Your Pathway To Success

At The Institute of Education students can choose to complete a one, two or three year programme of study for the Irish Leaving Certificate examinations.

Each programme varies in intensity and offers a unique educational experience for students.

All offer the same level of academic excellence and a pathway to some of the world’s leading universities.

Have A Question?

Want to find out more about the programmes we offer? Fill out an enquiry form and a member of our International Office will contact you as soon as possible.

What is the Irish Leaving Certificate?

The Irish Leaving Certificate provides international students with the opportunity to achieve a globally recognised qualification and a pathway to a top university in Ireland, the UK or internationally.

Globally accredited and equivalent to the A Levels, they are recognised by every university in Ireland and the UK, along with thousands of other universities in the USA, Canada, Australia and elsewhere.

The Irish Leaving Certificate examinations are the final examinations of the Irish high school system.

The Leaving Certificate offers students a broad and balanced education while allowing for some specialisation. Students typically choose between 7 and 8 subjects to be examined in, at a mixture of higher and ordinary levels. Maths and English are compulsory subjects and students must then select another 5 subjects from a choice of 28.

The exams are primarily written, with oral, aural, project work and practical components for certain subjects. Each subject is examined individually.

The exams take place in June, over a period of two to three weeks. You will receive the results of your Leaving Certificate in August.

The results of your 6 highest scoring subjects are counted and these give you the points needed to go to the university of your choice.

“I did my Leaving Certificate in The Institute of Education and am now studying medicine in the Royal College of Surgeons. The Institute of Education opened many doors for me.”

Muhammad, past pupil

1-Year Programme

6th Year | 16+ yrs

Students entering our 1-year programme complete the entire Leaving Certificate syllabus, including assignments and project course work, in one year.

This is an intense but highly productive year and is a popular choice for many international students looking for a pre-university programme and a pathway to their chosen third-level course .

With hands-on support and direction from our experienced teachers, and a clear focus on exam success, international students at the Institute can undertake serious, intensive study on our 1-year programme.

Our teachers have been working with international Leaving Certificate candidates for many years and have a deep understanding of their specific needs. In class, great emphasis is placed on the demands of the syllabus and exam technique. Teachers discuss grade targets with students and monitor performance throughout the year, with regular class tests, timed assignments and mock exams.

For students of advanced abilities and those aiming for a high grade in the exam, fast-paced classes are available in Maths and French.

With 28 subjects available to choose from, our international students can select a combination of subjects that they enjoy and that supports their future academic goals.

Our International Office works closely with all students, providing them with advice, guidance and support throughout the 1-year programme.

Detailed advice and support on college applications, interview preparation, personality and aptitude profiling and an annual career fair are just some of the services available to all students.

“I’m extremely glad that I made the decision to come to the Institute. The school is full of like minded students who have a drive to succeed and the teachers are incredible.”

Ray, past pupil

2-Year Programme

5th Year | 16 yrs

Our 2-year programme allows international students to immerse themselves in the Irish education system and lays the foundations for a successful Leaving Certificate examination.

Up to 70% of the subject syllabuses, plus project work is completed by the end of the first year, providing more time for revision and exam preparation in the final year.

A combination of academic focus and tailored support ensures that international students on our 2-year programme can take ownership of their learning, develop their confidence and maturity and enter their final year fully prepared for the challenges of the Leaving Certificate.

From the very start, we are focused on preparing students for the exams. Regular testing and continuous assessment in all subjects means that teachers can identify quickly where targeted support or subject guidance may be required for each subject.

Certain subjects are offered at both regular and fast-paced learning, to suit different learning styles and abilities.

Regular study skills seminars and compulsory periods of supervised study means that all students can work to their strengths and develop a study routine that suits their own individual style.

With 28 subjects available to choose from, our international students can select a combination of subjects that they enjoy and that supports their future academic goals.

Students on our 2-year programme can sample subjects at the start of their first year to ensure they are choosing subjects that they enjoy and will most likely succeed at.

Our International Office works closely with all students, providing them with advice, guidance and support throughout the 2-year programme.

