Ireland is an island nation located in the westernmost part of Europe or the west of Great Britain. It is also known as the Emerald Isle because of its expanse of green landscapes.
Politically, it is divided into two, the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. The Republic of Ireland occupies the greater part of the island, while the smaller Northern Ireland is part of the United Kingdom.
- Capital City: Dublin
- Area Size: 68,890 sqm
- Official Languages: English and Irish
- Type of Government: Parliamentary democracy
- Currency: Euro (€)
- Population: 4,971,714 (2021 estimate)
The Republic of Ireland is made up of four main provinces, Ulster, Connaught, Leinster, and Munster. Dublin, its capital city, is located in Leinster. Moreover, it is a part of the European Union, thus Ireland is subjected to the laws and treaties under it.
Why Study in Ireland?
Ireland is one of the friendliest countries in Europe and boasts world-class and quality education. Irish education for international students also enjoys strong support from the government because there is a clear policy to develop the country into an international education center.
Ireland has many attractive qualities that have helped make it a hotspot for international education. It’s not a mystery that year in and year out, many international students choose this gorgeous country.
Long Tradition of Academic Excellence
Ireland’s long-standing reputation for providing world-class quality education stems from its long tradition of academic excellence.
- The country boasts a 100% literacy rate for men and women from the age of fifteen and up.
- Ireland’s top institutions are regulars in different global rankings such as Shanghai Ranking’s Academic Ranking of World Universities, and the QS World University Rankings.
- Ireland offers a variety of degrees and programs including vocational courses through its universities, colleges, and institutes.
- Ireland’s qualification system is recognized both at the international level and locally.
Quality of Life
The Irish are known for their fun-loving nature which is probably helped by their excellent quality of life.
- In 2020, Ireland ranked 2nd in the United Nations Human Development Index, which measures a country’s average life expectancy, education, and income.
- Ireland ranked above average in OECD’s Better Life Index.
Safety and Security
Parents who worry about their children living in another country can rest well knowing Ireland is one of the safest countries in the world.
- In 2020, the country ranked 12th in the 2020 Global Peace Index List.
- Irish communities, work with Garda, Ireland’s national police service, on different crime prevention campaigns to ensure security for everyone.
- On campuses, Ireland has Campus Watch to prevent crimes and ensure safety inside universities.
Fair, Tolerant, and Hospitable Environment
Aside from being fun-loving and hospitable, the Irish are also welcoming and tolerant of diverse groups and lifestyles. The country also has a strong value for equity. For example, both students with immigrant and non-immigrant backgrounds perform similarly and well in schools, suggesting that there is no great disparity between their quality of life and access to education.
Ireland has become more diverse in recent times, owing mostly to immigration. Currently, ethnic and racial minorities in Ireland make up only 12% of Ireland’s population. This includes immigrants from different parts of Europe, Africa, and Asia.
Students who graduate from Irish educational institutions can look forward to great career opportunities after graduating because of Ireland’s reputation for quality education and academic rigour.
Ireland also offers a two-year stay back option if students choose to remain and seek employment in the country. This is a fantastic career opportunity that not all host countries offer.
Below are fast facts about Ireland’s educational institutions:
Higher Education Providers
- Institutes of Technology
- Colleges of Education
World-Ranked Institutions in the 2021 QS World University Rankings
- Trinity College Dublin
- University College Dublin
- National University of Ireland, Galway
- University College Cork
- Dublin City University
- University of Limerick
- University of Ulster
- Maynooth University
- Technological University of Dublin
Popular Postgraduate Courses in Ireland
- Computer Science
- Data Science and Analytics
- International Human Rights
- Traditional Music and Performance
In-demand Jobs and Skills over the Next Decade
- Information and Computer Technology
- Digital Marketing
- Climate Change
- Tourism and Hospitality
Top Industries by Multinational Companies
- Global Software
- Medical Technology
- Industrial Automation
- Financial Services
Top Industries by Export Markets
- Pharmaceuticals and Chemicals
- Business Services
- Financial and Insurance Services
- Food and Beverages
- Medical Devices
- Computer Services
Highest-Paying Jobs and Sectors in Ireland
- Software Development Engineers, Technology
- Automation Engineers, Engineering
- Accounting Professionals, Financial Services
- Quality Control and Quality Assurance Professionals, Science
- Sales Manager, Sales
Unique Student Experience
Ireland’s picturesque landmarks, history, rich culture, fun-loving people, and high-quality education make it an attractive choice for international students.
