25 Best Universities In Ireland For International Students 2024

If you are looking to study in Ireland, you are surely making a great choice. This location has a lot to offer for international students, including world-class universities and exciting student experiences. With more than 26 universities and colleges in Ireland, you’ll surely have a wide range of choices.

Out of 26 universities in Ireland, University College Dublin and Trinity College Dublin, University of Dublin are the top-performing schools in Ireland. This list covers both public and private institutions in Ireland.

To help you narrow down your school options, we’ve compiled the best universities in Ireland. We based our rankings on academic reputations from reputable sources and the number of international students. By doing this, you’ll have an efficient way of comparing your target universities and choose your host university in Ireland.

Rank University Founded Year City Type
1 University College Dublin 1854 Dublin Public
2 Trinity College Dublin, University of Dublin 1592 Dublin Private
3 National University of Ireland, Galway 1845 Galway Public
4 University College Cork 1845 Cork Public
5 Dublin City University 1975 Dublin Public
6 University of Limerick 1972 Limerick Public
7 Technological University Dublin 2019 Dublin Public
8 Maynooth University 1997 Maynooth Public
9 Munster Technological University, Cork 1997 Cork Public
10 South East Technological University Waterford 2022 Waterford Public
11 Atlantic Technological University 2022 Sligo Public
12 Dundalk Institute of Technology 1971 Dundalk Public
13 TUS Athlone 1970 Athlone Public
14 National University of Ireland 1908 Dublin Public
15 TUS Moylish 1980 Limerick Public
16 National College of Ireland 1951 Dublin Public
17 SETU Carlow 1970 Carlow Public
18 ATU Letterkenny 1971 Letterkenny Public
19 National College of Art and Design 1746 Dublin Public
20 Institute of Public Administration 1957 Dublin Public
21 Munster Technological University, Kerry 1977 Tralee Public
22 St Patrick’s College, Maynooth 1795 Maynooth Private
23 Dún Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology 1997 Dublin Private
24 Marino Institute of Education 1904 Dublin Private
25 Royal Irish Academy of Music 1848 Dublin Private

How do I get admission to the best universities in Ireland?

Applying to the universities in Ireland involves submitting requirements and following specific admissions procedures set by your chosen university. The requirements often include a student visa, application packages, and language scores. Check out our guide for international students who want to study in Ireland to learn more about applying for admission in this country’s universities!

How much are the tuition fees at the best universities in Ireland?

Tuition fees at Ireland’s universities can vary depending on which university, degree, and program you will be enrolling in. Generally, tuition fees for the bachelor’s level range from 3,200 Euros to 30,700 Euros , while tuition fees for the master’s level range from 2,250 Euros to 35,000 Euros. If you are interested, check out the affordable universities in Ireland!

As we cover the best universities in Ireland for international students, feel free to check out the university’s information on Admission, Tuition, Courses, and Language Requirements by looking at the individual university pages.

Top Universities in Ireland for International Students

1 University College Dublin

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#1 in Ireland
#74 in Europe
#168 in World
Percentage of International Students
26%
Total Number of students - 37,000
International Number of students - 9,500

University College Dublin welcomes the largest student population in Ireland, having over 35,000 students. It is also the most diverse university, being home to 9,500 international students. UCD is considered one of the most prestigious universities in the country and is consistently counted among the world’s top schools in reputable university rankings. A few Nobel Laureates are among the University’s staff.

Food Science
Architectural Science
Sports and Exercise Management
Philosophy
Economics

2 Trinity College Dublin, University of Dublin

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#2 in Ireland
#76 in Europe
#170 in World
Percentage of International Students
No Available Data
Total Number of students - 18,000

Trinity College Dublin, University of Dublin is one of the most prestigious universities in the world. It was founded in 1592 and is located in Dublin, Ireland. It offers undergraduate, postgraduate, micro-credentials, and continuing professional development programs. Trinity College consistently makes it to the top 100 of reputable academic rankings, including the QS World University Ranking and Times Higher Education.

Acting
Biomedical Engineering
Film
French
Geography

3 National University of Ireland, Galway

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#3 in Ireland
#147 in Europe
#331 in World
Percentage of International Students
21%
Total Number of students - 19,000
International Number of students - 4,000

National University of Ireland, Galway, or simply NUI Galway, is a public university in Ireland that has a history tracing back to the 1800s. The university boasts of its globally competitive research outputs in various fields, such as Human Rights, Biomedical Science and Engineering, Marine Science, and Environmental Science. At present, more than 19,000 students consider the university as their academic provider, and over 4,000 of them are international students.

