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 Aishling Butler from An Garda Síochána to give some advice for people considering this job:


Aishling Butler

Garda Trainee

An Garda Síochána

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  Aishling Butler
Take every opportunity available, don't be afraid to do voluntary work and get involved in communities.

Realists are usually interested in 'things' - such as buildings, mechanics, equipment, tools, electronics etc. Their primary focus is dealing with these - as in building, fixing, operating or designing them. Involvement in these areas leads to high manual skills, or a fine aptitude for practical design - as found in the various forms of engineering.

Realists like to find practical solutions to problems using tools, technology and skilled work. Realists usually prefer to be active in their work environment, often do most of their work alone, and enjoy taking decisive action with a minimum amount of discussion and paperwork.
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If you are interested in why things happen in the physical world, then Physics Technology may be for you. It underpins most modern technologies and holds a key to improving all of our futures.

Physicists design experiments to test or apply new ideas in order to better understand the physical world. For instance, it is the work of physicists which has led to key developments in areas such as optics, electronics, communications systems, information technology, computing, medical technologies, energy production and management, sustainable technologies and environmental technologies.

The course is a four year, full time honours degree programme and aims to provide graduates with scientific and analytical skills in physics as well as a practical problem solving ability.

It is not necessary to have studied physics in order to do this degree, although you do need to have an interest in science and technology. All of the Physics in year 1 and much of it in year 2 is delivered using the exciting method of Problem Based Learning. This learning style allows students to develop additional skills much sought after by industry: problem solving, adaptability, teamwork, research skills, leadership and communication skills.

Physics Technology is an accredited programme of the Institute of Physics (IOP).


This course will suit you if you are interested in the applications of physics to the key areas of Energy and Environment. You will need an aptitude for science and a keen interest in physics.

The first year of this programme provides a strong foundation across all of the relevant science subjects and in mathematics. This prepares students for the applied nature of the physics modules which are developed through to the final year and for the specialist Energy and Environment modules studied. In second year, the relevant core modules in physics, mathematics and computing are taught together with some specialised material in the Energy and Environmental areas. These areas are further developed in stages three and four.

All students participate in an industrial work placement of approximately 6 months in stage 3. Additionally, there is a strong emphasis throughout the programme on problem solving skills, professional skills, computing and ICT skills. There is a significant emphasis on laboratory practice and skills. These aspects of the programme, together with work placement and modules that emphasise the practical nature of the programme prepare graduates for employment in the relevant sectors or for graduate study either here in Ireland or abroad.


Medical physics involves the application of physics and its methods to solve problems in medicine.

Bioengineering is the application of engineering principles to address challenges in the fields of biology and medicine.

This course is a degree in Physics that emphasises the technology and application of physics in medical diagnostics, medical treatment, medical devices and in bioengineering.

There is a work placement during the third year.


This course provides a broad foundation in general sciences, before focusing on renewable energy and sustainable technologies.


Nanotechnology gets its name from ‘nanometres’, which are one billionth of a metre long, or the size of an atom. This field of technology works with materials and chemicals at the scale of 1-100nm.

The programme contains a solid science degree (physics or chemistry), but with a unique focus on nanoscience and nanotechnology.


This General Science Programme is ideal if you are not yet sure which Science discipline you wish to pursue and you are looking for a broad education in first year that will allow the maximum possible choice in future years.

In Year One students will study Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Mathematics and Nutrition.

Science - DT212

The main aim of this programme is to produce graduates with the necessary skills for employment as technicians/technologists or scientific personnel in the fields of biosciences, chemistry and physics.

Students will be able to select from a range of specialised modules which will be delivered in the second semester of year one including; Medicinal Chemistry, Astronomy/Environmental and Energy Physics and Human Biology and Disease. Entry to this course affords the opportunity to experience the three main scientific subjects prior to committing to a specific course.

After successful completion of the first year students will select and transfer to the second year of one of the following courses and will complete their studies as registered students of this course: BSc Biosciences (DT259) BSc Industrial and Environmental Physics (DT260), BSc Medicinal Chemistry and Pharmaceutical Science (DT261).

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