Montessori Education BEd (Honours)

  • Course Code

    MT 970

  • Field of Study


  • Type of Course:

    Honours Degree

  • Type of Qualification:

    BEd (Honours)

  • Type of Study:

    Full time

  • Application Closing Date:

Course Duration:

4 Years (8 semesters)

Course Summary

MTU acknowledges the increasing professional expectations of both the Early Childhood and School Age Education & Care workforces in Ireland and the subsequent need for competent, experienced, technically proficient personnel in the growth area of quality pedagogical practice. In line with the extensive policy and practice developments for the sector is the demand for personnel with specialist knowledge and advanced skills in these inter-related areas. The BEd (Honours) in Montessori Education programme is designed to cater for such demonstrable sector needs.

Admission Requirements:

For admission to a programme, standard applicants must

  • score the necessary CAO points and
  • meet the minimum entry requirements


Leaving Certificate examination in six subjects i.e. H5 in two subjects, and O6/H7 in four other subjects. The six subjects must include Mathematics, and either English or Irish.


A number of places are usually available to mature students and other non-standard applicants. Selection is by way of shortlisting and competitive interview which is informed by equality legislation and equal opportunities.  


Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL)

RPL is when formal recognition is given for what you already know prior to starting on a programme or module. With recognition of prior learning, the focus is on learning and not on experience as such. You can apply for RPL in any MTU accredited programme or module. Any recognition of prior learning will be considered on a case by case basis by the Head of Department with the assistance of the programme team, and the RPL Officer. The student will need to evidence how their prior learning maps to the full complement of Learning Outcomes for a particular module to facilitate achievement of the Standards of Proficiency for Social Care Workers. For detailed information on RPL, please click here.


Garda Vetting
Please note: MTU uses the National Vetting Bureau (NVB) to help assess the suitability of all applicants on this programme. It is important to note that participation in or completion of this programme may be affected by subsequent disclosure/discovery.


Depending upon the outcome of the vetting process, the Institute reserves the following rights:

  • to not register a student
  • to remove an existing registered student
  • to delay the student’s practice placement modules.

In all circumstances, it is the applicant student’s responsibility to proactively disclose any convictions/cases pending. The Institute reserves the right to inform any placement agency of the existence of any convictions/cases pending.

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Info re MTU Mathematics Exam only:
Some students who apply to MTU courses may not achieve the required entry standard in Mathematics through the Leaving Certificate. For such applicants, MTU offers a second chance to reach the required entry standard through a MTU Mathematics Exam. This second chance facility allows applicants (depending on their results in the MTU Mathematics Examination) to gain entry to courses with an Ordinary Leaving Certificate Mathematics entry standard, and (with a higher level of performance) courses with a Higher Leaving Certificate entry standard. Please click here for more information.

Work Placement

The extended period of Placement across all 4 years in this programme will further expand the employment opportunities for graduates as the sector looks favourably on extended Placement opportunities and experiences during respective programmes of study.

Leaving Cert Subjects:

Helpful subjects include English and Business

Further studies

Graduates of the programme will be provided with the opportunity to progress directly into the workplace or apply for further study at postgraduate level in the areas of: (i) Teacher Education (PME Primary Teaching @ Mary Immaculate College, Maynooth University, Dublin City University and Marino Institute of Education, amongst others), (ii) Intervention (Masters in Play Therapy @ Cork Institute of Technology, MSc in Speech & Language Therapy (Professional Qualification) @ University of Limerick, amongst others), and/or (iii) Leadership (MA in Leadership in Early Years Education and Care @ Institute of Technology Carlow, Institute of Technology Sligo and Technical University of Dublin).


Sport, Leisure and Childhood Studies

For information on Fees/Student Grants/Scholarships and Financial Assistance, please click here.



Recorded November 2021




What is Montessori Education

Dr Maria Montessori (1870 - 1952) developed an innovative, child-centred approach to education. The goal of Montessori education is to foster a child’s natural inclination to learn. Montessori teachers are trained facilitators in the classroom, always ready to assist and direct. Their purpose is to excite the child's enthusiasm for learning and to guide it, without interfering with the child's natural desire to teach themselves and become independent.


Programme Rationale

The Department is keenly aware of the increasing statutory, regulatory, and policy requirements of (i) the Department of Children and Youth Affairs (DCYA),

(ii) Pobal,

(iii) Tusla, and

(iv) the Department of Education, with regard to the Early Childhood and School Age Education & Care sectors; sectors that continually seek ‘work-ready’ graduates with substantial practice-based experience established, even at this early stage of their careers. The role of the embedded comprehensive teaching-based Placement Programme that provides not just breadth, but also significant depth, in the philosophical underpinnings of Montessori Education is an integral component in achieving such sector demands. 


