The ISPhD at the University of Limerick is an innovative, interdisciplinary programme that has been designed to enable international students to undertake and successfully complete a research dissertation at PhD level, and at the same time, develop the theoretical and practical knowledge and skills required of teaching professionals in the English medium instruction Higher Education context.   The programme was successfully launched in 2020 and the first cohort of 130+ students are due to complete it in 2024.

Programme Team

The programme team is made up of Course Director, Dr Angela Farrell, ISPhD Programme Administrator, Dr Niamh Lenahan, Academic Supports Coordinator, Dr Catherine Martin, and ISPhD intercultural advocate, Michelle Daly.


This programme comprises: 1) a taught component worth a total 75 credits; and, 2) a PhD research component worth a total of 270 credits, making an overall total of total 345 credits, and is structured as follows:

1. Taught component (total of 75 credits)

English Medium Instruction (General and Transferable Skills Studies)

2. PhD research and dissertation component (total of 270 credits)

Completion of a 60,00 to 80,000-word dissertation (in line with standard UL policy) followed by Viva Voce (in line with standard UL policy)

Academic, Cultural and Social Supports

The programme has been designed to facilitate the successful academic, cultural and social transition of international students to the University Limerick and to the local community and Ireland and features the following supports:

Did You Know?

In 2020, the University of Limerick was ranked at 17 in the world’s top 900 universities as part of a recent study of green universities. The survey is part of the Green Metric ranking of world universities and aims to provide information regarding the current condition and policies related to Green Campus and Sustainability in universities all over the world. The University was awarded a Green Campus Status for energy, travel, transport and biodiversity by the Foundation for Environmental Education. It is also 6th in the world for Suburban Campus according to the UI Green Metric World University Ranking 2018.