Ireland Study & Employment Information

Study | Live | Work | Play

It’s complicated business researching and comparing courses that you are considering, especially outside of your home country.  We understand that some students may wish to work part time while completing their studies. Here is some practical information on study and employment regulations that will help guide your decision.

Entitlement to Work
(Casual Employment)

Students who are studying the International Foundation Year or Pre-Master’s programme with DIFC are not entitled to work.

Once student’s progress to a third-level degree or postgraduate degree in Ireland, they are entitled to seek employment on a casual basis. You must obtain a valid Irish Residence Permit card.

Casual employment means you can work for 20 hours per week during term time or full-time (up to 40 hours) during normal college holidays.

Third Level Graduate Scheme

This allows non-EU/EEA students who have graduated from Irish higher education institutions to remain in Ireland for 12-24 months to seek employment.

Students are eligible for the scheme if they have a Bachelor, Master or Ph.D. degree.

Postgraduate students can stay in Ireland for 24 months in employment, following their studies. 

If you have graduated from a university in Ireland, you can avail of this scheme.

Employers can hire graduates who are eligible to work for up to 40 hours per week.


There is a similar scheme in the UK offered to graduates of Bachelor and Master’s degree, where you may remain to work for up to 24 months.

International student writing

You must have a valid Irish Residence Permit (IRP) card which will be extended for 12 months.

You apply, after your results issue, to the GNIB office. You must:

  • Provide a letter from the University Student Desk indicating you have obtained your examination results and are eligible to graduate
  • Have a valid passport
  • Have your IRP Card
  • Pay €300 by credit/debit card.

After 12 months, you may be eligible for the Green Card or Work Permit Scheme.

See further information on INIS and Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation websites.

2 women having a chat over coffee

PPS Number

All employees in Ireland have a PPS number for tax purposes (tax identification number). Therefore, if you are looking for a job you must apply for a PPS number.

Please note: One Semester students are not permitted to work while in Ireland.

Non-EU/EEA Students: You can work 20 hours per week during term time and full time during holiday periods. To apply for a  PPS number, you will attend a PPS Number Allocation Centre and bring the following documents:


Garda National Immigration Bureau (GNIB) Card

Proof of Address

Confirmation of Student Status (DIFC will provide Certificate of Attendance)

Please note that if you have “Stamp 2A” on your Garda National Immigration Card you will not be permitted to work during your stay in Ireland.

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