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The only Post-Primary teaching course accessible from anywhere in Ireland

Do you want to partake in the empowerment of young people aged 12-18 through education and play a part in helping each individual student in your classroom achieve their potential?

Our Master in Post-Primary Education is developed by teachers for teachers to help you become a professional educator, positioned to be a leader in the field of post-primary teaching. Hibernia College has a reputation for pioneering new teaching methodologies and embracing change in the ever-evolving world of education.

On this programme, you will specialise in two post-primary level subjects and your enthusiasm for, and knowledge of, these subjects is what will enable you to foster a love of learning in your future students.

It is not a requirement to have prior teaching experience to be eligible to apply for this course.

Reasons to study with us

  • Accessibility

    The PME in Post-Primary Education is available to graduate student teachers wherever you live. Complete your teaching practice in local schools and train as a teacher without having to relocate.
  • Experience

    Hibernia College is at the forefront of educational research and pioneering teaching methodologies. We are constantly embracing and implementing change in the classroom, empowering you in your future career.
  • Community

    The live online tutorials and forums are a great source of support and a useful way to get to know your fellow classmates. You will also connect with your peers and faculty at regular onsite workshops.
  • Faculty

    Our programme is created by teachers, for teachers. The dedicated and published faculty is leading in the field of post primary education and is active in researching contemporary education issues.

Is this programme for me?

The Post-Primary teaching course is for those who want to effect change in a meaningful way, by realising the talents and passions of their students and encouraging young people to utilise and get the most out of their abilities.

You understand that the role of the teacher is to facilitate the academic and personal growth of your students, allowing them to develop appropriate skills and social abilities.

You are passionate about your two teaching subjects and it is this passion and subject mastery that will motivate and foster a love of the subject material in your students, thereby ensuring that they bring as much learning as possible with them in to their future endeavours.

You believe in the importance of engaging with students beyond the classroom. Extracurricular activities allow you to build rapport with your students and staff alike.

Post-Primary Teaching Course

The Master in Post-Primary Education is a 120-credit award at level 9 and the duration of the programme is two years. It is a blended learning programme, combining online content, virtual learning environments and face-to-face delivery to develop professionals and experts who are positioned to be leaders in the field of post-primary education.

The PME in Post-Primary Education at Hibernia College consists of a sequence of modules that reflect the contemporary issues faced by post primary teachers today and the skills and knowledge required of them in order to be expert teachers who enable effective student learning. In particular, it recognises the importance of ensuring that student teachers consider that teaching itself is understood and practised as a form of self-critical learning by them; learning that is driven by inquiry, reflection and improvements based on evidence (Teaching Council 2011).

The content, learning and assessment processes of the programme aim to provide skills and knowledge such that student teachers understand the role of the teacher as a professional, reflective and reflexive practitioner.

There is a highly favourable employment outlook for our post-primary school teaching graduates due to the demographic explosion in Ireland, the short term shortage in the number of newly qualified teachers resulting from new Teaching Council requirements, and the increasing international demand for Irish trained teachers.

Key Information

  • Start Dates:

    April and September
  • Duration:

    Two years
  • Next Intake:

    Spring 2021
  • Application Fee:

  • Academic Accreditation:

    QQI (Formerly HETAC)
  • Professional accreditation:

    The Teaching Council
  • Available Teaching Methodologies:

    Gaeilge, English, Modern Languages, History, Geography, CSPE, Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Accounting, Business, Economics, Agricultural Science
  • School Experience:

    24 weeks in total
  • Tuition fees:

    €7,500 per academic year

Programme Structure

  • On-Demand Content

    12 to 15 hours per week of on-demand online lectures and self-study
  • Online Tutorials

    Approximately 2 to 4 hours per week of live online tutorials
  • School Experience

    24 weeks undertaken in three schools - 2 blocks of 7 weeks and 1 block of 10 weeks.
    This includes periods of observation, engagement in wider school activities, reflection and evaluation
  • Onsite Delivery at Weekends

    Students attend on site workshops and conference days on Saturdays. At times during the programme, this commitment is every Saturday
  • Assessment

    Assessment is conducted through a combination of written exam and continuous assessment, including assessment of your school placements.

    The Research Methods module enables students to write a 10,000 word research dissertation.
  • Additional Programme Detail

    Click here for more information on the programme including module breakdown.

