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27 May 2017


Entry Requirements FAQ's

arrowQ1: What does matriculation mean?

A: Matriculation refers to the minimum requirements for entry to the University. Before you can be considered for admission you must meet these minimum standards. Matriculation has nothing to do with points.

arrowQ2: To which students do NUI Matriculation Regulations apply?

A: NUI Matriculation Regulations apply to all students seeking to enter the NUI institutions. These are the four NUI constituent universities, UCD, UCC, NUI Galway and Maynooth University; the NUI recognised colleges,
RCSI and Uversity;
St Angela’s College, Sligo, a College of NUI, Galway, Shannon College of Hotel Management now part of
NUI Galway; and the Burren College of Art linked with NUI Galway;
NCAD and IPA linked with UCD. .


arrowQ3: What are the NUI matriculation (minimum entry) requirements?

A: For holders of the Leaving Certificate, six subjects are required. In 2017, the minimum standard is Grade H5 (Higher Course) in two subjects and Grade H7 (Higher Course) or O6 (Ordinary Course) in four subjects. Under the older grading system, the minimum is Grade D1 at Higher Level in two subjects, and at least Grade E in four other subjects.


arrowQ4: Can students combine the results of the Leaving Certificate Examinations taken in different years?


A : An applicant may combine the results of Leaving Certificate examinations obtained in different years for Matriculation purposes and may combine grades achieved under the old grading system with grades under the new system. The minimum grades set out above will apply. However, this applies to Matriculation only; it does not apply to points which are awarded on the Leaving Certificate results obtained in the same year.

Also, it should be noted that students seeking to enter Medicine must achieve the minimum entry (Matriculation) requirements and minimum course entry requirements in the same sitting of the Leaving Certificate. Students are advised to contact the Admissions Office of the Constituent University they wish to apply to for further details.

The compensatory system that applied under the old grading system is no longer in place with the new system.
However, where students are combining grades under the old and new systems, it will continue to apply. Students will be able to matriculate if they have achieved a Grade E in a subject under the old grading system, and also, among their six subjects, achieve three H5 grades or 1H3 and 1H5 grade under the new system.



arrowQ5: I wish to matriculate on the basis of QQI further education qualifications. What do I need?

A: In general, you need Distinctions in five subjects in QQI Level 5 and Level 6 Awards, for admission to degree courses in cognate areas. UCC will accept four distinctions but one must be in Communications. It would be a good idea to check with the individual University or College.

 

arrowQ6: What subjects do you need?

A: For Basic Matriculation on Leaving Certificate results you need six subjects. Among the six subjects, for all programmes, English and Irish must be included and there are other subject requirements related to the area of study, as follows:

- Architecture:
Mathematics (UCC), a Third Language and Mathematics (UCD).
- Arts, Human Sciences, Law: a Third Language.
- Art and Design (NCAD) a Third Language or Art or Design Communication & Graphics.
- Commerce: a Third Language and Mathematics
- Computer Science: Mathematics (Maynooth University, UCC, UCD) Mathematics; and a laboratory science subject or Technology (NUI,Galway).
- Engineering: Mathematics and a Laboratory Science subject (UCD); Mathematics and a Laboratory
Science subject or Technology (UCC, NUI Galway); Mathematics and a Laboratory Science subject or
Applied Mathematics or Technology (Maynooth University)
- Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences, Veterinary Medicine:
a Third Language, Mathematics and a Laboratory Science subject.
- Nursing: Mathematics and a Laboratory Science subject.
- Science, Agriculture, Engineering & Architecture, Food Science and Technology:
Mathematics and a Laboratory Science subject (NUI Galway, Maynooth University, UCC); Mathematics and a Laboratory Science subject or Applied Mathematics or Geography (UCD); Maynooth University will accept Applied Mathematics in place of an Applied Laboratory Science subject for certain BSc courses but not for Biological and Biomedical Sciences, Biotechnology, Psychology through Science or Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Chemistry.
- Social Science: A Third Language (UCC, NUI Galway and Maynooth University); UCD Bachelor of Social Science: A third language is not required and is replaced with a requirement to present Mathematics (minimum OD3) for matriculation purposes. Veterinary Nursing (UCD) Mathematics; and a Laboratory Science subject or Home Economics.

arrowQ7: What is the requirement for students whose first language is not English:?

A: Candidates presenting Irish Leaving Certificate are normally expected to complete English as part of their examination programme. Applicants whose first language is not English and who wish to use an alternative proof of proficiency in English should contact NUI in the first instance.

arrowQ8: Is the Leaving Certificate Vocational Programme (LCVP) acceptable as a subject for Matriculation purposes?

A: No. While LCVP may be used for points purposes, it does not count as one of the six subjects acceptable for matriculation..

arrowQ9: Does everybody have to present Irish?

A: Generally speaking, anybody applying to an NUI institution who was born and had all their education in Ireland must present Irish for Matriculation purposes. There are some exceptions. These are covered in question 16.

arrowQ10: Has there been any change in the Irish requirement as a result of the change in the status of Irish at EU level?

