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Ireland – FAQ’s

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WHAT ADVICE & GUIDANCE WOULD YOU PROVIDE TO PROSPECTIVE STUDENTS?

Students should seek advice and guidance from a qualified education agency. Students should not feel pressured into making any decision and invest crucial time to understand what area of study and country is most suitable for them. Pursuing an overseas education represents a significant investment in a person’s time, money, and future. Students who are unsure about what course they want to study or have reservations about their ability to pay should delay their plans until a sense of clarity emerges. Students can book an appointment to speak with a qualified student advisor by visiting www.studyoverseasnow.com.  

WHAT IS THE COST OF A STUDENT VISA?

The cost of a single-entry student visa is €60 and for a multi-entry student visa is €100. StudyOverseasNow.com recommends students apply for a multi-entry visa. Any student visa should last for the intended duration of the course. The duration of the program, including packaged programs, will be referenced in the offer letter. If students do not complete the program in the required time, an additional fee may be mandated to extend the student visa.

CAN STUDENTS BRING A DEPENDENT {S} WITH THEM?

No. Students residing outside the EU cannot bring dependents with them on a student visa unless they are studying a Level 10 program on the Irish National Framework of Qualifications {NFQ}, PhD candidates only. Spouses, dependents, and children of international students can apply to live in Ireland on separate visas.

CAN UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS BRING A DEPENDENT{S} WITH THEM?

Yes, students will need to apply separately.

CAN AN OVERSEAS {NON-EU CITIZEN} APPLY FOR A VISA IN IRELAND?

No. Students must apply online and outside Ireland for a student visa. Students from India must attend their nearest VFS-Ireland office to have their biometric details scanned prior to a visa outcome being received.

CAN A STUDENT WORK PART-TIME WHILST STUDYING?

Students should check the terms and conditions of their student visa. Typically, students can work 20 hours per week during the semester and 40 hours per week during vacation and holiday periods. Students should prioritize their studies over part-time work. Managing part-time work and full-time studies can prove challenging.

CAN DEPENDENTS WORK FULL-TIME WHILST IN IRELAND?

Yes. Dependents on a legitimate visa are permitted to live, work and travel throughout Ireland. Dependents are only permitted to work if the primary visa holder {student} has a study duration of more than one year.

WHEN CAN A STUDENT APPLY FOR AN IRISH STUDENT VISA?

Students can apply for a student visa up to three months before their date of travel to Ireland. Students should allow 6 – 8 weeks for visa processing. Students should ensure they have all documentation available prior to lodgement. For a list of documents required please download the “Ireland Study Guide”.

IS THERE A STREAMLINED VISA PROCESS FOR INDIAN CITIZENS?

No. However, there are additional services that VFS-Ireland offer.

WHAT IS THE LIKELIHOOD OF A VISA REJECTION & ELIGIBILITY FOR A REFUND?

A noticeable increase in student visa rejections has been evident in recent months/years. Students should furnish the correct documentation when applying for a visa and invest the necessary time and effort in their SOP {Statement of Purpose} and financial documentation. A student’s financials and ties to their country of origin play a significant factor during the decision-making process. Students who receive a visa rejection will need to declare this when applying to any country for any visa. StudyOverseasNow.com encourages students to seek advice on what documents are permissible. If students receive a visa rejection, a full refund of tuition fees will be provided. However, the cost of the student visa will not be refunded. Please note, that some universities may withhold an application fee.

DO STUDENTS HAVE TO PROVIDE PROOF OF FUNDS TO COVER TUITION FEES AND MAINTENANCE COSTS?

Students must demonstrate they have access to the necessary funds to pay for their studies and living expenses. In instances where course fees are less than €6,000 per year, the full amount must be paid to the institution before a student visa application is lodged. Where course fees exceed €6,000 per year, students must pay at least this amount prior to applying for their student visa. Evidence of this payment must be documented on the Letter of Acceptance and via a transaction receipt. The amounts stated above constitute the minimum immigration requirement{s}. However, institutions may require students to contribute significantly more than €6,000 to obtain a Letter of Acceptance. Immigration requires students to demonstrate at least €7,000 to cover living expenses upon arrival in Ireland. This is the estimated {minimum} cost of living in Ireland for an overseas student for one year. In addition, students must demonstrate they have access to a source of €7,000 per year to cover the cost of living. Please note, that the amounts quoted above are independent of any additional fees needing to be paid to the academic institution.

CAN STUDENTS APPLY FOR A POST-STUDY WORK {PSW} VISA FOLLOWING COURSE COMPLETION?

Yes. Students who have completed a Level 8 qualification (Bachelor with Honours) can apply for a 12-month stay-back option. While those who have completed a Level 9 (Masters and Research) qualification can apply for a 24-month stay-back option. The PSW visa is commonly referred to as the “Third Level Graduate Program”.

