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Scholars of Trinity College Dublin

People often have many questions regarding the Scholars of Trinity College and everything involved in the tradition, so we have tried to answer as many questions as possible here. You might like to look at our list of Frequently Asked Questions first.

The body of Scholars of Trinity College is one of the most enduring features of the University of Dublin – as old as the College itself – and an important symbol of the University's commitment to academic excellence in an environment which broadens the mind and offers an experience beyond the mere learning of facts.

Scholars are selected on the basis of a special examination, typically taken a little more than mid-way through the Senior Freshman (second) year of undergraduate study. This particularly searching examination is not compulsory, and students must show exceptional commitment, discipline and motivation if they are to display sufficient merit to be elected to the position of Scholar.

The announcement of each year's New Scholars and New Fellows is made with suitable fanfare by the Provost from the steps of the Examination Hall in early May on Trinity Monday, one of the most important days in the College Calendar.

Scholars are entitled to have their course fees waived, to take rooms on campus, and to attend Commons for free.

Being drawn from all faculties of study in College and having the privilege of residing in rooms on Campus for a number of years, Scholars are in a unique position amongst the College community in general and the residential community in particular. Scholars are well placed to receive an education that not only provides all the best that Trinity's teaching and research facilities have to offer, but also to benefit from those less tangible but hugely important aspects of a University education articulated by Cardinal Newman, in his essay 'The Idea of a University':

If I were asked to describe as briefly and popularly as I could, what a University was, I should draw my answer from its ancient designation of a Studium Generale, or "School of Universal Learning." This description implies the assemblage of strangers from all parts in one spot; - from all parts; else, how will you find professors and students for every department of knowledge? and in one spot; else, how can there be any school at all? Accordingly, in its simple and rudimental form, it is a school of knowledge of every kind, consisting of teachers and learners from every quarter. Many things are requisite to complete and satisfy the idea embodied in this description; but such as this a University seems to be in its essence, a place for the communication and circulation of thought, by means of personal intercourse, through a wide extent of country.