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Standards for pre-registration nursing associate programmes

Part 3 of Realising professionalism: Standards for education and training


Our standards for pre-registration nursing associate programmes have been in effect since 28 January 2019.

These set out the specific requirements that apply to all pre-registration nursing associate education programmes.

If you can’t find what you’re looking for, feel free to email us.

Why are our standards important?

Our standards are important for nursing associates in training and for education institutions who must comply with them to be approved to run any NMC-approved programmes.

Student nursing associates must successfully complete an NMC-approved pre-registration programme in order to meet our standards for registered nursing associates and be able to join our register.

Our standards framework

Our standards for pre-registration nursing associates programmes follow the student journey and are grouped under the following five headings:

  • Selection, admission and progression
    Standards about an applicant’s suitability and continued participation in a pre-registration nursing associate programme
  • Curriculum 
    Standards for the content, delivery and evaluation of the pre-registration nursing associate education programme
  • Practice learning 
    Standards specific to pre-registration learning for nursing associates that takes place in practice settings
  • Supervision and assessment 
    Standards for safe and effective supervision and assessment of students on pre-registration nursing associate education programmes
  • Qualification to be awarded 
    Standards which state the award and information for registering the student’s award with us

Using our standards

It's important to read these standards along with other parts Realising professionalism: Standards for education and training. 

This includes:

Reading these together will give you:

  • Clarity on what nursing associates need to know and be able to do, by the time they register with us, and
  • Our expectations of what approved education institutions and their practice learning partners must do for delivering NMC-approved programmes for nurses, midwives and nursing associates.

How these standards were developed

Over the past few years, we've been developing these standards with imput from stakeholders across the UK.

We put our proposals to consultation in summer 2017. We listened closely to the feedback we recieved and made positive changes to the standards as a result. 

Find out more about how the standards were developed.