DIFC Medicine Pathway for International Students

Your Best Pathway to the World of Medicine

The International Foundation Year – Health Science programme is a specialised foundation course designed to support international students progress to study Medicine at University. If you are interested in studying Medicine, but lack the entry requirements or have completed O Levels, this is an alternative route of entry for you.

The programme is specifically designed for international students who:
• Have completed their local high school qualification (or O-Level qualification)
• Have completed A-Levels or equivalent, but do not meet the entry requirements for university admission
• Need to improve their English language before studying at university in Ireland or UK.

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DIFC is Ireland’s leading independent foundation course provider with over 20 years’ experience in supporting international students progress to top universities worldwide including Ireland, UK and Europe.

DIFC is the exclusive delivery centre of the NCUK International Foundation Year (IFY) programme in Ireland.

  • Highest quality academic teaching
  • Full university application support provided – including counselling and advice, personal statement support, interview and exam preparation
  • Develop your skills in the areas of critical thinking, presentations, problem solving and time management
  • Major emphasis on your physical and emotional wellbeing

How does the Medicine Pathway work?

Successfully complete your high school examinations

IGCSEs, O Levels, SPM, WAEC and a range of local high school qualifications accepted

Complete an IELTS test

Minimum 5.5 IELTS or equivalent (September intake)/6 IELTS (January intake)

Study NCUK International Foundation Year with DIFC

Progress to Medicine *

(or Medical-related degree)

* Progression to Medicine is not guaranteed and is subject to meeting the medical university admission requirements.

Am I guaranteed a place in Medicine?

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Due to high competition and limited places for international students, there is no guaranteed place in Medicine. However, DIFC has partnerships with more medical universities than any other similar programme and a great track record for placement success, which means you have a much higher chance of securing your place on a Medicine degree. Since 2009 alone, we have placed 300+ students in their chosen medical university.

NCUK guarantees that 100% of students who successfully pass the NCUK International Foundation Year- Health Sciences with DIFC will achieve a University place in the medical field of study in general, which can be used as a backup for you.

View our Medicine Placements Here

“At my last year in high school, I didn’t have the best year, so I couldn’t get into Medicine. So, I decided to join DIFC in Jan 2018. I was so nervous at first since all I knew about DIFC that it was just another pathway to other universities and my English wasn’t as strong as I wanted. However, with time I loved being part of the DIFC community and now I`m a 1st-year medical student at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan). As a 1st year medical student, I learnt that without a strong foundation I wouldn’t be able to properly survive my first semester at university. DIFC provided me with all the mandatory requirements to continue my medical journey. For example, at DIFC it was my first time dissecting a heart in a lab, and this was one of the best experiences which has benefited me in my 1st year of medical school.

DIFC staff supported me all the way throughout the course and helped me develop lots of skills for me to get accepted at my first-choice university. The teachers are excellent and highly qualified – plus, they are so approachable, and friendly, which made this course so much fun and easier. I`m thankful for DIFC, with their help I`m now pursuing my dream (studying medicine). Until this point, I`m still in touch with them, because they made me a part of the DIFC family. DIFC isn’t just a pathway to other universities it is way more than that.”

Anas Bara

NCUK IFY Science

Now studying Medicine at University of Central Lancashire

See what our students say.

What Subjects Will I Study?

In the NCUK International Foundation Year programme at DIFC, you will study the following subjects

English for Academic Purpose

Mathematics for Science



Applying to University

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A key component of the Foundation Year is the university placement support provided to students for your university admissions. During your studies at DIFC, you will be fully supported through the whole university application process with:

  • Weekly individual and group tutorials
  • Career planning advice
  • University visits and counselling fair

All this is designed to help you make the right choice about what and where to study based on your career objectives and how you are progressing through your studies.

Find out how to apply here

Book Your Accommodation Now

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Great News!
DIFC are pleased to announce that we have signed a contract with Aparto to secure student accommodation for our students starting on our courses in September 2022 and January 2023. We can now offer an inclusive package to parents including college course and accommodation.

There is a limit on the number of rooms we have available for September 22, and they will be allocated on a first come first served basis once students have paid their course fees to DIFC. We anticipate that all our student accommodation for September will be booked out before 31st July 2022. After this students will have to find their own accommodation in Dublin for September 2022

We would be happy to arrange one to one counselling sessions with you on zoom if you would like more information.


Find out more about our Accommodation here

What are the tuition fees?

The tuition fees for the International Foundation Year – Health Science programme with DIFC are €17,800 plus registration. Further information available here


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