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Education - Primary Teaching

Do you want to inspire and influence future generations and play a key role in the intellectual development of young children? And do you need a teaching course that allows you to study from anywhere in Ireland?

If this sounds familiar, studying with Hibernia College in an accessible and supportive environment might be the choice for you.

The Professional Master of Education in Primary Education is perfect for you if you want to work with children aged 4-12.

Is this programme for me?
The Primary teaching course is for those passionate about teaching young children. This course will enable graduates to register to work as primary teachers with the Teaching Council of Ireland.

You will receive opportunities to learn how to nurture and support the development of the full potential of the child and instil a love of learning that will remain with the child through all stages of formal education.

Through your engagement with the course, you will work in a diverse range of schools, experience a wide range of classroom settings and engage in action research in a supported environment.

Furthermore your cooperation with fellow students and faculty will foster a strong sense of collegiality and team spirit.

It is not a requirement to have prior teaching experience to be eligible to apply for this course.

Primary Teaching Course
The Professional Master of Education (PME) in Primary Education is a 120-credit award at level 9 and the duration of the programme is two years. It is a blended learning programme, combining online content, virtual learning environments and face-to-face delivery to develop professionals and experts who are positioned to be leaders in the field of primary education.

The PME in Primary Education at Hibernia College consists of a sequence of modules that reflect the contemporary issues faced by teachers today and the skills and knowledge required of them in order to be expert primary school teachers who enable effective student learning. In particular, it recognises the importance of ensuring that student teachers consider that teaching itself is understood and practised as a form of self-critical learning by them; learning that is driven by inquiry, reflection and improvements based on evidence (Teaching Council 2011).

Entry requirements

•A primary degree, National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ) Level 8. Note that the grade and subject of the degree are not relevant for the purpose of meeting the minimum entry requirements.

•A Masters degree or PhD that is of NFQ Level 9 or higher is accepted in lieu of the primary degree.

•Please note that an NFQ Level 8 higher diploma on its own does not fulfil this requirement.

•Minimum grade C (Higher Level) in Leaving Certificate Irish

•Minimum grade D (Ordinary or Higher Level) in Leaving Certificate Mathematics

•Minimum grade C (Ordinary Level) or grade D (Higher Level) in Leaving Certificate English

•All students who apply for the PME in Primary Education programme for entry in September 2017 must comply with the minimum requirements outlined below.

Subject Grade for entry in April ’17
Irish Grade C3
English Grade D (ordinary or higher level)
Maths Grade D (ordinary or higher level)

Subject Grade for entry in September ’17
Irish Grade C3 or H4
English Grade O5 or H6
Maths Grade H6/O6

For students who sat GCSE and GCE A Level exams

•A primary degree, NFQ Level 8. Note that the grade and subject of the degree are not relevant for the purpose of meeting the minimum entry requirements.

•A Masters degree or PhD that is of NFQ Level 9 or higher is accepted in lieu of the primary degree.

•Please note that an NFQ Level 8 higher diploma on its own does not fulfill this requirement.

•Minimum grade C in GCE A level Irish
•Minimum grade C in GCSE English
•Minimum grade C in GCSE English Literature
•Minimum grade D in GCSE Additional Mathematics Or
•Minimum grade C at GCSE level in Mathematics

Alternatives To Irish Language Requirement

The following will also satisfy the minimum Irish language requirement:

•Diploma in Arts (Applied Irish) from University College Cork
•Dioplóma sa Ghaeilge, level B2 from NUI Galway
•Dioplóma sa Ghaeilge Fheidhmeach from University College Dublin
•Dioplóma sa Ghaeilge from NUI Maynooth
•Diploma in Irish from the University of Ulster
•Dioploma sa Ghaeilge (An Ghaeilge sa Saol Comhaimseartha) of Aonad na Gaeilge from the University of Limerick
•A pass in a First Arts exam in Irish, NFQ Level 8
•Teastas Eorpach na Gaeilge (TEG) Leibhéal B2 (Meánleibhéal 2)
•Minimum grade C in the NUI matriculation exam (pre-1992)

The following will also satisfy the minimum requirements in Irish, English and Mathematics:

•A pass in a University First Arts exam in the appropriate subject, NFQ Level 8

Please note that the above are the only accepted entry requirements as set by the Department of Education and Skills (DES). As these are DES imposed requirements, unfortunately the College will not be in a position to accept any alternative qualifications.

Additional Information
Note 1: Garda vetting Hibernia College offers programmes of study that require participants to work with children and/or other vulnerable groups. For this reason, students on this programme will be required to complete and sign a Garda Vetting Form. By completing and signing the Garda Vetting Form, the applicant is granting permission to Hibernia College to process details of any prosecutions/convictions for the purpose of assessing the candidate’s suitability for the course for which he/she has applied and the completion of work placements associated with the course.

