Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland Coláiste Ríoga na Máinleá in Éirinn

NON-EU Physiotherapy School Leaver

Key Facts

Course Title: Bachelor of Science in Physiotherapy
Award: BSc Physiotherapy
No of places: 8 Non EU places
Start date: Each September
Course Length: 4 years
Mode of Attendance: Full-Time
Academic School: School of Physiotherapy
Accredited by: RCSI is a recognised College of the National University of Ireland (NUI), awarding the BSc Physiotherapy to its physiotherapy graduates. Graduates of this programme are automatically eligible for membership of the Irish Society of Chartered Physiotherapists.

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How to Apply

1.Non EU Applicants residing in Canada and the United States of America

Application Process


Selection Process
Applicants will be selected for admission on the basis of open competition using the following criteria:

  • Academic eligibility,
  • Confidential references, a personal statement and life experience (work life balance, extracurricular activities, relevant work/ voluntary experience).
Competitive candidates from within the North American pool are provided with the opportunity to attend a Skype interview. Please see Related Links for guidance on "Preparing your Personal Statement" and "Preparing for an Admissions Interview".


2. All other Non EU Applicants

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Application Process

  • Applications must be made online directly to RCSI through the College website from 1st November 2017 to 1st March 2018. Although late applications are accepted until 01st of July, seats within the programme are very competitive and early application is advised.
  • There is a 75 euro application fee payable by credit card.
  • The following documents are required for selection and should be uploaded as part of the online application process:
    1. Certified copies of academic transcripts including English language transcripts (IELTS) if applicable
    2. Non-academic references
    3. Copy of passport showing name, nationality and date of birth
    4. A passport style photograph
  • Applicants are required to nominate an Academic Referee as part of the application process. The Admission Office will then contact the referee and request that they provide a ‘Confidential Academic Reference’. The full name, title, position and contact details of the referee is required as part of the online application. It is advisable therefore to inform the referee and seek his/her permission to nominate them as a referee. Please note that the contact details of the referee are required as part of the application and it is advisable to have these details available prior to commencing the application process


Selection process
Applications are reviewed by members of the Admissions Committee and applicants will be selected for admission on the basis of open competition using the following criteria:

  • Academic Eligibility,
  • English language eligibility
  • Confidential references, a personal statement and life experience (work life balance, extracurricular activities, relevant work/ voluntary experience).
Competitive applicants are then selected from within the overall application pool and the most competitive cohort is offered the opportunity to undertake an online interview. The interview normally takes place in March.

Please see Related Links for guidance on "Preparing your Personal Statement" and "Preparing for an Admissions Interview".


Special notices for International Students:

  • Singaporean nationals MUST complete their National service prior to application.




Course Overview

The BSc. Physiotherapy degree is a qualification for people who want to practice physiotherapy in Irish and international healthcare systems or in private practice. Graduates from this degree course are automatically eligible for membership of the Irish Society of Chartered Physiotherapists.

The aim of the RCSI School of Physiotherapy is to educate professionally safe, competent, reflective and analytical physiotherapists who possess a sound scientific knowledge base, an understanding of the value of research and analysis, are responsive to the needs of clients and carers and are aware of the dynamic diversity of healthcare environments in which they practice. In addition, the RCSI Physiotherapy programme has a strong clinical emphasis with almost one third of the programme undertaken in a variety of clinical placement sites supported by dedicated clinical tutors.

RCSI provides the opportunity to study physiotherapy in a multidisciplinary healthcare environment and amongst an international student body. The RCSI Physiotherapy programme is an internationally recognised qualification and we are very proud of our graduates who are currently employed in a variety of clinical locations both in Ireland and internationally, including the UK, USA, Canada, Singapore, Australia and New Zealand.

A career in physiotherapy offers you the possibility to work in:

  • Hospitals (public or private) – specialisations include orthopaedics, paediatrics, cardiorespiratory, care of the elderly, neurology, musculoskeletal.
  • Primary Care Centres and Community – delivering care in community based clinics and visiting people in their homes, giving treatment, advice and appliances to help improve independence.
  • School Environments – helping children with physical and intellectual disability achieve their full potential.
  • The Workplace – providing ergonomic assessments, pre-employment screening, risk management and educating workers in correct lifting and handling techniques.
  • Private Practice – assessing and treating people with a wide variety of musculoskeletal and sports-related clinical problems.
  • Sports Teams – physiotherapists can also be employed directly by sporting teams or other performance groups e.g. dance companies, to travel with the group and provide physiotherapy services exclusively for this group.
  • Academic & Research – increasingly, physiotherapists are choosing to pursue research careers by undertaking MSc by research or PhD programmes. Attaining a research degree is now seen as very desirable in the pursuit of an academic career.


