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University College Cork



Founded in 1845, University College Cork (UCC) has an excellent reputation. It caters for around 22,000 students, of which around 4,000 are international. Every year, students from over 104 countries are welcomed through the doors of this friendly university, into a supportive atmosphere.

There are three campuses, the Main Campus, Western Campus and North Mall Campus, all of which are within 15 minutes' walk of each other. The campuses sit across 210 acres, which includes several sports pitches.

One of the university's key principals is the promotion of diversity, thought exchange and career ambition. UCC is rated in the top 2 per cent of universities worldwide, (Sunday Times) and has also been ranked the number one university in Ireland for student experience.

UCC has been voted as the Sunday Times Irish university of the year for a record-breaking five times. Other accolades including being the first university campus to receive green flag status, and being ranked in the top 10 universities worldwide for sustainability (UI GreenMetric World University Ranking).

The university prides itself on the quality of its taught courses, and has globally significant standings in the worldwide research community. It is ranked in Europe's top 50 for teaching excellence (Times Higher Education), and has 19 subjects ranked by QS in the World University Rankings.

The city of Cork is one of the best places in the world to study. Recently named as a UNESCO Learning City, it is one of Ireland's most recognisable cities. It is bristling with both business and culture, and surrounded by beautiful landscapes. It is well connected to the rest of Ireland, the United Kingdom and Europe making it an excellent place to live and study.

The academic and professional staff of UCC will be live to chat with students from 3-6 pm on 30 November 2021 at their Live Postgraduate Expo. For more information sign up here!

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What's new

What's new


It has been more than ten years since UCC was granted the pioneering Green Flag Award, the first university in the world to do so. Established by the Foundation for Environmental Education, the award recognises sustainability and environmental issues, which the university continues to uphold. It is also ranked first in the world by Times Higher Education for responsible consumption and production, and the only Irish university to make the top 10 of the greenest universities in the world (UI GreenMetric World University Ranking).

The university achieves this by divesting completely from fossil fuel investments, hosting Ireland's only ''Farm to Fork'' food campaign and having a zero-plastic cafe on the campus. In recent years, UCC has cut its carbon footprint by over a third.

New learning centre

Recently, UCC opened a brand-new student services and learning centre. One of the university's oldest buildings on campus, it has been radically transformed into ''the Hub'', which sits at the heart of the campus. It is now a modern, state-of-the-art facility while still managing to conserve the heritage of its 170-year-old historic building.

Inside the hub, students will find study facilities, teaching and event spaces, along with a range of student services, such as student wellbeing, careers advice, accessibility support and the student support office. Many of the university's clubs and societies are also found in the Hub - with over 100 to choose from, students will find something which matches their interests.

Nurturing Bright Futures

The university has launched a new online course to help students make the transition to university. Entitled Nurturing Bright Futures, it hosts videos, articles as well as interactive worksheets and exercises. It is designed to help incoming students understand more about higher education and engage with UCC before classes begin.

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Graduate outcomes

Graduate outcomes

The focus of UCC is to produce students who are world and work ready. Over 90 per cent of its programmes offer placements both internationally and nationally, equipping students with the best skills upon graduation.

Around 4,300 UCC students undertake a placement each year, with 38 different placement programmes across three colleges, including 360 unique employers nationally and internationally.

While at the university, students have access to helpful career services including Connect - an online system where vacancies are posted. There is also the UCC Works Award, a professional skills development programme which gives students extra skills through extra-curricular activities and experiences.

The university has strong links with industry too, including its international and award-winning Ignite start-up programme for recent graduates. The 12-month programme helps to make a student's business idea a success, giving them access to coaches, mentors and industry contacts.

Being based in Ireland is also excellent for career prospects. Being an alumni of UCC gives students an excellent advantage. Over 90 per cent of graduates consistently enter employment or continue to further study from UCC.

Ireland is ranked first across Europe for employer attitude, while international students can secure a post-degree working visa. The visa allows them to remain and work in Ireland for up to 12 months following graduation.

