Dublin International Foundation College
Established in 1999 to deliver specialized foundation courses preparing international students for entry into a range of partner institutions in Ireland and the UK, DIFC has gradually expanded to also now offer Master’s Preparation programmes. Both the International Foundation Year programs and Master’s Preparation programmes are run in partnership with the Northern Consortium (NCUK). By offering NCUK qualifications, graduates of DIFC now have access to institutions in mainland Europe, Australia, New Zealand, Canada & The USA. These are in addition to a wide range of institutions in Ireland and the UK, making it a very attractive option for any African student wishing to have a choice of over 50 universities globally, after completing his/her preparation programme.
Majors at DIFC
The college offers International Foundation Year programs in 4 main areas
- Business (including Law)
- Medicine / Health Science
Within these four broad areas of studies there are many different combinations of courses that can be taken in order to qualify for hundreds of different majors.
The IF Year programs have 2 starts dates a year – October and January. Remember that, for most African students, successful completion of a Foundation programme is a pre-requirement before being admitted into a university in Ireland or the UK.
For those seeking to join a Master’s programme, the college also offers the Master’s Preparation programme. In addition to helping international students to develop their Academic English skills for the rigours of a Master’s programme, it will also teach essential academic research skills. The Master’s Preparation Programme is particularly important for African students who are non-native speakers of English and who have completed a bachelor degree in their home country.
Successful completion of either the IF Year or Master’s Preparation Programme gives guaranteed access to thousands of courses in Ireland, UK, Europe and the world. The NCUK qualifications open up study opportunities in some very high ranking institutions, including 8 of the Top 100 institutions worldwide – please note that the guarantee does not apply to Medicine, though each year successful graduates do progress into courses of Medicine at a number of different institutions !
The college does not offer any scholarships; instead it focuses on offering excellent value for money to all of its students. There are some opportunities available for early payment discount.
It is located on the campus of Griffith College, a leading independent college in Ireland that offers Bachelor’s and Master’s programs; Griffith College is also one of DIFC’s many partner institutions that will accept its graduates.
The college is located in the city centre of Dublin along the River Liffey, including the popular student area for going out in the evening, Temple Bar which is only a 15 minute walk away.
DIFC students have access to all of the clubs and facilities offered on campus by Griffith College. In addition to a fitness room, the students also have access to football pitches, basketball courts and student union too.
The college currently runs 12 active societies, which is a great way to make friends as well as to try something new. Options include Art & Design, Scuba & Surfing, Debating, Chess, Drama and, for those who really wish to take on a challenge, Irish language (remember though that, although there is an indigenous Irish language, English is the first language spoken everywhere) is an option for the adventurous students to try !
Housing for IF Year Students
College students have a range of different housing options available to them depending on personal preference, age and budget. For those seeking to live as close as possible to the college, students who are 18 years or above can book on-campus housing in Griffith College halls of residence. There are single and twin rooms to choose from, some with private bathroom, some not. Further information about the options and pricing can be found at www.griffith.ie/ghr.
Off-campus residences are also available. The college particularly recommends Uninest Student Residence ( www.unineststudents.ie/locations/Dublin/new-mill or Aparto www.apartostudent.com/locations/Dublin/binary-hub These two residences are located within walking distance or a short bus ride away from the campus.
Alternatively, the college can also arrange housing in a carefully chosen homestay. This is a great way to develop your English language skills while also getting to know more about Irish culture; it can also be the most affordable housing option in Dublin. All homestays are on a simple transport route to/from by bus. Students will have their own single room and the host provides breakfast and dinner daily (and lunches at weekends) + Wi-Fi / laundry & the other usual amenities. More information on pricing can be found at www.difc.ie/dublin-accommodation.
The students also have access to Griffith College’s cafeteria when on campus.
What comes next Foundation Year?
Upon successful completion of your IF Programme or Master’s Preparation programme, you will start the next stage of your life – a Bachelor or Master’s degree at an Irish or an NCUK university in UK, Europe or even further afield!