Connect with us


Language exemptions can impact college applications




Language exemptions are granted to students with specific learning difficulties affecting language acquisition and this can happen in primary or secondary school.

Exemptions for college entry may also be granted to students who were born outside of Ireland or had a minimum amount of their education abroad. See for details.

There can be some confusion around how language exemptions impact on college applications and it is very important that students and parents are clear on what they need to do at this stage to make sure that the CAO is aware of an exemption. Every year there are applicants who are disappointed on the day of the CAO First Round offers because they don’t receive an offer in spite having the required points. One of the reasons why this can happen is because an applicant has forgotten to process their language exemption. They often assume that having an exemption from language in school means that colleges and universities are aware of that, but this is not the case.

Some, but not all, Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) have general entry requirements regarding languages other than English and they are not the same in all colleges and universities. It is important to note that the language requirements are not in place for all programmes in these HEIs so it is really imperative that applicants check the general entry requirements and specific course requirements for the programmes they are applying for.

There are four universities that come under the National University of Ireland (NUI); UCC, UCD, Maynooth University and NUI Galway, as well as member institutions which include Royal College of Surgeons, St Angela’s College, Sligo and National College of Art and Design. To apply for exemptions from any NUI college you need to complete the relevant form which can be downloaded from and post it back to NUI. It is recommended that you do this 21 days after opening your CAO account but if you haven’t done so, it is not too late. CAO are notified of the exemption by NUI and it should appear on your CAO account one month after being processed. To apply for language exemptions for courses in Trinity College (TCD), UL or Mary Immaculate College, you will need to contact the relevant Admissions Offices directly. Exemptions for TCD should appear on your CAO account by the end of May. You will receive a Statement of Application Record in May from CAO instructing you to check all your details including language exemptions, which are recorded in the Qualifications and Assessments section. If it is not there you will need to contact CAO immediately. CAO do not record exemptions granted by UL or Mary I so contact their Admission Offices directly for guidance.

Niamh Dwyer is a Guidance Counsellor in Scoil Phobail Sliabh Luachra, Rathmore, and Chairperson of the Kerry Branch of Guidance Counsellors. She is also a Career Consultant. For details see



Ring of Beara Cycle launches school programme

The Ring of Beara Cycle is for kids too! As part of its commitment to make a positive impact on the local community, the Ring of Beara Cycle are proud […]




The Ring of Beara Cycle is for kids too! As part of its commitment to make a positive impact on the local community, the Ring of Beara Cycle are proud to continue to with two great initiatives: its Kids’ Cycle and its sponsorship of the School Cycle Safety Programme.

The Ring of Beara Cycle will take place on May 25 with over 4,000 cyclists taking part. The event starts and finishes in Kenmare town, Co Kerry to complete either a 110km or 140km route encompassing the magnificent mountains, valleys and the rugged coastline of the Beara Peninsula.

Kids’ Cycle
Adults are not the only ones getting on their bikes on May 25 for the Ring of Beara Cycle. The event also has its very own cycle for children around the town of Kenmare. Not only does this give kids a chance to join in the days’ activities with their parents, but it’s free and a great way for kids to get outdoors and exercise in a fun and safe environment.
Open to any child in national school between third and fifth class and following a 2km route around Kenmare and a slightly shorter route for tinier ones, registration is from 9.15am in Kenmare town square. Parents and guardians are welcome to cycle with their children. All participants should bring and wear a safety helmet for the cycle.
School Cycle Safety Programme
Another community initiative from the Ring of Beara Cycle is the Cycle Right Programme, working with local schools to get kids’ up to speed on road safety and cycle best practices.
The Ring of Beara Cycle is working with Cycle Sense and Wheely Good Cycling Academy to deliver this 4-week programme to local schools in and around Kenmare and the Beara Peninsula.
Some 250 students across 8 schools are participating in this initiative, and the schools involved are: St John’s National School, Realt Na Mara National School , Lauragh National School and Tulloha National School in Kenmare, and on the Beara Peninsula: Scoil Chaitigheirn in Eyeries, Oir Cheann iNational School in Eyeries, Cahermore National School in Allihies, Scoil An Croi Ro Naofa in Castletownbere, Mhichil Naofa in Castletownbere, Adrigole N S in Bantry, and Trafrask Mixed N S in Ardrigole.
This initiative is normally paid for by the schools themselves but is now free for all the children taking part thanks to a generous donation by the Ring of Beara Cycle Committee that covers the cost of delivering the programme to these schools.
Cycle Right is the National Standard for Cycle Training and provides practical cycle safety and skills training through Department of Transport, the Road Safety Authority and Cycling Ireland. The aim of the programme is to promote cycle confidence on the road in increasingly complex scenarios delivered by qualified, registered trainers.
No stranger to giving back to the local community, not only does the Ring of Beara Cycle make a significant, positive impact on the local economy, it also encourages kids to enjoy themselves on their bikes and to do this safely with confidence.

Continue Reading


Browne’s Agri Open Day is a must-attend event

Browne’s Agri Open Day is always one that was marked in  Agri calendars as a ‘must-attend event’. This year’s event is taking place on Wednesday May 22 on their site […]




Browne’s Agri Open Day is always one that was marked in  Agri calendars as a ‘must-attend event’.

This year’s event is taking place on Wednesday May 22 on their site in Castleisland.

The event was always renowned for getting great advice on the Agri topics of the day as well as a window into modern developments taking place in all aspect of Agriculture and country living.

The extending of the yard area will allow more space to be given over to even more exhibitors, ensuring all areas of agriculture, and rural life will be showcased on the 22.

There will be experts on hand to advise on Calf Rearing, Grassland management, Weed control, Drainage, Fencing , Shed and Yard Layouts as well as bee keeping, and helpful health advice.

“As well as the great advice, you will be ensured of great deals, great food, great craic and free entry to the many spot prizes that will be available on the day,” said general manager Denis O’Connor.

“All that is asked is your attendance and if at all possible, to make a small contribution to our chosen charity Pieta House.”


Continue Reading

Last News