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Information for Irish students

The University of Groningen has a long history of welcoming students from all over the world. Of our 30,000 students more than 6000 are international, coming from 120 different countries, including Ireland. This makes Groningen a truly international study city. Over 25% of the population are students.

Groningen has a cosy Irish community making it the University with the highest amount of Irish nationals studying in a degree programme in the Netherlands. There are currently around 175 Irish students enrolled at the University, the majority in a Bachelor programme with Master programs becoming increasingly popular. Popular subject areas are Economics and Business, Psychology, Arts, and Law.

This year, Google Science Fair winner, Fionn Ferreira, has chosen the University of Groningen to start his degree Chemistry.

With no language barrier, easy access to programs (no points), low cost of living and tuition fees (you can take the SUSI with you), we expect to welcome more Irish students to Groningen in the next couple of years.

Why choose Groningen?

  1. Top 100 globally-ranked university, est 1614
  2. Over 180+ English-taught degree programmes
  3. Straightforward entry requirements for the Bachelor programmes
  4. Focused 4-block system offered in 2 semesters
  5. Excellent student facilities such career- and support services, sports centers, libraries
  6. Wide selection of Master programmes to choose from after Bachelor graduation

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Information for applicants from Ireland

Bachelor's programmes

The Leaving Certificate (awarded with a minimum of 6 graduation courses at at least Ordinary Level, including at least 2 graduation courses at Higher Level with a minimum grade of H4) is sufficient for entry to most of our bachelor’s programmes. There is no points system (CAO) applicable in the Netherlands. Some programmes require you to have completed specific subjects or subject combinations within your diploma. Please check the entry requirements in advance.

No English language test is required.

The deadline to apply to the majority of programmes is 1 May. Please submit your application as early as possible so that the Admissions Office has enough time to process your documents. It can take a few weeks to be informed of the outcome of your application - the sooner you apply, the better.

Five of our English-taught bachelor’s courses (listed below) are Numerus Fixus . These programmes have an earlier application deadline of 15 January and an additional selection process run by the respective Faculty.

Master's programmes

For admittance to one of our master’s programmes you will need to have a research university bachelor’s degree (hons) in a related discipline. The Faculty Admissions Boards look at each master’s application on an individual basis. Your suitability for the master’s is based on the courses you have covered in your bachelor’s programme.

For more detailed information about academic entry requirements, please check the webpage for the master’s programme you are interested in.

No English language is required.

With a bachelor’s degree (hons) you are exempted from the GMAT/GRE requirements applicable to the Faculty of Economics and Business.

The University also offers a number of pre-master’s programmes. These are bridging programmes for students who wish to enrol in a master’s programme, but have certain deficiencies in their academic background. During a pre-master’s you will follow courses preparing you for a specific master’s degree. For example, the popular pre-master’s at the Faculty of Economics and Business, which consists of 60 ECTS and which needs to be completed within one year. Once you have successfully completed a pre-master’s programme, you can enrol in the corresponding master’s programme.

The Academic Year

The academic year in the Netherlands consists of two semesters. Each semester is then divided into two blocks, each lasting 10 weeks. Every block concludes with a short exam period. The academic year runs from the beginning of September to the end of June/beginning of July.

The Dutch grading scale consists of grades 1 to 10 where 1 is the lowest, 10 the highest and 5.5 (rounded off to a 6) the passing grade. Don’t expect the highest grades as it is rarely given, an 8 is considered very high.

Contact information

The University of Groningen works with a representative in Ireland: Guy Flouch of EUNiCAS. Please feel free to contact Guy by email or Whatsapp: +353 86 244 8834

You may also contact the country manager for Ireland, Heidi Scholtz, for all your questions.


I wanted to divert from the usual path that people take of going to an Irish university, usually very close to home with the same people they have been in school with for the past number of years. Attending University of Groningen has equipped me more for the future than I could ever have hoped.

It can take some time to settle in but you just have to remember that everyone there is in the same boat you are; all of them have also moved to a new country with a new language, trying to make new friends. However, if you're willing to dive head first into it and work hard, it will definitely be worth it.

People always said going abroad is a risk but the way I see it, it's an adventure, you just have to be willing to take the first step.

Sinead Walsh: BSc International Business; MSc Sustainable Entrepreneurship