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Ireland Study Abroad Program at University College Dublin

University College Dublin

  • Minimum GPA: 3.0 (4.0 scale)
  • Application deadlines: April 15 for fall or full year; October 15 for spring
  • Program advisor: Kendall Hook
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Program Snapshot

University College Dublin is a Rapid Response program
What is this?

Cead Mile Failte! We’re so excited that you’re preparing to study abroad on an IFSA-Butler program and have chosen the University College Dublin as your destination. UCD is a premier Irish university located just a short bus ride from the center of Dublin, Ireland’s capital city. We’re sure you’re going to love studying there!


What UCD has to offer

  • Ireland's largest and most richly diversified university
  • Ranked among the top 1 percent of universities worldwide
  • Alumni include James Joyce and five of Ireland's eleven Prime Ministers
  • A research-intensive institution with a reputation for teaching excellence
  • A creative and collegial environment
  • Spacious, self-contained campus with a medical center, banks, a travel office, bookstore, bicycle shop, sports center, restaurant facilities and two bars
  • More than 100 campus clubs that are a huge part of UCD's social life
  • An active Student Union that sponsors sports matches, films, concerts, parties and other social events
  • First-rate academic and athletic facilities
  • Cultural program of events for all international students


  • Housing is in one of seven residential complexes on campus; all housing is mixed-gender
  • Students purchase or prepare their own meals
  • Students may stay in their housing during vacation periods between terms

Students apply to one college or program at UCD and take the majority or all of their classes within that college or program. Depending on the program, students may take one or two electives in another area. Students studying abroad at UCD choose to apply to one of the following colleges/programs:

  • Arts, Celtic Studies and Human Sciences
  • Clinton Institute for American Studies (spring semester only)
  • Business and Commerce (Lochlann Quinn School of Business is an AACSB International accredited business school)
  • Pre-law
  • Engineering and Architecture
  • Agriculture, Food and Nutrition
  • Pre-medical*
  • Nursing and Midwifery*
  • Science
  • Sport and Exercise  

*New! Students may now apply to the pre-med and nursing and midwifery departments, which offer the opportunity for clinical placement.

We look forward to working with you! You can learn more about University College Dublin by visiting their website here.


Academic Structure

What are the Colleges/Programs I can apply to at UCD?
Students at UCD are only permitted to apply for admission to one college or program within the university. Students must take the majority of their courses within their college or chosen program. Students may apply to one of the following colleges or programs:

  • Clinton Institute for American Studies (Spring semester only)
  • College of Arts and Human Sciences
  • College of Business and Commerce (Lochlann Quinn School of Business only)
  • College of Agri-Food, Nutrition and Environmental Sciences
  • College of Science
  • College of Engineering and Architecture
  • Pre-Med Program
  • Nursing and Midwifery
  • Pre-Law Program
  • Sport and Exercise

What subjects may students take within the different Schools?
Students are expected to take the majority of their courses within the college they’ve been accepted into. The subjects that can be studied within each college are as follows:

Clinton Institute for American Studies: Students take a list of prescribed courses examining America’s global role. These courses focus on American politics, diplomacy, and the relationship between Ireland and the United States.

College of Arts and Human Sciences: Archaeology, Art History, Celtic Civilization, Drama Studies, Early Irish, Economics, English, Film Studies, French, Geography, German, Greek, Greek and Roman Civilization, History, Information Studies, Irish Folklore, Irish Studies, Italian, Latin, Linguistics, Mathematical Physics, Mathematical Studies, Modern Irish, Music, Politics, Philosophy, Psychology, Statistics, Spanish, Sociology, Welsh.

College of Business and Commerce: Accountancy, Banking and Finance, Business Management and International Business, Industrial Relations and Human Resources, Management Information Systems, Marketing. Please note that all business students will take a mandatory module, Irish Business History. This course will look at the political and economic history of Ireland, and field trips to places of historical interest are an integral component of this module.

College of Agri-Food, Nutrition and Environmental Sciences: Animal and Crop Production, Animal Science (including select electives from the Veterinary School), Agri-Environmental Science, Engineering Technology, Food and Agribusiness Management, Food Science, Forestry, Horticulture, Landscape and Sportsturf Management.

College of Science: Applied and Computational Mathematics, Biochemistry, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Botany, Cell & Molecular Biology, Chemistry, Climate and Earth System Science, Computer Science, Environmental Biology, Genetics, Geology, Mathematical Physics, Mathematical Science, Mathematics, Medical Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Microbiology, Neuroscience, Pharmacology, Physics, Physics with Astronomy and Space Science, Physiology, Plant Genetic Engineering, Statistics, Theoretical Physics and Zoology.

