Frequently Asked Questions

For CURRENT International Students on campus and NUI Galway students studying abroad

My studies are being affected because of the virus. Will I be supported in finding alternative opportunities to attain the necessary credits to complete the year?

NUI Galway supports both international students and NUI Galway students who return to their home countries due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

International students registered at NUI Galway for Semester 2 are being supported to access alternative routes to complete their studies and requisite assessments. Teaching is being / has been delivered online and exams/assessments will take place remotely. You can find more details here.  

NUI Galway students who have returned home from studies or placements overseas due to the pandemic: NUI Galway will be fully supportive of you as you work to secure your credits for the semester.  In the case of students attending universities abroad, we have seen that many of our partner institutions have put arrangements in place for the online delivery of learning materials.  If you haven’t already been notified of this, please make contact with your coordinator in your host university to find out whether such arrangements are available.  Where materials/assessments are provided online, it would be expected that you would avail of them and complete any online coursework assigned to you.  If this presents a problem, or if no materials are available online, please do contact your academic coordinator at NUI Galway.  In the case of students on traineeships, please liaise with the relevant Placement Officer at NUI Galway.

International Student Welfare

If you have concerns and questions about COVID-19 or other aspects of this situation then please contact the International Affairs Office where staff are available to help you. You can e-mail reception using international@nuigalway.ie or Louise Kelly, International Student Officer using louise.kelly@nuigalway.ie

Alternatively, during office hours you can call the International Affairs Office reception on 091 495277 or Louise Kelly on 091 493581

If you need urgent assistance you can call the 24/7 assistance line 086 8576152

If you remain in Galway and have health concerns or urgent/emergency medical issues – the Student Health Unit can be contacted for phone advice on week days between 9.00am-1.00pm and 2.00-5.00pm, please call either: 091-434337 or 083-3250034. If you are unable to get through on either phone line, please email healthunit@nuigalway.ie to arrange a call back.

If you do have any ongoing health needs/underlying medical conditions that either require regular medical care, or put you in a higher risk category in relation to Covid-19 then you should consider returning home if it is safe to do so.

Visiting, Placement and Erasmus Students

For visiting students, if you decide to return to your home country, we will support you to do this. You will be supported to access alternative routes to complete your studies for the three remaining weeks of term and any requisite assessments.

If you do decide to do this, please let us know by contacting the Erasmus/Study Abroad/College contact as appropriate. For further advice on alternative routes to study and assessment, please contact the relevant College.

If you are not already in touch with your lecturers about continued coursework and assessment, please contact the relevant College administration office for further guidance. College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies: caroline.kennedy@nuigalway.ie College of Business, Public Policy and Law: padraic.deburca@nuigalway.ie College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences:martina.nichulain@nuigalway.ie College of Science and Engineering: killian.dooley@nuigalway.ie (Science); nora.murphy@nuigalway.ie (Engineering)

If you have any non-academic questions relating to your Erasmus or Study Abroad placement you can use the following e-mail contacts incomingerasmus@nuigalway.ie outgoingerasmus@nuigalway.ie studyabroad@nuigalway.ie

I have a received a notice (19 March) from NUI Galway campus accommodation to return home if it possible and safe to do so. What if I need to stay?

If is it not possible to return home, we ask you to e-mail Susan.clancy@nuigalway.ie or call 091-527112 and we will make arrangements for you to continue residing in campus accommodation. It may be necessary to move room/accommodation block.

Refunds (if you do vacate)
We will be refunding the remainder of the academic term accommodation fee from the date of Monday March  16th for students who vacate. Deposits and utility pre-payment, less final bills will also be refunded. We will deal with refunds as quickly as possible bearing in mind that our immediate priority is to respond to this national emergency call. To help us process refunds, can you please ensure that we have your correct bank account details on your student portal: https://corribvillage.securedaccommodationnow.com/student/.

My studies are being affected because of the virus. Will I be supported in finding alternative opportunities to attain the necessary credits to complete the year?

NUI Galway will support international students if they, or their home institution, would prefer for them to return to their home country for reasons of realistic concern about COVID-19. Similarly, NUI Galway students are not asked to remain on studies abroad if they would prefer, for reasons of realistic concern, to leave the university they are in and return to the NUI Galway campus.

