Nurse midwife program

Nurse midwifeSpecialty appeal

  • Nurse midwives are in demand. The extreme shortage of maternity care providers means that there is a high demand for the quality of care provided by nurse midwives. 
  • Nurse midwives can work in a number of settings (birth centers, hospitals, private or public clinics) and apply their education to multiple ends (teaching, advocacy, research, public education). Women seek midwives for primary health care services, prenatal care, birth, postpartum care, gynecological care, and birth control.
  • Midwives empower women to take more active roles in making decisions about their health and lifestyle habits, and derive personal satisfaction and respect from making a difference in women's lives. 
  • Midwifery is a dynamic practice. While midwives learn an art that often reduces the need for high-tech interventions, they are also highly skilled practitioners educated to make individualized assessments when caring for women and their newborns including varied forms of technology as indicated. 

U.S. News and World Report badge for nurse midwiferyEducation and practice 

Nurse midwifery education is based on an understanding of health sciences theory and clinical preparation that shapes knowledge, judgment, and skills deemed necessary to provide primary health care management to women and newborns. This program prepares students for the American Midwifery Certification Board exam. 

The program begins with a solid foundation in primary care, then builds to include pregnancy care and childbirth followed by newborn care. Clinical experience is integral throughout the program and culminates in a ten week intensive clinical experience. A range of opportunities are available to students for the intensive clinical experience, including the range of birth sites and international settings.

Midwifery practice as conducted by nurse-midwives (NMWs) is the independent management of women’s health care, focusing particularly on pregnancy, childbirth, the post-partum period, care of the newborn, and the family planning and gynecologic needs of women.


See application requirements.


Listed below are the required courses for the nurse midwife program. Nurse midwife students will be placed in clinical settings appropriate to the role. The curriculum is offered in an on-campus format; however, a few of the core courses may be web-blended. The nurse midwife program is offered as a fall term (September) start only. There is a 2-year and a 3-year option for the set program plan for the nurse midwife curriculum. The minimum number of credit hours required is 48 and the minimum required clinical hours is 730. More information is available in student handbooks.

Sample plan of study 

Core courses

  • NURS 527: Promoting Optimal Models and Systems for Healthcare Delivery
  • NURS 528: Models, Theories and Methods to Promote Optimal Health Outcomes
  • NURS 529: Scientific and Analytic Approaches for Advanced Practice

Specialty courses

  • NURS 502: Advanced Physiology and Pathophysiology Across the Lifespan
  • NURS 503: Advanced Health Assessment for Advanced Practice Nurses
  • NURS 546: Antepartum Care of Essentially Normal Women
  • NURS 561: Care of the Childbearing Woman
  • NURS 566: Advanced Primary Care Nursing I: Health Promotion and Management of Acute Health Problems of Adults and Well Women/GYN Care
  • NURS 571: Advanced Midwifery Clinical
  • NURS 676: Intrapartum, Postpartum and Newborn Care
  • NURS 677: Nurse-Midwifery IV-Integration: The Childbearing Cycle
  • NURS 678: Transition to Advanced Practice: Professional Issues

Required cognate course

  • PHR 620: Pharmacotherapeutics I


The University of Michigan School of Nursing's nurse midwife program meets and/or exceeds the core competencies for basic midwifery practice as outlined by the American College of Nurse-Midwives (ACNM).

The ACNM describes the art and science of midwifery as being characterized by the following hallmarks:

  • Recognition of pregnancy, birth and menopause as normal physiologic and developmental processes
  • Advocacy of non-intervention in the absence of complications
  • Incorporation of scientific evidence into clinical practice as well as the evaluation and incorporation of complementary and alternative therapies in education and practice
  • Promotion of family-centered care
  • Empowerment of women as partners in health care and advocacy for informed choice, shared decision-making and the right to self-determination
  • Facilitation of health family and interpersonal relationships through skillful communication, guidance and counseling
  • Promotion of continuity of care and a public health care perspective
  • Health promotion, disease prevention, and health education
  • Care to vulnerable populations
  • Cultural competence
  • Therapeutic value of human presence
  • Collaboration with other members of the health care team