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University College Dublin

Why choose University College Dublin?

Welcome to University College Dublin, Ireland’s global university, and most popular destination for international students. UCD is home to over 34,000 students, 29% of whom hail from outside of Ireland. Ranked in the top 1% of higher education institutes worldwide, and located in one of the safest and most welcoming cities in the world, UCD’s main campus offers state-of-the-art learning and living facilities, only 3 miles south of Dublin's bustling city centre and Ireland’s major business hubs. UCD is a beautiful self-contained campus with extensive on-campus housing options, academic and recreational facilities.

University College Dublin


Min. SAT Score:
Min. ACT Score:
Min GPA:
Min. Age:
Additional Items:
  • Transcript
  • Letters of Recommendation
  • Language Requirement (English)

How to Apply

Application Steps
  • Go to the university course finder page
  • Click Special Groups > Study Abroad > Search. This will give you the list of available applications for study abroad courses
  • Click the blue 'Apply' button for the preferred course
  • Create an account on the application portal
  • Complete & submit the application for review


Min GPA:
Additional Items:
  • Transcript
  • Language Requirement (English)

How to Apply

Application Steps
  • Apply through the online application system
  • Submit a personal statement
  • Collate up-to-date offical transcripts and 2 reference letters

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is University College Dublin known for?

    UCD is known for many things, but has a special reputation for the quality of its degrees in teaching and learning. This makes UCD graduates among the most employable in Ireland.

  • Where does University College Dublin rank?

    University College Dublin ranked #177 in the QS Global World Rankings 2021.

  • Where in Dublin is University College Dublin?

    UCD is located in the southwest of Dublin, about a 20-25 minute car or bus ride. There are several public bus routes that run from the city center to campus, making it easy to access even if you live further from campus.

  • Is Dublin a good place to study abroad?

    Dublin is a great city for studying abroad! It's a major city that's more affordable than many other study abroad destinations, with easy flights to the U.K. and the rest of Europe. You can also explore the rest of Ireland easily by car or bus.


University College Dublin - Scholarship

Scholarships for International Students

UCD is pleased to offer a number of scholarships to international students. All UCD scholarships are advertised online. Please explore the link below to see what options are available to you.

$1,000 - $10,000


Default avatar
No, I don't recommend this program

Don't Study Abroad at UCD

I'll try to not be too negative in this review, but I genuinely hated my time studying abroad at University College Dublin. If you are thinking about studying abroad here, make sure you know what you're getting into. I spent my whole academic year here, and I seriously regret it. UCD is in the middle of nowhere; it honestly did not feel like I was in Dublin. Students generally are not super friendly, and it was quite lonely. The Irish students are a bit cliquely and overall are not interested in making friends with American/other international students. The school is huge, which was something I wasn't used to, coming from a medium-sized liberal arts school in the US. The campus has nice facilities, but it's quite ugly (unless you're into Brutalist architecture) and has a strange layout. Housing was fine, although a bit overpriced. It's a commuter school, so campus is dead on the weekends when all the Irish kids go home. I was living in a 7 bedroom apartment, and while it was nice to have my own bedroom and ensuite, I was living with international students who were all slobs.

Ireland is also not a very fun country. The weather is absolutely abysmal. You're on an island, so you're kind of stuck here. Many of the American students take trips around Europe during weekends or breaks, but if you don't have the money to do that, Dublin gets really boring really quickly. There are some beautiful places in Ireland, but they all kind of look the same. Irish people are generally pretty cool and laid back, but most of them just want to drink and party all the time. I cannot emphasize enough how much I wish I didn't study abroad here, and I can only recommend UCD if you intend to explore the rest of Europe while you're here and use it as a crash pad, or if you have an interest in learning about Irish history (but Trinity would be better for that anyway.) Don't study abroad at UCD if you can help it.

  • Lots of societies and clubs
  • Isolated
  • Lack of academic support
  • Not an "immersive" Irish experience
Response from University College Dublin

Hi Emily
We are sorry to hear that you didn’t have a great experience in Ireland and UCD, but many international students do. UCD is 6kms from the city centre with great transport links. Wishing you all the best in the future.