The University, its Colleges and Schools have undertaken to work with students to ensure alternative opportunities are given to them to attain the credits required to complete the academic year. Please note the last day of teaching is 3rd April which narrows the amount of coursework in question.  It may not be clear at this time what exactly the alternatives will be (there may be complexities around the particular requirements of each student’s individual pathway) but our academic colleagues are working on it and poised to address and support individual cases as they arise. The usual comprehensive NUI Galway non-academic supports would remain available for issues which might arise particular to this unusual circumstance.

If you are not already in touch with your lecturers with respect to continued coursework and assessment, please contact the relevant College administration office for further guidance.

College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies: caroline.kennedy@nuigalway.ie

College of Business, Public Policy and Law: padraic.deburca@nuigalway.ie

College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences: Martina.NíChúlain@nuigalway.ie

College of Science and Engineering: killian.dooley@nuigalway.ie (Science); nora.murphy@nuigalway.ie (Engineering)

The usual comprehensive NUI Galway non-academic supports remain available from the International Offices for issues which might arise particular to this unusual circumstance.

I have incurred additional expenses as a result of leaving my place of study prematurely. Are there any routes to assistance? 

In instances of, for example, pre-paid accommodation/meal plans, if financial assistance is to be examined there should be proven attempts at exploring refunds etc. with the third parties concerned. In particular, students must consult firstly with their host institution and insurance policies.

If, after exploring these options, a financial hardship remains, a case can be brought to Student Services for consideration.

For support from the Financial Aid Fund (Emergency / Hardship) email una.mcdermott@nuigalway.ie

I have accommodation concerns related to change of circumstance around Covid-19? Can I get advice?

Please see these FAQs for students under our Alert pages.

We are in contact with all of our students who are abroad.  Particular attention is being paid to those in areas that are affected or those becoming affected.

Where the DFA have advised against travel and we have recalled students to Ireland the University will consider any financial hardship cases which may present. Where individual students have elected to take precautionary action or to act independently of University advice and where hardship has arisen, eligibility under the Student Assistance Fund may apply. 

In instances of, for example, pre-paid accommodation/meal plans, if financial assistance is to be examined there should be proven attempts at exploring refunds etc. with the third parties concerned. In particular, students must consult firstly with their host institution.

Questions around academic support are addressed in other FAQs.

Third Level Graduate Permission Scheme (TLGPS):

The Third Level Graduate Scheme enables non-EEA third level graduates to remain in Ireland for period of time after they have graduated from their respective course. During this period of time they can seek employment and work in Ireland without an employment permit.  Entry to the scheme is facilitated by application and the start of the scheme is based on the official receipt of exam results. For a full explanation of the scheme and requirements, please visit the INIS website .

The Departments of Justice and Equality and Education and Skills have recently held discussions on the operation of the Third Level Graduate Permission Scheme (TLGPS) and have agreed the following:
 
1.  On a once-off basis, students who were residing in Ireland and attending Irish Institutions, but who returned home due to COVID-19 and completed their studies and exams online abroad, but who will receive their award from the Irish Institution will be entitled to avail of the programme and also allowed apply from overseas.
 
2.  On a once-off basis those students who are due to start their studies in an Irish Institution in September, but because of COVID-19 will have to complete the first semester online and who will complete their studies in Ireland will also be allowed avail of the programme.
 
The above 2 points are strictly one off arrangements as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and subject to the usual criteria of the programme.   
 
3. Those students who intend to study for the full year online with an Irish Institution will not be allowed avail of the programme.

 Visit the INIS website for more information.

I am an international student at NUI Galway and would like to speak to someone about my concerns/questions around Covid-19:

International students, including visiting semester students, can contact Louise Kelly, International Student Officer, on louise.kelly@nuigalway.ie, 091 493581, or if urgent on the 24/7 assistance line 086 8576152.

I am not feeling reassured. What else can I do?

Read advice from the HSE on our Alerts page or on www.hse.ie to establish the risk.

If you are a member of staff, you can discuss your concerns with your manager.

If you are a researcher or visitor, you can discuss your concerns with your contact person.

If you are a student, you can discuss your concerns with your study advisor or another contact person at your home and/or host university.

