Students seeking entry to postgraduate courses of basic subjects funded by the state will be obliged to pass an oral Irish exam under new changes.
So far, students have to complete separate Irish oral exams for DCU, Mainooth University, Marino Institute of Education and Marie Immaculate College.
Each oral exam was held on the same day as an interview at each third-level institution. A failure in the Irish oral exam resulted in discounting the interview, a practice that significantly contributed to the stress of the candidates.
From next year, however, for all candidates will be an Irish oral exam that will be held before students apply for their preferred institution.
The Irish Oral Exam will be administered by the Mainooth University Center for Research, Education and Testing of the Irish Language. It will be held in February 2019 at locations around the country.
Candidates will then apply to their preferred institution and in time be invited to interview those institutions. There will be no further oral oral examination in Ireland.
Higher education institutions have advised that the oral Irish exam will cost € 65 per candidate. However, students who access through access programs may be able to get a refund.
Education Minister Joe McHugh said the changes would help to run the running-out process.
"In addition, I believe that a standardized Irish oral part will do a lot to help reduce the anxiety and pressure and help future students to do their best."