Pause. Breath. Wait a second. Then consider your options

Students who are disappointed in their CLA offer this morning may feel that their world is depleting and their plans have been shattered, says Neil McCann, study advisor at St. Vincent's high school in Glasnevin, Dublin 11. But he points out that the CLA is not the best and the best and there are other options.

"The focus is on the collective labor agreement," he says. "If you miss your desired course, it may feel as if the future has been destroyed, but that is not reality."

If you are not satisfied with the results, what should you do? "There is not a huge amount you can do on the day, if you're angry, talk about it with family, friends or the school counseling coach, usually present on the results day or the few days after. to retreat and reflect on how bad it went, go ahead with your plans for today, meet friends or go out as you planned, and tomorrow you can start a discussion about what the next step is. "

So, if you still want to continue in education, what exactly are these options?

Repetition of the Leaving Cert

For students with a specific, long-term goal in mind – such as medicine or veterinary medicine – it can be particularly shocking to miss, and especially if they have missed their course with less than 10 or 20 points. "They had a goal and they still have it," says McCann. "It did not happen so they have to think about what the future holds, they have been focused for so long and, once they get through the first disappointment, they still want to do the course and so it can be a simpler decision for them to repeat That said, it can still feel very raw if you have invested so much time and energy. "

The decision whether or not to repeat must be carefully weighed, McCann says. "Approximately 2000 students choose to do it every year, but it's a difficult decision, you've had a stressful year and you're dealing with disappointment, so you have to ask yourself: do I have the will and the resilience to To go through the process again If the answer is yes, repeat can work for people They have been to dance, they know the beats of the sixth year and how you can set priorities and, as long as they meet the minimum subject requirements, do not have to they may no longer use English, Irish, mathematics or a second language, six subjects will suffice and they may even consider adopting a new subject. "

Many returning students will switch to a new school for a new start and a more intense focus, with colleges for secondary education and places such as the reimbursement institute that specializes in refresher courses.

Follow a course with a lower preference

Guidance counselors advise CAO applicants to fill in 10 options in the level 6/7 and level 8 sections of the form, says McCann. "With that in mind, hopefully there should be an offer that you would like to take in. If you are offered a course that is one of your ten, it may not be your first choice, but there is a reason why you should You consider taking it and then you can get one of your top choices in the second or third round and switch to that course, having said that, you only get that offer if someone else rejects their place, so those numbers will never be very big and you can still miss in round two. "

Students who have completed the level 6/7 side of their CAO form will receive an offer if they meet the points requirements of the course. They may find that this ordinary diploma is exactly what they want, or they can use their level 6/7 to go directly to a linked higher level level 8 course. For advice, contact the Admissions Office of the relevant higher education institution.

Follow-up training

The door to higher education can be opened with a post-Leaving Cert (PLC) program in one of the many local colleges for secondary education in Ireland.

"I have always encouraged students to have both a CAO and a follow-up course," says McCann. "For some, further education is a relapse or plan B, but for others it is a good first choice, and most students have a good idea as they progress in school, roughly where the chips fall when they get their exam results."

Bernadette Moore, director of the Rathmines College of Further Education, says that continuing education is a good qualification in itself and a springboard to higher education. And some of those who continue with further education have chosen them over a place on a university course.

"We have about 700 students in a very mixed group, more and more people come to us who have been given a place on the third level, but they are not doing so because they are not entirely sure whether the university course is suitable for them. For example, if they are interested in business and finance, but have not had much contact with them, they will come to us for a one-year Level 5 course that will help them see if it is the right fit for them, "she says. . "They have heard from friends or acquaintances who have followed a college education and dropped out, so they are clever by getting their qualification with us at the end of a year and from there to decide."

Others are disappointed that they did not get the Leaving Cert results they hoped for, or they want to work with as little delay as possible, so a level of a year of level 5 or level 2 of a year can be precise what they need. "Our fees are much lower than those of the university and some of our students may have a part-time job and get the level 5 or 6 that works for their needs," says Moore. "Some students come in with the intention to stay here for a year and find that they like the lecture, the atmosphere, the small classes and the individual attention, so they decide to stay a second year and level 6. to do."

A PLC course can still offer the chance to obtain a degree, but it will take another year. "Most courses on the third level have a link to a PLC option in a secondary school, although there are some major exceptions such as drugs," says Neil McCann. "You can take courses in the fields of art, business, computers, nursing and science, which can be a way to access your desired course at the third level, it just requires a little research."

Students can find more information by asking the local higher education college about the progress of the link between their chosen study program and a higher education program; they will have the information at hand when you submit your first application. You can also find subject-specific information on the very useful website, via the link to "PLC progress routes" under the course sheet.

The learning time

Apprenticeships are currently undergoing a renaissance. In the immediate aftermath of the recession years, the number of people following a trade or internship plummeted. When the old Fás program board was abolished, his successor Solas placed a renewed emphasis on apprenticeship. The government has also set targets to include the number of people doing an internship and there is a special focus on encouraging women – who are hugely under-represented in the sector – to consider them.

It is a tempting offer: learn the trade, go study, get paid and get a level 6, 7 or 8 qualification that is very mobile and can be used worldwide. This is especially tempting for those who struggle to pay the often hefty costs of the university, but it should be noted that the reward in the first year of an internship is not generally enough to live on.

The old familiars are still there. In the construction industry there are traineeships available in bricklaying, carpentry, stonecutting, plastering, plumbing and timber production. In the electric field, aircraft mechanics is particularly popular, while there are also learning contracts in refrigeration and air conditioning, electronic security systems, instrumentation and more. Under the banner of engineering, students can study polymer processing technology, industrial insulation, metal production, pipefitting and more. The ICT apprenticeships include ICT-associate professional network engineering and ICT-associate professional software development. Students interested in engines may consider repairs of bodywork, assembly of construction factories and perhaps the most recognized learning company of all, engine mechanics.

There are also newer, innovative options outside the trading area, with more offers that are expected to be used in the coming years. These include chefs and, in the area of ​​finance, there are accountant technicians, insurance practices and employees of international financial services and specialists.


Think of the apprenticeship. Training courses are linked to their local training and training boards and the course content is developed in collaboration with a specific local employer to train people for certain roles in a company, usually leading to a QQI level 5 price. Participants learn during their work and can get a small scholarship. Some of the courses can lead to a level 6 or internship, or to a permanent job in a local industry.

Work or travel

A gap year to work or travel can be a good way to find out where you want to go. Education will still be there when you are done.

The Irish Times will publish & # 39; Smart options & # 39;, a special addition to exploring follow-up courses on 23 August

Source link

Leave a Reply