If you are still concerned about your health based on the HSE advice, phone your GP for advice. Student Health Unit T: 091 492604; Emergency Medical Number: 087-2623997.

I don't have a doctor in Ireland or in my host country? Who should I contact?

If in Galway, you can contact the NUI Galway Student Health Unit T: 091 492604; Emergency Medical Number: 087-2623997. If abroad, you can contact the equivalent unit in your host institution. If this contact is not easily accessible, seek the advice of your coordinator there.

As of Monday 9th March 2020, the Student Health Unit walk-in service has been suspended, and we are now operating under a strict PRIOR APPOINTMENT ONLY service. To avail of an appointment, students can phone: 091-494337.

If students are unable to get through on the above phoneline, they can send an email to arrange a call back to: healthunit@nuigalway.ie

What policy is NUI Galway following in response to the evolving Coronavirus outbreak?

Our top priority is the health and safety of our students and staff, and our collective welfare as a university community.

The University is continuing to monitor the situation and plan for any interruptions to University services. Our advice is updated based on the latest information from the Health Service Executive and Department of Foreign Affairs. A sub-group of the University Management Team is meeting regularly to assess our community’s needs and to provide up-to-date information and advice to ensure minimal impact to our students and staff.

The latest information and advice is given here: www.nuigalway.ie/alert

Hand hygiene

  • Good hand hygiene can greatly help reduce the spread of germs. 
  • Hand sanitiser: The University has installed hand sanitiser units in buildings across campus, which dispense gel to help kill germs on your hands.
  • Hand washing: Our cleaners are carrying out additional checks on soap dispensers on campus and we encourage students and staff to wash their hands thoroughly and often. The HSE provides useful tips for good hand hygiene.

What measures are other Irish universities taking?

All Irish universities and higher-education institutions are aligning their measures closely with the expert advice issuing from the HSE and DFA, which means that all education institutions are taking equivalent measures in the same circumstances.

Social welfare payments and COVID-19: Are all students, including postgraduates and international students, who lose employment entitled to this payment? 

Yes. Those eligible will get payment for 6 weeks. Part-time workers who lose employment are also entitled to the payment. Workers who are on zero hour contracts are also entitled to receive this payment.

Full details and information is available online at Citizens Information.

For PROSPECTIVE/INCOMING International Students

We want to reassure you that we are working hard to ensure that we manage any impact that COVID-19 (Coronavirus) might have on you joining us in September 2020. NUI Galway is here to support you during this time of uncertainty in order for you to commence your studies.

Please reference this page for latest updates. You can also expect to receive frequent communications from our International Office about the next steps on your journey to joining us as a student at NUI Galway.

Thank you for your flexibility, patience, and understanding. This is an uncertain time, so please take special care of your physical and mental wellbeing and be sure to stay in communication with our university if we can be of any further assistance.

Contact Us >>

Starting Your Studies with NUI Galway

What are the term dates for the 2020-2021 Academic Year?

For the vast majority of students, including visiting students, the semester will begin on 28 September. Full dates can be found here: Semester Dates 2020-21

First-Year Undergraduate Orientation: Monday 21 September to Friday 25 September 2020. 

Students from the School of Education, School of Medine and Shannon College of Hotel Management should review the academic calendar for their revised start dates.

What will the student experience look like at NUI Galway in this academic year?

Academic Year 2020-21 at NUI Galway
In the face of the challenges posed by COVID-19, our University is working to ensure that your experience will be the best that we can deliver, whether you are starting a new course this September or returning for another year of study. At all times we will prioritise our university community’s health, safety and wellbeing as we structure the learning experience around the realities of a changed environment and will therefore at all times make decisions that adhere to public health advice.

Our students, staff and alumni are proud of our university and its reputation for excellence. We are determined to deliver a student experience that is as supportive as we can make it, and that enables the building of new relationships and development of talents. Colleagues, both academic and in professional services, are adapting to the changed circumstances, to deliver the best student experience that we can.

Semester Dates
For the vast majority of students, including visiting students, the semester will begin on 28 September. Full dates can be found here: Semester Dates 2020-21 We will continue to be guided by public health advice. Students from the School of Education, School of Medine and Shannon College of Hotel Management should review the academic calendar for their revised start dates.

