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Options for Pursuing Medicine in Ireland


With the release of HPAT scores recently, some students may be wondering what other options they have for getting into medicine. Irish students are fortunate – there are many options for studying medicine both in Ireland and abroad. This blog describes them in detail.


1.  Undergraduate medicine

Entry into undergraduate medicine is based on a combination of adjusted leaving certificate points and HPAT (please visit for more information). If a student does not achieve the minimum required points for entry into undergraduate medicine, there are several options. These include:

  • Low HPAT + high Leaving Cert: repeat HPAT, using this year’s leaving certificate points (leaving certificate points are valid for several years)
  • High HPAT + low Leaving Cert: repeat both HPAT and Leaving Cert (note that you will need to repeat HPAT as scores are only valid for one year)
  • Low HPAT + low Leaving Cert: repeat both HPAT and Leaving Cert, or consider other options (outlined below)

Note that MedEntry offers discounts for repeating students.


2.  Postgraduate medicine

To study graduate medicine, students need to achieve an award of 2.1 or higher in their first undergraduate degree (in any discipline) and also perform well in the GAMSAT (Graduate Medical School Admissions Test).

GAMSAT is a six hour test which takes place in March. It includes an essay writing component and predominantly science-based questions. One of the parts is similar to section 1 of HPAT. Graduate medicine is available at University College Dublin, the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland, University College Cork and the University of Limerick. Students should apply via the CAO.

Note that fees to study graduate medicine are far higher than undergraduate medicine – with fees close to €17,000.


3.  Studying in the UK / Northern Ireland

Most medical courses in the UK require students to sit an aptitude test, most commonly UCAT (previously known as UKCAT). Some courses also require students to sit a medical interview, and/or complete a written application. Applications for medicine in the UK and Northern Ireland must be submitted to UCAS.

MedEntry also prepares students for UCAT – for more information, please visit


4.  Studying in Europe

It is also possible to study medicine in Europe in English. Courses often have lower entry requirements compared to Ireland, and similar or lower fees. Courses are usually recognised by the Irish Medical Council.

Examples include studying medicine at Universita degli Studi di Milan (Italy), The University of Gronigen (The Netherlands), University of Oradea (Romania) and the University of Sofia (Bulgaria). More information can be found at

MedEntry students are truly a motivated and talented bunch, and we strongly believe that if you have a high enough level of motivation to get into medicine, you will succeed.

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Studying undergraduate medicine in Ireland at a gl...