Qualifications other than Leaving Cert

School LeaversQualifications other than Leaving Cert

Qualifications other than Leaving Cert

This scheme provides for the scoring of applicants presenting QQI FET/FETAC examination results. The scored results will be entered into the CAO system in the normal way.

QQI FET/FETAC has introduced a new awards system known as the Common Awards System, or CAS. All QQI FET/FETAC awards will be part of CAS from 2014. CAS awardswill replace existing linked QQI FET/FETAC awards.

As a result a new scoring system for QQI FET/FETAC awards will apply for entry through CAO to higher education from 2013. This scoring system will apply to all relevant QQI FET/FETAC level 5 and 6 awards listed on the CAO and higher education institution website. See QQI FET/FETAC Scoring Process tab for details..


Minimum Entry Requirements

The following minimum entry requirements will apply to graduates of QQI FET/FETAC Level 5 seeking admission to courses at Waterford Institute of Technology:

  • Higher Certificate (Level 6): Minimum entry: QQI FET/FETAC Level 5 or Level 6 award.

  • Ab-initio Degree (Level 7): Minimum entry: QQI FET/FETAC Level 5 or Level 6 award.

  • Ab-initio Honours Degree (Level 8): Minimum entry: QQI FET/FETAC Level 5 or Level 6 award including a distinction grade in at least three modules.

Please refer to the QQI website (http://www.qqi.ie) for changes to the award structure.

A full QQI FET/FETAC award normally contains eight modules.  Where a full award is accumulated over more than one academic year, it is the responsibility of the applicant to apply to QQI FET/FETAC for a full award.  A record of achievement does not meet these minimum entry standards.


How to Apply

Applications must be made through the CAO by the 1st February.  If you are taking QQI FET/FETAC examinations in the current acaemic year, please ensure to enter your PPS number on page one of the CAO application form.


Bachelor of Science in Nursing Programmes

Please see Nursing/Midwifery A Career for you 2015 booklet (http://www.nursingcareers.ie) for the most up-to-date entry requirements.

Whilst QQI FET/FETAC applicants may meet the requirements outlined above and be eligible for a nursing degree programme, due to the smallnumber of places availalbe, a random selection system is operated by the CAO.


Rules for eligibility

  • Progression is on the basis of achieving a Level 5 or 6 major award, with a minimum credit value of 120. Component awards, or achievement of less than 120 credits, wil not suffice. 

  •  It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that their QQI FET/FETAC registered centre applies to QQI FET/FETAC fora major award prior to application to CAO. 

  • A major award may be achieved over more than one year. Waterford Institute of Technology  requires tha an applicant's major award must be achieved and/or scored in a single sitting i.e over one certification year, between 1 August and 31 July. 

  • In addition some programmes in higher education require achievement of specified component awards, specific grades in individual component awards, or additional awards such as mathematics. Applicants are advised to confirm details of any specific requirementswith the Admissions Office of theindividual higher education institution. Details may also be found in the QQI FET/FETAC section of the CAO website.

Each level 5 and/level 6 component is scored  as follows:

Distinction: 3.333 points    Merit:2.222 points   Pass: 1.111 points

This is then multiplied by the individual component credit value to a maximum 120 credits, a total of 400 points.

For components with a credit value of less than 5 credits, multiply the credit value by 15.

Components leading to the best 120 credits are scored and applicants are ranked accordingly. The best 120 credits come from minor awards achieved with the highest grades.

The transcript fo rmajor awards lists the award code and title, grade and date of achievement for individual components required for the major award, and for any components achieved in any other certificatin period. QQI FET/FETAC forwards all relevant results achieved by applicants to the CAO.

This scoring system replaces that of ther original higher education links scheme and that of the 'pilot' scheme, and applies to all results achieved from 2013.

Some applicants will combine components achieved  prior to the introuduction of CAS with others which are part of CAS. The scoring is managed by CAO according to the system above. Level 5 and 6 Certificates,i.e major awards, achieved before the introduction of CAS are also scored according to the system outlined above.

To view the list of QQI FET/FETAC awards, please view the leaflet 'Progression for QQI FET/FETAC Level 5 Certificates and Level 6 Certificates' on  http://www.fetac.ie/fetac/documents/Prog_HEC_2011.pdf

The maximum nunber of points that can  be obtained is 400.  QQI FET/FETAC results cannot be added to Leaving Certificate points. Where applicants have taken both exams, the higher points will be considered for rating purposes.

Applications must be made through the CAO by the 1st February .  If you are taking 2013 QQI FET/FETAC examinations, please ensure to enter your PPS number on page one fo the CAO application form.

Leaving Cert Vocational

Waterford Institute of Technology treats the link modules as a single subject and awards points as follows:


•Distinction: 70 points

•Merit: 50 points

•Pass: 30 points


This is automatically computed by the CAO and will count if it is one of your six best subjects.  It will not, however, substitute for an honour where one or more are required.


Leaving Cert Applied

The Leaving Certificate Applied Programme was designed primarily to prepare students for the transition from school to working life.  It is not intended for direct tansfer into third level.  However, students with the LCAP who have completed a QQI FET/FETAC award can be considered for entry.