Why should I study in Ireland?

The country of beautiful coasts and nature, Guinness and St. Patricks Day…

Study in Ireland

Ireland is located in Western Europe and is a neighbor to Northern Ireland (United Kingdom). Ireland is an island country and the capital city is Dublin. Ireland is a member of the European Union since 1973 and uses Euro as currency in contrast to the United Kingdom.

The Irish Higher Education System

The higher education system in Ireland splits up into 7 universities, 4 colleges, 14 Institutes of Technology and 7 private higher education institution. The Institutes of Technology have a practical orientation. Third level institutions cannot award degrees. They have to be certified by another higher education party or by “Quality and Qualifications Ireland (QQI)”.

As usual in the European higher education area, the degree-structure is three-tiered for the overwhelming part of the subjects/ programmes: bachelor (undergraduate), master and doctoral degrees (postgraduate).

In Institutes of Technology, you can achieve a National Certificate after two years and a National Diploma after three years. Both degrees aren’t academic degrees, but professional qualifications.

Ireland’s Higher Education System in International Comparison

In this section, we highlight the overall performance of Irish universities on the institutional level per U-Multirank dimension. The table below shows the national breakdown of Irish universities and how they stand across the spectrum of above average (receiving a score of ‘A’ (very good) or ‘B’ (good)), versus below average (receiving a score of ‘D’ (below average) or ‘E’ (weak)). In doing so, U-Multirank offers a clear picture of the Irish strengths and areas for improvement.

It becomes apparent that in general Ireland’s higher education institutions perform particularly well in teaching and learning, knowledge transfer and regional engagement. The dimensions research and international orientation show also that most of the higher education institutions perform above the average.

National performance: Ireland

Percent of all Universities 100% 80% 60% 40% < below Average above > 40% 60% 80% 100% Teaching & Learning 12.5% 77.08333333333333% Research 38.059701492537314% 47.014925373134325% Knowledge Transfer 42.20183486238532% 48.62385321100918% International Orientation 41.46341463414634% 42.68292682926829% Regional Engagement 20.77922077922078% 57.142857142857146%

Fees & University Entrance Requirements

In Ireland, the tuition fees vary depending on the institution, study programme and level of study. Also, there is a difference between European Union (EU) citizens and non-EU citizens. Tuition fees can vary from 4,000 € up to 54,000 € per academic year. EU citizens don’t have to pay tuition fees for undergraduate programmes depending on some requirements. But they have to pay a yearly “Student Contribution Fee” in the amount of 3,000 €.

Entry requirements

Generally, to be admitted to a Bachelor’s degree in Irish higher education systems you need to possess a high school diploma and a proof of English proficiency.

For doing a Master’s degree in Ireland you have to submit a Bachelor’s diploma from an Irish university or from a university in another country as well as a proof of high-level competence in the English language.

As every university has its own requirements, for example, minimum grades or English competence level, it is the best way to have a look at the specific university you wish to study at.

Scholarships in Ireland

A scholarship database can be found here.

Student Visa

EU/EEA/Swiss citizens are not required to obtain a visa but you should obtain a residence permit at a local police office or at the Department of Justice and Equality (St. Stephen's Green, Dublin 2).

All non-EU/EEA/Swiss citizens must have a visa for living and studying in Ireland. For a study visa, you have to show proof of full-payment of courses to the higher education system. You also have to demonstrate that you have a minimum of 7.000 € per year for living costs (because estimated living costs per academic year in Ireland are 7.000 €). As a student, you can only stay in Ireland for a maximum of 7 years. You can find more information here

Key highlights for students interested in studying in Ireland

Ireland’s higher education performance in U-Multirank

  1. Irish higher education institutions show strong performance in the dimensions Teaching and Learning as well as Regional Engagement.
  2. University College Cork (15), Cork Institute of Technology (13), Dublin Institute of Technology (13) and Dublin City University (12) have the highest number of top scores of all Irish institutions.
  3. The Athlone Institute of Technology is among the global top 25 universities performing in U-Multirank’s 2018 edition in Interdisciplinary Publications.

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