That and the fact that students are also allowed the opportunity to work while studying. But lest you think it’s all work and study, Ireland has a wealth of leisure activities to choose from.
Working Part-time as a Student
International students can get employed if they meet the following criteria:
- Registered with Ireland’s national police service. the Garda National Immigration Bureau (GNIB)
- Enrolled in a programme leading to a qualification certified by the Minister of Education and Skills
- Attending a full-time programme of education (NFQ Level 7 or above)
- Studying for a minimum of 15 hours a day
- Studying for at least a one-year programme
- Attending 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. class per week or a minimum of 25 weeks per year
Aside from the above criteria, there are some requirements and conditions that differ between students from the European Economic Areas (EEA) and students from outside the EEA.
|Non-EEA Student||EEA Student|
|Requirements||Irish Residence Permit Card||Personal Public Services (PPS) Number|
|Eligibility||Can take on jobs only if their course is included in the government’s Interim List of Eligible Programmes (ILEP)||All nationals from the EEA are free to take on full-time or part-time jobs in Ireland without any work permit|
|Can work for only 20 hours per week|
|Can work for 40 hours per week only during these periods:
Students who want to work in Ireland are also advised to open an Irish bank account because most companies will pay them through their bank accounts.
Students who will undergo internships and are enrolled on Degree Programme courses are subjected to the following rules:
- The internship should not exceed 50% of the duration of the student’s chosen programme
- Educational facilities should ensure the work placements befit the student’s programme
- Work placement should be necessary for the programme’s completion
Leisure and Recreation
Many people find making friends and assimilating into the Irish culture is much easier compared to other countries in Europe because of the friendly nature of the Irish. They also love music and Ireland hosts a multitude of music festivals that visiting students will enjoy.
The Irish are also huge fans of sport, especially of Gaelic football and rugby. Students will have plenty of chances to participate or to watch in the many sports stadiums across the country.
For nature lovers, there are trails, parks, and beaches where people can trek, hike, cycle, or swim. There are also castles, museums, and galleries.
The application process in Ireland differs between EU students and non-EU students. EEA students can directly apply to study in Ireland through the Central Applications Office (CAO). On the other hand, non-EU students have to contact the international office where they are applying.
Academic Entry Requirements
Entry requirements for students also differ depending on their country of origin, EU or non-EU status, and the educational institution where they are applying to. However, at the minimum, the following should be submitted by the student:
- International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma if applicable
- English Language Proficiency Certificate
Study Visa Application
Students who will study and stay in Ireland for more than three months should apply for a study visa. Below are the steps:
- Apply for a study visa online through the AVATS Online Application Facility.
- Follow the instructions in the summary application form including information on where to submit the supporting documentation.
- Print and sign the summary application form.
- Submit the signed summary application form along with the supporting documents.
- If needed, provide your biometrics information to an Irish Visa Application Centre (VAC).
- Pay visa fees if needed.
Below are the average tuition fees for the following courses and degrees:
|Business||€9,850 – €19,500||€9950 – €34,500|
|Engineering||€9,850 – €25,500||€9950 – €25,000|
|Science and Technology||€9,850 – €25,500||€9950 – €27,000|
|Arts and Humanities||€9,850 – €19,500||€9950 – €19,000|
|Medicine and Health Sciences||€39,500-€55,000||€18,000 – €32,000|
The cost of living in Ireland depends on the location and the type of accommodation the student chooses. On average, students are expected to spend around €7,000 to €12,000 a year.
The following are the estimated amount of common expenses:
|Type of Expense||Average Cost|
Climate and Weather
Ireland’s weather is quite mild. However, it might seem harsher to students who come from warmer countries. Students are advised to bring warm clothes they can layer, such as shirts, jackets, sweaters, and overcoats.
Students are also advised to bring raincoats, especially those who will study in the western part of the country, where rain is more frequent.
Scholarships and Funding
Ireland offers several scholarships and funding assistance for international students who are planning to study in the country. Scholarships and grants are offered by the government, educational institutions, and non-government education. Below are some prominent scholarship offered to international students:
- Government of Ireland International Education Scholarships Programme
- Irish Research Council for the Humanities and Social Sciences (IRHSS)
- Fulbright Scholarships
In addition to this, be sure to also check out the scholarships and financial assistance offered by the school you are applying to.