Ireland | International Credentials Equivalencies

Minimum GPA
Second class honours, grade I (60%)
A Minus GPA
First class honours (70%)
B Plus GPA
Second class honours, grade I 65%
Instruction Languages
Bachelors Equiv.
Honours bachelor’s degree
Masters Equiv.
Grad Sample
Master's, Doctorate
Grading System

First Class Honours                          70%+
Second Class Honours, Grade I      60%-69%
Second Class Honours, Grade II    50%-59%
Third Class Honours                        40%-49%

* University of Limerick:
First Class Honours 3.40-4.00
Second Class Honours, Grade 1 3.00-3.49
Second Class Honours, Grade 2 2.80-2.99

Recognized Universities

The Univ. of Dublin,Trinity College
Dublin Business School
Dublin City Univ.
Dublin Institute of Technology
Griffith College Dublin
The National Univ. of Ireland (NUI)
Constituent Colleges of NUI:
Univ. College Dublin
Univ. College Cork
Univ. College Galway
Univ. of Limerick *

Notes for Ireland

* The University of Limerick uses a separate grading system.

Ordinary Bachelor Degree

The Ordinary Bachelor degree is typically awarded after completion of a programme of three years’ duration (180 ECTS credits). A number of one-year programmes (particularly in the IoT sector) are available leading to the Ordinary Bachelor degree for holders of the Higher Certificate. This qualification does not generally give direct access to postgraduate study in Ireland.

Honours Bachelor Degree

The Honours Bachelor degree is normally conferred following completion of a programme of three to four years’ duration (180-240 ECTS credits) in a recognised higher education institution, although programmes in areas such as architecture, dentistry and medicine last longer. It is possible for holders of the Ordinary Bachelor degree to complete a one-year programme leading to an Honours Bachelor degree.

Master’s Degree

There are two types of Master’s degree in Ireland: taught Master’s degrees and research Master’s degrees. The former is awarded following the completion of a programme of one to two years duration (60-120 ECTS credits). While the Honours Bachelor degree is the standard admission requirement, in certain cases those holding an Ordinary Bachelor degree may also be admitted. Furthermore, in some cases, entry to such programmes is permitted for people with extensive professional experience.

Research Master’s degree programmes are typically of two years’ duration (120 ECTS credits) though not all such programmes are credit rated. Entry to a programme leading to a research Master’s degree is typically for holders of Honours Bachelor degrees, who have obtained at least a Second Class degree classification. 

Doctoral Degree (PhD)

Doctoral programmes typically require three to four years’ study following an Honours Bachelor degree or a Master’s degree. Those entering with an Honours Bachelor degree tend to initially register for a research Master’s degree or provisional doctoral candidature and subsequently acquire full doctoral candidature.

Various doctoral programmes now exist, including professional and performance- / practice-based Doctorates. The PhD remains the most common form and is a research-based qualification in which students have to present a thesis. Structured PhD programmes, which integrate disciplinary, professional, and generic skills development opportunities into the course, are becoming increasingly common.

Higher Doctorate

This is the highest qualification achievable in Ireland, awarded to those who already hold a Doctorate and have gone on to publish extensively in their field over a sustained period of time. The individual should have produced work that is recognised internationally and establishes them as an authority in the relevant area.

Last Update: October 19, 2020

Last modified: October 19, 2020