Irish students study for a medical degree straight out of secondary school. Acceptance into a university medical degree program completely depends on the score a student gets on her Leaving Certificate. The Leaving Certificate exams take place at the end of the final year of secondary school and cover six subjects. To become a doctor in the Republic of Ireland, you have to achieve no worse than straight A1s in at least five subjects and one A2. This means your total points score must tally at least 570 out of 600. Some medical colleges don't accept students with fewer than 590 points, according to Postgrad.ie (reference 1).
Irish students begin studying for the Leaving Certificate in their second to last year of secondary school. This means a student decides he wants to become a doctor in Ireland at the age of 15 or 16. Universities require students to take the exam at honors level in at least one lab science, such as biology, chemistry or physics. Students must take at least two subjects at honors level, usually both in sciences. Students must also take English, Irish, Maths and a third language.
All university programs in Ireland require students to register their choices with the Central Applications Office (CAO). Students who wish to take a medicine degree must submit their applications by the 1st of February in the year they take their Leaving Certificate, according to University College Dublin (reference 2, p3).
Take the Health Professions Admission Test-Ireland (HPAT-Ireland). The HPAT-Ireland tests students reasoning, problem-solving and interpersonal understanding abilities. Every Irish university requires medical degree applicants to take this exam. The HPAT-Ireland website provides study material and sample questions. A student must arrange her test directly with HPAT-Ireland. The test takes place at the end of February, before the Leaving Certificate.
Complete the Leaving Certificate. The Leaving Certificate always begins on the Wednesday immediately following the June Bank Holiday, at the beginning of June. Medicine degrees have many more applicants than places, meaning only students with the best results get offered a place.
Submit a Healthcare Screening test and Garda (police) vetting form. Students who wish to become doctors in Ireland must undergo medical screening to prove immunity to tuberculosis and hepatitis B. A student embarking on a program requiring him to have contact with members of the public needs to submit a Garda vetting form before he registers for his course, according to University College Dublin. (reference 4).
In Ireland, medicine degrees take five or six years to complete. Trinity College states that students can earn a bachelor in surgery, bachelor in medicine or a bachelor in obstetrics (reference 3). In the final year of study and the year after completing your degree, you will work as an intern in hospitals.
Register with the Irish Medical Council when you have completed your internship.
Train for the area you want to specialize in. Doctors in Ireland can specialize in many areas, including pediatrics, cardiology, psychiatry, emergency medicine, infectious diseases and oncology. Study takes place at hospitals and through postgraduate courses.
Siobhan Russell has been freelance writing for the Internet since 2003. She has written articles covering a variety of subjects for Travelwand, Yellow Pages and eHow. Siobhan has a particular interest in writing travel and equestrian articles. She has a BA Honors in History and Philosophy from National University Ireland, Maynooth.