Location & Facilities

The School is located in central Dublin. Apart from having spacious and well-equipped teaching facilities, the school also has a modern movement laboratory containing state of the art measurement systems for use in teaching and in undergraduate and post-graduate research.
Measurement systems include:

  • Five camera Vicon motion analysis
  • Kistler force plate
  • 16 Channel EMG
  • Biodex isokinetic muscle testing equipment
  • Cardiorespiratory testing equipment




What You Will Study

Applicants with school leaving qualifications undertake a four-year programme, beginning with Foundation Year. The Bachelor of Science (Physiotherapy) programme is delivered over two semesters in each academic year. Each module is dynamic and interactive, with a focus on Evidence-Based Learning. Teaching methods include lectures, practicals and tutorials and course material is distributed via an online virtual learning environment (MOODLE) to the student’s own laptop. Practical classes are halved to ensure an optimal tutor: student ratio.


Foundation Year
Students entering the four-year programme will complete Foundation Year. This year provides a solid foundation in the basic sciences (Human Biology, General & Medicinal Chemistry and Medical Physics) and introduces the student to the use of information technology in the health sciences through a Medical Informatics module. This involves a series of lectures and structured practical and tutorial classes.


Physiotherapy Foundation Year Modules
Medical Physics
Medicinal & Pharmaceutical Chemistry
Human Biology
Human Systems
Biomedical Laboratory Sciences
Introduction to Diseases, Diagnostics and Therapeutics
Introduction to Physiotherapy Practice


First Physiotherapy Year

During this year, the basic and social sciences fundamental to the study of physiotherapy are developed. In addition, the theory and practice of basic core physiotherapy skills – movement, therapeutic exercise, manual mobilisation and the use of electrophysical modalities- are introduced, utilising a problem-solving approach. Physiotherapy skills are studied in parallel to the core sciences facilitating integrated learning. A three-week clinical placement is undertaken at the end of this year.


Physiotherapy First Year Modules
Manual and Physical Therapies
Movement Studies
Methods of Enquiry
Health, Behaviour and Patient Safety
Professional Development
Clinical Attachment


Second Physiotherapy Year

In this year the knowledge and skills of physiotherapeutic practice are further consolidated. The focus is on the application and analysis of problems and their effects in key pathological areas e.g. cardiovascular/respiratory, neurology and musculoskeletal disorders and modules include Anatomy, Neurology I & II, Respiratory / Cardiovascular I & II, Advanced Musculoskeletal, Professional Development II, Behavioural Science and Research Methods I. Students gain an understanding of the research process and build on their ability to appraise and evaluate research literature. Clinical education modules alternate with 4-6 week blocks of academic teaching and focus on the core areas of clinical practice –cardiorespiratory, musculoskeletal and neurological conditions.


Physiotherapy Second Year Modules
Neuroscience Anatomy
Neuroscience Psychology
Research Methods
Professional Development
Advanced Musculoskeletal
Clinical Attachment


Final Physiotherapy Year

This year focuses on the integration of knowledge and understanding into reflective clinical practice. Modules cover more specialised areas of physiotherapy practice e.g. Paediatrics, Sports Physiotherapy, Care of the Elderly, Women’s Health, HIV / Oncology, Dermatology, Vascular Pathology and Occupational Health. In addition, an understanding of health management and professional issues is promoted in a Management of Practice module. Clinical education modules again alternate with blocks of academic teaching and in the clinical setting, students encounter a more diverse and complex range of client groups. Clinical placement modules include paediatrics, women’s health, care of the elderly and advanced neurology.


Physiotherapy Final Year Modules
Research Methods
Advanced Physiotherapy Practice
Care of the Elderly
Clinical Attachments




Why Study Physiotherapy at RCSI

  1. The BSc. Physiotherapy degree is a qualification for people who want to practice physiotherapy in Irish and international healthcare systems or in private practice.
  2. The Programme is accredited by the Irish Society of Chartered Physiotherapists (ISCP), a member organisation of the World Confederation of Physical Therapy (WCPT).
  3. Graduates from this degree course are automatically eligible for membership of the Irish Society of Chartered Physiotherapists.
  4. First Irish School of Physiotherapy to have a programme successfully reviewed by the Australian Physiotherapy Council, allowing graduates to apply to the Physiotherapy Registration Board of Australia for General Registration.
  5. The Programme is included on the List of Quotable Qualifications approved by the Physiotherapists Board of Hong Kong.
  6. Early clinical exposure: Strong clinical focus of programme with over 1000 hours in a variety of clinical settings, where supervised clinical training is undertaken.
  7. Single focus on health sciences: RCSI is focused exclusively on educating healthcare professionals and every student benefits from being immersed in the RCSI multidisciplinary healthcare environment. The College’s teaching staff are experts in healthcare education and the RCSI Health Professions Education Centre ensures that students experience the highest international standards of teaching, learning and assessment using innovative methods and the latest technologies.
  8. Small class sizes and dedicated facilities.
  9. Research opportunities: Students are also provided with opportunities to participate in research through the RCSI Research Summer School.
  10. RCSI is ranked in the top 250 institutions worldwide in the Times Higher Education World University Rankings (2017-2018).
  11. At least 65% of the undergraduate student body is from outside of the European Union, making RCSI a unique College in which to study.
  12. Access to a network of over 16,000 Alumni practicing throughout the World.
  13. Location: Dublin ranked as 3rd Friendliest City in the World (Condé Nast Traveller's Guide 2016) and RCSI's city centre location provides superb access to the heart of the City.
  14. Location: Ireland ranked Number 1 by Lonely Planet as the World’s Friendliest Country.




