Irish Studies

Course Information

BA (Hons) (NFQ Level 8)

Full Time - Undergraduate Studies

CAO Code: DN530 BA Humanities
CAO Points Range 2021: 359
Length of Course: 4 years
Average Intake: 260

CAO Code: DN520 BA Joint Honours
CAO Points Range 2021: 356
Length of Course: 3 Years (4 years BA International)
Average Intake: 420

Leaving Certificate:

O6/H7 in English, Irish, a third language and three other recognised subjects.

Click below for equivalent entry requirements information for:

Why is this course for me?

Irish Studies is an interdisciplinary programme that examines the variety and diversity of Irish history, society, cultural practice and the complex processes through which Ireland and Irish identities have been constructed.

It asks a series of provocative and stimulating questions about ideas of Ireland and Irishness, such as how can we understand the ways in which place, history, culture and society have shaped Ireland, past and present? How do processes of emigration and immigration impact on Irish culture, society and identity? What influence have identity categories such as gender, sexuality, ethnicity and class had on Irish culture, society and identities?

Career & Graduate Study Opportunities

Irish Studies graduates develop key skills such as research, critical thinking and writing, that have diverse applications and can lead to employment opportunities in: Journalism and the Media, Tourism, Heritage, Advertising, Business, the Arts, Public Relations, Public Service and Politics.

Graduates are prepared to pursue MA and Diploma courses offered by the UCD School of Irish, Celtic Studies & Folklore including the MA Irish Studies and the MA Irish Folklore & Ethnology. Graduates may also pursue MLitt and PhD studies specialising in one of the many areas of the subject.

What Will I Study

Students take core Irish Studies modules alongside designated option modules from other Arts & Humanities & Social Sciences programme subject areas, including Irish Folklore, Celtic Civilization, Archaeology, Art History, English, Geography, History, Music and Sociology.

First Year

First year modules introduce students to key areas in Irish Studies. Modules include:

  • Introduction to Irish Studies
  • Introduction to Irish Cultural Studies
  • Folklore & the Imagination.
  • Dublin: Its Museums & Collections

Second & Final Years

Modules include:

  • Reading Irish Studies: Place People & Identities
  • Irish Studies Readings Seminar
  • Irish Literature in English
  • Irish Studies Research Skills
  • The Forgotten Irish
  • Heritage Management
  • Gender, Culture & Society
  • Kings & Heroes of Early Ireland
  • Yeats & the Arts
  • Myth & Tradition
  • Collectors of Song & Music
  • Poets, Power & Performance
  • Material Culture
  • Music in Ireland
  • Reading the Irish Revival
  • Music in Ireland
  • Georgian Dublin
  • Irish Foreign Policy, 1919-73

Third Year

Students attend lectures and seminars each week, as well as engaging in active learning in museums, archives and cultural sites both on and off campus.

Assessment is through a combination of written examinations and continuous assessment, including essays, portfolios, online tasks, presentations and independent research projects.

International Study Opportunities

Exchange opportunities available to third year students have included:

  • Edinburgh University, UK
  • Glasgow University, UK
  • University of Toronto, Canada
  • University of Otago, New Zealand
  • Concordia University, Canada

Irish Studies is a growing discipline building on other possible international study opportunities in the US, Canada, UK, China, Australia, Europe and South Africa.


“Choosing Irish Studies was one of the best decisions I have made in UCD. The core lectures encourage students to apply critical analysis to what makes Ireland the country it is today. In addition, through the range of option modules, I have also gained a deeper understanding of the complexities and nuances of Irish culture, history and society. I highly recommend choosing Irish Studies as a subject stream in UCD.”

Declan Nugent, Student

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