Download the app to find the best colleges for you
Download now
Career as Nurse

Last Updated On 11 Nov, 2020

How to Become a Nurse

About Nurse

Nursing is a popular profession in the healthcare industry that deals with various aspects of patient care. A nurse is an individual trained to serve the people who need medical assistance. Regarded as one of the noblest professions, nurses work in close contact with the doctors and other personnel of the healthcare industry. Understanding the process and technicalities involved in nursing should be the sole aim of a trained nurse. The job profiles for nurses can be explained with the type of roles and responsibilities they have. While some are usually involved in planning and evaluating nursing care requirements, handling pre and post-operation care, some have to maintain medical records, administer and monitor intravenous infusions and medication.

youtube image

Skills Required to Become a Nurse

Apart from formal education, one must have certain skills which help them become a successful Nurse and they are as follows:

  • Since nurses have to constantly deal with the medical staff and patients it is important for them to have good communication skills.
  • A nurse must be drawn to caring for the sick and injured. They must have the empathy to understand the suffering and pain of others.
  • Attention to detail is one of the important skills to be a Nurse. As it helps avoid mistakes and is also important for patient care.
  • Nurses are faced with important choices on a daily basis and must be able to use critical thinking to aid in decision-making.

Eligibility to become Nurse

  • Candidates must have passed 10+2 from a recognised institution with PCB (Physics, Chemistry and Biology) as major subjects. However, for diploma courses, candidates must have passed 10+2 with any combination of subjects

  • The basic eligibility requirement is to have a minimum of 45% marks in 10+2 or equivalent (relaxation rules apply for different categories and varies from college to college).

  • For admission into a course like Auxiliary Nursing & Midwife, candidates can apply with a passing certificate of 10th boards with an aggregate of at least 50% from a recognised institution.

  • A valid passing mark sheet of entrance exam for nursing course is compulsory for admission in undergraduate, diploma, postgraduate, and Ph.D. courses.

  • An important prerequisite for getting employed is to register oneself with a State Nursing Council

  • Apart from these courses, aspirants looking forward to building a career as a nurse can also opt for a particular specialisations by going for any Post Basic Speciality (one-year diploma) courses. Some of the popular Nursing specialisations are as follows: 

  1. Critical Care Nursing
  2. Emergency and Disaster Nursing
  3. Neonatal Nursing
  4. Neuro Nursing
  5.  Oncology Nursing
  6. Operation Room Nursing Orthopaedic and Rehabilitation Nursing
  7. Practitioner in Midwifery

Types of Job Roles Nurse

There are a number of job profiles for nurses that can be attained after achieving the required educational qualification. The profiles may also differ depending upon the need and requirement of the healthcare industry and interest of the candidates. Few of them include Emergency Room Nurse, Nurse Care Manager, Post-Anesthesia Care Unit (PACU) Nurse, Nursing Assistant, Telemetry Nurse, Staff Nurse, Nurse Manager, etc. Following are the popular job profiles for nurses.

  • Registered Nurse (RN): These are nurses who have been registered by medical institutions and organisations. They work within the hospital premises with the doctors or physicians to perform tasks related to different medical settings.

  • Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN): LPNs are ones who work with or under the supervision of registered nurses or doctors. They are responsible for checking and maintaining medical requirements and giving injections.  

  • Nurse Practitioner (NP): These are professionals who usually work under the supervision of a doctor or physician. However, with proper training and knowledge, NPs can also become independent medical practitioners prescribing medicines and diagnosing diseases.

  • Travel Nurse: As the name suggests, these are nurses who work nationally and internationally on a temporary basis. The work culture of a travel nurse is equivalent to that of a registered nurse.

  • Intensive Care Unit (ICU) Registered Nurse: ICU RNs have a prescribed and definite role designed only for taking care of medical requirements and maintenance related to the ICUs of hospitals or nursing homes. They can work for particular type of patients or patients of a particular age group.

  • Operating Room (OR) Nurse: Commonly known as Perioperative Nurses or Scrub Nurses, operating room nurses are responsible for taking care of patients before, during and after the operation or surgery.

  • Home Health Nurse: Home Health Nurse are the ones who provide medical help and support to the patients at their home. These nurses offer care mostly for patients with mobility or development issues.

  • Clinical Nurse Specialist: These are nurses who are skilled to diagnose and treat illness within their area of expertise. The role of clinical nurse specialist includes focusing on patients and their families or manage the nursing department or handling administration.

Employment Sector/Industry for Nurse

There are a number of employment opportunities for nurses available in the healthcare industry. It is upto the candidates to decide what field suits them most and what are their interest points. Given below is the list of employment opportunities covering the different sections:

  • Staff Nurse

  • Assistant Nursing Superintendent

  • Department Supervisor

  • Nursing Service Administrators

  • Industrial Nurse

  • Nursing Supervisor or Ward Sister

  • Community Health Nurse (CHN)

  • Deputy Nursing Superintendent

  • Military Nurse

  • Director of Nursing

  • Teacher of Nursing  

Top Recruiting Hospitals and Nursing Homes for Nurses

For aspirants of nursing and healthcare industries, mentioned-below are the top recruiting hospitals and nursing homes for nurses. Take a look at these organisations and shortlist the one that suits you.

