For higher education in Ireland, entry into ordinary undergraduate and honors programs for eligible international students (Non-EU students) is commonly done through the CAO – Central Applications Office. CAO is the centralized university application management service for most of the Irish Universities. Some universities also accept direct applications for certain UG courses. CAO allows prospective students to apply for multiple universities at a time, instead of sending out individual applications to the universities. For admissions into postgraduate programs, prospective international students directly apply individually to the universities of their choice without the involvement of CAO. Some Irish universities may require students to apply through the Postgraduate Applications Centre (PAC), an application management tool adopted by a large number of Irish institutions of higher education.
The academic year in Ireland is similar to other popular European study destinations such as the UK and Germany. There are two major intakes for admissions in UG and PG courses in Ireland. The Autumn intake commences in September, whereas the Spring intake is in the month of February every year. The applications for Autumn intake are generally opened in the month of November, which gives a ten-month window for aspiring students to submit applications and receive decisions. This makes Ireland a flexible study abroad destination for international students. In addition to these intakes, a few universities may accept student enrolments throughout the year. The following is the list of documents that the Indian student aspiring to study in Ireland would require while submitting their applications to the respective Irish universities:
- Academic Transcripts and Degree Certificates: Marksheets of 10th and 12th Standard, School Leaving Certificate, a bachelor’s degree (for admissions into PG programs).
- A valid score in an internet-based English Language Test - TOEFL or IELTS scores.
- Two professional letters of recommendation (LOR) from an employer/supervisor/manager with whom you have been associated during your work experience. The individual must be able to comment on your abilities as a professional, team player, and communication skills.
- A good quality Statement of Purpose (SOP) written by the student that is grammatically accurate, well-structured, and depicts motivation, ability, experience, and reflection.
- A crisp CV or Academic Resume tailored to the course/program applied for.
- An Art/Design Portfolio (in case of students applying for art and design courses or architecture courses)
- Availability of funds to support study expenses and living costs– proof of funds
- A valid Health insurance
- A copy of a valid passport
- Application Fee for CAO/Direct Applications (varies)
You must keep in mind that any documents that are not available in English, must be translated and certified by your educational institution or notary public before being sent to the university.