Step-by-step information to making use of for a school place in 2022 – The Irish Occasions


1. January 2022: Register with

In case you are focused on getting a spot at an Irish college, institute of expertise (IT), teacher-training school or personal school the place locations are provided via the CAO utility course of, go to by January twentieth and make an utility, paying €30 by credit score or debit card. After January twentieth and till February 1st, the price rises to €45.

All of the CAO needs at this stage are your private particulars together with your title, deal with, telephone quantity, any incapacity or particular studying issue, nation of beginning, nationality, e mail deal with, cost particulars and particulars of any post-second-level course (PLC) or different {qualifications} you may have.

When you may have carried out this, you’ll get your CAO identification quantity. From this level onwards, chances are you’ll point out which programs you want to be thought of for subsequent September.

Nevertheless, you may have the liberty to depart it for now and return to your utility in Might or June to listing or amend your course selections up till the July 1st deadline. Essentially the most complete supply of knowledge on programs is on

2. February/March: Take into account PLC choices

The additional schooling (FE) sector has 1000’s of alternatives for college kids who could take into account {that a} 12 months consolidating their studying in a selected space of information whereas growing their tutorial self-management expertise, would higher put together them for profitable engagement with a third-level programme.

FE can also be extraordinarily helpful for many who could not safe the CAO factors for his or her most well-liked course alternative. Many third-level schools reserve as much as 10 per cent or extra of the general locations for candidates who’ve efficiently accomplished a level-five FE award in that particular self-discipline.

Schools of additional schooling, which offer these programmes all through the nation, report that many college students who defer getting into third stage immediately from faculty and as a substitute spend a 12 months securing a PLC award usually carry out much better than their faculty friends once they progress to universities and ITs a 12 months later.

If in case you have a energy in a single topic space in class however is probably not academically sturdy throughout the total vary of Leaving Certificates topics, deciding to spend a 12 months at PLC stage in that topic may very well be a really sensible determination.

If college students get distinctions in all eight PLC modules, they’ve a superb likelihood of a reserved place of their most well-liked CAO course subsequent 12 months. See for a database of such linked programmes.

PLC programmes additionally provide coaching in sensible expertise for employment in a commerce or craft equivalent to enterprise, hairdressing, magnificence and the hearth and ambulance companies.

College students focused on native PLC programs must fill out utility kinds, normally on-line, from particular person schools within the subsequent few months; a hyperlink to a spread of FE programs and PLCs is now on provide via a hyperlink to FETCH programmes on the CAO web site. FE locations are provided totally on a first-come, first-served foundation and could also be unattainable to safe later within the 12 months.

Within the 2021 CAO utility season, 13,125 individuals introduced a QQI (High quality and {Qualifications} Eire) FET/Fetac additional schooling award (previously NCVA). A complete of 4,406 others introduced FE awards obtained from different regulatory our bodies. Initially of August 2021 the CAO made 4,418 gives in spherical zero, nearly all of which have been to candidates presenting FE awards. Many of those gives have been for programs which require greater than 500 CAO factors from these making use of on the Leaving Cert alone.

3. If you wish to do nursing, verify your choices

For the reason that Well being Service Government minimize the variety of accredited nursing locations by 310 in 2010 to 1,570 throughout the monetary disaster in an effort to minimize prices related to paying pupil nurses throughout their fourth-year placements, the CAO factors required to safe a spot have been past the attain of many school-leavers, who in different circumstances would have turn into extremely expert nurses.

Many who don’t obtain sufficient CAO factors apply as a substitute to FE pre-nursing programs, within the hope of securing a CAO place the next 12 months. Nevertheless, solely a handful of locations are made out there by CAO schools via this route.

Minister for Additional and Greater Training Simon Harris has acknowledged publicly in current months that he’s sad with this case, and needs to see a gap up of alternatives for appropriate PLC graduates of pre-nursing programmes into our stage 8 nursing diploma programs. We wait with curiosity to see how lots of the 2021 pre-nursing college students obtain gives of locations in August 2022.

Till 2016, given the then tiny numbers of CAO locations on provide to FE graduates, most profitable PLC nursing college students utilized for UK programmes which have been funded by the UK’s Nationwide Well being Service (NHS).

Nevertheless, over the previous 5 tutorial years, new college students on nursing, midwifery and AHP (allied well being skilled) pre-registration programs in England – which result in a qualification with one of many well being skilled regulators – should take out upkeep and tuition loans fairly than getting a NHS grant.

This impacts programs resulting in skilled registration in nursing (all 4 fields), midwifery, physiotherapy, occupational remedy, speech and language remedy, podiatry, radiography, dietetics, orthoptics, working division follow, in addition to prosthetics and orthotics.

This variation has impacted vastly on the numbers of scholars from the Republic in search of nursing or paramedical programs within the UK via UCAS (Universities and Schools Admissions Service) as they are going to now should pay the total annual tuition price of not less than £9,250 (€10,837).

In October 2021 UCAS reported that 325 college students with Republic of Eire house addresses registered for nursing and midwifery programmes in both Northern Eire or Britain.

An extra 520 candidates secured locations within the different paramedical programmes listed above. Some 90 candidates secured a spot in drugs or dentistry, with 35 succeeding in getting a spot in veterinary science.

4. Test the Brexit impact

Though Britain has left the European Union, the Frequent Journey Space settlement between the UK and Eire implies that Irish college students will likely be levied charges of €9,250 and won’t be handled as worldwide college students who should pay considerably greater charges within the UK.

In 2021, 850 college students from this State opted to review in Northern Eire, the place charges are £4,000-£5,000; 460 travelled to Scottish universities, paying £9,250 charges for the primary time as a result of Brexit, and 900 accepted a spot in England or Wales.