Undergraduate orientation will take place in the week commencing 21 September and comprise a mix of online and on-campus activities to help you familiarise yourself with the university, understand the structures and demands of student life, learn about the supports available to you and get to know your fellow classmates.

This year, we will structure orientation such that each College will have a different day of on-campus activities. A timetable of these activities will be issued to you prior to arrival. Orientation is a very important rite of passage for new students and we encourage all incoming students to engage fully with the programme of activities to give a solid start to their student journey. For those of you who are not able to attend in person, important orientation information will also be accessible online.

Course Delivery

We have committed to providing a blended experience for students in the coming academic year, and this should contain as much on-campus experience, both academic and support, as it is possible to deliver while adhering to public health guidelines.

All taught programmes will be delivered in a blend of online and on-campus classes. Irrespective of the size of the class, we will have on-campus learning built student experience, typically through on-campus tutorials, seminars, distanced meet-ups and/or laboratories according to the needs of various courses.

Large-scale lectures will be adapted for online delivery, while smaller classes will be delivered on-campus where it is possible and safe to do so. The majority of online lectures will not be timetabled but will instead be made available in advance of any related timetabled classes such as seminars, tutorials, lab work etc. School and Programme Directors will be working with Academic Administration over the summer months to develop teaching timetables, taking into account the continually changing situation and evolving public health advice. Timetables will indicate which classes will be delivered on campus – these classes will be a regular part of your experience and you will need to be on campus to participate. At all times capacity in rooms will conform to public health advice.

We will work to accommodate the small number of you who cannot come to campus for health, access or other reasons, so as not to disadvantage your academic journey. We are working hard to ensure that all learning will be made available online, or accessible through some alternative means, to allow for those who may face delays in arriving in Ireland, allow for limits to student numbers in teaching spaces, accommodate those who cannot attend for health reasons, and to provide a backup in case of a rise in COVID-19 transmissions.

Accommodation
We encourage all of you on taught programmes to be in Galway from September, to be available for on-campus learning, and to experience the fullest student learning experience possible, given the COVID-19 restrictions. Where possible, you should aim to book accommodation and expect to be present in Galway throughout the semester. We will continue to abide by public health guidelines to ensure a safe living and study environment and, where possible, we will plan allocations to ensure you are in apartments with other students studying the same programmes to support peer-to-peer learning and laboratory/group project work.

See below under Accommodation for more information on booking on-campus accommodation. In addition, there is a wide choice of private off-campus accommodation available and all of the details are listed on NUI Galway Accommodation Office.

Student Supports
Our staff in Student Services are working to ensure that your time at NUI Galway is a rewarding academic, personal and professional experience. We will continue to provide a range of services and initiatives to support and encourage you both on-campus and online. We will address your concerns in targeted ways to ensure that we are supporting you effectively and appropriately.

 Please also continue to refer to our alerts and FAQs webpages for relevant updates:

What If I cannot travel for the start of my course?

NUI Galway is proposing at-distance alternatives for you if you experience delays in arriving to Galway. This means that you can arrive on campus for teaching from the start date identified for your cohort if it is possible and safe for you to do so in line with public health advice. We realise that this may not be achievable for everyone, this approach has been designed to allow you to start Semester 1 online if needed and to join us here on campus as soon as you can. We know that you would prefer to be here with us in person and we will do everything we can to assist you to reach Galway.

Can I travel to Ireland at this time?

As of Thursday, July 2nd, 2020, Ireland’s border remains open and there are no additional restrictions on travel to Ireland. However the Irish Health Authorities require anyone coming to Ireland, apart from Northern Ireland, to self-isolate for 14 days upon arrival, and to complete a Public Health Passenger Locator Form to this effect.

Although Ireland is a member of the European Union (EU) the temporary restrictions on non-essential travel into the EU have not been adopted by Ireland.

The Irish government has announced plans to update its advice on international travel on 9 July, at which point it is expected that the requirement for self-isolation may be lifted for some countries.

The advice is subject to change at short notice, and we will update this page with new information as soon as it is available.

I am from a visa required country but the Irish Embassy is currently closed. How can I apply for my visa?

