Restricted entry courses are courses that must be included on the initial CAO application and cannot be added after the February 1 closing date (excluding Medicine which has an earlier deadline of January 20th to allow for the taking of the HPAT test). Most of the restricted entry courses fall into a broad range of categories such as; creative, dramatic, visual media, art, music and architectural studies. These courses require further assessment in the form of interview or portfolio presentation for consideration of entry onto those courses.
If an applicant is interested in a restricted entry course then the most important thing is to ensure it is on the CAO application before the February 1st deadline. This allows also for the time needed to prepare for the extra assessment. Planning this preparation early will be important when managing study time during the months leading up to the leaving cert exams.
In addition to the restricted entry courses, HEAR and DARE applicants will need to indicate their intention to apply for those schemes. The HEAR scheme applies to students trying to overcome socio-economic disadvantages, whilst the DARE scheme applies to students with an illness or disability. Both of these schemes assist students with entry to third level, with the provision of a small number of allocated places on reduced points. The schemes also provide access to learning and support services whilst in college.