Student Testimonials

Three months into my last year at St. Marys Academy in Winnipeg, Manitoba in Canada, I came to a conclusion: I wanted to become a physiotherapist. As I looked into my options, I was thrilled to find that RCSI, the school that both of my sisters were currently attending, offered a Physiotherapy program. After being accepted, I knew this would be the school for me. While the thought of leaving home was daunting, I was ready to experience new cultures, new people, and a whole new method of learning. Or in other words, I was ready to experience all that RCSI had to offer.

My time here has been incredibly rewarding. As the Physiotherapy Foundation year class representative I have been able to help be the voice of my own smaller class of future physiotherapists, as well as the whole class of 2018. Unlike any university I have toured through, RCSI provides its students with a tight knit community of small sized classes, and students from all walks of life. The opportunities to challenge and enjoy yourself academically, socially, and physically are endless. From rock climbing outdoors, to enjoying a dramatic production, RCSI is by far a school that excels at providing its students with everything that they need. I am so grateful for every opportunity that attending this school has given me and hope that my next three years are just as memorable.

Julia Verrelli Student Testimonial

Julia Verrelli
(Class of 2018)




Entry Requirements

The School of Physiotherapy receives applications from Non EU students who have studied in many different countries and undertaken many different high school systems. The list below shows the most frequent academic programmes with which International students apply for the course. If your educational programme is not covered on this list, please email the Admissions Office directly for further information.


GCE A -Levels

Applicants must present a minimum of three A-levels with minimum grades of BBB to include Mathematics and one of the following laboratory science subjects – Biology, Physics or Chemistry. Applicants must also have completed a minimum of 6 subjects at GCSE level, which must include a minimum of grade C in English and Mathematics.


IB Diploma

Applicants must attain a minimum score of 32 IB Diploma points (inclusive of bonus points) to include three subjects at Higher Level and three subjects at Standard Level. Subjects taken must include English, Maths and at least one laboratory science subject.


Note: Candidates are required to undertake all 6 IB examinations in one examination session.



TER required: 80%
Australian High School Certificate or equivalent with no less than an average of B in each subject.
Six subjects are required which must include English, Mathematics and a science subject from the group Physics, Chemistry and Biology.

Australian Foundation programmes
The following foundation programmes are eligible for consideration for entry to the School of Physiotherapy:
  • Monash University Program
  • Trinity College Foundation Program at the University of Melbourne
  • University of Queensland Foundation Program
  • University of New South Wales Foundation Program

Students who have completed one of the above Australian foundation programmes presenting English, Maths, Chemistry and Physics or Biology and with a minimum overall score of 80% will be eligible for consideration for entry to the Undergraduate Physiotherapy programme. No individual module score should be less than 70%.

Other foundation programmes not listed above may be considered. Enquiries should be emailed to the Admissions Office.



Applicants must have completed their high school examinations with a minimum average score of 85% and competitive grades in Biology, Chemistry and Physics or Mathematics in Grade 12.


Hong Kong Diploma in Secondary Education (HKDSE)

All applicants will be expected to take the 4 core subjects plus 3 elective subjects and to achieve minimum scores of Levels 5, 5 and 4 from the subjects Chemistry, Biology, Physics and Mathematics. Minimum scores of Level 3 must be achieved in all remaining subjects.
In addition applicants must achieve HKDSE English Language Level 5 or an overall IELTS score 6.5 with no less than a 6.0 in any band.


United States

Applicants presenting the American High School Diploma must achieve a minimum GPA of 3.5 including competitive marks in two of the following subjects in Grade 12: Biology, Chemistry and either Physics or Mathematics.


RCSI recognises the American High School Diploma Programme delivered by a number of international schools located outside of the USA. Please visit this website for a list of recognised schools. If your school is not listed, please email the Admissions Office for more information.


