How to apply for a PhD in Ireland
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How to Apply for a Phd in Ireland

Written by Taru Medha

The Postgraduate Application Centre

Even though you can apply directly to your university, some institutions might ask you to apply via the Postgraduate Application Centre (PAC). The PAC is a separate organisation acts as the online registration and application portal for most Irish Universities.

They have all the information you need about the process, from making the application to the final decision. Don’t worry, even though it seems complicated, it is a fairly straightforward process and PAC provides support at every step.

You can make multiple applications using PAC, however, they do charge a non-refundable processing fee of €50.

How does Ireland compare to oher popular study destinations?

On the fence about your choice of study destination? Check our our guides to other popular locations including Canada, Germany and the USA and see how they compare to Ireland for PhD study.

Documents required for a PhD application

Whether you make the application to your university or through the application centre, you will be asked to submit a few documents to complete your application. You will need the following:

  • Transcripts from your Masters degree. If you are still studying at the time of application, you will be provided with a provisional/conditional letter of admission. You will then have to submit you final mark once you have completed your degree. You will need an unconditional/final letter of admission to apply for your Irish student visa.
  • Research proposal
  • Language test results

You might also be asked to attend an interview once you have submitted your application.

The National Qualifications Framework (NFQ)

The National Qualifications Framework or NFQ is a 10-level system used to describe qualifications in Ireland. A PhD is classified is a level 10 qualification, and is usually proceeded by a Masters degree, which is a level 9 qualification.

Language requirements for a Masters in Ireland

Even though the official language of Ireland is Irish, the first language, and the language of instruction at universities, continues to be English. If you have not previously completed a degree in English, you will have to take an English language test.

The most popular English language tests are the IELTS and the TOEFL. Irish universities also accept the PTE Academic and the Cambridge Proficiency Test. Some universities also accept the new Duolingo test. You should check with your university before deciding on the language test you submit.

Even though fluency in Irish is not a key skill sought after by employers, you can use your time in Ireland to learn a bit of this historic language.

More about a PhD in Ireland

You can also find detailed information on PhD course structure in Ireland along with their fees and the funding options available on our website.

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Last Updated: 06 December 2022