Ireland Student Visa Information

Visa Description

Ireland is recognized as the best education systems in the world for Higher Education Achievements. It provides the students to choose from 5000 internationally recognized qualifications as well as have access to the exceptional research opportunities in world-leading programs. The higher educational institutes in Ireland also connects with the leading global companies to offer career assistance to the international and domestic students.

Like every other country, the applicants from the non-EU countries do not require a visa to study in Ireland while candidates from EU countries will need to have a visa once they decide to have their education in Ireland. The Student Visa Application process is categorized into two heads, based on whether a student is applying for a degree program offered by a higher education institution or they intend to pursue an English-language or non-degree course.

Applying for a student visa

The applicant must apply for their visa application online using the AVATS online facility. It is an online visa application facility which is available universally and must be utilized by all aspirants

All the required documentation, passport size photograph, and appropriate fee have to be attested along with the completed application and received by the relevant office as indicated by the online system., only then the application will be further processed. The students are advised to go thoroughly through the visa details. If the candidate does not provide the requisite documentation, their visa will be refused.

Cost of the visa application

The applicants are requested to provide a valid evidence that they have sufficient funds to cover their tuition fees and cost of living expenses. They have to make sure that they have ample funds to support their stay in Ireland without recourse to public stocks, or the reliance on casual employment. Following will be the documents serving as evidence of access to sufficient finances:

  • A detailed bank statement comprising of a six-month period immediately preceding the visa application and indicating sufficient funds to cover their expenses.
  • Official confirmation that the student is in receipt of a scholarship.

Note - An approximate cost of living in Ireland for a student is €7,000, for one academic year. It is mandatory to prove that the student or his/her sponsor has instant access to an amount of at least €7,000 for each year of their studies, including the program fees for each of those years. If a NON-EEA Student is opting for education for less than six months, the non-EEA Student must have access to €500 per month of the stay or €3000 whichever is the lesser.


Documents Required

Following are the documents required for the student visa application:

  • A completed online application form.
  • The details of the Irish Embassy along with all the passports that are valid for a period of 12 months.
  • A passport sized photograph.
  • Evidence or receipt that the application fees is already paid.
  • A signed letter of application that indicate that the student requires a visa.
  • A Letter of Acceptance from the Irish university, institute or college, verifying that the student has been accepted and enrolled in a regular program, requiring a minimum of 15 hours organized daytime tuition every week.
  • The letter should confirm the applicant's name along with the entire title/duration of the program.
  • It should also verify the amount of fees payable for a particular course and that this amount has been paid.
  • If the Institute has taken out any medical insurance on the student's behalf, all the requisite details should be included in this letter of acceptance. While if the College does not arrange it, then its the student's responsibility to organize it themselves and provide evidence along with their application.

Conditions for English Language & Non-Degree Programme

The New Immigration Regime for Full-Time Non-EEA Students introduced some new visa conditions and immigration rules for English language and non-degree program for the non-EEA students in Ireland. It came into effect in July 2011.

If a student is taking up an English language course in Ireland and applying for a student visa for the same, it is necessary to ensure that it is a recognized English language school or institution.

  • The primary conditions of being a regular Non-EEA student for a Language and Non-Degree Programme are:-
  • For an applicant to stay in Ireland to attend courses at language/non-degree level is limited to a maximum period of three years. It should comply with the following conditions:
  • The student must obtain a Letter of Acceptance from the college/institute, confirming that they have been accepted and enrolled in a regular day-time program including a minimum of 15 hours organized daytime tuition every week.
  • Evidence that the fees have already been paid. In colleges where the fees is below €6,000, the full amount of the fees must be paid in advance
  • The student must have €3,000 at the first registration, in addition to the course fees.
  • They must comply with Medical Insurance requirements.

Application Process

Undergraduate Students

If the candidate is applying for higher education in Ireland as an EU citizen, they need to apply for all undergraduate courses through the Central Applications Office (CAO). Applications can be submitted online, which makes the job even easier.

