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 Lydia Peppard from Health Service Executive to give some advice for people considering this job:


Lydia Peppard

Care Assistant

Health Service Executive

Read more

  Lydia Peppard
The advise that I would give to someone considering this job is to do their Leaving Cert and do the Transition year as this would give an opportunity to get some job experience or do some voluntary work within the community.

Do a Level 5 FETAC health related course. The skills and qualities that are needed to do this type of work are a real sense of caring for other people, communication skills, listening skills, be able to take and give constructive criticism without causing or taking offence, patience a willing to give your best effort to your work.

The Investigative person will usually find a particular area of science to be of interest. They are inclined toward intellectual and analytical activities and enjoy observation and theory. They may prefer thought to action, and enjoy the challenge of solving problems with clever technology. They will often follow the latest developments in their chosen field, and prefer mentally stimulating environments.
Career Interviews
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Leaving Cert Results - What Happens Next?
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Key Dates

The first thing to do is to familiarise yourself with the Key Dates over this period. We have listed them here, but you can also download and print a copy from here.

Next, make sure all communications are in working order and accessible including: mail, email, internet, mobile phone, passwords, Skype etc.

PIN numbers required to access Leaving Cert results online should be available through the school.

Note: *These dates may be amended - watch out for information updates. A full list key of dates is available from the SEC here.

2016 /2017


Action – if

5th November (12:00) CAO Online application facility opens

CAO Change of Course choices Facility opens
Submit CAO application and avail of reduced application fee (€25)   Change your course choices free of charge 
20th January (17:15) Deadline for Reduced application fee (€25.00)  
Apply online by this date to avail of the discounted application fee of €25.
21st January DARE & HEAR Application Advice Clinics   Information clinics take place nationwide today

1st February (17:15)

Normal closing date for CAO applications.

HPAT late registration continues.


All CAO applications after this date are late applications.
Restricted application courses (those with early assessments and portfolio requirements) must be listed on CAO application by this date.
HPAT late registrations continue to this date with an additional €70 late fee, as well as the €115 registration fee. Exceptional late HPAT registration until 3rd February, for fee of €105 plus registration fee €115.

5th February to 1st March

CAO change of course facility 

Online facility to amend CAO course choices becomes available  €10 Fee applies
Before 15th February Paper Applicants will be sent a Statement of Course Choices Contact CAO if you do not receive it.
Between 17th February and 8th March Mature Nursing Test (PAS) Registration is open until 8th March
27th February HPAT Test  For all Undergraduate Entry to Medicine
1st March (17:15) CAO course choices 

Closing date for amending course choices 

Closing date for final completion of online HEAR/DARE forms
5th March MSAP Test  For mature applicants to certain courses in UCD, UCC, UL and NUI Galway
19th March GAMSAT Test  Graduate Entry to Medicine test held
March/April Restricted Courses Interviews and portfolio presentations for restricted application courses held in this period
1st April (17:15) HEAR/DARE supporting documentation Latest date for HEAR/DARE supporting documentation to arrive in CAO
Week Beginning 20th April Mature Nursing Test (PAS)  Mature Nursing Test (PAS) takes place
Late April HPAT applicants Mature applicants who sat HPAT in March receive results
1st May (17:15) Closing date for late applications to CAO €50 fee (€80 for paper). No further applications accepted for 2017 entry after this date.
5th May (12:00) Online Change of Mind facility becomes available (Free) CAO Change of Mind facility Opens – See  
Applicants get a statement of application record to date from CAO before end of May.
Before 15th May Late Paper Applicants will be sent a Statement of Course Choices Contact CAO if you do not receive it
Before end May  Statement of Application Record sent to all applicants Contact CAO if you do not receive it
June 7th Leaving Cert Start Date for LC exams
1st July (17:15)
Change of Mind closes
Final date for CAO change of mind (course and/or order of preference) for 2016 entry

CAO makes 6,000-plus offers on website in first week of July to mature applicants and deferrals from previous year
Early July Round A offers  CAO Offers for certain Non-Standard categories of applicants - applicants receive an offer by post, by e-mail and SMS text
22nd July Exceptional closing date  Closing date for late applications for those already attending a participating HEI
Early August Round Zero offers  CAO offers for certain Non-Standard categories of applicant - applicants receive an offer by post, by e-mail and SMS text

Mid August (16th TBC)

Expected delivery date of Leaving Cert Results to over 700 schools

LC Results also sent to CAO

LC Results also available via Internet service or dial up from 12.00 Noon using a PIN* number & Exam number

SEC Appeals Application Form issued with LC results (To be returned directly to schools by LC Candidate)

When  collecting results, it’s useful to have a Points calculator to hand: click here


Go to

And click on Candidate Information Booklet for details

Dial up results at
1530 716016


August 22nd

Round 1 of CAO Offers online at 6.00am and by post and SMS text.

The applicant must decide whether this offer is to be accepted or not.
Applicants who have not received an offer will receive another Statement of Application Record.

August 23rd

Return of completed application forms for viewing of scripts.

Script viewing forms must be completed and returned by August 23rd

There is no charge for viewing of scripts

August 29th*

Closing date for acceptance of Round 1 offers at 5.15pm

This offer must be accepted or allowed to lapse by this date.

September 1st

Round 2 of CAO offers issued online and by post.

The candidate must decide whether this offer is to be accepted or not.

September 2nd & 3rd  

Viewing of Leaving Cert Scripts in Schools. 

Students along with one other person of their choice, have an opportunity to view their scripts in school on either or both of these dates. The scripts cannot be viewed by anyone unless the student is present.

Student must decide if they wish to appeal their results.

September 7th

Closing date for receipt of Appeals applications by SEC.

Submit forms and pay appeals fees to schools.
Cost €40 per subject (payable by giro or credit card)

September 3rd onwards to 24th September – colleges & courses vary

Start of college academic years

Incoming students receive all dates and details

Info also available on college websites

September 7th

Closing date for Acceptance of Round 2 offers

This offer must be accepted by this date or allowed to lapse.

September - 14th October

CAO offers continue to fill up vacant places

Offer season ends 14th October.

Early October

Release of LC Appeal results


[Updated 29/9/16]
SEC = State Examinations Commission; CAO = Central Applications Office


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