Middle East and Gulf Countries

Students who graduate from government/public and bilingual high school programmes that are delivered throughout the Middle East cannot apply for direct entry to RCSI.
Such students must complete a recognised pre-university/foundation programme (see sample list below) prior to applying to RCSI. Applicants who have undertaken A-level or IB may be eligible for direct entry to RCSI’s undergraduate physiotherapy programme and should refer to the relevant sections above.


Pre-university/Foundation Programmes

Students who graduate from high school systems that do not meet the National University of Ireland regulations for direct entry to the undergraduate programmes offered in RCSI may undertake a recognised pre-university/foundation programme and apply to RCSI on the basis of the results obtained in their selected programme. RCSI does not make recommendations or have any preferred providers from the programmes listed below.

Other foundation programmes may be considered. Enquiries should be emailed to the Admissions Office.



Irish Leaving Certificate

Non EU Applicants must present a minimum of 6 subjects [1 x H5 and 5 x O6/H7] to include English, Mathematics, a laboratory science (either Chemistry or Physics or Biology) and a second language. In addition to meeting these subject requirements, applicants must also achieve a minimum of 480 points in the same sitting of the Irish Leaving Certificate examination.


INTO St Georges University of London Foundation Programme in Medical, Biomedical and Healthcare Sciences

Minimum overall score of 65% with a minimum of 68% in Academic English, a minimum of 60% in Chemistry and no individual module score less than 55%.


Bellerbys College Foundation Programme

Overall average score of 70% across the academic modules with no less than 55% in any individual module.


Dublin International Foundation College (DIFC)

Minimum grades AAAB in subjects English, Mathematics, Biology and Chemistry.


Liverpool International Foundation Programme

Overall average score of 60% across all modules with no less than 60% in any individual module.


Scottish Highers

Applicants must complete the Scottish Higher Examinations with minimum grades of AAABB, which must include Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Mathematics and English.


English Language Requirements

Teaching in RCSI is through the medium of English; therefore, all applicants are required to demonstrate a high level of competence in the English language.

Applicants (whose first language is not English) must either meet the minimum English language matriculation requirement as outlined above or separately in the IELTS examination (academic stream) with an overall average score of 6.5 with no individual section lower than 6.0.

Note: All IELTS test results must be less than 2 years old at the time of admission.




Course Fees


  • Non EU fees for the academic year 2018/19 are €25,000.
  • Please note that RCSI offers academic scholarships worth €7,000 per annum to privately funded students, reducing the overall tuition fee to €18,000 per annum.
  • An additional one off payment on first year fee of €135 applies for registration with the National University of Ireland (NUI).






To review any of the following policy documents and statements, please visit the Policies page:

  • Am I an EU or Non EU Student (for application and fees assessment)
  • Applicants with Disabilities Policy
  • Complaints and Appeals Procedure
  • Data Protection Policy
  • Fees Policy
  • Fitness to Practice Information
  • Policy and Procedure for Admitting Students under 18 years of age
  • Statement on Confidentiality and Declaration of Interest pertaining to admission
  • Statement on Feedback pertaining to admission
  • Statement on Fraud pertaining to admission
  • Statement on Garda (Police) Vetting
  • Statement on Infectious Diseases and General Health
  • Undergraduate Admissions Policy
  • Undergraduate Schools Transfer Policy




Visit RCSI - Open Days and Education Fairs


Open Days Education Fairs
Book a Campus Visit or School Tour
  • To book a guided tour of the RCSI campus, please email the Admissions Office at least one week in advance.
  • Guided tours normally take place every Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 11am-12pm (outside of bank holidays etc.).





  1. What do I do if I am experiencing difficulties with my RCSI online application?

    Please ensure that you are not applying before or after the application period (1st November - 1st March (late applications accepted until 01st July) or 1st July – 15th November (late applications accepted until 15th January) if an Atlantic Bridge applicant). If you are experiencing difficulties please email the Admissions Office and indicate what the difficulty is.
  2. Can I have the application form sent to me by post?

    No, all applicants applying directly to RCSI (Non EU applicants from outside North America) must complete the RCSI online application.
  3. Are students guaranteed housing?

    Mercer Court Accommodation is located immediately adjacent to the College and is reserved for new incoming students. Capacity is limited and places are offered to students on a first come first served basis. The Student Services Department maintains a Registry of Accommodation and assists students in finding suitable accommodation. Details in relation to accommodation are available in the Student Life section of the website.




Contact Us


The Admissions Office is responsible for the admission of students to all of the College's undergraduate programmes.
Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland
Admissions Office
123 St Stephen's Green
Dublin 2
Tel: 00 353 1 402 2248


The Atlantic Bridge Program is responsible for compiling applications of students residing in Canada and the USA to all of the College's undergraduate programmes.
3419 Via Lido, Suite 629
Newport Beach, CA 92663
Tel: (949) 723 6318




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