A day as a children's nurse

Your day starts on the children's hospital ward, monitoring the progress of a teenager who's been in a car accident. You talk with his parents, assuring them he's recovering well, and discuss future care plans. Although his mother is very upset, you manage to reassure her that her son is in safe hands, and persuade her to go home and rest. Later, you help monitor a toddler with breathing problems. Since you can't communicate verbally, you pay close attention to the child's facial expressions and movements to try and establish how she is feeling. You enjoy being around children and young people, and making a positive difference to their lives.

Real-life stories

Katie Ryan

Find out more
Careers A-Z

Does this sound like you?

You enjoy communicating with young people, and are good at picking up both verbal and non-verbal clues about how they're feeling. You're calm in a crisis and good at handling people in distress.

What's next after GCSE?

You'll need to do a degree level qualification to be a nurse so will usually need a minimum of five GCSEs (typically including English language or literature and a science subject) at grades 5/4 (C) or above or equivalent level 2 qualification, then go on to take at least two A levels (eg including a subject like human biology, psychology or sociology) or equivalent level 3 qualification.

What's next after A level and beyond?

After A levels, you'll need to go to university to do an approved full-time degree in nursing or apply for a nursing degree apprenticeship. For their full-time degrees, some universities may ask for three A levels and have specific subject requirements, so make sure you check with the uni you're interested in directly. Nursing degree apprenticeships are available in some parts of the country and you'll usually need the same level of GCSEs and A levels or equivalent qualifications.