Considering Applying

Where can I find information on University of Galway postgraduate programmes?

Our postgraduate prospectus is online here. We also attend various national postgraduate exhibitions and fairs. Our Postgraduate Open Day is held in University of Galway in early-November with our Spring event taking place in February.  

What is the difference between taught and research programmes? And what's a 'Structured PhD'?

Broadly speaking, a taught programme involves seminars and lectures (much like an undergraduate programme), and is usually one or two years in duration (full-time or part-time). A research programme is usually longer in duration, involves study of a specialised subject/area, and the student will present a thesis at the end of their research studies. 

Structured PhD provides a much higher degree of training for the research student than the traditional research programme which has relied largely on one-to-one interactions with a supervisor. A Structured PhD may include some transferable, discipline-specific, or generic skills training. Your studies, therefore, may have some “taught” components. As with all PhDs, the core component of a structured PhD programme is “the advancement of knowledge through original research”. 

Which programme should I choose?

To discuss your postgraduate studies options you should first contact the relevant programme director for the programme(s) you’re interested in. Programme directors are listed in the programme pages of the  online postgraduate prospectus. Another option is to make an appointment to see a Career Development Centre adviser to discuss your further studies options: click here for University of Galway Career Development Centre.  

What are the entry requirements for each programme?

Our postgraduate prospectus is online here: if you follow the links for the specific Colleges/Schools, you will see the entry requirements for each programme are listed on each individual webpage.    

If I see Level 7, or 8, or 9 mentioned in entry requirements, what does this mean?

Level 7 = Ordinary Bachelor degree 
Level 8 = Honours Bachelor degree or Higher Diploma 
Level 9 = Master degree or Postgraduate Diploma (Note: These levels refer to the academic level of the relevant programme, in terms of meeting specified learning outcomes, rather than to the applicant's performance or degree result.  Thus, an applicant who reaches only a Pass, rather than an Honours, grade in a Level 8 programme is still awarded an Honours Bachelor degree; likewise, an applicant who achieves an excellent grade in a Level 7 programme is still awarded an Ordinary Bachelor [not an Honours Bachelor] degree.)

There is a distinction between a postgraduate diploma (PDip) and a higher diploma (HDip). A PDip is Level 9; a HDip is Level 8. 

More information is online (including the "fan diagram") at the National Framework of Qualifications web site:  

I have non-standard (international) qualifications. How are they recognised by the Irish system?

If you are unsure about how your qualifications compare to the Irish system, please refer to The following websites may also be consulted for further information: and

Is there an English language requirement to study at University of Galway as a postgraduate student?

Click here for further information. 

Where can I get information on TOEFL or IELTS?

For details of these English Language Proficiency Tests, see and for information on testing centres and dates. Note: the NUI Galway TOEFL institution code is 8861

Other English Language tests may be acceptable, see for a list of these. 

How much does each programme cost?

Postgraduate programme fee information is online at Fees

Where can I find information on funding?

See the Fees and funding of this web site. Check out the following link also.


How do I apply to a postgraduate programme? 

University of Galway postgraduate applications (for 2024–25 academic year) are made online, further information hereResearch applicants: you are recommended, in the first instance prior to making an online application, to consult with the academic Department, or the Research Centre at University of Galway in which you intend to do your research. At this stage, you should have prepared an outline proposal for the Department or Centre to consider and support. 

Is there a different application procedure for international students?

Non-EU students can make an online application via the online application system. Applications can also be made via an University of Galway representative in your home country. For further details please contact the International Affairs Office.

How much is the application fee? Is it refundable? 

€35 application fee (by credit/debit card).

This fee is non-refundable

How many programme choices can be made per application?

You can make (up to) two programme choices via the online application system for the one application fee (within the one academic cycle). You will receive an email with instructions on how to submit your second application (once your initial application has been submiited), these must be followed to avail of the second application option. After this if you wish to make extra applications, you must submit another application and another application fee will apply. 

What is the closing date/review date for programmes? 

Click here for further information. 

Are late applications accepted?

Applications will continue to be accepted and reviewed if there are still programme places available. 

What supporting documents are required for my specific University of Galway programme?  

Please click here to see the supporting documentation required for your programme.

I don’t have the results of my final exams, can I still make an application? 

Complete the application as normal and include your transcripts to date, then forward a copy of your final certified transcript of exam results as soon as it becomes available to you. 

Is there an English language requirement to study at University of Galway as a postgraduate student?

Click here for further information. 

How soon should my supporting documentation be submitted with my application?

We recommend that you upload all supporting documentation as soon as possible, as in some instances, a programme director may not be able to review your application until it is complete.  

If I have to supply references, do they have to be from academic referees?