Note 2: Primary degree level If you are unsure of the level of your primary degree, contact the conferring college or university, or contact the National Qualifications Authority of Ireland at In order to gain entry to the programme, candidates are required to possess a Level 8 award as per the NFQ. While Hibernia College will make every effort at the time of application to check the level of the award and notify applicants if the College believes there may be a concern with their qualification, it is each applicant’s responsibility to check the level of their award. Hibernia College will not be held responsible in the unlikely event a graduate of the Higher Diploma is refused admission to the Register of Teachers.

Note 3: Mature students Note that there are no concessions for mature students. All applicants must meet the same minimum entry requirements to be considered for admission to the programme, and all applicants who meet those requirements will be called for interview.


Two years (24 months)

Number of credits


Subjects taught

Online Content
On-demand online lectures, online tutorials and self-study

School Experience
24 weeks undertaken in 3 schools - 2 blocks of 7 weeks and 1 block of 10 weeks.

This includes periods of observation, engagement in wider school activities, research, teaching, reflection and evaluation.

Irish: 4 weeks in the Gaeltacht
(2 x 2 weeks courses)

Onsite Delivery at Weekends

Onsite conferences: the entire intake meets together in a central venue.

Regional onsites: tutor groups meet in a regional venue.

Indicative Calendar

April 2017 Orientation

May 2017 School Observation (1 week)

July 2017 Gaeltacht (2 weeks)

January/February 2018 School Experience 1 Placement (6 weeks)

April 2018 1 week of on-sites scheduled during Easter week

May/June 2018 School Experience SEN observations (1 week)

July 2018 Gaeltacht (2 weeks)

September - November 2018 School Experience 2 Placement (6 weeks)

January - March 2019 Advanced School Experience (10 weeks)
April 2019 Programme ends

Assessment method

Assessment of the programme is conducted through a combination of written exam and oral exams (Gaeilge), and continuous assessment, including the assessment of school placement. Students will also have the opportunity to engage in educational research through the completion of a research thesis.

Application date

Application Deadline
Friday 17th February 2017


All applicants who are deemed to have met the entry requirements and who have submitted a fully completed application form with supporting documentation and payment of the application fee, will be interviewed.

We strongly encourage applicants to submit their completed application form as early as possible.

Interview Scheduling
Acceptance and entry to the course is by interview. The process is as follows:

•Applications that are fully completed with all supporting
documentation will be acknowledged by e-mail.

•Applicants are placed in the queue for processing and will be contacted by phone or e-mail during daytime hours to schedule an interview.

•The Admissions Team will make contact directly with the applicant to arrange an interview. During busy periods, the waiting time for interview may be slightly longer.

•Applicants will usually be given a notice period of approximately one week ahead of their allotted interview date and time.

•Interviews normally take place in the daytime, Monday to Thursday at Hibernia College, 9-10 Fenian Street, Dublin 2.

•Applicants are expected to attend at the scheduled time and date.

•Applicants must bring a valid photographic identification with them to the interview, this should be a current passport or driving license. If an applicant fails to present identification, the interview panel cannot proceed with the interview.

•Applicants will receive a reminder by e-mail confirming the scheduled interview, directions to our premises and other information.

Once an interview has been scheduled, in the unlikely event that an applicant has no choice but to cancel, the Admissions Team will endeavour to re-schedule the interview. However, during busy periods or nearing the start date of the programme, this may not be possible. Please note that if you are not in a position to attend the interview on the date offered, it is important that this is communicated to the Admissions Team at the earliest opportunity.

Course fee

Application Fee: €95
Course tuition fees: €12,700
Fees are payable as follows:
Deposit (paid on acceptance of place): €1,000
Year 1: €8,000
Year 2: €3,700
Graduation: approx. €100
Gaeltacht fees: 2 x 2 week courses, each costing €750

Payment of course fees can be made by cheque, bank draft, postal order or via Paypal. The application fee and deposit are paid by credit or debit card via Paypal and must be made in full before the start of the course.

Fees are subject to change.

Tax Relief

Tax relief on the course tuition fees is available to students at the standard rate of income tax (currently 20%) for the relevant tax year. More details are available on the Irish Revenue website.

Loan Facility for Students
The Comhar Linn INTO Credit Union have introduced a loan facility for students of primary teacher education. Please click here for more information.

Enrolment and start dates

Our next start date is April 2017
We are also accepting applications for September 2017

Remember to mention gradireland when contacting institutions!