College of Engineering and Architecture: Biosystems Engineering, Bioprocess Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Electronic Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, technical architecture (Architectural Technologies, Structures, Environmental Science), cultural architecture (Architectural History & Theory, Ecology, Conservation) and managerial architecture (Professional Studies).

Pre-Medical Program: Students have the opportunity to and are encouraged to experience the clinical environment during their study abroad semester. Students will attend lectures and laboratory classes which are delivered by lecturers who are at the forefront of both teaching and research. The following are some of the suitable scientific and health based subject areas: Anatomy, Botany, Biochemistry, Environmental Biology, Pathology, Cell and Molecular Biology, Genetics, Physiology, Radiography, Zoology. Pre-med students: Please contact your program advisor for a list of pre-medical courses that are offered during the semester or year you are planning on studying abroad at UCD.

Nursing and Midwifery: Students on this program may select modules from a comprehensive range of undergraduate modules on offer in the school in the areas of nursing and midwifery, children’s nursing, and mental health. Students may also select up to two modules from other university programmes.

Pre-Law Program: Students are invited to take a minimum of four semester long School of Law modules as an introduction to different areas of the legal system. Modules such as Constitutional Law, Contract Law, Criminal Law and European Law are offered. Students are also eligible to take one module from outside of the School of Law, in the Lochlann Quinn School of Business or The College of Arts, Celtic Studies & Human Sciences.

Sport and Exercise: The UCD Centre for Sports Studies offers specialisations in Sports/Exercise/Coaching Management and Health and Performance Science Exercise Management which include modules such as: Sports Marketing and Sponsorship Event Management Economics of Sport Sports Operational Management Communication and Media in Sport Sports Tourism Financial Management of Sport Principles of Exercise Management Principles of Exercise Prescription Applied Exercise Management Theory of Coaching Player Development and Welfare Introduction to Exercise Science Fundamentals of Strength and Conditioning Intorduction to Nutrition for Health & Sports Performance Psychology of Sport and Health Sports Injury Management


Where can I find a list of courses that the university offers?
You can find University College Dublin's online course catalog here.

  • Click on the gray “Modules” tab
  • Under “Category,” select the college you’re applying for (ie Arts & Humanities or Engineering)
  • Under “Subject,” choose the subject area you’re interested in
  • Tick the boxes to show courses from Levels 1, 2, and 3
  • Hit the search button to see courses offered that academic year (semester 1 = U.S. fall, semester 2 = U.S. spring)

What if I need to take a required course?
Please be aware that IFSA-Butler cannot guarantee that your host university will offer a particular course, or that you will be allowed to take that particular course. However, if you need to take a required course, you may indicate that it is required on your course preference form. Your IFSA-Butler program advisor will communicate your needs to your host university.

What courses am I eligible to take?
As an IFSA-Butler student, you are entitled to enroll in undergraduate courses for which you are qualified and in which space is available. Course descriptions in the online course catalog (see above) include prerequisites you must fulfill in order to enroll in each course.

For each course that you list on your preference form, be sure to check the following:

  • When determining which courses to take, please bear in mind that the Irish academic system is generally an intensive, three-year program.
  • First-year (100 level) courses are appropriate for departments in which you have little or no prior experience.
  • Second-year (200 level) courses will be equivalent to advanced sophomore or junior-level U.S. courses.
  • Third-year (300 level) courses will be equivalent to senior-level U.S. courses.
  • Fourth-year (400 level) courses are equivalent to courses for a postgraduate degree. You will not be eligible to take these courses as an undergraduate study abroad student.

Course Restrictions

Please consult the "Academic Structure" tab to familiarize yourself with the cross-enrollment policies at University College Dublin.

  • English majors will receive priority registration for English modules. These students can select up to three modules, two "core" and one "option" module. Core modules are at the 200 level (level 2) and option modules are at the 300 level (level 3). Students will be pre-registered in "core" modules only. "Option" module registration will take place on-site at UCD. Non-English majors can select up to two "core" modules only, subject to availability.
  • Psychology majors will receive priority registration and can select up to maximum three psychology modules. Non-psychology majors can select modules subject to availability, although availability is typically very limited.
  • History majors will receive priority registration in history modules. Non-history majors can select modules subject to availability.


How many courses am I able to take, and how do I determine U.S. semester credit hours?
IFSA-Butler requires students to enroll in a full course load at the host institution, as defined by IFSA-Butler. The number of courses you take depends on the credit value of the courses you select. A full course load at University College Dublin is 30 ECTS credits for the semester (equivalent to 15 U.S. semester credit hours) and 60 ECTS for the year (equivalent to 30 U.S. semester credit hours).

