Education - Primary Teaching

Key Features
Thematic in nature, the programme focuses iteratively on students’ role as learner, teacher, researcher and leader. In addition to the established broad range of curriculum and foundation studies areas studied traditionally within ITE programmes at MIC, this programme contains a strong spine of three research methods modules which culminate in the Reporting Educational Research module. The research modules provide students with a critical introduction to the principal methods in educational research; identify educational research issues and questions, and consider appropriate methods of investigating them.

This course provides students with the opportunity to spend two Tréimhse Foghlama sa Ghaeltacht across their two years. These two modules are usually undertaken within the first year of the programme and between semesters; in early January and during the Summer break between first year and second year.

A range of assessment modes are employed across the two year programme, comprising written examinations and course work including group presentations and Blended Learning; summer modules such as ‘Leadership and Policy’ are undertaken by the students in an online format.

Professional Placement
The students have the opportunity to undertake a number of school placement experiences across a range of classes over the course of the two years and assessment and mentoring supports the student during this process. Assessment of school placement and micro-teaching is also a core component of this programme.

Programme Aims
The Professional Master of Education (PME) seeks to foster in graduate teacher education students a spirit of justice and compassion in the service of others and the creation of a democratic setting where all have the freedom and opportunity to achieve their full potential. The PME aims to develop graduate students' knowledge, skills, beliefs, and values in ways that support the development of professionals who:

Promote and maintain a strong commitment to education and teaching and to the quality of the educational experiences of their pupils
Respect and value childhood and help children to unlock and realise their potential.

Value their identity as learners, teachers, researchers and future leaders

Recognise the dignity of the individual graduate student of education who brings her/his own unique identity, prior experience and expertise to the teaching profession

Comprehensively understand, respect, question and think critically about knowledge and who can adapt this knowledge within the complexities of their educational research and practice
Are committed to promoting rich, innovative, flexible, creative learner-centred environments

Seek to develop their personal and professional qualities including creativity, enthusiasm, risk-taking, commitment, responsibility and innovation, all of which equip teachers to actively contribute and respond positively to change in Irish society in the twenty-first century

Promote the vision of the teacher as researcher and critically reflective practitioner who engages with inquiry-based examination and consideration of all aspects of professional practice, linked to a commitment of the teacher

Challenge and confront social injustice and inequality as they see them in the class, playground and in the community, thus helping them to become agents of change.

Are empowered to recognise, appreciate and accommodate difference
Understand, recognise and imbue the pivotal contribution of educational research to teacher formation

Recognise leadership as an intrinsic component of teacher education

Subjects taught

Year One:
Year 1 - Semester 1
Semester 1 provides a strong foundation in many curricular areas, foundation disciplines and research methods as well as introducing students to School Placement. Blending subject-specific pedagogies with modules which interrogate contemporary issues in education in a context of campus-based and school-based learning opportunities, students will be enabled to achieve deep insights into teaching and learning early in the programme.

Year 1 - Semester 2
Semester 2 builds on and extends the knowledge, skills and understanding gained in Semester 1. Semester 2 culminates in a prolonged school placement offering students an opportunity to apply learning in practice.

A summer school programme is an integral part of the first year of this master’s programme. This summer school includes a Tréimhse Foghlama sa Ghaeltacht and students return to campus following their period in the Gaeltacht to complete an oral Irish examination. In addition, students complete two on-line modules; in the Leadership and Policy module provides an intensive immersion experience into the field of educational research where students explore fundamental theories and enduring questions in the field of educational leadership and policy. Within the Research Methods 2 module research principles, theories and approaches are explored leading to the completion of students’ research ethics application.

Year Two
Year 2 - Semester 3
Semester 3 builds on the knowledge, skills and attitudes gained during Year 1 through curricular areas, foundation disciplines and research methods. Inclusive and Special Education is a discrete focus of this Semester through both a taught module and a specific school placement. Students will develop their research proposal during this Semester and engage in data collection and analysis. A significant element of Semester 3 will be the parallel focus of teaching, learning and research highlighting the multi-faceted nature of the role of the teacher and the teaching profession. Students work individually with allocated supervisors with significant expertise in the students’ chosen field. Students will submit their educational research report during Semester 4.