Many of the world's leading companies, such as Apple, Pfizer and Dell have offices in Ireland, making it a truly global and exciting workplace.

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Teaching quality

Teaching quality

Ranked in the top two per cent of institutions worldwide (Sunday Times), UCC provides quality teaching and is committed to providing the best possible learning experience. Its reputation is maintained through its huge variety of taught courses across different subject areas. It is also supported by a commitment to world-leading research.

Teaching and research excellent are not tackled separately by UCC, with a connected curriculum approach. This gives students the opportunity to learn in a unique way by working with leading academic experts and professional researchers.

Researchers at the university have collaborated with 309 different industry partners in the last five years, so students can also be sure that academics at UCC have the latest industry and professional knowledge to underpin their work. Nine UCC researchers were ranked in the top 1 per cent of their field (Clarivate / Web of Science 2019).

In 2019, UCC received EUR 483,000 in funding for teaching and learning enhancement initiatives. As part of the UNESCO Global Network of Learning Cities, UCC fosters a Learning Neighbourhood Programme to provide community-based learning support and build a culture of lifelong learning.

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Entry requirements

Entry requirements

Specific entry requirements differ depending on the specific course applied for.

International applicants will be required to have qualifications which are equivalent to the Irish Learning Certificate. Applications will be made on a case-by-case basis, with minimum requirements visible by checking the course outline by subject / course. Several courses also have special additional requirements which will need to be taken into consideration too.

For international students whose first language is not English, proficiency will also need to be demonstrated. Tests such as the IELTS, TOEFL and Pearson PTE are accepted, and need to have been completed within three years prior to the commencement of study. A school leaving or matriculation examination may also be used to show English language proficiency.

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Student support

Student support

Students at UCC have access to a variety of support services. UCC prides itself on providing personalized support which helps students feel at home while living and studying in Cork.

The university was the first in Ireland to appoint a first year experience coordinator to ensure the successful transition and progression of first year students. If students are finding settling into university life difficult, or there are any unforeseen problems, the coordinator is there to offer advice and support. They also offer career guidance and life coaching to help students achieve their academic and personal career goals.

International students also have a dedicated support service. Students are supported right from pre-departure, with advice available on a range of matters including immigration and how to open a bank account, all the way through to graduation.

All students are invited to take part in orientation when they arrive. Here they can learn about all the student services and meet peer student leaders who can answer questions about life on campus. This orientation event will take place immediately prior to the start of term.

Additionally, the Welcome Programme is organised by the international office for newly-arrived international students. It includes familiarisation with the campus, walking tours of the city, day trips, Irish music and Irish dancing.

Other student support facilities at UCC include a skills centre, student counselling and development, as well as student health and wellbeing.

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Scholarships & funding

Scholarships & funding

International students at UCC can access several different avenues of funding and scholarships. Each year, the university offers more than 1,000 bursaries and scholarships.

International applicants can receive funding from several areas, including:

  • Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI)
  • Local Authority Grant (LAG)
  • Student Assistance Fund (SAF)
  • Scholarships for UCC students

The various scholarships and funding opportunities are made possible by the university's partnerships and can be secured in several different ways. This includes sporting achievements and academic performance to assist students who have specific financial difficulties that might prevent them from accessing a course.

The university has a dedicated international scholarship list, which includes the qualification criteria and amounts. Many scholarships also have automatic application, so students are automatically considered for them, while others need to be actively applied for.

A full list of all available scholarships is on the UCC website, which provides the latest information on who can apply for each one, as well as subject-specific grants.

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International students

Average cost of living in Ireland

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301st  / 1250

THE World ranking

Join us at University College Cork
Join us at University College Cork
Join us at University College Cork
Join us at University College Cork
Join us at University College Cork
Join us at University College Cork
Join us at University College Cork

Total average cost: €1747

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To find out more about the information shown here – read about How we collect and display course information. IDP assumes no responsibility or liability for any errors or omissions in the content of this site. We always recommend that you speak to an IDP counsellor to get the latest and most accurate advice.

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