WHAT IS THE COST FOR A POST-STUDY WORK VISA?

€60 for a single entry and €100 for multi-entry.

CAN STUDENTS STUDY ENGLISH PRIOR TO COURSE COMMENCEMENT?

Students can study English before commencing their primary course. This is typically referred to as a “Packaged Offer”. However, students studying pre-sessional English programs are more likely to obtain a visa rejection. The cost of studying English in Ireland is considerably more expensive than studying in India.

WHAT ENGLISH TESTS ARE PERMITTED TO MEET VISA & UNIVERSITY REQUIREMENTS?

The English test permitted by immigration includes IELTS, CELA, Duolingo, ETAPP, TOEFL, and PTE. Please note, that academic institutions set their own admissions requirements. StudyOverseasNow.com advises students to take an IELTS or PTE test. WHAT IS THE TAX-FREE INCOME ALLOWANCE IN IRELAND? The tax-free allowance in Ireland is €16,500 per year. Students are sheltered from tax up to that limit. The amount can change throughout the year and StudyOverseasNow. com advises all students to retain the services of a qualified accountant before filing their taxes.

WHAT IS THE AVERAGE HOURLY PAY IN IRELAND?

The amount varies depending on location, time of year, and supply vs demand factors. Students are unlikely to be offered a professional job whilst studying full-time. The rates for restaurant and retail jobs range from €9-11 per hour. Students can expect to earn €200 per week during the semester and €400 per week during semester breaks.

WHAT IS THE AVERAGE GRADUATE STARTING SALARY?

The amount varies significantly based on a student’s qualification level. In addition, pay will differ depending on the skills and area of study undertaken. Typically, students graduating from STEM {Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths} courses will receive a higher remuneration package than those graduating from other fields. However, the average graduate starting salary in Ireland is €28 – 31,000 per year

CAN STUDENTS STUDY PART-TIME?

No. Students are required to study full-time. This is defined as a minimum of 15 hours per week of study. Failure to comply with this rule could result in a breach of visa conditions and possible deportation.

WHAT IS THE COST OF PRIVATE HEALTH INSURANCE AND IS IT MANDATORY?

Students are required to obtain private health insurance prior to arrival. This will need to be evidenced during the visa process. Students should have adequate medical provisions to protect against the costs associated with any medical care whilst overseas. The average cost of health insurance per annum is €200 – 300 per year.

WHAT IS THE AVERAGE LENGTH OF AN UNDERGRADUATE DEGREE?

This varies depending on the credit provided and the area of study. For example, law and engineering are longer in duration than an Arts or Business program. However, the average length of an undergraduate degree in Ireland is three years.

WHAT IS THE AVERAGE LENGTH OF A POSTGRADUATE PROGRAM?

This varies depending on the credit provided and the area of study. Students who have completed an honors degree or gained work experience might expect a shorter duration of the study. However, the minimum length of a postgraduate degree in Ireland is one year.

WHAT IS THE PUNISHMENT FOR A STUDENT VISA OVERSTAY?

Students should notify the immigration department as soon as they become non-compliant from a visa perspective and notify their education provider immediately. Significant penalties apply for visa overstays which include a three-year travel ban to Ireland.

CAN STUDENTS CHANGE EDUCATION PROVIDERS UPON ARRIVAL?

Ideally, students should be clear on the institution they wish to study at and conduct adequate research prior to acceptance. Any subsequent changes could lead to questioning from immigration officials. However, if a student would like to change providers they should seek the advice of a student advisor.

WHAT IS THE POPULATION OF IRELAND?

4.9 million.

HOW MANY UNIVERSITIES ARE BASED IN IRELAND?

There are 8 universities in Ireland: Dublin City University, National University of Ireland, Maynooth University, Trinity College Dublin, University of Limerick, University College Dublin, University College Cork, and Technological University Dublin. A range of polytechnic colleges and private institutions are also available.

WHAT DOES “CERTIFIED COPIES” MEAN?

A certified copy is an original or photocopy of a document that has been signed, stamped, and/or witnessed by a pre-approved government authority stating its authenticity. Signatures should appear on the front of each page. In most cases, an approved education agent can provide certification.

CAN STUDENTS CLAIM CREDIT FOR PREVIOUS STUDIES?

The student may qualify for credit based on previous studies and/or professional experience. Typically, 50% of a course is the maximum amount of credit students can apply for. Students should be aware that lowering the amount of study time can impact their ability to remain in Ireland following course completion.

DO STUDENTS NEED TO ARRANGE ACCOMMODATION PRIOR TO ARRIVAL?

StudyOverseasNow.com recommends all students organize accommodation prior to arrival. Accommodation can be arranged short-term whilst a more long-term option is sought. However, short-term rentals are more expensive and can cause unnecessary stress before course commencement. Please note, that immigration official may request a residential address prior to arrival. If students cannot furnish the necessary documentation this could lead to visa rejection.