Academic Entry Requirements - The entry requirements for the undergraduate courses may vary every year, depending on the number of candidates and the number of places available. Irish students complete by the results in the Irish Leaving Certificate Examination. Students are rated on their six best subject scores.

One of the minimum entry requirements for higher education programs is the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma. Faculty requirements and various courses must be met at all institutions. The applications are evaluated independently, and the Diploma does not ensure admission. Individual institutions may stipulate requirements additional to the minimum required.

English Language Requirements - The aspiring students should be able to grasp, understand, converse and write English and be proficient in the Language to be accepted for a degree programme. English Language Training Programmes are offered in many universities and colleges. There are around 94 private English language training schools nationwide; that runs short and long-term programmes.

Below is a list of the minimum standards in The English Language. However, the results achieved in such other examinations must indicate ability to one of the standards outlined below:

Examination Level Required
Irish Leaving Certificate in EnglishOrdinary level grade D
GCSE English LanguageGrade C
GCE O-Level English LanguageGrade C
University of CambridgePass in Use of English Examination
IELTSComposite score of 6.0- 6.5 with not less than 6.0 in any one component
Cambridge ProficiencyGrade C
Cambridge AdvancedGrade A
ARELS oral examinationsPass
ETAPPGrade C1
PTE AcademicMinimum score of 36

Postgraduate Students

Whether a student is an EU or a non-EU postgraduate student, they have to apply directly to the foreign office in their preferred higher education institute. Some Higher Education Institutes will request the student to apply through the Postgraduate Applications Centre.

English Language Requirements - The applicants registering for a degree course must be able to speak, read and write the language proficiently to participate in the seminars, tutorials, discussions and examinations. If their mother tongue or their undergraduate education is not English, then a student have to pass an approved test before registering any program.

Examination Level Required
Irish Leaving Certificate in EnglishOrdinary level grade D
GCSE English LanguageGrade C
GCE O-Level English LanguageGrade C
University of CambridgePass in Use of English Examination
TOEFL 220 (computer-based test) 550 (paper-based test)
Cambridge ProficiencyGrade C
Cambridge AdvancedGrade A
ARELS oral examinationsPass
ETAPPGrade C1
PTE AcademicMinimum score of 36

Please note that test scores are only valid for 2 years.

Requirements for the Medicine Program - If a candidate is applying for graduate entry medicine, they will require to pass the GAMSAT examination. It is a particular test developed by the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER) for medical schools providing graduate-entry programmes. GAMSAT is required by all the EU graduates applying for the 4 Year Graduate Entry Medicine Programme (GEP).

English Language Courses

Ireland offers specific language courses for the international student who aspires to study one. To register for an English language course in Ireland, a student has to apply directly to the English language institute they are interested in, as well as indicate the course they prefer to opt. It should be noted that the English language school they are applying to is a recognised English language school.


Where to apply for the Visa Application

The Ireland Embassy and Consulates in India are located at the following addresses:

  • Mumbai

    • Mr Cyrus Guzder Honorary Consul-General of Ireland Mafatlal House, 7th Floor H.T. Parekh, Marg Backbay, Reclamation Churchgate, Mumbai 400020
    • Telephone: +91 22 6635 5635 / +91 33 6633 9717
    • Email: irishcongen@vsnl.net
  • Chennai

    • Mr. Rajeev Mecheri Honorary Consul of Ireland Mecheri Centre, Number 49, Eldams Road, Teynampet, Chennai 600018
    • Telephone: +91 44 6609 7700
    • Email: irishconsulchennai@gmail.com
  • Kolkata

    • Mr M K Jalan Honorary Consul of Ireland C/o Keventer Agro Ltd, 2 Clive Ghat Street, Sagar Estate, 8th floor, Kolkata 700 001
    • Telephone: +91 33 2230 4571
    • Fax +91-33-2282-2335
    • Email: poulamichowdhury@keventer.com
  • Bangalore

    • Dr. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw Honorary Consul-General of Ireland c/o Biocon Limited, 20th K M Hosur Road, Electronics City PO, Bangalore 560100 Karnataka
    • Telephone: +91 80 2808 2006
    • Email: kiran.mazumdar@bioconindia.net