tests

    These are quite comprehensive and must be completed by one of our Ministry of Defence-approved doctors

  • Pre-Joining Fitness Test (PJFT)

    This involves completing a 2.4km run on a treadmill within a certain time, at a fitness centre near you

  • Student Nurse Selection Board

    This is a 1 day board (arriving the day before) in Portsmouth where you will deliver a 10-minute presentation on a clinical subject, take part in a team working exercise and sit a 30-40 minute interview with the Nurse Education Advisor and Specialist Medical Recruitment Team. 

  • Royal Navy Acquaint Course (RNAC)

    This four-day induction to life in the Royal Navy is a pass or fail course

  • Start training

    Once you’ve passed a Security Check, you’ll be offered a place at HMS Raleigh to commence Initial Naval Training

Initial training

Your Royal Navy career begins with 10 weeks’ basic training at HMS Raleigh, a shore base in Torpoint, Cornwall. The discipline, teamwork, organisational, firefighting and weapon handling skills you learn here will stay with you right through your career.

Aim to get yourself as fit as possible before you arrive. You’ll be doing a lot of physical exercise, and you’ll find it much easier if you’re already in shape. There’s also a swimming test, so if you can’t swim, make sure you learn by the time you join us.

Professional training

After you’ve done your Basic Training, you’ll study for your degree at Birmingham City University, and receive extra military training when you have some down time. Once you’re qualified as a Naval Nurse, you’ll be fast-tracked to the position of Acting Leading Naval Nurse, going straight into a Defence Medical Group, based in an NHS Hospital.