Hibernia College is monitoring the changing situation in relation to COVID-19. All School Placement arrangements, dates and procedures are regularly reviewed in line with the most recent health and safety advice. The College reserves the right to make any changes as it sees fit.

Spring 2021 Indicative Calendar

  • April 2021

    Programme commences
  • April – July 2021

    Online and face-to-face events and assessments
  • August – October 2021

    Online and face-to-face events and assessments
  • November – December 2021

    School Placement 1
  • November 2021 – February 2022

    Online and face-to-face events and assessments
  • March - April 2022

    School Placement 2
  • May – September 2022

    Online and face-to-face events and assessments
  • September – November 2022

    Advanced School Placement
  • November 2022 – April 2023

    Online events and Research Project
  • January 2023

  • March 2023

    Research Project submission
  • April 2023

    Programme ends
  • November 2023


Fees and Costs

Application Fee: €95

Course tuition fees: €15,000

Fees are payable as follows:
Year 1: €7,500
Year 2: €7,500

A deposit payment of €1,000 is required to secure your place. The balance of Year 1 fees, €6,500 are payable by the applicable due date.

Hibernia College is an approved college for the purposes of s.473 A of the Taxes Consolidation Act, 1997, enabling eligible students to avail of tax relief on tuition fees paid. More details are available on the Irish Revenue website.

Garda Vetting Fees: €50

Graduation: current fee is €100

Payment of tuition fees are to be made by bank transfer. Application fees are paid online, and must be paid in full before application will be processed.

Loan Facility for Students

The TUI Credit Union have introduced a loan facility for students of post primary teacher education. Please click here for more information.

School Partnerships

The Hibernia College Post Primary Schools Partnership Programme (PPSPP)

The PPSPP is a partnership between Irish post primary schools and Hibernia College. It aims to create a positive, supportive and progressive learning and practice environment for graduate student teachers (GSTs) on teaching placements in schools. Hibernia College students must complete three blocks of school experience/professional practice of seven, seven and ten weeks’ duration as part of their Professional Master of Education programme. School Experience is the cornerstone of the programme when students are afforded an opportunity to engage in classroom practice in two subject areas and acquire the teaching skills and competencies required to fully participate in all aspects of post primary school life.

Benefit to Schools

There is strong evidence that schools which partner in Initial Teacher Education benefit in many ways. This is a powerful professional development opportunity for co-operating teachers, mentors and the wider school community. Mentoring requires the development of leadership skills, invites a re-evaluation of the mentor’s own practice, exposes the school to new resources and fresh approaches, and offers mentors access to a mentor network, where best practice can be shared and research and other career-focused networks can be forged.

Entry Requirements

All applicants must satisfy the following requirements:

Level 8 degree

Level 8 Degree

Applicants are required to have a Level 8 degree, which satisfies the curricular subject criteria which are set and regulated by the Department of Education and Skills in association with the Teaching Council of Ireland, and which must be satisfied independently of Hibernia College’s entry requirements.

It is the applicant’s responsibility to ascertain whether their specific qualifications are in accord with the Teaching Council requirements, satisfying the general and specific criteria for post primary registration purposes. As part of your PME Post Primary application, you are required to complete a subject declaration form for all subjects you are qualified to teach and which you are seeking to have recorded on the Teaching Council’s Register of Teachers. Teaching Council regulations stipulate that, in addition to holding a Level 8 degree (or equivalent) on the Irish National Framework of Qualifications, you must meet the requirements for at least one post primary curricular subject. The requirements for all qualifying subjects are set by the Teaching Council.

Applicants must follow the Teaching Council guidelines:

  1. Click on the subject(s) of your choice and complete the form.
  2. Please ensure that all details on the form are correct, that you hold a Level 8 degree (or equivalent) and the requisite total number of ECTS credits in the relevant subject.
  3. Print the form, sign it and return it with the other documentation requested. This form must be returned to Hibernia College with your application form and transcripts. This form will be submitted to the Teaching Council if your application to this programme is successful.

Additional Information

Note 1: Applicants who are unsure of the level of their primary degree should contact the conferring college or university or contact QQI.

