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For Career Changers

Midwifery attracts people from all walks of life. No matter what your age, lifestyle, or professional background, there's an educational path that will help you to become a midwife.

If you have a BA/BS degree and want to become a Certified Nurse-Midwife (CNM):

  1. There are many programs that first offer the courses necessary to become a registered nurse (RN) and follow with graduate courses in midwifery. Most of these programs require 3 years of full-time study or its part-time equivalent. See the complete list of programs.
  2. Alternatively, you may first attend a nursing education program at a location near you and then apply to midwifery education programs. 
  3. When you graduate from an Accreditation Commission for Midwifery Education (ACME)-accredited program, you are eligible to take the national certification exam administered by the American Midwifery Certification Board (AMCB).
  4. As a CNM, you will be legally qualified to practice in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
If you have a BA/BS degree and want to become a Certified Midwife (CM):

  1. There are currently two accredited education programs with a CM option: The Midwifery Institute at Philadelphia University, and the State University of New York, Downstate. These programs require a solid science background from courses like biology, microbiology, chemistry, human anatomy, and physiology.
  2. As a graduate of one of these midwifery programs, you will be eligible to sit for the same national certification exam that nurse-midwifery graduates take.
  3. As a CM, you will be legally qualified to practice in 11 states (Arkansas, Colorado, Delaware, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, New York, New Jersey, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, and Virginia) and Washington, DC.
If you do not have a college degree:

Midwifery requires graduate-level education. If you have not yet earned a BA/BS, click here.

Distance-Based Midwifery Programs

If you are unable to relocate, there are many fully distance and partially distance midwifery education programs that may meet your needs. Distance programs require you to receive your clinical education from a practicing CNM/CM in your home or nearby community. Contact the program of your choice for more specific information about requirements.

Consider exploring what each educational program requires by clicking here



American College of Nurse-Midwives
409 12th St SW, Suite 600, Washington, DC 20024-2188
Phone: 240.485.1800
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