In most cases an academic reference is preferable, but professional references are acceptable also. Consult with relevant programme director if in doubt. 

I have applied for the wrong course, can I amend this?

No, it is not possible to change the course after the application has been submitted.  You may use the second application option (if you haven't already done so), to apply for your correct choice. If your application has not been submitted you can amend your course selection as appropriate by navigating to the programme choice section.

Can I amend details on my application after I submit it?

Once an application has been submitted it is not possible to amend information included in an application (with the exception of some personal fields located in the ‘Update Profile’ section). If there is additional/updated information you wish to include, you can upload it as a Word document in the ‘Other Documents’ section of the upload screen.

After Applying, Decisions/Offers etc.

When will I hear the outcome of my application?

Applications will be put forward for review to the relevant programme director only when they have been marked complete (application fee paid & requested supporting documents submitted). Since applications can take at least four weeks to review, if you wish to receive a decision in an early round, you should apply early. In the case of research programmes, allow up to six weeks, from the date we receive your application, before you can expect such notification. 

How do I know when a decision has been made with regard to my application?

You will receive an email alert advising you of your updated status, you can also check your application status on the online application system. It is vital that you give the correct email address on your online application and that your email account is working. It is also important that you check your email regularly. 

How do I check my application status? 

Log into your application using your account credentials (username [email address] & password)
Go to 'My Account' section 
Your status should be displayed (you may also navigate to 'Decision History').

I have been offered a place on a programme, now what?

You will be required to follow the steps given to you within your online account (and your email alert) should you wish to accept.

What’s a conditional offer?

You may be made an offer for a place on a programme conditional on certain criteria being met. For example, for final year undergraduates applying to a postgraduate programme, you may not have your final exam results. University of Galway may choose to make an offer to you, based on you attaining a particular grade in your final exams.When you have met the conditions specified in your conditional offer, and have uploaded official evidence of same (e.g., your transcript) you have automatically secured a place

How do I apply for a deferral (e.g., for a year)?

Deferrals (to the following year) may be possible for those who have accepted an unconditional offer on a postgraduate programme. The granting of a deferral is not guaranteed however. 

Can I transfer from one programme to another?

If you are offered a place on a programme and accept it, and subsequently are offered a place on another programme, you may transfer your acceptance from one to the other. Your deposit is also transferable from one University of Galway postgraduate programme to another, with the exception of the Professional Masters in Education/Oideachas (Máistir Gairmiúil). 

Why wasn’t my application successful?

Please contact the relevant Programme Director if you require feedback as to why your application was unsuccessful. 

What's the programme place deposit? Is it refundable?

To secure a taught postgraduate place at University of Galway a deposit (usually €500 or in some cases €1,000) is payable at offer-acceptance stage. This is deducted from your course fees at registration stage, so in effect is a partial-payment of your ultimate course fees. You are normally asked to accept and pay the deposit within 2 weeks of offer.

Under EU directive, applicants are entitled to a refund if requested within 14 days of payment. The deposit is non-refundable after the cooling off period of 14 days. However, it is refundable in the event that you do not meet the conditions pertaining to your offer (if you were made a conditional offer in the first instance) and provide validating evidence.

My programme is fully-funded. Do I still have to pay the programme deposit?

If you are funded by a grant authority or other funding body, you are still obliged to pay the deposit to accept and secure your place on this course. 

On registration, please provide the Fees Office at Unversity of Galway with evidence of your grant and they will invoice the grant authority for payment of your tuition fees. Once this payment has been made to your student record, the Fees Office will organise a refund of your initial deposit minus the student facilities levy. However, if your course fee is higher than the grant authority maximum you will be liable for the fee difference on registration. More fees information here


I need a letter to say I've accepted a place and/or a letter certifying my registration. Where do I get this?

You can print off your course acceptance email/letter. Post-registration: if you need a letter stating that you're a registered student, or any other Statement of Attendance, this is provided by the Student Registry Helpdesk, and you should contact them directly.

Can I audit/attend some postgraduate classes (i.e., register as an 'occasional student')?

Click here for further information.

How and when do I register? What's my I.D. number?

Schedule and more detail available at:

Important: if you are an University of Galway current student or graduate your current/old student I.D. number is required for registration (i.e., if you have been assigned a 'new' number please do not use this). If you are a non-Unversity of Galway student starting postgraduate studies at University of Galway then your (8 digit) student number (displayed within your application portal) will become your student I.D. number and is required for registration.

When does my programme start?

For most taught programmes, term will commence in early-September, annually.

Will I receive information about introductory lectures, etc., before registration?

The individual Discipline/School should send out material to you in advance of registration. Please contact your Programme Director for more information if necessary.

How do I contact the Postgraduate Admissions Office?

Please click here.