Note 2: Hibernia College is in no way responsible for the assessment of qualifications for the purpose of registration. While we will make every effort at the time of application to notify applicants if we believe there may be a concern with their qualification, the fact that they are accepted on to the Professional Master of Education programme does not mean their degree will be recognised for entry on to the Register of Teachers by the Teaching Council. Hibernia College will not be held responsible if a graduate of the Professional Master of Education is refused admission to the Register of Teachers on the basis of an erroneous declaration at the point of application and admission to the programme.

Note 3: There are no concessions for mature students. All applicants must meet the same minimum entry requirements to be considered for admission to the programme, and all applicants who meet those requirements will be called for interview.

Note 4: All students entering the programme will be subject to Garda vetting. Students successful in securing an offer of a place on the programme will be advised that all offers are subject to a satisfactory Garda vetting.


All applicants who are deemed to have met the entry requirements and who have submitted a fully completed application form, with supporting documentation and payment of the application fee, will be interviewed.

We strongly encourage applicants to submit their completed application form as early as possible.

Interview Scheduling

Acceptance and entry to the course is by interview. The process is as follows:

  • Applications that are fully completed with all supporting documentation will be acknowledged by email.
  • Applicants are placed in the queue for processing and will be contacted by phone or email during daytime hours to schedule an interview.
  • The Admissions Team will make contact directly with the applicant to arrange an interview. During busy periods, the waiting time for interview may be slightly longer.
  • Applicants will usually be given a notice period of approximately one week ahead of their allotted interview date and time.
  • Interviews normally take place in the daytime, Monday to Thursday at Hibernia College, Block B, The Merrion Centre, Merrion Road, Dublin 4.
  • Applicants are expected to attend at the scheduled time and date.
  • Applicants must bring a valid photographic identification with them to the interview. This should be a current passport or driving license. If an applicant fails to present identification, the interview panel cannot proceed with the interview.
  • Applicants will receive a reminder by email confirming the scheduled interview, directions to our premises and other information.

Once an interview has been scheduled, in the unlikely event that an applicant has no choice but to cancel, the Admissions Team will endeavour to re-schedule the interview.  However, during busy periods or nearing the start date of the programme, this may not be possible.  Please note that if you are not in a position to attend the interview on the date offered, it is important that this is communicated to the Admissions Team at the earliest opportunity.

The Interview

The interview will be approximately 25 mintues in length.

At the start of the interview, applicants will present on a junior or senior cycle curriculum topic of interest.

The topic chosen should be related to the applicant’s first subject choice.

The presentation should be no longer than 3 minutes.


The interview will also focus on four key elements:

  1. Motivations and the Profession

Candidates will be given the opportunity to show they possess skills, interest and enthusiasm for both of their subject areas and the profession.

  1. Suitability to Teach and Subject Knowledge

Candidates will be provided with an opportunity to show that they have investigated both of their subjects and have given some thought to teaching at different levels to different class groups. The reflective task which candidates will complete prior to interview will also be used to ascertain the candidate’s subject knowledge.

  1. Preparation

Candidates should be able to display knowledge of Hibernia College and the programme for which they have applied.

  1. Competencies

Candidates will have the opportunity to demonstrate competencies which will be pertinent to teaching e.g. effective planning, responsiveness and interpersonal and reflective skills.

Please note that this list is given as a guide only.

Interview Outcomes

  • The outcome of the interview will be that the applicant is recommended or not recommended.
  • The outcome of the interview is communicated via e-mail only and is not given to applicants by phone.
  • In the interest of fairness to applicants who are unsuccessful, the College will accept one repeat application following the initial application.
  • Applicants can make two consecutive applications only.  Following which, they must take a break in applying for two calendar years.  This is intended as a means of affording applicants the time required to address any shortcomings identified in their application.
  • Those who are recommended will be made an offer for the next available cohort. To accept an offer, applicants must submit documentation and payment in accordance with the terms of the offer.
  • To accept an offer, all applicants will have to pay a deposit it €1050.
  • Where the College has concerns about any individual failing to show genuine commitment to the commencement and/or completion of the programme following repeated applications/admissions, the College reserves the right to refuse future applications.  In addition to this, in instances where an individual demonstrates that they do not have the potential to succeed on the programme and/or in the associated profession, the College reserves the right to refuse a subsequent application.

Is this a full-time or a part-time course?

The programme is taught over approximately two calendar years and it involves a workload of approximately 37 hours a week.