A number of Visa Application Centres have recently announced they will accept long stay visa applications from Monday 22 June. Please check the website of your closest Irish Embassy for new announcements. In the meantime, please make sure you have all documentation required to support your application and be ready to apply soon.

To support students who cannot attend campus in the early part of the first semester for personal or travel reasons, the University is proposing at-distance alternatives for undergraduate and taught masters students, with the expectation that these students will attend campus when it is possible for them to do so.

Third Level Graduate Permission Scheme (TLGPS) Update:

The Third Level Graduate Scheme enables non-EEA third level graduates to remain in Ireland for period of time after they have graduated from their respective course. During this period of time they can seek employment and work in Ireland without an employment permit.  Entry to the scheme is facilitated by application and the start of the scheme is based on the official receipt of exam results. For a full explanation of the scheme and requirements, please visit the INIS website .

The Departments of Justice and Equality and Education and Skills have recently held discussions on the operation of the Third Level Graduate Permission Scheme (TLGPS) and have agreed the following:
 
1.  On a once-off basis, students who were residing in Ireland and attending Irish Institutions, but who returned home due to COVID-19 and completed their studies and exams online abroad, but who will receive their award from the Irish Institution will be entitled to avail of the programme and also allowed apply from overseas.
 
2.  On a once-off basis those students who are due to start their studies in an Irish Institution in September, but because of COVID-19 will have to complete the first semester online and who will complete their studies in Ireland will also be allowed avail of the programme.
 
The above 2 points are strictly one off arrangements as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and subject to the usual criteria of the programme.   
 
3. Those students who intend to study for the full year online with an Irish Institution will not be allowed avail of the programme. 

Please note that the NUI Galway Teaching Delivery has been designed to allow you to start Semester 1 online if needed and to join us here on campus as soon as you can. We know that you would prefer to be here with us in person and we will do everything we can to assist you to reach Galway.

Applying to NUI Galway

Will postgraduate courses run as planned in September?

All universities are prepared for enrolment in September 2020 and this is what we are planning towards. If the Department of Education & Skills makes changes to proposed enrolment dates we will all have to adapt accordingly. For now, we are planning a start date of 28 September 2020 for postgraduate students.

Are applications still being accepted?

Yes, applications for enrolment in 2020 are still being accepted. There are some courses that have deadlines that have already passed. However there is no disruption to the application process as a result of COVID-19.

When will I get a decision on my current application?

There is no disruption to the application review process as a result of COVID-19. Since applications can take at least four weeks to review, if you wish to receive a decision in an early round, you should apply early, and submit your application as complete as possible. In the case of research programmes, allow up to six weeks, from the date we receive your application, before you can expect such notification.

I am in an affected country. With the Covid-19 outbreak, are you still considering applications from my country? 

All new applications for study at NUI Galway are treated in the usual way, irrespective of where you are from or currently reside. We are still accepting applications for 2020, and we continue to welcome new applications at all study levels. If your application is successful, we will be in touch with you about the next steps leading up to registration. 

English language test centres near me have been closed, what if I cannot meet the conditions of my offer? Do you accept any online English Language courses?

We are aware that many universities and English language test centres are closed until further notice, and that many of you may be concerned about meeting the conditions of their offer. If complications for international students in meeting the conditions of their offer continue to arise (e.g. if universities, VACs, English Language options remain closed) the International Office will issue more specific details on the options for offer holders based on particular circumstances. In the meantime, we encourage all of our students to continue with their language preparation at home until further information is available.

NUI Galway is now accepting the Duolingo English Test (DET) for visa required students. DET is offered fully online with test results available in 48 hours. The Visa Division of the Department of Justice and Equality has confirmed that it will accept the Duolingo English Test as an alternative on an exceptional basis for 2020 only. Click here for more information.

What format might my course take in September?

While we hope we can facilitate on-campus classes as normal in late-September, there is a possibility your course may be in a blended format for at least Semester 1, i.e., it may involve some on-campus classes along with online learning. The format of your programme will be sent to you in more detail by your programme director nearer term-start-date. (Please continue to check this FAQs site often: further updates will be posted here.)

I cannot get hold of the information you have requested, what shall I do? 

We are aware that delays may be unavoidable for you in providing the information needed to support your application. We aim to be as flexible as possible. If you have transcripts and are awaiting these to be authenticated by your university, we ask that you please submit your transcripts in their current form to our Admissions Office for review. 

