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Dublin, Belfast, Newry, Ireland, Northern Ireland

Program Description

For this week-long field experience, students will be placed within a primary and/or secondary classroom setting within a host school in Newry, Northern Ireland. Students participating in this short-term study abroad experience will have opportunities to observe educational practices from a cross-cultural perspective in order to develop one’s awareness of the factors that influence one’s own cultural identity. In developing this awareness, students will gain a more robust understanding of the impact of cultural practices on the contextual factors within a classroom setting.

While in the classroom, students will be expected to actively engage with their cooperating teacher and interact with host students in one-to-one, small group, and large group settings.

This program also includes a two-day visit to Dublin, Ireland and a two-day visit to Belfast, Northern Ireland.

Location Description

In this educational field experience, JMU students will be immersed with the schools in the community of Newry, Northern Ireland. Through their work in the local schools, JMU students will be able to observe how educators work with students in this evolving cultural context to promote understanding and global awareness. In addition, these schools are experiencing a rapidly growing influx of immigrants, primarily from Eastern Europe, a situation that is reflected within the schools in the City of Harrisonburg.

This field experience will also provide JMU students opportunities to work with various populations and gain knowledge and skills to create a more inclusive learning environment within their own classroom. Ultimately, this experience strives to develop within JMU teacher candidates enhanced skills in providing culturally responsive instruction that is unique to the cultural settings in Newry but very applicable to providing solid educational practice in any instructional setting.


Robbie Higdon | | MIddle, Secondary, and Mathematics Education

Anne Loso | | Early, Elementary, and Reading Education


Students will be housed in shared double rooms within a hotel or hostel during the stays in Dublin, Belfast, and Newry. These lodgings will be located within walking distance to the city center as well as the host school locations. 

All meals will be provided as part of this program. Breakfast will be included as part of the program lodging accomodations. Students will be provided a meal stipend to cover lunches and dinners, approximately 16 meals. A welcome meal and a farewell meal are also included within the program.

Additional Items to Consider

Proposed itinerary:

5 January 2022-Depart for Dublin, Ireland

6-7 January- Arrive Dublin (2 nights)

8-9 January-Travel to Belfast (1 night)

10-14 January-Field Experience in schools in Newry, NI (6 nights)

15 January-Travel to Dublin and return to the USA

Students must a valid passport that is good through at least 1 July, 2022.  Visas are not required for entry into Ireland or Northern Ireland. Students will be required to provide a certificate of completion for child abuse prevention training. 

COVID-19 Location Information:

Each country has different requirements upon entry with regard to COVID-19. Please check this website for the most up-to-date information on what is required for the country (or countries) that are part of this program. Please note that this changes often, so we encourage you to check back frequently.

Applicant Criteria

Applicants must have a GPA minimum of 2.5

Students must be fully admitted to and be in good standing within the teacher education program.

Application Process

This list serves as an application preview. To apply, students will need to complete the following:

  • Study Abroad Online Application ($40 fee)
  • Short Essay 
  • Interview with Program Director

Further details and instructions about these application requirements will be available upon log-in. 

Application Deadline


All dates are tentative and subject to change


EDUC 490: Special Topics in Education (1 credit)

EDUC 501: Workshop in Education (1 credit)

Courses listed here are to be used as a general guideline for program curriculum. *All courses are considered pending until approved by the Academic Department, Program, and/or College.


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