Ireland, officially known as the Republic of Ireland is a sovereign country in north-western Europe. Its capital city is Dublin, which is also its largest city and is located on the eastern part of the island country. The Republic of Ireland is home to over 4 million people. Ireland is a fantastic study abroad destination.
Surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, it is flanked by the Celtic Sea to the south, the Irish Sea the east and the Saint George’s channel to the south-east. Ireland has only one land border which it shares with Northern Island.
Ireland was originally created as the Irish Free State until 193 when it was renamed Republic of Ireland after the adoption of a new constitution. Its first official language is Irish Gaelic but English is more widely used.
The country ranks among the top 25 wealthiest nations in the world in terms of GDP per capita. It had the fastest growing economy in the European Union in 2015 and ranked sixth, alongside Germany in the list of the most developed countries in the world.
WHY STUDY IN IRELAND
It is common to see a student planning to study abroad contending with many options but there are a lot of reasons the Republic of Ireland is the right place to study. Apart from the fact that Irish universities are among the top 1% of research institutions around the world today, there are a number of other benefits attached to studying in the Republic of Ireland. These include;
- Having access to world-class research methods and opportunities
- Universities in Ireland offer outstanding supportive learning environment. International offices are dedicated to offering necessary services and information to students.
- Being an English-speaking country, Ireland has close cultural and educational links with other English-speaking countries. This will help students focus on their academic interest.
- As safety is one of the top considerations of an international student, Ireland offers a safe and friendly learning environment.
- The opportunity to connect with leading global companies located in the country for career opportunities after graduation
- Choose from more than 5000 internationally recognized courses
- Students can work approximately 20hrs per week while studying
TOP UNIVERSITIES IN IRELAND AND THEIR INDEX ON THE WORLD UBIVERSITY RANKING
Trinity College Dublin, University of Dublin
Country Rank – 1
World Rank – 88
Located in the capital city of Dublin, the Trinity College Dublin was founded in 1592 and is the country’s oldest higher education institution and one of the ‘seven ancient universities’ in the UK and Ireland. It is officially recognized and accredited by the Department of Education and Skills, Ireland and currently has more than 18,000 students in its three faculties: Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences; Health Sciences; and Engineering, Mathematics and Sciences.
University College Dublin
Country Rank – 2
World Rank – 168
Founded in 1854, University College Dublin was formed from the Catholic University of Ireland and is located in Dublin. It consists of 5 colleges, 34 schools and 18 research institutes. There are approximately 25,000 students currently enrolled in the institution and its admission policy is based on past academic records and grades of students. It has popular names including famous writer James Joyce and award-winning producer and director Neil Jordan among its alumni.
National University of Ireland, Galway
Country Rank – 3
World Rank – 243
The National University of Ireland was established in 1845 and is located in the city of Galway. It is officially recognized and accredited by the Department of Education and Skills, Ireland and is currently undergoing a 400 million Euros redevelopment program and takes pride in offering less common courses including a BE/MEng in Sport and Exercise Engineering and BSc in Podiatry. It currently has more than 17,000 students in enrollment and also offers other courses and programs that lead to officially recognized degrees.
University College Cork
Country Rank – 4
World Rank – 283
Established in 1845, the University College Cork is located in the town of Cork in the southern part of the country, and is the first university in the world to receive the Green Flag, usually in 2010 for environmental sustainability. It currently has more than 18,000 students in its faculties and offers courses and programs that lead to recognized higher degrees. Its admission policy is based on entrance examinations and accepts applications from international students.
Dublin City University
Country Rank – 5
World Rank – 391
Established in 1975, Dublin City University is a much younger university compared to the ones above but gained university status in 1989. About 16,000 students are currently in enrollment and another 1,000 in distance education courses. It offers courses leading to recognized higher education degrees and boasts of an impressive collection of academic and non-academic facilities including The Helix – a large arts venue, as well as administrative facilities.
HOW TO APPLY
The first step to applying is identifying a course of choice and knowing the qualification that will be achieved. This can be done through the National Qualification Framework (NFQ). For undergraduates, applications will have to be submitted through the Central Applications Office (CAO), which facilitates the process by collecting student data through a centralized system. The CAO does not take a final decision concerning a student’s admission.
Graduates and post-graduates will have to send their applications directly to the institution through the institutions’ website or downloading the application form from the course website or study program.
Non-native English speakers will take a course to determine their proficiency in the English language.
WHEN TO APPLY
Majority of the universities in Ireland are open to applications in September and a few of them offer February intake.
DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSION OF APPLICATIONS
This is determined by the institution applied to. It is advisable to keep in touch with the institution by regularly visiting their website.
Ireland has one of the best education systems in Europe according to a World Competitiveness Report. With a very low unemployment rate, its economy is undergoing a rapid growth due to the availability of quality education and its people are very friendly.