When choosing a midwife course, you should listen to your instincts and go with a program that offers classes which match your learning style. In general, there are two types of midwives. The first is a nurse midwife who has obtained nursing training followed by a midwife course and licensing. The second is a lay midwife who is generally required to attend a school which teaches midwifery. This is sometimes followed by an apprenticeship before licensing can be obtained.
Midwifery is not legal in all areas, so to find the best midwife course you will need to first make sure that birthing with a midwife is legal where you live. If it isn’t, you can choose to relocate to an area where there are no legal obstacles, or you may choose to become a childbirth educator, doula, or nurse for laboring women. Should you decide that becoming a midwife is something you really wish to pursue, then you may begin looking for schools before you relocate.
Not every midwife course is the same. They may all offer the same basic principles for delivering healthy babies, but some are just as technical as medical school. While knowing the proper medical procedures is important, it is equally as necessary to attend a school that offers you the same guidance and care that you would like to offer to your patients. Visit any schools you may be interested in, and speak with instructors about your reasons for becoming a midwife and then ask what their philosophies are regarding pregnancy, labor, and delivery.
Speak to practicing midwives and get a feel for what they believe and their specific reasons for doing what they do. Find someone you feel you connect with both professionally and as a person, and ask her where she received her training. You may find several possible schools this way, so follow your instincts in choosing which option is best.
Find out all you can about the costs of taking a midwife course, how long training generally takes, any apprenticeships you will be expected to complete, and laws regarding midwifery in the area. Ask about licensing and the success rate of the school in helping students graduate successfully. You should also find out how many years they have been offering services and the overall success rate of their students.
In some areas you may also be able to attend a certification course at a local university or college. Others may only require that you complete an apprenticeship followed by taking an examination. Keep in mind that midwifery is a lifelong learning experience, and that you will continue to educate yourself based on your own beliefs and principles.