The College does not provide verification that the programme is defined as full-time or part-time for the purposes of third parties, as those third parties have different definitions of these terms.

How flexible is the programme?

Hibernia College is a blended learning institution dedicated to improving access to higher education through the delivery of accessible programmes.  Hibernia College is the most accessible and flexible initial teacher education provider in Ireland and this PME in Post Primary Education is the only such programme that is available to graduate student teachers wherever they live.

This PME programme does require a considerable commitment of the student for self-study, online tutorials, onsite workshops and blocks of school experience. Please be aware that students will be required to travel to attend onsite sessions on Saturdays. All practical components of the course are taught during face-to-face classes. Online tutorials take place after 6pm on weekday evenings and on-demand programme content is available for students to study at a time that suits them.

Do I need previous teaching experience?

No. It is not a requirement to have prior teaching experience to be eligible to apply for this course.

When is the next intake?

There are two intakes per year, in the spring and autumn, normally April and September.

Are there concessions for mature students?

No. All applicants must meet the same minimum entry requirements to be considered for admission to the programme and all applicants who meet those requirements will be called for interview.

I’ve sent in my application. How long will it be before I get called for interview?

Once you have submitted your application, you will receive an email from the Admissions team confirming receipt and outlining further information about the interview format and other practical details. This email will contain a likely timeframe for interview. In general, depending on how busy the period is, this can be 1-4 weeks. We endeavour to provide candidates with a minimum of 5 days’ notice of their interview time and date. Applicants should be prepared to accept an interview within this timeframe. Interviews normally take place at the Hibernia College Dublin office.

I have a primary degree but I don’t know if it’s ‘Level 8’.

If you are unsure of the level of your primary degree, you should contact the conferring college or university, or contact the awarding body or QQI.

Is recognition of prior learning possible?

No, not for application to this programme. However, prior learning and significant experience may be taken into account when assessing suitability for the second subject methodology.

When do the live online tutorials take place?

The live online tutorials normally take place on weekdays from 6 – 9.30 pm, but they can also take place outside these times.

Is there an upper age limit for enrolling on the programme?

No. There is no upper age limit.

Is there a limit to the number of times I can apply?

Yes, there is a limit. In the interest of fairness to applicants who are unsuccessful, the College will accept one repeat application following the initial application.

Following which, they must take a break in applying for two calendar years. This is intended as a means of affording applicants the time required to address any shortcomings identified in their application.

What can I expect in the interview?

Eligible applicants will be required to complete an interview process that will comprise a reflective task in your elected teaching subjects accompanied by a formal interview that will consist of general and subject specific questions. The subject-specific part of the interview will provide you with the opportunity to demonstrate your subject competence in your elected subject areas. The general interview questions will provide you with an opportunity to demonstrate your suitability for post primary school teaching.  The interview will take place at Hibernia College.

I have a primary degree but I do not know if it qualifies for the Teaching Council requirements for registration as a teacher.

Ultimately, your level 8 degree will determine your choice of these two subjects when applying for the programme. It is the Teaching Council, not Hibernia College, who will determine what subject(s) your degree will allow you to teach.

Once you complete the PME in Post Primary Education course with Hibernia College you will register as a teacher with the Teaching Council of Ireland. In order to do this, you need to meet their requirements in at least ONE of your two subjects. You must ascertain whether you meet these requirements BEFORE applying to Hibernia College. To do this you must fill out a declaration form for all of your registrable subjects.

The declaration form outlines what credits and modules you need to register in a subject. There is then space for you to fill in your course modules and credits awarded. It will be clear once you have completed the form if you meet the criteria or not. You should have your degree transcripts or list of modules to hand when filling out the forms to speed up the process.

You will need to submit either one or two declaration forms when applying to Hibernia College depending on whether you have one or two registrable subjects. The College will then pass this information to the Teaching Council for review. Each student must ensure that they hold the requisite credits when completing the declaration form(s). Failure to meet the criteria, as set out by the Teaching Council, will result in you not gaining Teacher registration status, down the line.

Where can I find information about the Professional Diploma of Education (PDE)?

The Professional Diploma of Education is no longer running and has been replaced by the PME in Post Primary Education.  Information on the PDE course can be found here.


If you have any additional questions, please email us at


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