I have an offer for September 2020, what if my travel plans are delayed due to the COVID-19 travel restrictions and I am unable to get to Galway in time for my course start date?

If complications for international students in meeting the conditions of their offer continue to arise (e.g. if university and VACs remain closed) the International Office will issue more specific details on the options for offer holders based on particular circumstances.

Visa offices in my country are closed, will I be able to obtain a study visa in time?

The International Office, NUI Galway is in contact with the Department of Foreign Affairs and will be closely monitoring updates from Visa Offices and Visa Application Centres (VACs) on closures over the coming weeks as authorities review the situation.

Are the scholarship schemes previously advertised for 2020 still available?

Yes, the scholarship schemes are all still available.NUI Galway is committed to attracting high calibre students from around the world. To this end, the University offers a range of merit based scholarships to students from a number of non-EU countries, in line with our strategic international priorities. For more information http://www.nuigalway.ie/international-students/feesfinance/internationalscholarships/
 

My course involves a placement aspect. How will this be handled?

The University is currently working on plans to handle postgraduate course placements/internships, etc., in light of COVID-19 restrictions. Information will be communicated to prospective students by their programme director in due course. 

I am a study abroad or exchange student hoping to come to Galway in September or later in the academic year 2020/21. Can I still apply? 

 Yes, like many partner institutions we are continuing to receive nominations for our exchange and study abroad programmes for the academic year 2020/2021 through the normal channels on our website: 

To facilitate this, we have extended the deadline for Semester 1 and full year international study abroad and non-Erasmus exchange applications by one month to May 31st.

At this time, the Erasmus application deadline for Semester 1 and full year remains as May 31st. 

Given the uncertain future we all now face, we are advising applicants not to make any financial commitment towards planned study abroad (e.g. flight booking, accommodation deposit) at the moment.

In the case of study abroad students applying to NUI Galway, tuition fees are collected after the semester starts so there will be no financial implications if a student enrols and then with withdraws from the study abroad programme up to the start of Semester 1, September 2020.

We encourage students to contact us with any concerns or plans you might have at this stage about study abroad participation for the academic year ahead (for example what opportunities might exist to move a planned semester 1 visit to semester 2).

Where can I find information and advice?

On-Campus Accommodation

Are all on-campus rooms single occupancy?

Due to social distancing requirements, all on campus rooms will be single occupancy only. This is also likely to impact on common spaces within accommodations blocks.

What happens if I am unable to start my course in NUI Galway due to Covid-19 travel restrictions?

If you are unable to start University due to a Government-imposed travel ban in place in either your home country or here in Ireland and you have already booked accommodation with us, Campus Living will refund any deposit less an administration charge and refund any rent paid.

What happens if NUI Galway’s academic year dates change due to Covid-19 restrictions?

If the NUI Galway’s academic year dates change as a result of Covid-19, Campus Living will be flexible. Licence agreement dates will be changed to reflect any changes in 2020/2021 academic year and rent will only be charged on a pro rata basis for the revised dates.

Are rooms available to comply with Irish government isolation requirements after arrival?

For students who have secured on campus accommodation, your room will be available to rent to satisfy government guidelines with regard to self-isolation after arrival in Ireland. Please see the following link for information:

https://www.dfa.ie/travel/travel-advice/coronavirus/

 For more information, you can also visit NUI Galway Alert.

Covid 19

National report: Irish University Help Fight the COVID-19 Pandemic

Ireland's universities are playing a vital role in our country's response to the COVID-19 emergency. Through targeted research, volunteering and redeployment, and the sharing of expertise, data and facilities, our universities are delivering life-changing impacts at home and abroad.

Our Research & Innovation Office at NUI Galway has developed a website highlighting the wide range of positive impacts our university is having.

The Irish Universities Association has published a report highlighting the wide range of positive impacts our universities are having.

Downloads

  • Undergraduate Prospectus 2020

    Undergraduate Prospectus 2020 PDF (18.4 MB)

  • Postgraduate Prospectus 2020

    Postgraduate Prospectus 2020 PDF (20.6 MB)

  • Pre-Arrival Information

    Pre-Arrival Information PDF (16 MB)