5 ECTS credits at UCD colleges= 2.5 U.S. semester credit hours; six total courses per semester


The course preference form is not a registration form; it is a guideline to let your host university know which courses you are interested in taking abroad. You should discuss your course selections with your academic advisor at your home institution and have several backup choices in mind. This schedule will be based on the courses listed on the course preference form.

What are the registration conditions?
You must take a full University College Dublin course load as determined by IFSA-Butler. Credit will be awarded on a Butler University transcript based on a typical U.S. full course load. All courses are graded on an A-F scale, and there is no provision for pass/fail or auditing courses unless pass/fail is the only method of assessment for the course. You are not allowed to register for online, distance education or hybrid courses.

You should also be aware that you may be charged additional fees by your home institution or host university to take or process additional credits. Taking less than a full course load may jeopardize your student status and result in personal academic repercussions and/or loss of financial aid.


What do I need to know about exams?
Because of the differences in the academic systems, you will not know your exam schedule until after you arrive at your host university. Please refer to your program calendar to review the exam period for your host university. Your host university's policies do not permit you to reschedule any exams, request alternate assessments or arrange to have your exams proctored in the United States. If this occurs, IFSA-Butler cannot assist you in conducting a grade appeal or academic follow-up for the course in which you made this arrangement. You will need to complete and submit all academic work prior to departing the program.


How will my home university know what my classes were and what grades I received?
After you have returned to the U.S., your home university will receive a Butler University transcript with the credit you earned at the University College Dublin. The Butler University transcript will report the equivalent U.S. semester credit hours and letter grades. We also will send an official transcript to your permanent address.


Housing Options

What are my housing options?
Students attending UCD are housed within university residences located on the main UCD campus. Each college is allocated a specific number of housing assignments with the university residences. Most of the housing in UCD residences are similar to flats. Each flat usually accommodates three to four students in single bedrooms with a shared bathroom, shower and kitchen facilities. Laundry facilities are located within the student residences.

You must supply your own cooking and kitchen supplies, towels and linens. Students can purchase a linen packet for 20 Euros upon arrival in Dublin. There will also be organized trips to nearby stores so that you can purchase necessary supplies.


Students live in self-catered accommodations at UCD, and no meal plans are offered. However, there are places to eat locally and on campus should students tire of cooking for themselves.

Housing FAQs

Is my housing included in the program fee?
Yes. Your program fee includes accommodation at the university while classes are in session. You will be responsible for the cost of your meals (whether a meal plan or self-catered) and any commuting costs you may incur. Some university housing requires students to move out during winter and spring breaks. If you wish to remain in residence during the vacation period(s), you must notify the university housing office upon arrival to make necessary arrangements. Staying in residence during university breaks may incur additional costs not covered by the IFSA-Butler program fee.

When will I receive my housing assignment?
You will most likely receive your housing assignment one to two weeks before your departure. However, in some cases you may not receive your housing assignment until you arrive in Ireland for orientation. Your program advisor will notify you of your housing assignment via e-mail when it is released by the university.

Please keep in mind that while IFSA-Butler guarantees housing, we cannot guarantee your preferences.

Can I arrange my own housing?
Yes. IFSA-Butler recognizes that some students require independent housing for their time abroad. If you choose not to take advantage of our guaranteed housing, you may sign up for independent housing on the housing preference form. Once you've made this choice, we will not provide housing for you or bill you for the accommodation fee.

Please be advised that housing costs can be high abroad, and many times students living independently end up spending more money than students living in IFSA-Butler arranged housing. If you are hoping to save money by arranging housing on your own, please research your options early so you can compare costs. You must notify us of your intention to live in independent housing by the program application deadline for your term abroad, listed at the top of this page. We are not able to accommodate independent housing requests after the deadline.

Location Info

Population: 1.5 million
Location:In the East, near the coast of the Irish Sea

City features

  • Ireland's largest city and its capital
  • An economic center with one of the fastest growing populations of any European capital city
  • Friendly and down to earth
  • A vibrant cultural scene with music of all kinds, theatre, art and literary activities
  • Restaurants, pubs and clubs make it a weekend destination for the under-30 crowd from across Europe
  • The modern Temple Bar area, with a history dating to 300 BC, is popular for its galleries, pubs, restaurants and shops
  • Learn more about living and studying in Dublin with this video

Do more!

  • Use Dublin as your starting point for traveling the country on trains and buses that run from Dublin to all major cities in Ireland
  • Take a ferry to Wales and the Isle of Man
  • Take advantage of student fares on flights from Dublin International Airport

Time Out: Dublin
Visit Dublin
City of Dublin
The Irish Times

Dates & Fees

Program Dates

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Students must have a round trip ticket to enter the country. Please use the program end date when initially booking your return. 

