The basics
THE UK: Applying to University

Why study in Northern Ireland?

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Divided neatly into six counties, Northern Ireland covers a relatively small area of land considering the range of vibrant attractions it offers. The obvious place to start exploring it is in the cultural and historic capital, Belfast, now one of Europe's top city destinations. It's packed with museums, Victorian architecture, some of the UK's coolest bars and fashionable shopping areas. Some of the history of the country can best be explored through Falls Road and Shankill Road in West Belfast, areas that were hard-hit during the Troubles. Now, in peaceful times, the walls bear some astonishing murals created by the people who live there.

Look outside the cities and you'll find there's much more to Northern Ireland. Almost as soon as you leave Belfast you're surrounded by sumptuous countryside. The coastal road in County Antrim that runs north from Larne to Ballycastle is just one example. It takes in the nine mountain glens of Antrim and the scenery you'll pass is stunning. Students will reap the rewards of living in this magnificent country and will benefit from the history and culture, as well as institutions of higher learning like Queens University and the University of Ulster.

The rejuvenated social scenes of Belfast and Derry and the range of activities and beautiful landscapes across all of Northern Ireland make visiting a superb experience. However, what makes the place unique is the famous warmth and wit of its residents. Whether you're planning to spend three years studying, or just a few weeks visiting, Northern Ireland's warm welcome and myriad of attractions ensure you'll love discovering everything that it has to offer.

Highlights

Belfast Nashville Songwriters' Festival
This five-day programme of seminars, workshops and concerts will feature over 100 songwriters from around the world, at various venues throughout Belfast. Head to this exciting city to experience the very best in song writing and performing.
 

Carnivale of Colours, Derry, Co Londonderry
A seven-day event centered around two circus tents featuring an exciting programme of performance, spectacle and education in a grass roots circus - family orientated environment. Circus shows, walkabout acts, musicians, sights, sounds and tastes of the world at this new and innovative approach to the traditional traveling circus concept.
 

Mourne International Walking Festival, Newcastle, Co Down
The festival offers something for everyone - stunning scenery, superb walks and great fun. Set within the spectacular scenery of the Mourne Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, there are walks to suit all levels of fitness and ability with lowland routes at 10, 20, 30 and 40kms, as well as high-level routes within the mountains.
 

A Quality Education


Northern Ireland has respected schools, colleges and universities with a wide range of world-class study choices, in depth resources and top quality staff, teaching and research. You can gain respected and valued UK qualifications and take advantage of flourishing relationships between education and business.

The country has two universities, Queen's University Belfast, which is located in the Capital, and the University of Ulster, which operates at several campuses in County Londonderry, County Antrim and Belfast. There are also two university colleges, six highly regarded colleges of further education, outstanding English language centres and many excellent schools, some with boarding departments for international students, and they are all within easy reach.

If you are planning to study in the UK but you're not sure if university is for you, then perhaps you should consider a course at a college specialising in higher and further education. Northern Ireland offers six multi-campus 'super' colleges, which were created in 2007, after 16 colleges of further education merged. The courses on offer at colleges can be more diverse than those at universities, and all six colleges in Northern Ireland offer A-Levels, NVQs, BTECS, foundation, bachelor and postgraduate degrees.

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