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 Paul Galvan from Department of Education and Skills to give some advice for people considering this job:


Paul Galvan

Resource Teacher

Department of Education and Skills

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  Paul Galvan
I would advise them to ensure they enjoy working with young people. If possible try to get some teaching experience; I started out as a substitute teacher before applying for my H Dip in Education.

Enterprising people like situations that involve using resources for personal or corporate economic gain. Such people may have an opportunistic frame of mind, and like commerce, trade and making deals. Some are drawn to sales and marketing occupations. Many will eventually end up owning their own business, or managing a section in larger organisations. They tend to be very goal-oriented, and work best when focused on a target. Some have an entrepreneurial inclination.
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Tip: Use the links on this page if you know what type of course you are looking for.

Courses and Awards

There are tens of thousands of courses on offer throughout Ireland. With the exception of 'Hobby' courses, most courses lead to some form of qualification from an accredited authority. In Ireland, most qualifications fit into what is known as the The National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ). This framework divides all qualifications into ten levels. It can be useful to think of it as a ladder system; entry at the bottom is at Level 1 and Level 10 is at the top.

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The range of Levels include different types of qualifications from Basic Education (Level 1-3) Certificates and Diplomas (Levels 4-7) Undergraduate Degrees (Levels 7-8) and Postgraduate Qualifications (Levels 9-10)

Completion of each level usually means you can progress to the next, so the framework helps you to build up your education and training, thus improving your employment prospects.

Education Levels and Job Zones

Entry into many jobs and occupations usually requires a certain standard of education (e.g. Level 6 Certificate, or a Level 8 Honors Degree), and often specific courses or awards. To assist you in your career research, we have categorised all our occupations according to a general classification known as Job Zones.

Job Zones are a classification according to the level of education, training and experience generally required for each job. There are 5 Zones, Zone 1 refering to a basic level of education or experience (up to Level 4 on the NFQ above), and Zone 5 indicating the higher education Levels (Levels 9 & 10 on the NFQ). 

Note that employers value a persons previous employment experience highly, and often regard a persons experience as equal or more important to qualifications. So for older experienced people, the extent of their experience may play a very significant part in being accepted for a job. This is reflected in the classifications system as it refers to education or experience in many cases.

To search for information on each Occupation and the Job Zones associated with them click here.

Unemployed and looking to upskill

If you are currently unemployed it is important to be aware of the many upskilling and employment initatives available to you. These initiatives aim to encourage engagement in employment opportunities.

For more information click here.