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Study in Ireland

Semester Study Abroad Programme

Carlow College, St. Patrick’s has partnership arrangements with many higher education institutes across the US where American students can spend a semester studying in Ireland as part of their undergraduate degree. It’s called the ‘semester study abroad programme’ and has become increasingly popular in recent years.


The cornerstone of the programme is its Irish Experience course, a multi-disciplinary course covering Irish history, literature, music, language, politics and identity. Field trips to areas of historical and cultural significance expand and deepen the exploration of these themes. For more information, click on the field trip tab below.


Broaden your horizons and make lifelong friends

The semester study abroad programme provides a perfect opportunity for American students to enhance their educational experience. Spending a few months in another country gives a valuable insight into a different culture. It is a great way of broadening your horizons, growing as an individual and making lifelong friends.


Learn about the history, culture and people of Ireland

As part of the study abroad programme, there is an Irish Experience module for students who want to learn more about Irish culture. It features an introduction to the history, culture and people of Ireland and is a great way of contextualising your Irish experience.


On-campus Accommodation

Carlow College offers on-campus accommodation to international students on the Irish Experience programme. Accommodation is available at Lennon House which is situated within easy walking distance of the main college building and Carlow town centre.


For more information, contact Dr Eric A. Derr in the International Office:


Other pages that may interest you:

Carlow Town

Carlow, Ireland, affectionately known as Carlow-town, is the quintessential Irish country town. With a population of 25,000, Carlow is home to two colleges including Carlow College, known to locals as St. Patrick’s College. Learn more about Carlow College at and about Carlow-town at Dublin is about an hour away and is easily accessible by both train and bus.


The cost of housing is included in the program fee. Housing is provided at Lennon House, a residence hall on the college campus. Residing at Lennon House is a requirement of the program. Each student will have a private bedroom and will share living space, kitchen, and bathroom with two or three other students. WiFi is available in the residence hall and is included in the fee. Laundry facilities are located on the premises. Bed and bath linens are provided.


Meals are not included in the program fee but there are fully functioning kitchens available for student use. Students are expected to cook or provide meals for themselves. Many students enjoy group dinners in the common area in Lennon House. Additionally, a nice selection of grocery stores and eating establishments are located within walking distance of the College.

All study abroad applications are due to the International Officer at Carlow College by 15 October (Spring Term) and 15 May (Autumn Term). An application is considered complete when it includes:

  • a completed Carlow College, St. Patrick’s Semester Study Abroad Guidelines and Application Form;
  • a copy of your passport page showing your photograph and personal details;
  • certified copies of transcripts from current institution of study;
  • if your first language is not English, attach evidence of proficiency in English (IELTS Score or equivalent); find out more here: English language requirements for admission to Carlow College, St. Patrick’s
  • if you have elected to provide evidence of disability or learning differences, please submit along with your application a letter from the Disability Office (or equivalent) indicating the supports you currently receive.

Please note that the issuance of student visas is for the duration of the learners’ academic studies. As such, visas do not permit learners to remain in Ireland prior to, or after the conclusion of, the academic term.

Our incoming study abroad students are registered on the B.A. (Hons) in Arts and Humanities Programme, but can take courses across all our undergraduate degree programmes. Disciplines include: Creative Arts, English, History, Media Studies, Philosophy, Political Science, Psychology, Sociology and Theology. As such, study abroad students can choose from a wide selection of courses that fulfil either general education or major/minor credit hours (generally 12 / 15 credit hours). Learners should consult with their home institution or study abroad provider to ensure their chosen courses will transfer back to their academic programme of study.

To learn more about the courses on offer at Carlow College, click here.

As part of the Irish Experience course all incoming study abroad students are expected to attend cultural excursions, which are uniquely tied to the content covered in the Irish Experience module and are led by academic staff members of the College.

Co. Carlow / Wexford

  • Dunbrody Famine Ship
  • St Mullins
  • Mount Leinster
  • Ducketts Grove
  • Brownshill Dolmen


Dublin City

  • Trinity College Dublin
  • Book of Kells
  • Dublin Castle


Co. Wicklow – Glendalough

  • Glendalough Heritage Centre and National Park


Kilkenny City

  • Kilkenny Castle
  • St Canice’s Cathedral (Round Tower)
  • St Francis Brewery


Co. Kerry

  • Rock of Cashel
  • Torc Waterfall
  • Muckross House and Park
  • Dingle Peninsula


Belfast City

  • Political Murals Tour of Belfast
  • Crumlin Road Gaol
  • City Hall

All incoming study abroad applicants are required to obtain a Stamp 2 Visa from the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service to study at Carlow College for one academic term or one academic year. After applicants have formally been accepted onto the programme, they will receive a ‘Letter of Induction’ from the President of Carlow College. Along with this document, applicants are required to present to the Immigration Officer at Dublin Airport the following documents:

  • a ‘Letter of Induction’ validating that they are a study abroad learner at Carlow College;
  • a valid passport issued by the United States;
  • evidence of private medical insurance (arranged by your home institution); and
  • evidence of sufficient funds in the amount of €3,000 (or €500 per month if you are staying less than 6 months).

The Immigration Officer at Dublin Airport will stamp all passports for a period of thirty days.

Upon completion of registration at Carlow College, the International Officer at Carlow College will schedule appointments with the Carlow/Kilkenny District Immigration Officer for the application of a Stamp 2 Visa. At their designated appointment, students will present the same documents at the Garda Station that they presented to the Immigration Officer at Dublin Airport. In addition to being fingerprinted, students are required to pay an application fee in the amount of €300 payable by credit/debit card.

NOTE: Proof of Sufficient Funds

  • Proof from a foreign bank
    • You must bring 2 original bank statements from a foreign bank (i.e. your bank from the United States).
      • The first statement must show a balance of €3,000 or equivalent (or €500 per month if you are staying less than 6 months). The statement must less than 1 month old.
      • The second statement must be from the same bank. It must be less than 6 months old.
      • Both statements must be for the same account and in your own name, i.e. the same name as detailed on your passport.
    • You must also show that you have a debit card (for cash withdrawals in Ireland – cards from the US are standard and should work with no problem).
      • The debit card must be for the same bank account that has the €3,000 (or €500 per month if you are staying less than 6 months).
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