Whatever path a student wishes to take, the team has the knowledge, resources and expertise to support each student individually as they make key decisions about their future.

International students on our 2-year programme have access to a wide range of personal development opportunities, ensuring they maintain a balanced and sustainable approach to their studies.

Extra-Curricular Activities
This programme provides students with a welcome break from study and is essential in developing self-confidence, responsibility, and initiative. Chess, creative writing, debating, film studies, drama and Model United Nations are just some of the clubs available to students. All activities take place after school or during lunchtime.

Health & Fitness
Run by Irish International Athlete Brian Gregan, this programme helps students maintain good health and nutrition habits and develop a balanced and focussed approach to their studies. Students can take part in a range of sporting activities such as athletics, circuit training, football, table tennis and GAA.

Wellness
This programme includes weekly workshops on stress, anxiety, nutrition, coping skills and goal setting and is designed to increase student awareness and management of mental health and wellbeing.

“Joining the Institute was the best decision I’ve ever made The teachers here are fantastic!”

Yashika, 6th year student

3-Year Programme

4th Year | 15 yrs

Students entering our 3-year programme are provided with everything they will need to transition successfully into a new culture, environment and education system.

This is a popular choice for many international students who wish to explore their talents and abilities and build their academic confidence before they start the Leaving Certificate syllabus.

Working with our expert teachers and a team of academic mentors, international students on our 3-year programme can establish a solid foundation in key subjects such as Maths and English and many other Leaving Certificate subjects, before going on to tackle the fuller syllabus over the following two years.

For students who need to build their academic confidence, the programme provides an extra year to reinforce the basics, developing valuable study and classroom-based skills, as well as allowing students to improve their English language proficiency.

Study time is built into every school day and a team of qualified academic mentors are on-hand to support and train students in developing study skills to suit their individual needs and learning styles.

With 28 subjects available to choose from, our international students can select a combination of subjects that they enjoy and that supports their future academic goals.

International students on our 3-year programme can experiment with different subjects, selecting a total of four each term. Towards the end of the academic year an experienced career guidance team and an international mentor then assist students in selecting the appropriate subjects for their chosen pathway to university. 

International students on our 3-year programme have the option of sitting a selection of international examinations during the year. 

Cambridge International IGCSE
As a recently accredited Cambridge International School, the Institute has become the first school in Ireland to include the Cambridge International IGCSE as an option for its students.

Students now have the option to study the following subjects at IGCSE level:

  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • English
  • Maths
  • Physics

There is significant crossover between the IGCSE and the Leaving Certificate, and studying for this qualification enables international students to develop their subject knowledge and the skills needed to support a smooth progression to the Leaving Certificate.

 

Language Qualifications
In addition, international students at the Institute also have the option to study for the following language qualifications:

  • French DELF
  • Spanish DELE
  • German Goethe

These exams are held in collaboration with the Alliance FrançaiseInstituto Cervantes and Goethe Institut.

A wide array of trips and activities throughout the year ensure that international students on our 3-year programme have an opportunity to settle in, make new friends and become part of our school community.

Activities include art appreciation, barista training, computer coding, drama, driving lessons, first aid, film studies, debating, graphic design, philosophy, yoga, tax and financial planning and many more.

International students on our 3-year programme have access to a wide range of personal development opportunities, ensuring they maintain a balanced and sustainable approach to their studies.

Extra-Curricular Activities
This programme provides students with a welcome break from study and is essential in developing self-confidence, responsibility, and initiative. Chess, creative writing, debating, film studies, drama and Model United Nations are just some of the clubs available to students. All activities take place after school or during lunchtime.

Health & Fitness
Run by Irish International Athlete Brian Gregan, this programme helps students maintain good health and nutrition habits and develop a balanced and focussed approach to their studies. Students can take part in a range of sporting activities such as athletics, circuit training, football, table tennis and GAA.

Wellness
This programme includes weekly workshops on stress, anxiety, nutrition, coping skills and goal setting and is designed to increase student awareness and management of mental health and wellbeing.

Pathways | In Focus

The Irish Leaving Certificate provides international students with a diverse range of interesting pathways to some of the world’s leading universities. Whatever future ambitions you have, we can help you find the course and opportunity that works for you.

