For 39,000 of the students who got their Leaving Certificate results last Wednesday, there is good news this morning of an offer to study at a third-level college.
They are among 52,000 applicants for higher-education places to get offers through the Central Applications Office (CAO). The offers have been available to check online since 6am.
75,200 places are being offered, but 23,000 people, who are being given a choice of a course on each of their level-8 (honours bachelor degree) and level-7 or 6 (ordinary degree or higher certificate) lists, must decide, by next Monday evening’s deadline, which, if any, they wish to take up.
For half the 40,599 people being offered a level-8 course, it is the degree that was top choice on their list, when the opportunity closed, on July 1, to change course orders. But for another 11,393, their level-8 offer is their second or third preference.
Those still awaiting their first choice, or who have not yet been offered a college course by the CAO, must wait until Thursday week, August 27, for the next round. Last year, however, only 3,300 offers were made at that stage, from which just 1,100 received their first offer.
While 50,500 of this year’s 79,000 applicants for entry to first-year undergraduate programmes are receiving a first offer, places are also available, today, for 1,600 people offered places in preliminary rounds earlier this month and in early July.
They include mature applicants, overseas students, or those with further-education qualifications who applied for courses that have a quota of places for such students.
After today’s offers have been issued, 18,500 CAO applicants will have yet to be given a chance to study on any course for which they were seeking admission.
Regardless of their status, CAO general manager, Joe O’Grady, said everyone who has applied this year should receive a notification by post today — or, if not, by tomorrow. For those getting no offer at this point, a statement of application should arrive.
“It is extremely important that applicants notify CAO, immediately, if there are any errors or omissions in any of the correspondence received from CAO. They must make sure to do this well in advance of the next offer-round to allow any corrections to be considered in subsequent offer-rounds,” he said.
Those who have received offers today include 34,595 sent an acceptance onto either a level-7 or 6 programme. It was the first preference of 29,000 of these applicants, from their lists, which chosen from 471 courses at those levels.
With another 4,300 getting their second or third preference from their level-7/6 application, 97% who were offered a place in these categories this morning have an offer of one of their three top picks.
While it is good news for these students, it might limit offers from these courses in round two, although those who have also been offered a level-8 programme may decide not to accept one of those level-7/6 offers received today.
At the end of the CAO offers process, last October, just 47,000 places, on 1,400 courses at 45 colleges, had been filled. However, with all but 1,800 taken up after round-one offers, only limited vacancies will be left after next week’s second round.
The CAO has listed courses for colleges which have not yet filled places from applications to date, and which are re-opening for new applicants to seek entry.
These ‘available places’ courses can be found on the CAO website, with applications for them open from midday tomorrow to existing CAO applicants, but also to anyone who has not already applied this year.
* More details of this facility, and advice for those wishing to accept an offer, or still awaiting one, can be found in the 16-page ‘Choices for College’ supplement with today’s Irish Examiner, which also lists the round-one points for every CAO course.
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