Notre Dame's program in Ireland is located in the city of Dublin, a capital city of 1,000,000 people located on the Irish Sea on the east coast of Ireland. Physically a small city—all the major museums and sites are within walking distance—it has a rich cultural life manifested especially in its established and experimental theater and traditional Irish and classical music. Dublin also boasts several excellent museums including the National Museum, with Celtic objects from the 8th and 9th centuries, and the National Gallery of paintings, which has a large collection of Irish artists. It is a young city, with over 100,000 college-age students in its many educational institutions.
Academic Program and Courses
Students will take courses at the Keough Naughton Notre Dame Study Center in Dublin and at one of the Republic of Ireland's best universities—University College Dublin (UCD). Notre Dame's Keough Center is located at O'Connell House on Merrion Square, the most elegant Georgian square in central Dublin. The building was the former home to Daniel O'Connell, the early 19th century Irish Catholic political leader. Notre Dame's Center is directed by Professor Kevin Whelan, an historian and member of the Royal Irish Academy.
The ND Dublin Program is a perfect complement to the broad offering of courses by the Department of Irish Languages and Literature and the Keough-Naughton Institute for Irish Studies at ND. Courses in the Irish Language are offered along with Beginning Irish which is offered every fall and spring: IRLL 101. There are also a wide range of courses on Irish Literature and Culture, that are valuable both before and after the Ireland Study Abroad Experience.
University College Dublin was founded in 1851 as the Catholic University, and in 1908 it became a part of the National University of Ireland and lost its denominational character. It is now located on a lovely, green 350-acre campus at Belfield, three miles from the center of Dublin. The largest university in the Republic, it is home to over 24,000 students. There are almost 5,000 international students, about 20% of the student body.
Academic Year: Early September through mid-May
Fall Semester: Early September through mid-December
Spring Semester: Mid-January through mid-May
Dates for 2018-19
Monday 3 September: all students arrive and are picked up at Dublin airport, orientation week begins
Monday 10 September: TCD and UCD classes begin
Week of 22 October: TCD Reading Week
Monday 29 October: Bank Holiday
Friday 30 November: TCD and UCD classes end
Week of 3 December: TCD and UCD Reading Week
10-15 December: TCD Exams
10-21 December: UCD Exams
*Please take program dates into consideration and how they may coincide or conflict with internship and other academic requirements.
- The Dublin UCD program accommodates students for either a semester or a yearlong period of study.
- The Dublin Program is unique in that it can accommodate students from all of Notre Dame's colleges—Arts and Letters, Business, Engineering, and Science.
- Students accepted to the program must submit a secondary application to UCD requesting admittance into one of four colleges (Arts, Science, Business, Engineering). They must then take a majority of their courses within that one college, but may take a lesser amount (1-2 courses) in a different college. These outside courses are dependent upon open places and timetable allowances, as are all study abroad courses. Presently, Theology courses are not available at UCD.
- Within each of the UCD colleges there is a wide range of subjects, and students are advised to choose courses with the help of a Designated Undergraduate Advisor at ND.
- Students in the Dublin program are required to take the course "Introduction to Ireland" taught by Kevin Whelan. Students will join other ND student participants of the Dublin program who are attending TCD at the ND Study Center (O'Connell House) for this course. "Introduction to Ireland" is cross-listed for HIST, SOC, ANTH, and IRST and satisfies the University history or Social Science Requirement at ND. Two weekend trips are included with the course. One trip usually visits a site in the North of Ireland, and the second trip visits a site in the western or southern portion of Ireland.
- The Notre Dame Center usually offers an optional Literature course in the Spring Semester, taught by Declan Kiberd, that carries 3 credits. The course is "Modern Irish Writing: 1950-2010." The course is cross listed in ENGL and IRST and satisfies the University Literature Requirement.
- UCD does not offer any courses in Theology.
- A minimum of 15 credit hours or 5 courses per semester is required for all ND study abroad programs.
- Course catalogs for UCD for the current year
All courses taught at UCD potentially can be taken for credit at ND providing that they are approved by the specific academic advisor and/or dean. For a list of courses taken in the past (2005 to present) at UCD please consult the ND Study Abroad course database listing these past approvals. Courses approved in the past are not guaranteed to be offered by UCD in any future semester.
- Fall semester students at UCD will complete their exams before Christmas and then return to the states.
- All Spring semester students are required to arrive on the same day and are picked up by ND Study Center Staff at the airport.
- Spring semester and academic year students usually do their major traveling during spring break. Finals are completed by mid-May and flights are arranged back to the US on the day following the last possible day of finals.
- Students studying for the full academic year are responsible for their expenses over break.
- University College Dublin eligibility: Sophomores wishing to pursue the UCD option must have a minimum 3.0 GPA by the end of the fall semester of their sophomore year. Participation in the program is during the junior year. UCD can accommodate most majors, from science, engineering, A&L, and business. However, course availability is not guaranteed by the host institution, UCD or ND. Students must also check with their academic advisors and determine if UCD fits into their academic plan.
- Application deadline: November 1st of a student's sophomore year.
- Students wishing to prepare a good application to Dublin should thoroughly understand the specifics of the program and clearly state why they think they would be a good fit. They should inform their academic reference writer and rector of the reasons for their interest in the Dublin program. They should prepare an excellent essay, including how the program specifics fit their academic and career goals.
- Application deadline is November 1st, of a student's sophomore year. The On-Line ND application requires one academic recommendation.
Service site opportunities have included:
- The Dublin Program is noted for its organized service opportunities. Students regularly drop in to help coach basketball at St. Louis Primary School, and participate in one service event together as a group during the semester
- The Dublin Program also includes a Community Based Learning component, which is part of the “Introduction to Ireland” required course. This allows a pre-selected group of students of the program to formally commit 2-3 hours a week to a service site in Dublin. The students write weekly journals and the required final research essay for the course involves the service site where they volunteered.
Please be aware that this is a competitive program with a limited number of spaces.
Housing and Meals
- Aisling Project
- Fighting Words
- Foundations Project
- Friends of the Elderly
- Separated Children’s Educational Services
- Special Olympics, Dublin
If you are considering applying to a study abroad program and you do not have a valid passport, or your passport will expire within six months past your program end date, please take steps to obtain or renew your passport immediately. Passports can take longer than expected to process, and you may need your passport to apply for visas well before your program begins. For more information about obtaining and renewing passports visit the United States Postal Service.
US students do not need a visa to study in Ireland. Although, they do have to register with the Garda within the first few weeks of their arrival and pay the fee.
- Students enrolling in the Dublin program and taking courses at UCD will live in dormitories on the UCD main campus with other international and Irish students. Students will live in single rooms or doubles with shared kitchen facilities. UCD accommodations
- Students will shop for groceries and prepare meals in their kitchens. Cafeterias and restaurants can be found on campus and in Dublin, but tend to be expensive unless a student purchases a meal plan. A stipend to cover partial food expenses is given in USD to students on a monthly basis to purchase and prepare food. The ND Dublin Center provides a Monday evening common dinner before the mandatory course: Introduction to Ireland. UCD dorms are equipped with kitchens and a dining area per each flat.
- Students will walk to classes held on the UCD campus and commute by bus to city center Dublin to participate in the mandatory course "Introduction to Ireland" held at the Keough-Naughton Notre Dame Study Center, also known as O'Connell House. Students are advised to purchase a "Leap Card" for 30 non-consecutive days upon arrival in Dublin. The Leap Card allows for a student discount towards the expense of the bus pass. Students will take the 39a bus to the O'Connell House courses in City Center Dublin, an approximate 30 minute ride.