Careers rarely develop the way we plan them. Our career path often takes many twists and turns, with particular events, choices and people influencing our direction.

We asked Oisin McGrath from Defence Forces to give some advice for people considering this job:


Oisin McGrath

Lieutenant - Pilot - Air Corp

Defence Forces

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  Oisin McGrath

If you are seriously considering applying for the Air Corps you should check the pre-required Leaving Certificate subjects as outlined in the cadetship booklet. This is very important!!

Also, if applying you should get the details of the fitness test from the cadetship booklet and make sure you can do each of the disciplines well before the fitness test...a lot of people fail this part of the application process, and it can be passed easily!

If possible, you should organise a visit to Baldonnel through somebody that you know or maybe even your school...just to get familiar with the aircraft and to see the daily operation of the Air Corps.


Administrative people are interested in work that offers security and a sense of being part of a larger process. They may be at their best operating under supervisors who give clear guidelines, and performing routine tasks in a methodical and reliable way.

They tend to enjoy clerical and most forms of office work, where they perform essential administrative duties. They often form the backbone of large and small organisations alike. They may enjoy being in charge of office filing systems, and using computers and other office equipment to keep things running smoothly. They usually like routine work hours and prefer comfortable indoor workplaces.
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CAO Points Calculator

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Leaving Cert. Grades to CAO Points

Marks Grade Points for
Higher Level
Points for Ordinary Level
90 - 100 H1 / O1 100 56
80 < 90 H2 / O2 88 46
70 < 80 H3 / O3 77 37
60 < 70 H4 / O4 66 28
50 < 60 H5 / O5 56 20
40 < 50 H6 / O6 46 12
30 < 40 H7 / O7 37 0
0 < 40 H8 / O8 0 0

Link Modules

Distinction 66  

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Merit 46  

Link Modules

Pass 28  
Note: Best scores from 6 subjects used to calculate points.

Note: 25 Points are awarded to any passing grade in Higher Mathematics, i.e. H6 and above.

QQI / FETAC Grades to CAO Points

The calculation of CAO points from QQI courses is more complex, as the modules may have different credit scores. We recommend using our QQI / FETAC Points Calculator to calculate your CAO points from QQI / FETAC courses.

Calculators for 2016

The following are links to CAO points calculators that are valid for 2016 Awards only.

Download our
Points Calculator
and Course Search App pointsCalcImage
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