If you are interested in the health sciences, you have lots of choice across the medicine, dentistry, pharmacy and broader healthcare professions.

There are five undergraduate medicine degrees in Ireland, incorporating access to the Irish Medical Council certified Intern Training Programme on graduation. Those with an interest in clinical research will also have the opportunity to compete for an Academic Track Internship in Ireland alongside other programmes specific to your university.

For future pharmacists, your integrated undergraduate and master’s degree will incorporate practical placements within the community, hospital and industry contexts. You will have the opportunity to learn from practicing pharmacists and participate in continuous professional development within Ireland’s growing pharmacy sector once you have graduated.

Those with an interest in Dentistry can study in TCD or UCC, where they will gain a qualification that is recognised in the EU, Australia, Singapore and Canada. On graduation, students can practice within the community or hospital settings, pursue postgraduate work or work within specialised sub-disciplines, such as orthodontics, endodontics or oral surgery.

The IUMC (Irish Universities and Medical Schools Consortium) manage the international applications to many of the Irish undergraduate programmes across the healthcare professions. As well as Medicine and Dentistry, students can apply to programmes in Pharmacy, Radiography, Physiotherapy and many other related programmes.

Generally speaking your application will involve writing a personal statement and gathering together references from your teachers along with some additional supporting documentation. Don’t worry, we will help you with these.

A business degree is flexible, with broad applicability across a range of sectors. As an undergraduate student, you might choose to study a language as part of your business degree, or combine your study of business with law, economics or computer science.

Some students like to study abroad, with many of the major business schools in Dublin offering the opportunity to pursue an international or global business degree across the EU, US or Canada.

When you finish your undergraduate studies, you might like to continue on to a Masters degree or MBA (Masters of Business Administration). Alternatively, you can likely gain a foothold in any industry that interests you, while some of the more direct pathways following the degree include HR, marketing, project management and finance.

If you’re interested in science, you can choose a course that is as general or as specific in nature as you please.

Science is such a diverse discipline that it extends beyond our more traditional understanding of the physical sciences to incorporate computer and data science, geoscience and climate science, or sport science among others.

A science degree has broad applicability, and while lab work is the most obvious pathway for someone with a science degree, graduates might also be interested in pursuing a career in the medical sciences, pharmaceutical industry, food industry or any number of other pathways across research or industry.

Your degree in Engineering can be as general or as specific as you wish. There are numerous and diverse sub-fields, ranging from mechanical, to electronic to biomedical among others.

Many engineering degrees begin with a broad overview of the discipline, after which you can choose to specialise in your chosen stream. After university, you might follow a career in the growing engineering sector or pursue further research and postgraduate work.

The biomedical engineering sector in Ireland is particularly well established, as are the aerospace, automotive and chemical engineering sectors, all of which offer industry and academic possibilities to engineering graduates.

Technological University Dublin is a great place to start for students who are interested in Computing and IT. TUD is a practice-based environment with lots of specialised courses for those with specific careers in mind within the IT sector.

UCD also offers students the opportunity to combine their modules to best suit their interests, while at TCD you can study Computer Science alongside a language.

When you graduate, you will be well placed within one of the central European tech hubs, hosting the numerous global software, cloud service and e-commerce figureheads, many of whom offer internships during your undergraduate years and beyond.

If you’re interested in a general law degree, almost every university in Ireland has an undergraduate programme for you. It is also possible to combine the study of law with a number of different disciplines, including languages, economics, history, philosophy, politics and others. Chances are, if you have a particular career within the legal profession in mind, there will be a specific degree to help you on your way.

A Law degree is flexible, and has the potential to take you in unexpected directions. You might want to become a solicitor, but you might also consider the possibility of a career in Human Rights, International Relations, Finance or further research.

 

Want To Join Our School?

To learn more about the admissions process and your pathway to a top university, please contact our friendly and supportive International Office.

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Stay up to date with the latest news and events from the International Office by following us on social media or exploring our school news stories below.

A Selection Of Our Partner Universities