Ireland Student Visa

Applying for an Irish student visa allows a foreign national the opportunity to immigrate to Ireland on a temporary basis in order to undertake a course of study in the country.

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Studying in Ireland is an increasingly popular option for undergraduates across the world; Ireland offers a long history of excellence in learning with nine universities, fourteen institutes of technology and a host of other educational establishments.

Ireland visa applications have increased in recent years due in part to a comparatively liberal immigration policy coupled with the high quality of life which can be obtained in the country.

As a specialist immigration consultancy, Global Visas can help you to assess your eligibility and embark upon the most appropriate method of immigrating to Ireland.

Visas of any type can be obtained: from a short-term Irish tourist visa to long-term work and business visa services. The immigration consultants at Global Visas can provide immigration lawyer expertise throughout your move.

Irish visa applications will be managed and monitored at every stage and a Global visas migration consultant will be able to advise you from your initial application through to our range of on-arrival services.

Visa Benefits

Ireland study visas allow their holders to live and work in Ireland for as long as they need to complete their course.

In Ireland, visas of this kind are issued as either a "C visa" for those applicants whose courses will last less than three months, or "D visas" for those who wish to study in Ireland for longer than three months.

Whilst in Ireland, study visa status is not in its own right a route to permanent settlement, the Graduate Programme will in some circumstance enable students to switch to an Irish work visa.

This may, in time, lead to the opportunity to apply for permanent residence and naturalisation as an Irish citizen.

Ireland also permits foreign nationals studying in the country to undertake a limited amount of work in order to help support themselves and any dependents.

Visa Eligibility

In Ireland, immigration for candidates wishing to apply for an Irish student visa requires that the following criteria be met.

  • A letter of acceptance must be provided demonstrating that an applicant has been offered a place on a full time course of study at a recognised Irish educational institution. The course must involve at least fifteen hours of study per week.
  • Candidates must be able to demonstrate evidence of enough funds to support themselves and any dependents joining them in the country.
  • It must be shown that the course fees have been paid in full.
  • Private medical insurance must be arranged and documentary evidence of this must be provided.
  • It must be the candidate's demonstrable intention to return to their own country at the end of their period of study.

In addition, although English is described in the Irish constitution as the second official language, the first being Irish Gaelic, it is nonetheless spoken far more widely and is the primary language in which tuition will be given.

As a result, candidates applying for an Irish study visa must be able to show proficiency in the English language to a sufficient degree to allow them to successfully pursue the course.


Successful applicants in possession of an Irish study permit are permitted to work in Ireland part-time in order to supplement their income. Students may work part-time up to a maximum of 20 hours per week.

Spouse and Dependent Immigration

In Ireland, visa applications for students may result in a successful candidate being in the country for a period of several years.

As a result, family immigration is permitted for the spouse and/or dependents of the primary applicant. Dependents entering the country under a family visa service of this kind will be permitted to reside in the country for as long as the principle applicant's course of study in Ireland.

Student visa holder's dependents will only be permitted to work full time with a valid Irish Work Permit.

Additional Information - The Graduate Scheme

In Ireland, student visas are accompanied by the Graduate Scheme, which allows those candidates who successfully obtain a degree from a tertiary educational institution in Ireland to extend their stay by an additional six months.

Applicants may approach the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service to obtain this extended grant of which the crucial benefit is the ability to seek and undertake employment.

If a candidate successfully finds an appropriate position, they may be able to apply to live and work in Ireland under an Irish work permit or by applying for an Irish Green Card. Find out further information on our Irish Spouse Visa page.