Your program end date may change due to circumstances beyond IFSA-Butler's control. Upon arrival at your host university, be sure to verify your exam schedule and program end date. We also strongly recommend that you investigate fees and penalties associated with your airline tickets in case you need to make date or route changes.

Program housing is available only until the program end date.

Exams must be taken where and when scheduled. Under no circumstances may students request that an exam time be changed. In Ireland, exams are taken under formal examination conditions and changes cannot be made for individuals.

Program Fees

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What's included in our Ireland program fees
Expense calculator

Academic Year and Fall Payments Due: July 1
Spring Payment Due:
November 15

Program Fee Bills
IFSA-Butler will send a single bill for tuition, services and housing. Any bills for tuition differentials and/or supplemental housing fees will be sent separately. Students who opt for independent housing will not be charged the housing component of the program fee.

The housing component of our program fee is based on the average cost of local student self-catering accommodation, usually a shared room in a regular dormitory, apartment or house without any extra features.

Personal Cost Estimates

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Expense calculator

These figures are designed to assist students with financial planning but are only estimates based on past students’ experiences at the current exchange rate. They do not include any entertainment or vacation travel costs. Meals are estimated based on the cost of a weekly standard grocery shop with one or two meals out.  If you plan to eat out once a day or more, we recommend using a higher estimate.  If you have dietary restrictions or follow a specific diet (gluten-free, vegetarian, vegan, organic, etc), you may also wish to budget more due to the higher cost of specialty food items.

The above numbers are general estimates of expenses during a program abroad. We recommend taking into account your current spending habits, the cost of living in your host country and the current exchange rate. Your IFSA-Butler program advisor can be helpful as you attempt to work on a personal budget for your experience abroad.

Personal Miscellaneous: Covers general expenses of college life, including course supplies, photocopying, toiletries, snacks, personal care, etc.

Commuting: Estimates are for transportation between housing and university. Transportation for personal or recreational purposes is not included in the above estimates.

* U.S. citizens do not need to apply for a visa to study in the Republic of Ireland. However, citizens of certain countries may need to do so. If this applies to you, you will be notified by your IFSA-Butler program advisor. All students, regardless of citizenship, will need to register with the Garda (Irish police) upon arrival in the Republic of Ireland. Registration will cost €300 (approximately $400).

All costs are in U.S. dollars.

Meet Your IFSA-Butler Team

IFSA-Butler has a dedicated team of staff who are here to help students prepare for their program in Ireland:

kendallProgram Advisor Kendall Hook assists with the application process and is here to answer program, cultural and academic questions before departure. Kendall studied abroad twice during her undergraduate career, in Florence, Italy for a summer term, and London, England for a semester internship program. In addition, she has personally traveled all over Europe and the U.K. She graduated from Baylor University and completed a Master’s degree in Higher Education Administration from Vanderbilt University, specifically concentrating on International Education Policy Management. She is very excited to help students find their fit, plan their own study abroad adventures and help them step outside of their comfort zone. She can be reached at the email link above or at 800-858-0229, ext. 4205.

altStudent Accounts Coordinator Angelita Shaffer assists with the financial side of study abroad and processes payments and invoices. Angelita can be reached at the email link above or at 317-940-4221.




donnettaStudent & Parent Services Manager Donnetta Spears is available to both students and parents for travel questions and information. Donnetta has worked with IFSA-Butler since 2000, and she has traveled through parts of Europe, Latin America, Australia and New Zealand. As the mother of 4 college students (including one who studied abroad on an IFSA-Butler program), she has a deep understanding of the ins-and-outs of study abroad from a parent perspective. Donnetta can be reached at the email link above or at 317-940-4252.

Once abroad, our students are in the capable hands of our on-site office in Dublin. Click here to read more about Resident Director Maria Keane.

abbyAcademic Records Coordinator Abby Miller graduated from Butler University where she worked as a guide for international students from all over the world. From that experience and combined with her own world travels, she knows the amazing experiences that studying abroad can provide. Abby is excited to work with IFSA-Butler students and to help answer any questions about their academic records. Abby can be reached at the email link above or at 800-858-0229, ext. 4217.

Get Connected

Connect with IFSA-Butler Students

If you really want to know what it's like to study abroad, connect with IFSA-Butler alumni and students who are currently abroad on an IFSA-Butler program. Check out the following:

Institute for Study Abroad, Alliance For Global Education and MORE CULTURE. LESS SHOCK. are registered marks of the Institute for Study Abroad, Inc.