Education system in Ireland
The Irish Education System was traditionally divided into three basis levels: Primary (8 years), Secondary (5 or 6 years) and Higher Education which offers a wide range of opportunities from post-secondary courses, to vocational and technical training, to full degree and the highest post-graduate levels.
The higher education system in Ireland is broad in scope and encompasses the university sector, the technological sector, the colleges of education and private, independent colleges. The institutions which fall within the first three groupings are autonomous and self governing, but substantially state funded. Education has been a key factor in making Ireland one of the fastest growing economies in the world over the past decade.
“Cooperative Education” involves placement of students in employment relevant to their Degree programmes for six or eight months during their undergraduate studies. Some Institutions in Ireland adopts this model as an integral part of the academic programme.
The main intake offered by all Colleges and University is September and few Universities offer Feb Intake also.
As English is the language of instruction at all Irish Institutions of higher education, students must demonstrate a proficiency in English to be accepted for a third level Programme. Generally, the required minimum score in TOEFL is 90. Many universities and colleges provide English Language training programmes for intending students. Furthermore, there are over 110 private English language training schools throughout the country which run both short and long terms courses.
Options for overseas students who wish to study in Ireland
a) Attend secondary school in Ireland and complete the Leaving Certificate Examination with Irish students. This route is chosen by a number of students who commonly take the examination in conjunction with English languagetuition.
b) Undertake recognized public examinations in their own countries. This is a more common route and it is essential that every applicant check that the educational qualifications she/he is presenting are adequate to satisfy entry requirements. To have a realistic prospect these results should be very good, e.g. for medicine 3 good ‘A’ Level passes (grades A/B) or the equivalent, in relevant subjects are required. The minimum requirement for most degree level programmes is 3 grade ‘C’s at A level or equivalent. If there is any doubt about the acceptability of an applicant’s qualifications, clarification should be sought in good time from the third level institution.
c) Student can apply to the institutions directly or to the Central Applications Office for Undergraduate Programmes.