Solid research is vital if a student wants to make the best choice on their CAO form.
That application form itself is pretty straightforward and the hardest part is deciding on the courses to apply for, and the order in which to list them.
CAO allows applicants to list up to 20 courses on their form. These may include 10 level 8 (hons degree) courses and 10 level 7/6 (ordinary degree/higher certificate) courses.
By placing a particular course in the number one slot, an applicant is indicating that they wish to receive an offer for this course above all else. The same principle applies to the order of subsequent choices – for example, a student would prefer the third listed course over the fourth listed course.
If a student can say they will enjoy every course on their CAO form, and they can see how each of these courses supports their career goals, they should be included in their application, even if they Don’t get the syllabus right.
In many cases, the difference between two courses in the same field can be quite subtle, making it difficult for applicants to make a decision. Similarly, two courses with the same title at two different colleges can be very different. That’s why in-depth research is important.
Although it is not necessary to fill all 20 places, applicants should try to enter as many courses as possible. CAO cannot issue offers for courses that are not listed. However, applicants are not bound to accept an offer once issued.
Hopefully, at this stage, most of the applicants have as many courses as they want to enter in the form. Filling all the slots can be a struggle and, again, research is key to getting as close to this goal as possible.
After the release of the Leaving Certificate result, the CAO will work the order of merit list of each applicant until they are able to make an offer based on the marks obtained by the applicant and whether they are eligible for admission requirements in terms of subjects and grades. fulfill the. , It can be the top choice of the student or the latter preference. Applicants will get an offer for the highest listed course for which they have the marks and admission requirements.
Importantly, once an offer is made, the applicant may not receive an offer for a course with lesser preference in subsequent rounds. However, an applicant may receive an offer for a higher preference course at a later stage. About 50 percent of Level 8 applicants usually receive their top choice and about 75 PCs receive one of their top three. The success rate is higher at level 7/6.
Many sixth years are concerned about the large increase in minimum marks requirements seen over the past two years. This is understandable, and courses that seemed a realistic goal a few years ago may now be out of reach.
Also, many are concerned that the students who have taken the Leaving Certificates in 2020 and 2021 may re-apply to the CAO with the benefit of higher-than-normal marks secured in the Leaving Certificates in those years.
Where exactly the minimum marks will land is unpredictable each year, and much more this year. However, applicants should, as always, proceed by placing their dream courses at the top of the order of preference list, placing some more realistic options in the middle position and placing some banker courses last, always guided by which course Would prefer instead of points.
It is important that young people take responsibility for researching their own courses. However, for most, this includes skills they have not yet fully developed. Young people may find it difficult to navigate open days, question academic staff in a meaningful way, and critically evaluate course material. Many will benefit from parental support in this process.
Careersportal.ie Course Finder and qualifax.ie are excellent starting points for accessing course content. But discussing the content of these courses with your parents will really add value and help the youth to articulate their views. When given the opportunity to speak orally, without judgment, answer simple questions like ‘What do I like about this course? Is there something that I don’t understand? How is it different from other courses I have visited?’ can be very beneficial.
A helpful aspect of the CAO application process is that it does not have a form that has to be sent at any point of time and acts like an online file where an applicant can log in and out at any time and submit his/her application till completion. can work on. Date 1st February at 5 pm.