Agricultural Science
Global Experience
Commerce and Accounting
Marine Science
Project and Construction Management

4 University College Cork

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#4 in Ireland
#151 in Europe
#336 in World
Percentage of International Students
1%
Total Number of students - 22,337
International Number of students - 212

University College Cork (UCC) offers various Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctoral programs. It is located in Cork, one of the largest cities in Ireland. Reputable university rankings consistently place UCC in the top 250 to 300 universities worldwide. UCC is home to over 22,000 students who enjoy vibrant student life on the university’s picturesque campus.

Archaeology
Greek and Roman Civilization
Pharmacy
Philosophy
Psychology and Computing

5 Dublin City University

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#5 in Ireland
#271 in Europe
#591 in World
Percentage of International Students
14%
Total Number of students - 16,000
International Number of students - 2,300

Dublin City University is one of the most prominent universities on the Northside of Dublin, Ireland. This university was founded in 1975 and was known as the National Institute for Higher Education; it welcomed its first students in 1980. Since that time, Dublin City University has been known for providing quality education for both domestic and international students. This university is distinguished for its wide range of programs that cover some of the most exhilarating subjects, such as education, business, engineering, and computing.

Psychology and Mathematics
Bioprocessing
Nursing (Mental Health)
Psychology and Disruptive Technologies
Journalism

6 University of Limerick

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#6 in Ireland
#308 in Europe
#670 in World
Percentage of International Students
12%
Total Number of students - 17,000
International Number of students - 2,000

The University of Limerick is a public university that is home to over 17,000 students, of which 2000 are international students. It is known as a university that satisfies students’ needs through different programs that cover fields such as education, business, medicine, and technology. The university has a very rich history as it was founded in 1972 and follows an educational tradition from which it has produced many famous world leaders. This university offers different opportunities for international and domestic students, where many of them may gain rewards based on their academic performance.

English Language and Literature
Digital Culture and Communications
Law and Accounting
International Business
Paramedic Studies

7 Technological University Dublin

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#7 in Ireland
#489 in Europe
#1161 in World
Percentage of International Students
No Available Data
Total Number of students - 28,500

The Technological University Dublin (TU Dublin) is the first technological university in Ireland. It has five campuses across the city, all fitted with cutting-edge facilities to support research activities. The university offers a wide range of programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels and is home to over 20,000 students.

Accounting and Finance
Culinary Entrepreneurship
Hospitality Management
Interior Design
Music

8 Maynooth University

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#8 in Ireland
#561 in Europe
#1375 in World
Percentage of International Students
No Available Data
Total Number of students - 15,180

Maynooth University was founded in 1997 and is located in Maynooth, Ireland. The school offers undergraduate and postgraduate programs to both local and international students. The university has a student population of 15,180 and a total of 1,236 staff members facilitate their education. Maynooth University has been recognized for its academic excellence before, ranking first in Ireland for the Best Young University Rankings in 2020 according to Times Higher Education.

Entrepreneurship Studies
International Business and Global Cultures
Local Studies
Marketing and Global Cultures
Social Science

9 Munster Technological University, Cork

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#9 in Ireland
#805 in Europe
#2514 in World
Percentage of International Students
6%
Total Number of students - 18,000
International Number of students - 1,000

Munster Technological University in Cork, previously named Cork Institute of Technology, was founded in 1997 and is located in Cork, Ireland. With Munster Technological University in Kerry, around 17000 local and 1000 international students enroll in its 6 campuses. The school offers undergraduate and postgraduate degrees with over 2000 staff members handling them.

Animal Bioscience
Hospitality Studies
Industrial Physics
Popular Music
Social Care

10 South East Technological University Waterford

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#10 in Ireland
#833 in Europe
#2577 in World
Percentage of International Students
No Available Data
Total Number of students - 10,000

South East Technological University Waterford is one of the youngest universities in Ireland. Established in 2022, it is a public university offering degree programs in a wide range of disciplines. The university values research and continuously invests in cutting-edge facilities and laboratories. It also has international research partnerships, allowing students to collaborate with experts around the globe.

