How to Apply

How to Apply for a Research Course

1. Choose a Course 

Academic requirements

  • PhD applicants need an honours level degree (NFQ level 8) with a minimum of a 2H1 (second class honours, grade 1) to apply.
  • Master by Research applicants need an honours level degree (NFQ level 8) with a minimum of a 2H2 (second class honours, grade 2) to apply.
  • Check our qualification comparison website here for equivalencies.
  • Check our English language requirements here
  • Although students generally choose a topic for their research from their degree discipline you are not restricted to your primary degree subjects.

Find a supervisory team

  • Once applicants know which area or topic they wish to research, they then need to find a supervisor. This site offers a list of academics listed under a wide range of schools/departments/disciplines
  • Applicants can also contact UCC Department/Schools relevant to that area of research and check the availability of appropriate supervisors.
  • You must choose a supervisor and discuss your prospective research with them before applying. Your supervisor will let you know if you need to prepare a research proposal and will need to approve your proposal before you submit it. You may need to submit this proposal directly to the School/Department and/or submit it with your online application. Applicants who apply to research programmes in Arts, Celtics Studies and Social Sciences, Law and Medicine & Health are required to submit a research proposal of approximately 1,500 words, and in Business a proposal of approximately 500 words is required.

2. Apply Online 

After confirming your research area and supervisory arrangements (as detailed above) applicants apply online at the UCC application portal. There is a €50 application fee for applications.  


3. Gather Supporting Documentation 

The following documents will be required in support of your application.

  • Evidence of all qualifications listed on your application, including transcripts of examination results for each year to date that have not been completed at University College Cork
  • Your Passport or Birth Certificate (applies to non-NUI graduates only). You will be registered in the name that appears on your passport or birth certificate. 
  • Your research proposal (check with your Supervisor if this should also be submitted to the School/Department)
  • Any supplementary forms requested

You do not need to supply originals of any document in support of your application at the application stage. However, you will be asked to produce the original documents in support of your application to UCC when you register.

Your application cannot be processed until all supporting documentation has been submitted.  


Fees for postgraduate research courses are payable in two instalments for EU students. The first instalment is payable upon online registration. The second instalment is payable six months later. 


English Language Requirement

All applicants whose first language is not English must provide evidence of English language proficiency. 

To view the minimum English language requirements currently accepted at University College Cork please click here

Graduate Studies Office

Oifig na Staidéar Iarchéime

2nd Floor, West Wing, Main Quad, UCC , T12 YN60

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