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Ireland - Maynooth

University Overview

National Unviersity of Ireland Maynooth 

Founded in 1795 as St. Patrick's College, Ireland'sIreland Map national seminary, today's National University of Ireland Maynooth is a modern research university with over 27 majors to explore, including the popular Celtic Studies. Located in the beautiful, historic town of Maynooth, just 15 miles west of Dublin city centre, the campus is a stunning mix of new and old, offering its 10,000 students a lively and friendly atmosphere to connect and explore over 150 different student clubs and organizations. 

City Overview

Boasting the only true college town experience in the country, Maynooth is  centrally located to Kildare town of Maynooth where students will find a  charming range of small town shops, services, restaurants and pubs. Maynooth/Kildare town is a quick five minute walk from the local train station, offering excellent transport connections to Dublin city centre and the rest of  Ireland.  The city itself is quaint and comfortable, truly catering to the large surrounding student population.  From the city center, a quick five to ten minute walk will take you to either side of campus. 

Program Highlights 

  • Student Buddy Network:  Exchange students can apply for a local buddy to help offer them transition assistance as they newly settle in Ireland
  • International Society:  This organization hosts events throughout the year for international students, including discounted tours of nearby tourist destinations.

Academic CalendarMaynooth Green

  • Fall Semester:  Mid-September to mid/late January
  • Spring Semester:  Late January to late May

Academic Calendar for 2021-22

Academic Focus

  • Exchange students can enroll in any class, provided they meet the prerequisites
    • Certain fields may be restricted for local students, and unavailable as an exchange student
  • Generally study aboad students select level 1 (Intro) classes for lower division. Levels 2 & 3 classes are upper-division and assume a depth of knowledge in the field.
  • Course credits are offered in European Credit Transfer units (ECTs).  A full-time student should enroll in 30 ECTs, or 15 CSU units (ECTs are on a 2:1 ratio, rounded to the nearest whole number, therefore a standard 5 ECT course=3 CSU units).
  • Teaching will typically be in lecture format, with less formal discussion sections led by tutors.  A knowledge of library research methods and writing is highly advisable, as is a willingness to read beyond the scope of the course.
  • Final grades are usually based upon a comprehensive exam.   For this, keeping up with assigned and supplemental reading becomes critically important.
  • All work transfers back to San Marcos and can be used to fulfill all graduation requirements.

Language of InstructionMaynooth Library



  • Class Level:  Upper-division status (completion of 60 units)
  • GPA of 2.75 or above and good academic standing to departure.
  • Prerequisites:  Level 2 & 3 classes generally require significant experience in the field.  If, based upon transcript review, you do not have the necessary prerequisites, you will be asked to consider an alternative course.
  • Special Note to Business Majors:  In order to receive credit for upper-division courses abroad, you must have already completed your Pre-Business coursework at CSUSM.


15 semester units/30 ECT units (European Credit Transfer system).  Typically this works out to 4-5 classes/semester.The European Credit Transfer system is calculated in a 2:1 ratio, and rounded to the nearest whole number.  For example, a 5 ECT unit class will count as 3 CSU semester units.  Most students will take four-five classes at 5 ECTs/each.


A wide range of housing options is available at Maynooth. Pending receipt of the housing application, housing assistance will be offered to place students in the limited university residence halls, but students may also opt for off-campus housing, or even a homestay with an Irish family. 

  • Campus Rates for Academic Year 2021-22

Estimated Cost

  • Students pay their normal State University Fee to CSU San Marcos, currently $3,858/semester. No tuition or fees due at Maynooth.
  • On-campus residence: $550-$725 per month; Off-campus residence (room only): $500 per month and up
  • Health Insurance: $265/semester
  • Cost of meals and personal expenses will vary, but average $650 per month.
  • Sample 2020-21 Budget  

Application Deadlines

  • For Fall Semester/Year Study March 15
  • For Spring Semester Study October 1

How to Apply

  1. Visit the National University of Ireland Maynooth website at Maynooth University to learn about the university and life in Maynooth.  Use visit Dublin for a variety of local events in the larger metropolis of Dublin city.
  2. Meet with the CSUSM Study Abroad Advisor in ELB 588 to determine if you are eligible for this program.
  3. Obtain course descriptions from the Module Catalogue for each of the faculty in which you wish to study. 
    • Please note that registration for courses will happen during your orientation program and not all classes will be open to visiting exchange students.  Having flexibility in course options is critical.
  4. Consult with a faculty advisor in your major/minor department to determine if Maynooth courses will count toward you major.  If so, complete a Study Abroad Credit Approval Form.
  5. Order an official transcript from CSUSM and any other college from which you have taken a semester or more in classes (even if you have already transferred credit to CSUSM). 
    • Please send the transcript(s) directly to Global Education, c/o Tiffany Gabbard, ELB 588, 333 S. Twin Oaks Valley Rd. San Marcos, CA  92096-0001 or pick in person and drop off at Global Education (preferred).
  6. Read about your accommodation options and follow the instructions given online. 
  7. Complete the online Maynooth Application and submit a copy to the CSUSM Study Abroad Advisor for your file.
  8. Submit additional application details to Global Education:  CSUSM General Study Abroad Application
  9. Submit your flight details to Global Education:  Flight Information Form
  10. Attend the pre-departure orientation and follow up with the Study Abroad Advisor with any additional questions.
  11.  For practical planning, read over the Maynooth Arrival Guide, which is full of important information from the International Office.

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Being an International Student at Maynooth