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Education In Ireland- The Student Guide

Written by  Vishesh Chogtu

Published on Wed, March 9, 2022 8:12 AM   Updated on Wed, March 9, 2022 8:12 AM   6 mins read

About Ireland

Academic Courses in Ireland are free at various levels for Irish nationals and residents of the European Union. It also includes university programs as well. However, this benefit is not available for international students.

Admission into undergraduate programs (ordinary or honors degree courses) is generally done through the Central Applications Office (CAO). Most students apply through the CAO instead of applying individually to each university. The autumn admissions in Irish Universities start in September while the spring admissions start in February. Some colleges do enrollments throughout the year.

Top universities in Ireland 

  • Trinity College
  • National College of Ireland
  • University College Dublin
  • Griffith College
  • National University of Ireland Galway
  • Waterford Institute of Technology
  • IBAT College Dublin
  • Maynooth University
  • Cork Institute of Technology
  • Dublin City University

Most of the popular universities in the country are situated in reputed cities like Dublin, Galway, and Limerick. Approximately, there are more than 5000 Indian students in Ireland right now.

  • Language and Literature
  • Business Studies
  • Medical Courses
  • Nursing
  • Social Sciences 

Indians living in Ireland

There are approximately 100,000 Indians residing in this island nation currently. 

Student Life


First, students need to decide whether they want to live in university-managed accommodation or in a rented apartment. University’s accommodation provides students with a catered or self-catered option. Catered accommodation offers the benefits of the meals being cooked by students themselves.

Wherever an individual chooses to live, he/she should make sure that they know the contractual rights and responsibilities. In most cases, students are required to enter into a tenancy agreement, which they must read thoroughly before signing.


Orientation week is compulsory for non-local students in order to ensure that students arrive before it starts. This is the time where they will be introduced to the college and its facilities with services, as well as enrollment in the classes. It will be good for students if they read the guidebook, which is provided by the university. 


Along with sports, universities offer extracurricular activities to students which provide a wide range of experiences. Music, literary societies, science, and drama are offered in all universities, and there are facilities for outdoor education and other leisure activities.


Eligibility Criteria

For every program, a minimum academic score of 60% or above in Class XII is required. Foundation and Diploma programs are available for individuals who had secured at least 50%. The students must have completed 18 years of age before joining a course. It is important to note that entry requirement is lower at Irish universities but the education quality is higher. Hence, one must carefully enhance his / her skills to cope with the high standard of education during the next few years.

Required Documents:

  • Mark Sheets of Standard X, XII, 
  • TOEFL or IELTS scorecards
  • Letters of recommendation 
  • Statement of Purpose (SOP)
  • Academic Resume
  • Portfolio for students applying for art and design courses or architecture programs
  • Certificates of achievements at the state or national level and 
  • Proof of funds
  • Health insurance
  • Copy of your passport
  • Photocopies of these documents should be in English with a certification of the educational institution

Admission Process

 Central Applications Office (CAO) is an online registration system which is used to fill the application form for Irish universities.

  • Create an account on the CAO website 
  • Submit the scanned copy of the documents,
  • The score of TOEFL/IELTS 
  • Pay application 

Common steps while applying for admission

  • Search for universities and courses
  • Contact colleges and visit websites for information
  • Make a list of all colleges
  • Apply for the language exams like TOEFL or IELTS
  • Write Statement of Purpose with Letters of Recommendation
  • Register at Central Applications Office
  • Apply to the colleges of your interest
  • After all of this apply for Study Visa

Language Exams

The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) or Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is the standardized exam in order to get admission in Irish colleges. Both the exams have different formats, structures, and bands. These exams are different in various aspects but many universities ask for requires the score of any one of the two exams. So, it is up to the individual to decide to select the language exam.

Cost of Living

There are few things which a student will need while studying in Ireland.

  • Accommodation rent (on-campus or off-campus)
  • Food and Groceries
  • Power, water and internet
  • Mobile-Phone bills
  • Books
  • Airline tickets for traveling back to India

Some things can vary from person to person:

  • Dining out
  • Travel and vacation
  • Car rent 
  • Cable TV connection

The students who want to get admitted in Bachelors courses with a duration of 2-3 years, the average tuition fee is going to be approximately €10,000- € 15,000 each year. On average, around 8.5 lakh to 14 lakh will be the total cost or expenses for a year. 

  • Students are advised to arrange for the accommodation before arriving in Ireland. Students can either stay at campus residents or they can choose to rent out an apartment with their friends. 
  • For a student visa, officials also need documents of the accommodation and bank statement. 
  • Students require a sum of 100,000 INR per year to cover extra expenses during the course. 

Apart from all these things, medical insurance also plays a big role in your expenses. Always try to go for medium-level insurance which can help you during any health crisis.

Part-Time Jobs

  • In order to cover extra expenses student can go for a part-time job. University in Ireland also helps students in getting a decent part-time job in the campus.
  • Normally, there are two kinds of part-time jobs–University Jobs and part-time jobs outside the campus.
  • Part-time jobs in universities and colleges generally are, assistant in a lab to assist professors or waiter in a café or restaurant. Assistant in labs generally have higher pay per hour.
  • Apart from universities and colleges, part-time jobs can be found outside the college campus, for example, one can work at gas stations and restaurants but not all colleges allow these jobs.
  • The minimum wage in Ireland is 1600 euro per month. Students can earn a good amount on weekends and can work for long hours.
  • A student can also teach junior students and can charge a fee as per the rules defined by the university. 

About the Author & Expert


Vishesh Chogtu

Author • 

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