Accounting
Retail Management
Information Technology
Agriculture
Molecular Biology

11 Atlantic Technological University

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#11 in Ireland
#961 in Europe
#3028 in World
Percentage of International Students
7%
Total Number of students - 20,418
International Number of students - 1,397

Atlantic Technological University is a public university in Ireland with 8 campuses across various cities. It was recently founded in 2022, after the merging of three institutes of technology in Sligo, Galway, and Letterkenny. At present, the university is home to more than 20,000 students and over 2,200 academic and non-academic staff.

Applied Sport with Business
Business Administration
Civil Engineering
Creative Design
Forensic Investigation and Analysis

12 Dundalk Institute of Technology

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#12 in Ireland
#1038 in Europe
#3313 in World
Percentage of International Students
No Available Data
Total Number of students - 4,509

Located in the city of Dundalk, the Dundalk Institute of Technology is a public university founded in 1971. It offers degree programs across a vast range of disciplines. These can be completed by students online or on campus. The Dundalk campus maintains a vibrant learning environment that is well-equipped with facilities including theatres, laboratories, computer rooms, and a gymnasium.

Audio and Music Production
Internationals Tourism Management
Event Management
Musical Theatre
Theatre and Film Practice

13 TUS Athlone

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#13 in Ireland
#1053 in Europe
#3369 in World
Percentage of International Students
No Available Data
Total Number of students - 6,000

The Technological University of the Shannon, Athlone campus, more widely referred to as TUS Athlone, was founded in 1970. It is one of the leading research universities in Ireland. The university offers a wide range of undergraduate and postgraduate programs. Its campus is home to modern laboratories, a renowned library, a performance venue, and an international athletics arena.

Accounting
Animation and Illustration
Business
Business and Law
Civil Engineering

14 National University of Ireland

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#14 in Ireland
#1088 in Europe
#3490 in World
Percentage of International Students
No Available Data
Total Number of students - 18,000

The National University of Ireland was founded in 1908 through the Irish Universities Act with three Constituent Colleges in Dublin, Maynooth, and Cork. The university offers Higher Doctorate, Doctorate, Honorary, Master’s, and Bachelor’s degree level programs. Some of the fields of study covered include Arts, Human Sciences, Food Science and Technology, Social Science, Dentistry, Medicine, and Health Sciences.

15 TUS Moylish

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#15 in Ireland
#1116 in Europe
#3607 in World
Percentage of International Students
No Available Data
Total Number of students - 6,000

TUS Moylish was originally established as Limerick Institute of Technology in 1852. TUS Moylish offers several degree programs at the undergraduate and postgraduate levels. Professional training and Continued Professional Development programs are also offered by its Flexible Learning Department. TUS Moylish aims to provide education that balances theory and practice to help each student gain deep knowledge of their field and skills for real-life work scenarios.

Construction Management
Culinary Entrepreneurship
Law and Taxation
Business Studies
Creative Broadcast and Film Production

16 National College of Ireland

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#16 in Ireland
#1156 in Europe
#3740 in World
Percentage of International Students
No Available Data
Total Number of students - 5,000

The National College of Ireland is a distinguished third-level educational institution in Dublin, and the government mainly supports it. When it was established in 195 and was first known as the Catholic Workers Colleges, a collaborative effort between Irish Jesuits and Irish Trade Unions. It is now a stand-alone college that offers full-time and part-time courses at all academic levels, from undergraduate to postgraduate, in subjects like finance, psychology, computing, and business, among others. 

Early Childhood Education and Care
Human Resource Management
Data Science
International Business
Cloud Computing

17 SETU Carlow

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#17 in Ireland
#1168 in Europe
#3785 in World
Percentage of International Students
No Available Data
Total Number of students - 10,500

SETU Carlow is a university originally established as the Institute of Technology Carlow in 1970. The university offers undergraduate and postgraduate programs to local and international students and is also renowned for its research outputs. Various student services are available to students on campus, including career services and a health center.

Human Resource Management
International Business
Marketing
Public Relations and Media
Sports Management and Coaching

18 ATU Letterkenny

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#18 in Ireland
#1301 in Europe
#4251 in World
Percentage of International Students
No Available Data
Total Number of students - 4,500

ATU Letterkenny, formerly Letterkenny Institute of Technology, was founded in 1971 and is located in Letterkenny, Ireland. It offers Certificate, Bachelor’s, and Master’s programs. The school is part of the Atlantic Technological University, with other campuses across Ireland, particularly in Connemara, Killybegs, Mayo, and Sligo. Multiple student services and extracurricular activities are available for students.

