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Study in Ireland

Located in the North-Western Europe, Ireland is a small island nation with an incredible history, culture and profound connection to music. It is in fact, the continent’s second largest island after Great Britain. The country is most famous for its stunning landscapes, spectacular coastlines and magnificent castles. It is one of the few countries that offer best of both the worlds- calming countryside and a vibrant urban lifestyle. In fact, it is one of those rare countries that has managed to preserve its natural beauty while progressing towards development. 

So, if you are one of those students who is planning to study abroad for a general postgraduate degree or a more specialist qualification, then Ireland might be the perfect choice for you.

Top Universities in Ireland

Ireland enjoys a long-standing reputation of academic excellence which is why the country is home to some of the best-ranked universities and academic institutions. So, to help you out in finding the right university, here is a list of the top universities in Ireland.

1. Trinity College Dublin (TCD)

 

study in ireland tcd

Founded in 1592, by Queen Elizabeth I, Trinity College Dublin is Ireland’s oldest higher education institution and a sole constituent college of University of Dublin. It is home to 17,000 undergraduate and postgraduate students across all the major disciplines in the arts and humanities, and in business, law, engineering, science, and health sciences. Here, Students can avail of over 170 societies and sports clubs.

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2. National University of Ireland (NUI)

study in ireland national university of ireland

Established in 1845, the National University of Ireland or NUI is located in one of the world’s best cities- Galway. The university ranks amongst the top 300 universities worldwide and is officially accredited by the Department of Education and Skills, Ireland. NUI has more than 110 active societies and 50 sports clubs. The university has five colleges and offers many less-typical courses, such as a BSc in Podiatry and BE/MEng in Sport and Exercise Engineering.

3. University College Cork (UCC)-

Founded in the year 1845, University College Cork is located in the city of Cork, in the southern part of Ireland. It is an integral university of the National University of Ireland. Also, the university is the world’s first university to receive the international Green Flag for environmental sustainability and has also achieved five QS Stars for its overall performance. University College Cork believes in a combined tradition of teaching, research and scholarships, maintaining its position in the top five universities of Ireland.

study in ireland university college cork

4. University College Dublin (UCD)-

university college dublin

Founded in 1854 by John Henry Newman, University College Dublin is one of Europe’s leading research-intensive universities that has a legacy of academic excellence. It is currently ranked within the top 1% of higher education institutions worldwide. UCD is also Ireland’s most globally engaged university with over 30,000 students drawn from 136 countries. It also offers 70+ active student societies and 55 official sports clubs.

 

5. University of Limerick (UL)-

Founded in 1972, the University of Limerick (UL), is located on the west coast of Ireland along the picturesque River Shannon blended with state-of-the-art teaching and research facilities. It was awarded the prestigious 5-star rankings for graduate employability, innovation and knowledge transfer by QS Stars independent assessors.  It is an independent, internationally focused university with over 12,000 students, including more than 2,000 international students each year.

study in ireland university of limerick

Why Study in Ireland?

Often known as “The land of Saints and Scholars”, Ireland enjoys a great reputation for its excellent educational system and research institutions. In fact, according to a study, there are about 16,701 full-time international students living in Ireland.

So, what makes Ireland such an attractive destination? Here are some of the reasons:

why study in ireland

Safe Environment in Ireland

Ireland offers a safe and friendly environment which is why many international students are attracted to this country. It is ranked in the world’s Top 20 countries for quality of life, safety & security, and peace & human development. Also, the people of Ireland are welcoming and friendly and they would not let you feel out of the place. The Irish are proud of their country and their culture and they are happy to share it with you.  So, once you’ve lived in Ireland, you will have several friends.

Advanced Quality Education

The Irish education system is one of the best in Europe. Universities in Ireland rank in the top 5% world-wide and are built on a solid foundation of commitment to excellence. In fact, the Irish Government has increased their investment in higher education by an average annual rate of 10%.

Innovative and Creative Culture

: Apart from a safe environment and academic excellence, Ireland promotes innovation and creative culture. All the life-changing inventions such as the submarine, colour photography, the modern tractor, modern stethoscope, rubber shoe soles, etc are all done by the Irish people. So, if you are inclined towards creativity in art, literature, music or ingenuity in science and technology, Ireland is the choice for you.

No language barriers

Although Ireland has its own unique language- Gaelic, but the universal language spoken in the country is English. Since, English is a global language, international students are attracted towards this country. Students thereby find it comfortable to cope up with the course and a comparatively new environment.

Location Advantage

The advantage of studying in Europe is that it’s relatively easy to get from one country to the next. With the Irish visa, you can travel the rest of Europe or anywhere in the UK as well. So, apart from studies, you can take advantage of amazing international experiences while engaging in diverse cultures and making new friends for a lifetime.

