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Ireland: giving the cost advantage

delhi Updated: May 30, 2007 15:28 IST

The country’s USP
Ireland is billed as a provider of quality education in the English language at competitive costs.

The Embassy of Ireland says that it does not have reliable figures on the number of Indians enrolled in Irish institutes.

According to an Embassy official, “Enrolment figures are undocumented. So, a guess estimate of the total number of Indians currently enrolled in Ireland would be 1,300, which includes 874 (student) visas issued last year.”

According to the official, there are about 30,000 international students in Ireland. Seventy per cent of these are postgraduate pupils.

Hot for what?
Business is the most popular subject taken up by 31 per cent of Indian students in Ireland. Twenty-six percent are pursuing ICT, 14 per cent Hospitality and Tourism, 11 per cent Engineering and the rest are following other subjects.

Five Irish universities with the highest enrollment of Indians (not in this order):. National University of Ireland, Galway. Trinity College, Dublin. University of Limerick. Dublin City University. University College, Cork Information highway.

Here is the way to education and beyond in Ireland:

Session commences: the session is on from September to June, with summer vacations from June to September and shorter breaks during Christmas and Easter. The session is divided into two or three semesters. Some institutions have two intakes, some three and others only one. Most universities go by the semester system in which modularisation has been introduced to provide greater flexibility to pupils.

When to apply: apply anytime of the year but at least two-and-half months before your selected course is scheduled to start.

How to apply: whereas European Union students can apply straight to the Central Application Office, non-EU students, including Indians, should contact individual universities or institutions directly for admissions.

Deadline: each course has a different deadline for application, which depends on its date of commencement.

Application processing time: the offer letter comes depending on when you applied. The application processing time can be as little as 24 hours on the spot, that is, at the Embassy of Ireland, or may take three weeks to a month. If a course starts in September, the university or institute may offer admission by April or May.

Application docket: in Ireland, candidates are selected for undergraduate programmes through a score system based on their school leaving certificates (SLC). Overseas applicants for UG programmes are selected on the basis of Class XII marks.

Their marks in the Bachelor’s degree and the subject they studied are considered for direct entry into PG programmes. Standardised test scores: no Graduate Record Examination (GRE) and Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) scores are required. However, institutes may insist on an International English Language Testing System (IELTS) score of at least 6.

Tuition fee:

the annual tuition fee for undergraduate and postgraduate programmes (excluding medicine) varies from about 7,000 to 12,000 euros.

Cost of living: the living cost, on an average, is 600-700 euros month or 7,000 euros a year. Accommodation is cheaper outside Dublin. Scholarships: universities distribute scholarships directly and the applicant has to find one himself by approaching them. The Embassy does not provide scholarships nor does the government, though it gives grants for projects to universities.

Part-time jobs: students are allowed to work for up to 20 hours a week.

Student visa: contact the visa office of the Embassy. The Embassy has opened visa application centres in Delhi, Chandigarh, Jalandhar, Chennai, Kochi and Hyderabad. Irish consulates in Mumbai and Bangalore also accept visa applications.

Job opportunities: Ireland has a shortage of hi-skilled manpower in areas such as Information Technology, Healthcare, Financial Services, Accounting, the infrastructure industry and more.

Its recently launched Third Level Graduate Scheme allows non-European Economic Area students, completing their undergraduate, postgraduate or doctorate programmes at a third-level Irish institution, to work in specific job fields in the country.

The student permission of those who qualify under the scheme will be extended (non-renewable) for six months so that they can find a job.

Once the candidate takes up a job, he/she may seek a Green Card or Work Permit. A Green Card, however, does not guarantee Permanent Residency status.