Year 2 - Semester 4
Semester 4 is primarily devoted to prolonged school placement and the application of knowledge, skills and attitudes acquired through Semesters 1, 2 and 3. A key feature of Semester 4 is the completion and presentation of a professional portfolio which will provide an opportunity to link practice with theory, to engage deeply with subject matter and pedagogical content and to participate in reflective dialogue about teaching and learning. It will provide a structure for documenting and reflecting on students’ assumptions, understandings, experiences and achievements during their teacher education programme.

This Summer School programme includes the second Tréimhse Foghlama sa Gaeltacht.

Entry requirements

Applications for 2024 entry are now open - link to application form on the 'How to Apply' section.

There are 120 places available and the closing date for applications is Monday 8 April 2024.

For September 2024 entry, the Leaving Certificate minimum requirements for the PME are as follows:

Irish - H4
English - H7 or O4
Maths - H7 or O4

Useful Links

Leaving Certificate Grading Schemes (1992-2016 Scheme and New Scheme 2017).

Department of Education and Skills Requirements for entry 2024

Department of Education and Skills Requirements for entry (Irish version) 2024

Oral Irish Exam for 2024
TEG oral exam for 2024 entry will take place 26/27 January 2024 and 9/10 February 2024. Application forms available from from 15 November 2023 and closing date for applications will be 8 January 2024.

Please note that the TEG office are running an additional exam for TEG on 24th February in Maynooth only, with the closing date Friday 16th February.

The Oral Irish Exam requirements for 2024 entry are detailed below.

For 2024, applicants wishing to apply for the PME Programme are required to take an Oral Irish exam before applying to MIC for the programme.

Applicants are required to take the Teastas Eorpach na Gaeilge (TEG) Meánleibhéal 1 (B1) Irish-language oral examination. Full details on the oral exam are available here.

A minimum of 65% must be obtained in the B1 Oral TEG exam to be eligible to apply for the PME Programme.

Applicants must upload their results from TEG Level B1 Oral Irish exam as part of their application to MIC for the PME programme.

A successful result in the TEG oral will be valid for two years before the test needs to be retaken. Applicants who have achieved a minimum of 65% in the TEG oral exam in the last two years are eligible to apply.

The following TEG certificates from 2022 and 2023 will be accepted:

TEG Meánleibhéal 1 (B1) with a mark of 65% or higher/ a pass or higher at TEG Meánleibhéal 2 (B2) (min 50%)/ a pass or higher at TEG Ardleibhéal 1 (C1) (min 60%).

Additional marks are awarded for students who complete the TEG Oral Examination at a high level.

Up to 6 additional marks may be awarded for students who successfully complete the TEG B1 oral examination at a high level and these marks will be added to their score. Applicants achieving from 90-100% receive 6 additional marks, applicants achieving from 80-89% receive 3 additional marks.

Applicants who complete the TEG oral examination and obtain 65-79% receive no additional marks, but are deemed to have passed the test and are eligible for the programme.

Applicants who have passed higher levels of TEG (B2, C1 and C2) receive 6 additional marks.

Commencing with applications for the 2023-2025 programme cycle, an interview is now no longer part of the selection process for Mary Immaculate College, and is replaced by a points scoring system. Details available in the How to Apply section.

Application dates

There are 120 places available on the programme for 2024 and the closing date for receipt of completed applications (link below) is 8 April 2024.

Applications are now open - click here to apply.

Frequently Asked Questions

2024 Regulations for Entry for PME

2024 Regulations for Entry for PME (Irish Version)

This programme is not open to applications from non-EU countries. Application fees are non-refundable due to applicant ineligibility. See International programme listing at

Please note: Commencing with applications for the 2023-2025 programme cycle, an interview will no longer be part of the selection process for Mary Immaculate College, and will be replaced by a points scoring system. For full details on points system at

All qualifications must have been awarded by 1 March 2024 to be included for points purposes. All supporting documentation must be uploaded with the online application and MIC will not accept late submissions after the closing date. Please do not submit late documentation by post or email, as it cannot be accepted.

Please note: If any information provided for points calculation is found to be fraudulent, the applicant's application will be cancelled and will not be processed by the College.

Download the Employer Reference form (for paid employment) at


2 years full-time.

Enrolment dates

Applications for 2024 entry are now open.

Post Course Info

Career Opportunities
On successful completion of the course, graduates are qualified to teach all classes in the primary school.

More details
  • Qualification letters


  • Qualifications

    Degree - Masters (Level 9 NFQ)

  • Attendance type

    Full time,Daytime

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