Different EU candidates to UCAS aren’t as lucky as they’re levied worldwide charges of as much as £30,000-£40.000 a 12 months, which has led to a collapse of their purposes to UCAS and a corresponding enhance in continental EU college students accepting gives from the CAO this 12 months.

Some 5,356 continental EU candidates sought a CAO place in 2021, over 2,200 obtained a stage 8 provide, and 870 (up from 330 previous to Brexit) at the moment are learning in an Irish third-level school.

This pattern will develop strongly within the coming years, given Eire’s standing as the one English talking nation within the EU and can solely improve the linguistic and cultural mixture of our universities. Will this new pattern put strain on CAO factors and the supply of pupil lodging for Irish college students? Solely time will inform.

5. January and Might/June: Selecting a school course

It is advisable apply for any course listed as restricted within the CAO handbook by February 1st. All different programs could be added or eliminated out of your utility listing as much as the ultimate change-of-mind deadline on July 1st.

If you wish to apply for college in Northern Eire or Britain, you should finalise your course listing with UCAS by January twenty sixth. The price for 2022 purposes will likely be £22 for one alternative, or £26.50 for two-to-five. All candidates to UCAS might want to register of their Hub to start out and entry their utility.

For FE programmes you should point out which PLC programs you’re making use of for in your preliminary utility to every school.

For programs in different EU nations provided via English, time limits are on the course profile pages on

Between February Fifth and March 1st, any CAO applicant could change a course alternative for a price of €10. In case you are a mature pupil or have utilized for a restricted utility course, or if you wish to apply for a course you haven’t but listed and want to appropriate or amend your utility file, you should report any errors or adjustments to the CAO by March 1st (price €10).

In any other case, you don’t must make course adjustments at this stage but when it’s important to, you need to use the change-of-mind facility (Might Fifth-July 1st) with no cost.

Earlier than the top of Might, all candidates obtain a press release of utility file as a ultimate acknowledgement and to confirm that every one info is correct. If this doesn’t arrive by June 1st, contact the CAO instantly.

Accompanying this assertion will likely be a change-of-mind type, which you need to use as much as the time limit at 5pm on July 1st. You could make as many adjustments as you want on-line.

6. July/August: CAO gives

Within the first week of July 2021, the CAO made gives to six,698 people who have been nearly completely mature candidates (aged over 23) and candidates who accepted and deferred a spot final 12 months.

An extra 4,418 -plus people obtained gives in spherical zero at the start of August. Most of those have been to FE graduates who had a PLC award. A number of hundred locations in graduate drugs are provided at this stage additionally.

These gives can be found on-line however you’ll want to go online to get them and there’s no e mail or textual content alert.

When the change-of-mind interval closes on July 1st, sixth-year college students look ahead to the outcomes of their Leaving Cert in mid-August. When the outcomes are out, admissions officers within the third-level establishments inform the CAO of the variety of locations out there on every course.

The CAO then allocates locations by way of laptop, based mostly on the outcomes of every qualifying pupil and the directions of the admissions officers.

Schools provide a selected variety of locations on every course listed with the CAO. College students are provided their highest alternative on every listing that their factors give them entry to. If there are 100 locations on provide, the 100 college students with the proper entry necessities, who’ve the very best factors, will likely be provided these locations in spherical one.

When the CAO receives the Leaving Cert outcomes, every candidate’s selections are examined by the pc, beginning with their first alternative on every listing and dealing downwards. When their factors fall inside the variety of locations provided on a course, the pc gives that place and removes all lower-preference programs.

The CAO could later provide a spot on a course listed greater in your listing if it turns into out there.

It’s crucial that candidates listing their selections within the order they need them, from one to 10, with one being their most desired course and 10 being the least desired.

7. Finding out overseas

Because the UK loses a lot of its attraction to Irish college students as a result of Brexit and better prices related to the withdrawal of NHS funding to nursing and paramedical programmes, European universities, which supply greater than 1,100 undergraduate levels throughout all disciplines via English, are attracting rising numbers of Irish candidates.

There at the moment are as much as 1,000 Irish undergraduate college students in first 12 months undergraduate programmes in Dutch universities alone, with many a whole lot extra scattered throughout schools all through Europe.

A few of these European universities, which rank within the high 100 worldwide in worldwide rating, who registered 4 or 5 Irish college students 5 years in the past, at the moment are admitting greater than 100 college students a 12 months (

As is the norm in continental Europe, charges vary from simply over €2,000 within the Netherlands to no charges in Germany and Scandinavian nations. Medical and veterinary programmes in jap European nations cost charges of €10,000 upwards.

Many of those nations have invested of their third-level infrastructure for hundreds of years and have ample locations to accommodate most aspiring candidates.

In current a long time, as a result of decrease beginning charges, fewer younger individuals are in search of third-level locations so locations are extra simply out there. Matriculation entry necessities are much like Irish universities, two H5s and 4 O6s within the Leaving Cert generally however, in contrast to in Eire, there are not any CAO factors necessities.

A pupil on 300 CAO factors might properly safe entry to a European college programme to review, for instance, physiotherapy or psychology – programs which might require not less than 500 factors in Eire.

However provided that securing a spot in a European college for home in addition to exterior candidates is comparatively simple in comparison with an Irish one, failure or drop-out charges after first 12 months are excessive at as much as 40 per cent for home college students. Irish college students’ attrition charges on these programs are usually a lot decrease, in all probability reflecting a better stage of dedication required to safe the provide of a spot.

So be warned: after securing your first 12 months place, passing your exams and finishing the course over three to 4 years is a giant problem. Repeating first 12 months is usually not allowed, except you may have secured nearly all of required credit in your examinations.


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