A: No. The change in the status of Irish at EU level does not affect NUI matriculation and all students born and educated in the Republic of Ireland must present Irish as a matriculation subject unless they satisfy the criteria for an exemption.

arrowQ11: How do I apply to NUI for an exemption?

A: You need to complete the Exemption Application Form available from NUI. It can be downloaded at http://www.nui.ie/college/entry-requirements.asp. There are five sections in the form. Applicants must complete Section A and then the section relevant to them.

arrowQ12: I was not born in the Republic of Ireland. Am I exempt from Irish for NUI matriculation?

Yes. But you need to have your exemption recorded by NUI and communicated to CAO. To get this done, you need to complete the Exemption Application Form (available from http://www.nui.ie/college/entry-requirements.asp and return it to NUI with a copy of your birth certificate. Sections A and B of the Form are relevant to you. It’s better to wait until you have received your CAO application number before contacting NUI as otherwise you will have to send the CAO number in separately. Students resident in and applying from Northern Ireland/United Kingdom who present GCE/GCSE qualifications are automatically granted exemption from Irish and do not need to contact NUI.

arrowQ13: I was not born in the Republic of Ireland but hold Irish citizenship. Am I exempt from Irish for NUI matriculation?

A: Yes, this provision covers all students born outside Ireland, your citizenship is not an issue. Once you have a birth certificate from outside the Republic of Ireland you can apply for an exemption. (See Q12 above)

arrowQ14: I was not born in the Republic of Ireland but am going to school here. I would like to study Irish.

A: That’s fine. As you know, for entry to many degree programmes you must present a language other than English. You can use Irish for this purpose.

arrowQ15: I was not born in the Republic of Ireland but have had all my schooling in Ireland. Am I exempt from Irish?

A: Yes. You need to complete the Exemption Application Form (available from http://www.nui.ie/college/entry-requirements.asp and return it to NUI with a copy of your birth certificate. Sections A and B of the Form are
relevant to you. It’s better to wait until you have received your CAO application number before contacting NUI as otherwise you will have to send the CAO number in separately.


arrowQ16: How do I know if I am eligible for exemption from Irish?

You are eligible for exemption from Irish in the following circumstances
(i) If you were born outside the Republic of Ireland (26 counties)
Candidates (apart from those born in Northern Ireland/United Kingdom who present GCE/GCSE qualifications) are required to complete Sections A and B of the Exemption Application Form and send this with a copy of their birth certificate to NUI;

(ii) If your primary education up to the age of eleven years was outside the Republic of Ireland (26 counties); or

(iii) If your second level education took place for at least three years outside the Republic of Ireland.
Candidates applying under (ii) and (iii) above must complete Section A and Section C of the Exemption Application Form and have Section C of the Form completed and signed by the Principal/Head of their school. Wait until you have received your CAO application number.

Special exemptions (See questions 18 and 19).



arrowQ17: What does the third language requirement mean?

A: It means that you must present a language in addition to Irish and English as one of your six Leaving Certificate subjects. If you are exempt from Irish, you must present a language other than English. All languages available in the Leaving Certificate and all EU languages are acceptable. Classical Studies and Hebrew Studies are not considered as language subjects.

For students from outside the European Union who are presenting the Leaving Certificate, certification in their mother tongue or in another language may be acceptable. (See Matriculation Regulations 6.3 p. 21).


arrowQ18: What is the position of students with dyslexia with regard to exemption from Irish? (see note below)

A: There are special provisions for students whose dyslexia constitutes a significant learning difficulty. A student who has been granted an exemption from Irish at school on the grounds of dyslexia, having been assessed by a professional psychologist, should complete Section A and Section D of the Exemption Application form and return it to NUI. You should enclose a copy of the Psychologist’s Report together with a copy of the Department of Education and Skills Certificate of Exemption. In these cases NUI will grant an exemption from Irish and also from the Third Language requirement.

Sometimes students are diagnosed late as having dyslexia and have not come to the attention of the National Educational Psychological Service. In these cases, NUI will accept certification from a professional psychologist accompanied by a recent (no more than 3 years old) report from the psychologist. Students should complete Section A and Section E of the Exemption Application Form and return it to NUI enclosing a copy of the Psychologist’s Report and the NUI certification form signed by the Psychologist. Copies of these forms are available from http://www.nui.ie/college/entry-requirements.asp.

The position of students with dyslexia is complex. Exemptions are not automatic and are granted only on the basis of professional evidence. However, NUI is sympathetic to students who can provide professional evidence of the effect of dyslexia on their language abilities.

arrowQ19:What is the position of students with dyslexia with regard to exemption from the Third Language? (see note below)

A: The provisions set out in Q18 in relation to exemption from Irish apply also in the case of students applying for exemption from the Third Language requirement. Students applying for exemption from a third language on the basis of dyslexia need to complete Section A and D or E of the Exemption Application Form. http://www.nui.ie/college/entry-requirements.asp

The position of students with dyslexia is complex and exemptions are not automatic. However, NUI is sympathetic to students who can provide professional evidence of the effect of dyslexia on their language abilities.

