University College Dublin

University College Dublin


University College Dublin (UCD) is Ireland's largest and most diverse university. It is also Ireland's most international university, with 20% of the student body consisting of students from 120 countries around the world. UCD is located 3 miles south of Dublin city centre in a beautiful self-contained campus with extensive on-campus housing options, academic and recreational facilities.


University College Dublin
Dublin 4
Co. Dublin



I knew very little about Dublin when I decided to study abroad at UCD, but I had heard great things about the school and I thought it would be an interesting challenge to go to a place I knew so little about. Before I arrived, I was nervous about picking an unfamiliar place, but it couldn’t have worked out better. UCD and Dublin vastly exceeded my expectations, and now I can’t imagine having gone anywhere else. The campus is so beautiful and my classes were awesome, and I felt supported and welcomed into the community almost instantly. I got to take a wide range of interesting and unique classes, and although the teaching style is very different than what I was used to, I always felt like I had plenty of support and I definitely learned a lot from all my professors! My classes were engaging and challenging, but I also had plenty of time to explore Ireland and a few other countries!
I couldn’t believe how fun and fulfilling the semester was. I've learned so much in the past few months, inside that classroom and out. Throughout my time at UCD, I felt encouraged to focus on my classes, but also make time to have new experiences outside of the classroom. I also took a class called "Ireland Uncovered" which was a great introduction to the history and culture of Ireland, and it was a great way to learn about the country and make some new friends. I also took dance classes with the dance society, which was another great way to meet new people. I have made so many friends from all over the world, and have learned so much from all of them!
Dublin is a great city to study abroad in - there's so much to do and it's a very student friendly city. From pubs, to museums, to shows, to gorgeous scenery, there's something for everyone and so much to explore! I'm so glad that I got to come to UCD for a semester and I am already looking forward to coming back!

Yes, I recommend this program
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My time at UCD is definitely one of the most rewarding times of my life. Apart from the engineering courses, I also took German electives from ALC and Irish culture course. During the first semester, I work closely with associate professor P. F. Curran on my graduate project. I’m so happy to apply my knowledge of control theory into practice and have the privilege to learn the cutting edge control algorithm developed here in UCD to control the fuel tanks of ESA’s Ariana rockets. My invaluable experience here also helped me to receive an admission from Duke University’s graduate school. I’d say my experience at UCD absolutely adds to that.

My favorite music band is Westlife and that’s the reason why I choose to study in Ireland. After I arrived here, I’m so impressed by the history and culture of this emerald isle. The national museum of archeology is my favorite place to visit. I also love the breathtaking scenery at the cliffs of Moher. I’m also learning how to play the Irish tin whistle. Hopefully I can play a complete song before I leave here. In one word, a semester/ year at UCD is worth it without doubt.

Yes, I recommend this program
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My semester in Ireland has been filled with new faces, new classes, and new experiences. As I look back at the semester, I remember all the times spent studying, laughing, and enjoying myself with friends. UCD does a great job of integrating academics with fun extracurricular activities for its students, like having Yoga and Pilates classes, but also having events like Mario Kart Tournaments. Not only does UCD provide fun activities, but the staff are also so helpful to the international students in helping them to choose the right classes, hosting events to bring international students together, and even sometimes having extra pots and pans for the apartments! UCD is located about a fifteen minute bus ride from the Dublin City Centre, which has a rich culture and history. It was so fun to explore the city, visit some pubs, watch some Gaelic Football Games at Croke Park, visit the Guiness storehouse, and see all the beautiful Christmas lights in the city. Not only did I enjoy myself at UCD and in Dublin, but I was also incredibly fortunate to be able to travel all around Ireland and Europe throughout the semester. I got to explore Spain, France, Austria, Germany, Switzerland, Hungary, Italy, Scotland, and not to mention traveling all over Ireland, seeing the Cliffs of Moher, Killarney National Park, the Aran Islands, and Giant's Causeway! My semester at UCD has been filled with so many memories that I will treasure for a lifetime!

Yes, I recommend this program
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I was very disappointed with my semester at UCD. Only come here if you're coming with friends and you're dying to see Ireland. I was looking for a different college experience abroad, and to be engrossed in the culture. However, just being on the campus felt like living in an isolated ghost town. I wish I had known this was a commuter school. The 'societies' are just small cliques of students, they don't do much outreach and seemed to have very few events. The International Society aimed at study abroad students had no trips after early October and tickets for their other trips were hard to come by. Though it would depend on program, in my opinion the professors were subpar and definitely don't cater to Americans. There's n assignments besides midterms and finals, so it's easy to lose focus. You'll be way behind the curve when you get back to the US, especially if you go to a rigorous school. I put some recommendations below to improve the program. Basically, they need to cater to all study abroad students-not just people who are using UCD as a base to travel the rest of Europe. The big thing going for UCD is that it's close to Dublin (though the campus is in the suburbs and feels like you could be anywhere). Dublin is a great city, and I enjoyed being in it, but that alone can't carry the school or the 4 month semester. If you don't have a group of friends and the money to travel Europe with, stay home or find a different program.

How can this program be improved?
-Better integration of students into Ireland
-Take notes from American college orientations
-Improve school facilities. The hours for businesses are wrong online. Food essentially isn't available past 6 PM, and there isn't many options. The library doesn't have great hours either, and the professors were not engaged.
-Get native Irish students involved in process
Response from University College Dublin

We are very sorry that you didn't enjoy your experience at UCD. We would like to respond to some of the points which you made that were negative.

UCD has over 3,000 rooms on campus with a vibrant social scene; with sports events and societal events going on throughout the week.

Clubs and societies have an entire week in which students can join. There are nearly 60 sports clubs and nearly 100 societies for all interests. These can be as large as 800 people (Soccer club) for sports clubs and over 1,500 for societies (Commerce and Economics Society) so they could not be called small.

Along with clubs and societies, the Centre for Study Abroad organises a number of free trips around Ireland throughout the year for study abroad students.

UCD is in the top 1% of universities in the world, with some of the leading academics in their field. The way modules are assessed is completely dependent on the module coordinator. There can be assignments throughout the year.

Study Abroad students at UCD receive a full orientation programme that has integrated thousands of students over the years to life in Dublin.

We are very sorry that you did not enjoy your time in Ireland, but we feel like our university and the experience that you can have here is better than your review states

No, I don't recommend this program
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I would highly recommend the study abroad programme at UCD, in particular, that within the Quinn School of Business, which is what I completed. Going to UCD is a great way to be immersed in the lively city of Dublin while also enjoying the benefits of a campus, such as study spaces, the gym, and student centers and a great way to meet friends. I would highly recommend living on campus rather than trying to find outside accommodation, as this will help you to meet people and to adjust to Ireland. UCD is very welcoming and organizes many on-campus activities, as well as hosting a long list of clubs and other ways to connect with other students. The education is good and all UCD staff are extremely helpful. My favorite memories have been joining the film society, hanging with friends at the on-campus bar, the Clubhouse, and exploring Ireland as well as the rest of Europe with the great friends I've made.

How can this program be improved?
This program can be improved by increasing social events for study abroad students within their respective majors/programs.
Yes, I recommend this program


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