DECISIONS! DECISIONS! – Making important career decisions and deciding which course is best for you, can be difficult. It is important to make sure you are well informed and avail of whatever support is available.
How Do I choose A Course?
Research— It is essential to thoroughly research all your course options and not be too restrictive. A variety of supports and resource materials are available.
- Talk to a Guidance Counsellor and get access to careers information and advice, college prospecti and applications literature etc.
- Visit college websites, read their prospectus for details of the courses, including entry requirements
and course content. Ask yourself does the course suit your particular interest, abilities and career objectives?
- Where possible attend open days.
- Check out educational websites.
- For courses you are interested in, you should also check if fees are payable. Not all courses are covered by the Free Fees Initiative.
- If at this point you are still unsure of your exact career or course choices don’t worry, you can always submit an application, then if necessary use the CAO change of mind facility to change your course choices (with some restrictions ) & order of preference up to the 1st July 2017.
- Consider alternatives – maybe full time college is not for you. Are there other ways to the career you want
www.cao.ie – The Central Applications Office processes applications for undergraduate courses in Irish Higher Education Institutes.
www.qualifax.ie– information includes the title, code, content of each course available.
www.careersportal.ie—have a new tool to assist students researching CAO courses. The CAO Course Finder courses using any combination of filters including; Career Interests, Career Sectors, Regions, Colleges, CAO points, availability of QQI Progression routes, no maths required etc.
Money matters are an important factor in the whole application process. Most undergraduate students don’t have to pay tuition fees (Free Fees Initiative) BUT there is a Student Contribution (the maximum rate for 2016/17 is €3,000).
Check out www.studentfinance.ie for more information on finance options available including the Student Grant, Fund for Students with Disabilities, Student Assistant Fund, Back to Education Allowance etc.
You can find out more about the Student Grant and make an application at www.susi.ie. Applications for 2017 open on April 3rd. Note; last year the closing date for what they called ‘priority’ applications was in early July. The earlier thebetter for SUSI applications to ensure you are paid in time. However late applications are allowed, possibly up to the end of October. This will of course mean long delays in getting your applications processed.
www.citizensinformation.ie has additional information on fees and supports for third -level education.
Studying in Europe
Our colleagues in Crosscare have a great post on Studying in Europe which gives tips and useful websites so that you can find out more about more of the options available to you!
Our Going To College 2017 Guide
You can download our Rough Guide to applying for College 2017 HERE or by clicking on the photo below