Default avatar
No, I don't recommend this program

Horrendous education, avoid at all costs

Do NOT waste your money. The only thing that made this program worthwhile was the ability to travel. A proper gap year would have been better/cheaper. The graduate business school at UCD is an absolute joke, especially compared to the rigor you get in the US. Not to mention, the school treats you horribly and gives ZERO support to international students. On a scale of 1-10 their accessibility rating would be 0. You're forced to endure some professors that do not know how to teach at all. The school makes it extra difficult for students to get any kind of job, part-time or full-time, as they do not support any kind of employment. Yes, this is a BUSINESS school that will shame you for any kind of employment. And it is not even close to a good enough school to act the way they do. It is the most disorganized, chaotic organization I have ever seen. Their communication is horrible and it is clear that the program is the bottom-tier priority of all who work there, yet master's students aren't even permitted an ounce of job flexibility. It was like going back to kindergarten. Save your money, just travel for a year or go somewhere else. To be fair, none of the schools in Ireland are worth it based on what I've heard from many peers, including Trinity College.

  • Travel
  • At least you'll have a masters on paper...
  • Bad education
  • Inexperienced professors
  • Apathetic staff
Response from University College Dublin

Dear Whitney,
Thank you for your comments on your experience at UCD College of Business. We are sorry that the programme did not meet your level of expectation. As a highly ranked, triple accredited Business School this is not the feedback we normally receive from our international students. Our dedicated programme teams work hard to support our students during their stay with us. Our aim is always to ensure we deliver a vibrant learning experience. To offer our students the best chance of success we do encourage our full-time students to focus on their studies for the year they are with us and suggest they don’t engage in employment. Of course our students are adults and most visas allow paid work for up to 20 hours per week so there is nothing to prohibit any of our international students sourcing casual employment during the year. As a follow up to your comments we would be very pleased to schedule a call with our Director of Alumni Relations to discuss your experience in more detail if you would like to contact us at
Best wishes, the UCD Smurfit Team

Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

UCD Study Abroad Experience

UCD was an amazing school to study abroad in for a semester! They provide free trips to go to different places in Ireland such as Galway, Kinsale, Glendalough, and more events where I was able to meet tons of friends. Also, UCD has a great community that makes it easy to join clubs/societies even if it is just for a semester which allowed me to make local Irish friends. It was easy to go into the city whenever I wanted and was a very safe location to walk around even at night so would highly recommend!

  • Social scene is great
  • Safe location
  • Easy to make local friends
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

UCD is A Second Home

I'll start with the two (slightly) negative points:
-Academics can be a bit stressful sometimes, since much of the time, assignments are due all in one month + you have less assignments worth more percentage of your grade unlike the American system. However, I will offset this statement a little by saying that professors will make sure you don't fail!
-My residence wasn't the best— you pay for what you get, but even then, it is a little overpriced and when I came in, the previous owners left it in very dirty condition (however, this is not UCD's fault). But as someone in Glenomena, the single rooms and (in my case) the ensuite bathroom are hard to complain about, and there's nothing a little cleaning up yourself can't do.

But otherwise, I loved being at UCD! Being a UCD student for the semester has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. At first, it was hard to adjust due to the size of the campus, but there have been so many opportunities to find friends and traveling experiences through UCD-organized events (they run trips around Ireland for study abroad students!) and school societies. The campus is also very big, but that means there are many student life and academic resources— it almost seems like a small town sometimes. I have come out with increased independence, many lifelong friends, and new memories that I will always cherish because of my time at UCD. I highly recommend that if anyone goes to Ireland for study abroad that UCD should be considered!

  • Great location
  • Many resources on campus
  • Many opportunities to travel and make friends with UCD-led events
  • Expensive cost of living in Dublin
  • You pay for what you get in terms of housing, and it is not always the cleanest
Default avatar
Yes, I recommend this program

UCD study abroad!

I have loved my time at UCD. I feel safe on campus, enjoy the learning material, and have loved exploring Dublin. The facilities for students like my residence and the gym were excellent, and the bus into Dublin was easy and convenient. One thing I would change is that there could be more academic support for international students adjusting to a new style of teaching. I was able to utilize the maths tutoring centre, but I felt that overall there were not many resources made available to students who may have been struggling.

  • Easy to travel and explore new places
  • Safe campus
  • New culture
  • Limited support


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Alumni Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with verified alumni.

Why did you choose this program?

I had studied abroad for a mini-term in London last year and loved every second of it. However, it was simply not enough time. When I heard that the Honors Program at my school was partnering with UCD to send over a cohort of students each semester, I thought it would be a good fit. I really wanted to go back to Europe and I had never been to Ireland, so I thought why not? My scholarships from my home University still applied, so it was about the same cost-wise. Also, the staff at UCD were so friendly and accommodating- they made the whole process so easy! Thanks to their help, all my classes will transfer, and I will still be on-track for graduation. I couldn’t have planned it to work out any better than it has!

