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Irish schools

Irish medical schools | Admissions requirements | Medical programs

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  • Study medicine in Ireland
  • Admissions requirements E.U applicants
  • Admissions requirements non E.U applicants
  • List of Irish medical programs


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 Why study medicine in Ireland

 Ireland is one of the top choice countries for applicants who want to study medicine abroad. There are a few main reasons for this: 


1. Good international reputation of several medical courses, many of which rank in the top 500 universities worldwide (note that not all schools in Ireland are eligible for these rankings, and rankings are not always a good indication of quality of education).


2. Well developed connections of some Irish medical schools with schools abroad including in the UK, Canada and US, making it easier for applicants to get good placements in their home countries after graduation.


3. Efficient application and recruitment systems in several regions including North America, Europe and Asia which make it easy for applicants to apply, and often interview in their home country.


4. Better chances of admission at some Irish medical schools, compared with medical schools in North America and the UK. Note that this is not the case at all medical schools in Ireland (see below).



Despite these important advantages, students should also consider the high tuition costs (particularly for non-E.U students as discussed below), and the high competition for some Irish programs relative to other schools abroad. For some students applying to Irish medical schools, it is a good idea to apply to medical schools in other foreign countries as well. 


E.U Students' Admissions Requirements

For the 4 year Graduate Entry Programs, E.U students are usually admitted based on achieving an upper second class honours degree and performing well on the GAMSAT exam. There is no interview for these courses. Once the academic requirements are met, E.U students are ranked based on their GAMSAT scores. Some schools like the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons (RCSI) have relatively high GAMSAT cutoffs (63 in 2010 at RCSI), while other programs may be less competitive.


For the 5 and 6 year medical courses, the admissions requirements are different for regular applicants and mature applicants (mature students are those that will be 23 years of age or older as of January 1st of the year of matriculation). All applicants apply through the CAO and are evaluated on their school leaving results and their score on the HPAT-Ireland. Note that the HPAT-Ireland is a two and a half hour multiple choice, paper based test with 3 equally weighted sections: logical reasoning and problem solving, interpersonal understanding and non-verbal reasoning. Applicants receive an HPAT score out of 300 points which is valid for two years.


Each non-mature applicant is given a total score out of 900 points that is used to rank them for admission to the 5 and 6 year programs; 300 points for the HPAT, and 600 points for their school-leaving results. For mature applicants, admissions committees usually review applicants individually. Mature students write a personal statement on life experiences, educational objectives and extracurricular activities, and short-listed candidates are often interviewed before admission as well.


Non-E.U Students' Admissions Requirements

Most non-E.U applicants, including North Americans, apply through an agency in their home country. Many international students are recruited each year, including approximately 200 North American students per year. For non-E.U applicants, the MSAG Worldwide 2013-2014 guidebook focuses on only the Atlantic Bridge programme for North American applicants. Recruitment agencies in Asia are not covered.


North American applicants require an undergraduate degree and the MCAT to apply to the 4 year medical programs, an undergraduate degree only to apply to the 5 year medical programs, and secondary school education to apply to the 6 year medical programs. Additionally, North American applicants are required to submit a personal statement, two reference letters or a premedical advisory committe letter (if one exists at the student's university), a resume and their transcripts. Most schools do not interview North American applicants, however, the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland and the University of Limerick will conduct interviews (usually in North America) before accepting students.


Competition for places varies significantly, but some schools like he Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons (RCSI) have average MCAT scores as high as Canadian and US schools (29 in recent years at RCSI) while other programs may be less competitive.


Medical Courses

The programs open to University Graduates are listed below:


4 year programs 5 year programs 6 year programs
Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI) Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (RCSI)
University College Cork The National University of Ireland, Galway The National University of Ireland, Galway

University College Dublin

Trinity College Dublin University College Dublin
University of Limerick University College Cork  
  University College Dublin  


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