Programme Objectives

This programme will

  • Enable graduates to specialise in their chosen field by offering specific niche modules in the education and care domain, e.g. Montessori: The Pre-School Child, Montessori: Middle Childhood, Montessori & Transformation, Introduction to the Arts and Learning Through Creativity.
  • Ensure that graduates are appropriately prepared with the necessary skills for careers in the Early Childhood Care and Education (ECEC) and School-age Childcare (SAC) sectors. This aligns with ‘First 5: A Whole-of-Government Strategy for Babies, Young Children and their Families’ (2018), which outlines the importance of the workforce in delivering high quality ECEC and SAC, through the development of a professional workforce.
  • Provide graduates with increased opportunities to apply for Level 9/10 programmes of postgraduate study. The breadth of study from birth to twelve years of age provides great scope for research across both early and middle childhood.



This programme serves to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of the Montessori approach to the education and care of children in early and middle childhood. Students are supported to develop the requisite knowledge(s), values and competencies to work effectively in a range of education and care settings, in line with current legislation, standards and quality frameworks.



This programme serves to provide students with a comprehensive understanding of the Montessori approach to the education and care of children in early and middle childhood. The students will be supported to develop the requisite knowledge(s), values and competencies to work effectively in a range of education and care settings, in line with current legislation, standards and quality frameworks.


Work Placement

The aim of professional practice placement is to provide students with the opportunity to experience various education and care settings, thus facilitating the professional growth, development and training of the student over the duration of this programme of study. The placement blocks are 2 weeks in year 1, 12 weeks in year 2, and 12 weeks in year 3. Learning situations within the working environment facilitate the student to integrate theory and practice and develop competence in practice skills. The programme team ensure that all placement experiences provide training, support and challenge for the students.


Q & A

Q: What is the difference between a BEd (Hons) in Montessori Education and a BA (Hons) in Early Childhood Education & Care (ECEC)?
While there are strong links between the existing ECEC programme in the Dept. and this Montessori Education programme, there are also significant differences as the latter embeds Montessori philosophy and pedagogy throughout all the practice modules. While graduates will have a foundation in ECEC in general, they will have specialist knowledge and practices in relation to the Montessori Approach to Education and Care. This BEd in Montessori Education programme incorporates pedagogy relating to children from birth to twelve years of age while the BA in ECEC covers the span from birth to six years of age.


Q: On successful completion of this honours degree, am I qualified to teach at Primary School level?
Graduates are qualified to teach in Montessori primary schools in Ireland. These are fee-paying schools where children are educated using the Montessori pedagogy. Teachers in these schools do not require a Teaching Council number.


Q: Is there a pathway to primary school teaching from this course?
BEd (Honours) Montessori Education graduates are eligible to apply for the Professional Master of Education (PME) in primary teaching, which is a 2-year Level 9 Qualification, provided they present with the minimum Leaving Certificate requirement in Irish or suitable equivalent. The Department of Education recognises this PME to teach in Primary Schools.

MTU Cork has developed a website which gives full details of all modules for all courses. The website also has information on recommended textbooks, average weekly workload, assessments and exams.


Full details of the modules on this programme of study are available by clicking the following link:


Modules >> 

The BEd (Hons) in Montessori Education programme will combine key theories with applied research and practical skills to afford graduates appropriate knowledge, practices and values to work as professionals in a wide range of settings in the ECEC and School Aged Childcare (SAC) sectors. Specifically, graduates will be qualified to work as ECEC practitioners and managers, SAC practitioners and managers, and Montessori Teachers in both early childhood and primary education settings, amongst many more related areas.

Graduates of the programme will have expertise in the following areas

  • Montessori pedagogy for early/middle childhood
  • Child Psychology
  • Leadership in early childhood & school age education
  • Anti-bias curriculum
  • Learning through Creativity/Developing Arts based curricula
  • Inclusive Practice
  • Physical Activity & Health Promotion
  • Leading outdoor learning

Potential Areas of Employment

  • Early Childhood Education and Care practitioner and manager
  • School Age Childcare practitioner and manager
  • Montessori Teacher in both early childhood and primary education settings
  • Development Worker with City and County Childcare Committees
  • Quality Specialist and/or Inclusion Specialist with Better Start
  • Early Years Specialist with Tusla Inspectorate
  • Tutor and/or Research Assistant

Application for this course are processed by the
Central Applications Office (CAO)

CAO 1st Round:

Entry 2021: 409

CAO Cut off:

CAO Average:

Not Specified

Marian Quinn
021 4326022

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