Animation
Design Film and Media Production
Graphic and UX Design
Athletic Therapy and Exercise Rehabilitation
Fire Safety Engineering

19 National College of Art and Design

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#19 in Ireland
#1332 in Europe
#4362 in World
Percentage of International Students
No Available Data
Total Number of students - 950

The National College of Art and Design is a traditional public university offering great educational opportunities for domestic and international students. This university was founded in 1746 and has continued to lead the educational industry through progress with exceptional professors and innovative programs. The opportunities that are offered at this university are unique and can help an individual make a breakthrough in his academic career.

Education and Design or Fine Art
Critical Cultures
Fine Art Media
Textile & Surface Design
Product Design

20 Institute of Public Administration

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#20 in Ireland
#1368 in Europe
#4448 in World
Percentage of International Students
No Available Data

The Institute of Public Administration was founded in 1957 and is located in Dublin, Ireland. It is a school and a public service agency that serves undergraduate and postgraduate programs. Training and development courses are also taught by professional specialists. These programs will be conducted in one of its departments, the Whitaker School of Government and Management. Consultation, research, and publishing services are other services that have their own departments.

Business Studies
Healthcare Management
Human Resource Management
Law and the Administration of Justice
Local Government

21 Munster Technological University, Kerry

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#21 in Ireland
#1420 in Europe
#4606 in World
Percentage of International Students
No Available Data
Total Number of students - 3,000

Munster Technological University in Kerry, previously named Institute of Technology Tralee, was founded in 1977 and is located in Tralee, Ireland. It is part of the Munster Technological University with Cork Institute of Technology. The school offers a variety of undergraduate and postgraduate programs on-campus or online. Students of these programs can also study full-time or part-time.

Agricultural Engineering
Civil Engineering
Computing
Pharmaceutical Operations
Wildlife Biology

22 St Patrick’s College, Maynooth

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#22 in Ireland
#1529 in Europe
#4913 in World
Percentage of International Students
No Available Data
Total Number of students - 500

St. Patrick’s College was founded in 1795 and is located in Maynooth, Ireland. As a pontifical university, it specializes in the fields of theology and philosophy. St. Patrick’s offers programs from diplomas to doctorate degrees. Its campus is also noteworthy for housing historic buildings, gardens, and a national science museum.

Theology and Arts
Theology
Divinity
Philosophy

23 Dún Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology

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#23 in Ireland
#1577 in Europe
#5061 in World
Percentage of International Students
No Available Data
Total Number of students - 2,500

Dún Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design, and Technology was founded in 1997 and is located in Dublin, Ireland. It was formed when three schools were merged and became what it is today. The school specializes in digital, technology, and arts, with various undergraduate and postgraduate programs offered. Students in and out of Ireland can enroll in various programs, paying different tuition fees.

3D Animation
Art
Creative Computing
Digital Marketing
Film

24 Marino Institute of Education

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#24 in Ireland
#1783 in Europe
#5657 in World
Percentage of International Students
No Available Data
Total Number of students - 1,300

The Marino Institute of Education (MIE) is a private institution that specializes in teacher training. It offers programs at the undergraduate and graduate levels, as well as postgraduate diplomas. MIE is an associated college of Trinity College Dublin, a top university in Ireland. Its academic programs are assessed and validated by Trinity, ensuring that each student gets a high-quality education.

Early Childhood Education
Primary Education
Education Studies

25 Royal Irish Academy of Music

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#25 in Ireland
#1978 in Europe
#6138 in World
Percentage of International Students
No Available Data
Total Number of students - 150

The Royal Irish Academy of Music was founded in 1848. It is in Dublin, the capital city of Ireland. It is the country’s oldest musical teaching institution and received Irish royalty recognition 24 years after its establishment. RIAM offers diploma programs and degree programs in a variety of music disciplines.

Music
Music Education

We know that choosing your dream school in Ireland not an easy task. After all, you need to consider other factors like the cost of your education, school background, and population, as it can be overwhelming on your part.

So, to help you out further in weighing your school options for studying in Ireland, make sure to visit our list of the best public and private universities in Ireland! These articles will surely help you in deciding your next study destination!