There are various modes of entry to the teaching profession. General information is set out below.
Teaching posts are advertised by the Boards of Management of individual schools. Selection is by interview.
To become a Primary Teacher there are two possible entry routes:
1. A Bachelor of Education Degree (B.Ed) from a recognised College of Education*.
These colleges are:
*This course is available to School Leavers (under 23 years of age) and Mature Students (over 23 years of age) with appropriate Leaving Certificate qualifications. Grants and Scholarships may be available. Interested persons should contact one of the Colleges of Education directly.
2. A Level 8 Degree or a Major Award at Level 9, plus a recognised postgraduate diploma/certificate in primary education. This is now called the Graduate Diploma in Education (GDE) and will become a two-year programme from September 2014.
The minimum entry requirements for admission to the B.Ed course are:-
- a minimum of Grade C3 on a Higher Level Paper in not less than three subjects, to include Irish;
- Grade D3 in three other subjects in accordance with the Rules and Programme for Secondary Schools;
- Grade C3 on an Ordinary Level - or D3 on a Higher Level paper in English;
- and Grade D3 in Mathematics (either Ordinary or Higher Level).
Note: From September 2012 changes to accredited courses from The Teaching Council in the Republic of Ireland mean that B.Ed programmes are now 4-year long.
A 3rd level qualification in the relevant subject area and the special conversion programme for Primary teaching (PDE) available at the Colleges of Education in:
- St. Patrick's College, Drumcondra, Dublin
- Mary Immaculate College, Limerick
- The Froebel College, Blackrock, Co. Dublin
- Coláiste Mhuire, Marino, Dublin
- Hibernia College, (on-line learning) Dublin 2
Note: Changes to accredited courses from The Teaching Council in the Republic of Ireland mean that Professional Diploma in Education (PDE) and Graduate Diploma programmes will be 2-year long from 2014.
The Department of Education and Skills will grant restricted recognition to teachers with the Montessori qualification which is awarded on completion of the three year full-time course in the Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) College, Dublin and teachers with the National Diploma or Degree in Montessori Education from St. Nicholas' Montessori College, Dun Laoghaire. This Diploma/Degree is accredited by the Higher Education and Training Awards Council (HETAC).
Montessori teachers with these qualifications are eligible to teach in certain categories of Special Schools and Special Classes in National Schools. They are also eligible to be appointed as resource teachers for children with special needs in mainstream National Schools.
Second Level Teacher
Voluntary Secondary Schools and Community and Comprehensive Schools:
Teaching posts are advertised by the Boards of Management of individual schools and selection is by interview. To become a Second Level Teacher in a Voluntary Secondary School or Community or Comprehensive school, you need a relevant 3rd level qualification and the 1-Year Higher Diploma in Education.
Teaching posts are advertised by the Vocational Education Committee. Teachers are appointed as teachers of a specific subject, and must have a qualification to Degree level in the relevant subject area. In the past it was not essential for a graduate to have professional teacher training:
Note: Changes to accredited courses from The Teaching Council in the Republic of Ireland mean that:
From September 2013 all teachers in the VEC and further education sectors will be required to have a Level 8 degree on the National Qualifications Framework and a teacher education qualification
Graduate and Professional Diploma in Education (PDE) programmes will be 2-year long from 2014.
Irish Language Qualification
No Irish language qualification is required at Secondary teaching level, unless you wish to teach in an Irish Medium School or in the Gaeltacht. In this case, The Ceard Teastas Gaeilge is a requirement.
For Primary School teaching, the Irish Qualification Scrúdú Cáilíochta sa Ghaeilge must be obtained within a 5-year period of teaching, in order to be granted full recognition.
How to apply
In general teachers are recruited by the school board of management, or by the Vocational Education Committee. Teaching posts are usually advertised in the national and local press. Lists of schools may be obtained from:
Government Publications Office,
and can also be accessed on the Department of Education and Skills website at www.education.ie.
Information on pay scales can be obtained from:
Department's External Staff Relations Section,
Irish Life Centre,
or by accessing the relevant circulars at www.education.ie.