ARE THERE HALAL OPTIONS IN RESTAURANTS, SUPERMARKETS AND AT UNIVERSITY?

Ireland is a multi-cultural society and people of all faiths and backgrounds coexist peacefully. Students will find options available to them in major cities, and towns. Limited options/choices may exist in rural/regional communities.

ARE STUDENTS REQUIRED TO ATTEND ORIENTATION?

StudyOverseasNow.com recommends all students attend orientation. Orientation is an opportunity to meet with classmates, join clubs and societies and learn key information about the university and area of study. During orientation {O’Week} students can receive help opening a bank account, registering at a doctor’s surgery, and signing up for other important services. Students may find it difficult to integrate if they do not attend orientation or arrive late.

CAN STUDENTS STUDY PART-TIME?

No. Students are required to study full-time. This is defined as a minimum of 15 hours per week of study. Failure to comply with this rule could result in a breach of visa conditions and possible deportation.

HOW MUCH CASH SHOULD STUDENTS BRING WITH THEM?

Unlike India, most places of business will accept debit/credit cards. StudyOverseasNow. com does not recommend students carry large amounts of cash with them. Money should be deposited in a bank and accessed via card payments. Please note, that Amex cards attract a higher fee and a minimum spend is usually required. If students arrive in Ireland with an amount greater than €10,000 in the local currency they have to declare this to an immigration official upon entry.

SHOULD STUDENTS LIVE IN HALLS OF RESIDENCE {HoR}?

Students traveling overseas for the first time would benefit from an HoR experience. Most HoR is situated on-campus making it easier to get to and from class. Students will have the opportunity to join clubs, societies, gyms, and extracurricular events. Most HoR has full-board options available where meals are provided as part of their package. The majority of HoR students find it easy to make friends as they are surrounded by like-minded students in a similar environment. HoR can be a little more expensive than living off-campus; however, students will save time and money on transport and other associated costs.

WHAT IF A STUDENT FAILS A CLASS / UNIT / SUBJECT?

Students will need to retake exam{s}, unit{s} or subject{s} they fail. Students will need to pay for the cost to retake. In addition, the student visa may require extending to clear any backlogs. Students should do everything possible to limit any failures/backlogs. Failing a subject can prove costly and time-consuming. If a student fails too many units/subjects, their student visa may be revoked.

SHOULD IRELAND’S WEATHER PLAY A FACTOR WHEN LOOKING FOR STUDY OPTIONS?

A student’s primary motive should be their studies and career goals. However, large parts of Ireland can register below 0 Celsius during winter months and +20 Celsius during summer months. Students should consider these factors if adverse to extreme weather; be it hot or cold.

ARE STUDENTS GUARANTEED A JOB AND / OR BUSINESS VISA FOLLOWING COURSE COMPLETION?

No. Some universities will help students with internships and have established links with employers; however, no university can guarantee a full-time job or provide business visas. Students hoping to study overseas should be skeptical if they receive information to the contrary.

WILL MY QUALIFICATION FROM IRELAND BE RECOGNISED GLOBALLY?

Yes. Institutions that StudyOverseasNow.com represent will be recognized internationally following course completion. Some programs/areas that require accreditation, for example, law, project management, engineering, and actuary studies are dependent on the university having the appropriate accreditation through an official / designated awarding body. Speak to StudyOverseasNow.com to find out if the university or area of study provides accreditation.

DO IRISH INSTITUTIONS ACCEPT THE INDIAN 10+2+3 EDUCATION SYSTEM?

Most countries have postgraduate options available to students who have completed the standard education system in India. Some universities / countries may provide direct entry whilst others offer a postgraduate certificate/diploma. High-ranking universities may request a lengthier undergraduate degree or an internationally recognized high school qualification. Universities may require the completion of a college aptitude test; for example, ACT, GMAT, SAT, GRE, LSAT, etc.

DO STUDENTS NEED TO ATTEND A MEDICAL EXAMINATION?

No. However, students are required to have their biometric details taken at their nearest VFS office.

DO STUDENTS NEED TO OBTAIN A POLICE CERTIFICATE FOR VISA PURPOSES?

Yes. The document needs to be obtained no more than 6 months prior to visa submission.

DO STUDENTS NEED TO PROVIDE THEIR BIOMETRIC DETAILS?

Students will need to book an appointment at their local VFS office to have a copy of their fingerprints and photo taken.

CAN A STUDENT APPLY FOR A VISA IN THE COUNTRY?

No.

WHEN CAN STUDENTS ARRIVE IN COUNTRY BEFORE THEIR STUDIES COMMENCE?

Students should arrive no more than 30 days prior to course commencement.

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