Availability of Scholarships

study in ireland scholarships

Ireland offers numerous scholarships and funding options to international students. There are several types of scholarships option available. Some of them are offered by the Irish governments, others by universities, and some by private organizations. Some scholarships in the country are only available to students from developing countries, while some are available to students with excellent academics. Others are available for students in need of funds to finance their education.

Typical scholarships available in Ireland are: Fulbright scholarship, Student Universal Support Ireland, and more.

How to apply to study in Ireland?

If you are an international student planning to pursue a course for more than 3 months in Ireland, you have to apply for a student visa. However, if you come from an EU/EEA country, you won’t need an Irish student visa.

 

Documents required to apply for student visa:

  • Your signed and dated summary application form that can be obtained from the website of the Irish Naturalization and Immigration Service.
  • Two recent colour passport sized photographs not more than 6 months old
  • Current passport and a full copy of all previous passports
  • A signed letter of application including your full contact details (stating the reason you want to come to Ireland)
  • Letter of Acceptance from the college/university
  • Evidence accounting for any gaps in your educational history
  • Proof of payment of the registration and tuition fees
  • Copies of all academic qualifications, exam results required for university study
  • English language proficiency certificate (Accepted exams are: IELTS, TOEFL and PTE)
  • Proof of sufficient funds to support your stay in Ireland without recourse to public funds, or the reliance on casual employment
  • Medical Insurance
  • Biometric Information
  • Commitment to leave Ireland on the expiry of your visa
  • Visa fee: €60 for single entry and €100 in case of multi-entry.

Note: Do not include false or misleading information or documents in your application. If you do, your application may be refused. In some circumstances, you may not be allowed to appeal the visa decision and may be blocked from getting an Irish visa for 5 years.

When to apply for the student visa?

You can apply for the study visa up to 3 months before your date of travel to Ireland. Also, it is always recommended to apply as soon as possible because your application can take 8 weeks or longer to process.

How to check my visa status?

To know if your visa has been processed, you can check your visa application status online, using your Visa Application Number. If your visa is approved, the Irish Embassy office will attach your visa to your passport. However, in case of discrepancies, if your visa is refused, you can appeal the decision within two months.

Watch this detailed youtube video on 

Top 5 Reasons to Study in Ireland 

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Cost of Living in Ireland

The cost of living in Ireland is relatively higher than the average European countries. Depending on which country you plan to live in, the costs may vary between 550 – 1,000 EUR/month.

Dublin being the capital city of Ireland is one of the expensive cities in the country followed by Cork and Galway.  

Job Opportunities in Ireland

jobs in ireland list

Ireland is the fastest growing economy in the European Union (EU) and therefore the jobs available here are plenty. Also, once the poorhouse of Europe, Ireland has grown exponentially to becoming Europe’s economic powerhouse. Today, the country is home to leading global MNCs such as Apple, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, HP, GSK and many more. In fact, it is the second most attractive country globally for FDI – after Singapore.

The service sector dominates the job market in Ireland. The main sectors employing graduates are: Chemicals, Computer hardware & software, Food products and Medical equipment and pharmaceuticals. Also, Ireland is gaining popularity as a holiday destination, so the hospitality and tourism industry are flourishing and are in need of both skilled and casual workers.

Since, majority of Ireland’s population is around the age of 25, the competition for skilled jobs is fierce. Major cities that students work in are Dublin, Cork and Galway.

Also, the employment laws are strict here. As an international student, you can work part-time up to 20 hours per week during semesters or full-time 40 hours per week during scheduled holidays. However, if you belong to EU or EEA, you are allowed to work in Ireland without any restrictions.

Language Requirements:

Irish (Gaelic) and English are the two official languages in Ireland. However, English is the most commonly spoken and is considered to be the first language of the majority of the country.

Having said that, the Irish language still remains an important part of the country’s culture and identity and people take great pride in their language.

To attain a decent job, English proficiency is mandatory and sufficient, but some knowledge of the Gaelic language might help furthermore.

Work Environment in Ireland

With a large emphasis being placed on work-life balance, in Ireland, the average working week must not exceed a maximum of 48 hours. Employees are also entitled to a 15-minute break after 4 hour’s work and a further 15-minute break after a 6-hour work period. These breaks are unpaid. Irish law also provides sick leave, public holidays, maternity leave, parental leave, and four weeks of paid holiday a year.

Also, the Irish people are not workaholics. They would not work on weekends nor work long hours. The standard Irish office day is from 9 am until 5.30 pm with an hour for lunch.

Conclusion

Having said all that, Ireland is most definitely one of the most preferred destinations for study abroad amongst international students. Successfully graduating from an esteemed Irish institution, you tend to open many doors in the global labor market. Also, employers consider education from Irish universities as a mark of dedication and excellence.

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