JobsHow to Apply for a One-Year Nursing Course in the UK for...

How to Apply for a One-Year Nursing Course in the UK for Free (Deadline Approaching)

The UK is facing an unprecedented shortage of nurses and other healthcare professionals. To tackle this crisis, new government policies and funding aim to rapidly increase the nursing workforce. As a result, 2024 brings exceptional chances for aspiring nurses to kickstart their careers completely free of charge. This includes full tuition coverage, guaranteed NHS jobs after graduating, free training courses, and more. This guide covers all the key funding schemes, scholarships, apprenticeships and other pathways open in 2024 to become a UK nurse without paying fees.

Below is How to Apply for a One-Year Nursing Course in the UK for Free (Deadline Approaching)

Fully Funded UK Nursing Degrees

The most straightforward route is applying for universities that provide 100% scholarships or bursaries for nursing students.

Here are some of the best fully funded nursing degrees available in 2024:

1. University of West London

The University of West London offers a 100% scholarship covering the full tuition fees for its 3-year Nursing Studies BSc degree. This is open to all non-UK international students starting in September 2024.

2. University of Greenwich

The University of Greenwich provides a tuition fee waiver scholarship for the first year of its Nursing Studies degree. This is available for all new international students enrolling in September 2024.

3. Anglia Ruskin University

Anglia Ruskin University guarantees all nursing graduates a minimum 2 years of full-time employment with the NHS. This makes getting a work visa and settlement much easier after your course. Tuition fees are around £14,000 per year.

4. University of Cumbria

Similar to Anglia Ruskin, the University of Cumbria offers a 2-year accelerated nursing degree leading to guaranteed NHS jobs for at least 2 years post-graduation. 2024 fees are expected to be approximately £13,500 annually.

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New Government Nursing Scholarships

Alongside university scholarships, the UK government has introduced new national funding schemes to cover nursing tuition fees:

1. Nursing Degree Apprenticeships

One of the most affordable ways to qualify as a Registered Nurse is through a Nursing Degree Apprenticeship. This enables you to earn a full BSc qualification and salary simultaneously, without paying any fees.

Applications for 2024 intake open in Spring.

2. Return to Practice Courses

If you are a nurse who has left the profession, the government fully funds Return to Practice courses to help you re-join the workforce. Course fees and placement costs are covered.

Additional Funding Support

As well as the above, all nursing students can access:

  • NHS Bursary – At least £5,000 a year towards living costs.
  • Childcare Allowance – Up to £2,000 extra if you have kids.
  • Specialist Subject Premium – £1,000 additional funding for specialist nursing courses.
  • Hardship Grants – Extra assistance if facing financial difficulties.

So in summary, 2024 brings exceptional new chances to study nursing in the UK without paying tuition fees. The next sections cover key application dates, eligibility criteria, and step-by-step advice to help you secure your fully funded place.

Key Application Deadlines

Here are the essential deadlines to apply for funded nursing programmes starting in 2024:

Undergraduate Degrees

Most universities accept applications for September 2024 entry between January – June 2024.

However, it is best apply as early possible due to limited places.

Nursing Apprenticeships

Applications open in March 2024, with key deadlines between March – July 2024.

.Again, earlier application gives you the best chance of securing a place. So if you want to start training as a UK nurse from September 2024 without paying fees, the key is submitting your applications within the next 3-6 months.

Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible for the nursing scholarships, bursaries and apprenticeships covered in this guide, you must meet certain criteria:

Academic Requirements

  • At least 2 A-Levels or equivalent (some universities accept alternative qualifications)
  • IELTS score of 6.5+ (some institutions require higher English test scores)

Residency Status

  • Most funding schemes are open to UK nationals and settled migrants
  • International students can also access university scholarships and financial support


  • 18+ years old
  • Meet health/criminal record requirements
  • Not currently working as a nurse (for apprenticeships)

So providing you fulfil the above eligibility conditions, you stand an excellent chance of securing a fully funded nursing place in 2024.

How To Apply

Follow this step-by-step guide to apply for free nursing programmes starting in September 2024:

1. Choose Specialism

Decide which field interests you most – Adult, Mental Health, Child or Learning Disabilities Nursing.

This affects funding availability and application procedure.

2. Check University Scholarships

Research which UK universities offer funded nursing degrees for 2024 entry.

.Then check if you meet their academic and English requirements.

3. Submit UCAS Application

For undergraduate degrees, apply through UCAS between January – June 2024.

4. Apply for Apprenticeships

Look for Nursing Degree Apprenticeship vacancies on NHS Jobs from March 2024. Application windows close in June/July.

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5. Arrange Accommodation

Once receiving an offer, start planning accommodation. Most universities help arrange this.

6. Apply for Visa

If travelling from overseas, apply for a Student Visa. Your university will provide support.

7. Register with NMC

After graduating, register with the Nursing & Midwifery Council (NMC) to start practising as a qualified nurse.

So in summary, early preparation is key to securing your fully funded place for September 2024 entry. The government aims to rapidly expand nurse training numbers, so it’s an incredibly exciting time to join this rewarding profession.

Career & Settlement Opportunities

As well as paying no tuition fees, choosing nursing brings fantastic long-term job and settlement prospects in the UK.

Guaranteed Employment

Degrees like Anglia Ruskin’s guarantee graduate nursing jobs for at least 2 years. Others provide extensive career support. You’ll gain invaluable experience to then progress into advanced nursing specialisms.

Visa Sponsorship

Once holding an NHS nursing contract, you’ll easily switch onto the Skilled Worker or Health & Care visa route.

After your course, you can stay to develop your career within the National Health Service.

Quicker Settlement

Home Secretary Suella Braverman plans to cut the general residency requirement for settlement from 5 years to 3 years for skilled professionals like nurses.

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So you could gain Indefinite Leave to Remain within just 3 years of arriving in the UK. In summary, funded UK nursing qualifications offer wonderful opportunities for long-term employment, sponsorship and settlement.


I hope this guide has provided insightful information on the many new chances launching in 2024 to become a fully qualified nurse in the UK without paying tuition fees.

With over 50,000 additional nurses needed by 2024, it’s truly an unprecedented time to join this vital profession and make a difference to people’s lives. The key is early preparation and application. So start researching suitable universities and apprenticeships today.

We wish you the very best of luck securing your funded place on the rewarding path to an exciting nursing career!

Also Read:

4 Ways To Study Nursing For Free In The UK In 2024: This article covers various options for fully funded nursing degrees, cheap nursing degrees with guaranteed jobs, nursing degree apprenticeships, and post-study work visas in the UK.

How to Pursue Your Nursing Courses Abroad: A Complete Guide: This article provides comprehensive information on why, where, and how to study nursing abroad, including types of nursing programs, planning steps, choosing the right program, financing your education, and preparing for the cultural adjustment.

The Quickest Path to Becoming an RN in the United Kingdom in 2024 Without Taking Language Tests: This article outlines the steps to become a registered nurse in the UK without taking IELTS or OET, such as improving your English, learning the UK healthcare system, preparing for the adaptation course, completing the adaptation course, and submitting the NMC registration application.

How to Register with the UK Nursing and Midwifery Council: A Step-by-Step Guide for Nurses, Midwives and Nursing Associates: This article explains the requirements and process of registering with the NMC, the regulatory body for nursing and midwifery professionals in the UK, including eligibility criteria, application documents, fees, and verification.

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