  • All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi

  • Apollo Hospital, Chennai

  • Moolchand Hospital, New Delhi

  • Kokilaben Hospital, Mumbai

  • Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, New Delhi

  • Sunrise Life Care Ivf And Infertility Center, Gurugram

  • Lilavati Hospital and Research Centre, Mumbai

  • Narayana Hrudayalaya, Bangalore

  • Shanti Nursing Home, Aurangabad

  • Kushte Nursing Home – Marine Medical Center, Pune

Planning to choose Nurse as your career?

Pay Scale/Salary of Nurse

The pay-scale of a nurse may depend on the type of specialisation and experience that he/she holds. Mentioned-below is the salary for a nurse:

Job Profile

Starting Salary per annum (in INR)

Mid Level Salary per annum (in INR)

Senior Level Salary per annum (INR)





Note: The above figures are an estimate and may vary from individual to individual and organisation to organisation.

Books & Study Material to Become Nurse

In order to get admission in a good nursing institute, candidates may have clear some entrance exams. To achieve this, candidates can take reference from good books and other study material. Given below is the list of best books to prepare for a career in nursing.

  • Review Guide for NLN-RN Pre-Entrance Exam by Mary McDonald

  • The Pearson Guide To The B.Sc. (Nursing) Entrance Examination by Saroj Parwez

  • McGraw-Hill's Nursing School Entrance Exams, Second Edition: Strategies + 8 Practice Tests by Tamra Orr, Thomas A. Evangelist, and Judy Unrein

  • Indian Army Military Nursing (Staff Nurse) Services Exam Books by Sura College of Competition

  • Comprehensive Guide for Nursing Competitive Exam by R.S. Sharma, Vinod Gupta Preeti Agarwal

Pros of becoming a Nurse

  • It is a noble profession as it involves helping people recover their health.

  • The number of employment opportunities are plenty in India and abroad.

  • The nobility and serenity of the task give self-satisfaction and mental peace.

  • It makes a person multi-tasking and also allows flexibility in their work profile.

Cons of becoming a Nurse

  • The field requires a lot of physical effort and working hours can be hectic.

  • Nurses have to be very careful as their work impacts patient's health and life.

  • Nurses are exposed to a number of infections, germs, and viruses.

  • Looking at the situation of patients can cause stress.  

Do you think this is the right career choice for you?

Take our test and find out if it suits your strengths.


FAQs about Nurse

What is a nurse in simple words?

A nurse is a person trained to provide care to sick and injured people. Nurses are allied health professionals who work with doctors and other health-care workers to make patients well and keep them healthy and fit. Nurses are in demand because there are not enough healthcare professionals to meet the current needs of patients in hospitals.

What is the role of a nurse?

Nurses have many roles in their profession which includes caring for patients, communicating with doctors patients and families, administering medicine. Today, nursing means not only taking care of the patient but administering the treatment plan, tracking progress, recording vital statistics, administering medication and monitoring patient diet.

Is nursing a good career?

Nursing is a very good and rewarding career, but how well you fit into this profession, depends on yourselves. Furthermore, the demand for nurses is increasing on a daily basis. It's therefore a great area to enter.

How much does a nurse earn during their initial days of career?

A nurse is usually hired at the beginning of their career with an annual salary package of INR 2.5 LPA to 4 LPA.

How much does an experienced Nurse get paid?

A senior-level nurse can earn an average salary in between INR 8 LPA to INR 14 LPA.

Which nursing job is the most popular?

Some of the popular nursing jobs are Nurse Midwife, ICU Nurse, Nurse Practitioner, NICU Nurse, Medical Surgery Nurse, Oncology Nurse etc.

What is the highest paid profession in nursing?

Some of the highest paying nursing careers are General Nurse Practitioner, Clinical Nurse Specialist, Certified Registered Nurse Anaesthetist, Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner, Pain Management Nurse, Intensive Care Nurse, Certified Nurse Midwife etc.

In a nursing career, what is the least stressful nursing job?

Air Travel Nurse, School Nurse, Nurse administrator, Public Health Nurse etc are some of the least stressful nursing jobs in the nursing profession.

What are the advantages of working as a nurse?

Job security, better job opportunities, flexible work schedules, career flexibility, high salary packages and mental satisfaction are some of the major advantages of working as a nurse.

What is the difference between General Nurses and Midwives?

General Nurses usually work in hospitals, nursing homes and medical centres. Their primary task is to take care of patients, assist physicians and perform administrative duties. Midwives nurses are nurses who specialise in caring for expectant mothers and provide medical assistance during childbirth.

View More

Confused on what to choose as your career?