What did your program provider assist you with, and what did you have to organize on your own?

The staff at UCD were extremely organized and were available to assist with everything from the application process to picking classes to finding housing. They also made themselves very accessible in answering any and all questions, even ones that arose throughout the semester. I can't think of anything that needed to be organized on my own besides arranging my travel to and from Ireland, and even then they would still be able to advise you.

What is one piece of advice you'd give to someone going on your program?

Enjoy every moment! Ireland has so many amazing places to see, make sure you take advantage of every second there. Also, don't be afraid to put yourself out there and do things out of your comfort zone.

If you can, take moments every so often to reflect on the experience, because you will get so much more out of it that way.

What does an average day/week look like as a participant of this program?

An average day consists of class for a few hours, maybe grabbing a chicken fillet roll from the Centra on campus, then a lot of free time to explore the city, hang out with friends, and travel! There isn't much schoolwork until the end of the semester, so weekends can be spent exploring Dublin or traveling to other cities and countries in Europe.

Going into your experience abroad, what was your biggest fear, and how did you overcome it? How did your views on the issue change?

I think my biggest fear was actually making friends, just because you were in a completely new place in which you don't know anyone. It can be scary, especially since you leave all of your friends and family behind, but what I realized- just like the first week of college freshman year- everyone is in the same boat and looking to make friends. It was so easy, I even met a few friends on my flight over. I became really close with all my friends and I'm so grateful that Ireland brought us together.

How are the classes in terms of difficulty and structure?

The classes were a little different than what I was used to in the states. For instance, we had very few assignments and one final exam that counted for a large majority of our grade, as opposed to multiple tests, homework, and assignments throughout the semester. Moreover, the exams were also majority essay-based responses as opposed to multiple choice.

Finally, the grading scale is a bit different- more subjective. To achieve an A on an assignment requires effort above and beyond, and most professors are selective in awarding A's. Thus, the classes are a bit on the challenging end, but not in terms of workload, in terms of quality on assignments. However, it is nothing to be worried about, everyone I know ended up doing well enough. I'm just mentioning this as something to keep in mind, so you are a bit more prepared for what is to come.

Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Aoife Redmond

Job Title
International Programme Manager - School of Nursing, Midwifery and Health Systems

Aoife has been an International Education professional for over 10 years and has worked extensively worldwide and in Ireland leading groups of international students through academic, volunteer, and leadership programs. She joined UCD International in 2016 as the Arts and Humanities Study Abroad Manager and is now the International Programme Manager for the UCD School of Nursing, Midwifery, and Health Systems.

What is your favorite travel memory?

I had the opportunity to live with a hill tribe family in Chang Rai, Thailand for a short time, and it was incredible! We taught English in their school, helped on their farm, and visited groups within their village such as their Mayoral team, medics, and women's groups. It was truly an eye-opening experience!

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

I find it very heartening that the Nursing Study Abroad students we receive are just as dedicated to their future healthcare careers as our Irish students are. It makes me proud to know that the young people we work with will really make a difference in the world after their studies, and we get to be a small part of that. It motivates me to make the Study Abroad experience as smooth as possible for our incoming students and showcase our school as much as a positive and supportive learning hub.

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

My favorite stories are those where past students come back to visit the friends they have made at UCD and in Dublin for vacation.

I love that even a single semester can forge friendships that last beyond the academic experience.

I also love to hear about students who perhaps weren't accustomed to traveling before their Study Abroad semester and who are now travelling and experiencing new places whenever they can. I am extremely happy that these students get to do that because their semester showed them how small the world is and how important it is to see as much of it as possible!

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

If I could go back in time and study abroad during my own college experience, I would do that in a heartbeat! I traveled as an international student after my MA, and it was life changing. However, I also think that taking the leap during my undergrad would have been really impactful as a slightly younger person. Travel is ALWAYS the right choice and should be undertaken at every opportunity!

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

The UCD staff are completely dedicated to supporting our Study Abroad students and their experience in Dublin, Ireland and Europe. No matter what subject area a student may choose, there is a staff member they can touch base with before they arrive and meet with when they are here to help them navigate their time here. From choosing the right academic modules to helping them figure out how to get to the airport for their next adventure, the UCD staff are there help out in any way we can. Our priority is to deliver a great student experience all round, and that makes me proud.

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

Teamwork, understanding, and fun! International Education is a great industry to work in. It is ever changing, and we get to meet wonderful faculty and students semester after semester. Working together towards successful programming, understanding, and learning from our students’ experiences and having great fun along the way can only lead to great things!

Articles About Studying Abroad in Ireland