Note on Q18 and 19 – Rationale

Where a student applies on the basis of dyslexia, for an exemption only from Irish, but intends to present a Third Language in the Leaving Certificate, the student must explain why he/she is applying for an exemption from Irish while continuing to study another language. (NUI finds it surprising that a student with serious dyslexia would continue to study a language. However, we appreciate that there may be special circumstances to justify this and we are prepared to consider such applications).


arrowQ20: If a student is granted an exemption, does he/she still need six subjects for matriculation?

A: Yes. Every student needs six subjects to matriculate.


arrowQ21: What happens if students entitled to exemptions don’t apply?

A: If students don’t apply to NUI and have their exemptions recorded, they will come up on CAO records as not meeting matriculation requirements and will not be offered places even if they have the points..


arrowQ22: I am repeating my Leaving Certificate and was granted an exemption(s) in a previous year. Do I need to reapply??

A: Once you have applied for and been granted an exemption, you do not need to reapply for the exemption. However, it is essential that you contact NUI in the year of your CAO application. CAO does not carry forward details of exemption(s) to the next year and NUI needs to re-send details of exemptions granted in the case of students applying again to CAO.

In order to have your exemption entered on your current CAO record you need to contact NUI with your original CAO number and your current CAO application number. Your exemption can then be transferred to your current application record. Failure to do this will mean that you will not be offered a place.


arrowQ23: I completed my second-level education in another country, but I am planning to attend an NUI Institution. What do I need to matriculate?

A: Our Matriculation Regulations booklet gives a comprehensive listing of the EU School-Leaving qualifications accepted for matriculation, and sets out the requirements for holders of their qualifications and also for those presenting the European Baccalaureate and International Baccalaureate. Holders of any other qualifications should contact the Admissions Office in the University or College where they are applying.


arrowQ24: I have applied to NUI for a language exemption on grounds of a learning disability. Do I need to make a separate application to the Disability Access Route to Education (DARE) to qualify under that scheme?

A: Yes.

An application for an NUI language exemption does not imply that application has been made to DARE; application to DARE must be made through the CAO.
The criteria for the granting of an exemption from the NUI Irish and/or Third Language requirements are not the same as those for DARE. Therefore the granting of an NUI exemption does not mean that a student is automatically eligible under DARE.

 

arrowQ25: I have a waiver from language requirements under DARE.  Do I need to apply to NUI?

A: Yes.

Yes. You should submit an application to NUI in order for your exemption to be recorded by NUI and CAO.

 


Main points to note:

• To matriculate on Leaving Certificate results, six subjects are required in all cases. From 2017, students must achieve a minimum Grade H5 in two subjects and at least Grade H7 or O6 in four other subjects and must satisfy the Irish requirement and (where necessary) the Third language requirement. (For those who did the Leaving Certificate in an earlier year, under the old grading system, students must have achieved a minimum Grade D1 at Higher in two subjects, and at least Grade E in four other subjects and must satisfy the Irish requirement and (where necessary) the Third language requirement).

• If you were born outside Ireland, you are eligible to claim an exemption from Irish for Matriculation purposes.
(see Q12).

• Students who have a DES Exemption from Irish must still apply for NUI exemption.

• Students applying for an exemption from Irish and/or the Third Language requirement on the grounds of dyslexia need to complete relevant Section of the Exemption Application Form and enclose Psychologist’s Report (see Q18 and Q19).

• Students repeating the Leaving Certificate who were granted an exemption in a previous year, MUST contact NUI with their original CAO Application Number and their current CAO Application Number (see Q22). Failure to do this will mean that you will not be offered a place.

• The criteria for the granting of an exemption from the NUI Irish and/or Third Language requirements are not the same as those for the Disability Access Route to Education (DARE). The granting of an NUI exemption does not mean that a student is automatically eligible under DARE (Q24).

Information contained in these FAQs apply to matriculation only. Comprehensive and updated information on entry requirements to University courses is available on NUI University websites. Students should consult these websites for information on specific courses.

If you have any questions at all about your matriculation status, please phone NUI (01 439 24 24) or send an email to registrar@nui.ie. We are always happy to discuss matriculation issues and help in whatever way we can. We do advise that if you have any doubts at all about your entitlement to exemptions or your matriculation status please contact us early. While we are happy to process applications for exemptions at any time, if they apply to NUI for exemptions students should be aware of CAO deadlines. If they apply to NUI after 31 July, this may be too late to qualify them for a CAO offer. We will do our utmost to help, but we can only work within the deadlines of other organisations. While NUI facilitates students by communicating the details of exemptions granted to the CAO on a student’s behalf, we are not responsible for any omissions that occur. We strongly advise students to contact us before 1 May in the year of their CAO application, to make sure that any exemptions subsequently granted will appear on their CAO record. If an omission should occur there is plenty of time to correct your record.