UCD Access Courses

**Applications for entry in 2018/19 have now closed**

 

Have you ever thought of coming to university to study for a degree?

Access courses are one year long, part-time courses designed to prepare adults, who may not have formal qualifications, for successful study at university. These are Special Purpose Awards (Level 6) which equip mature students with the skills and confidence required to take the next step to selected degree courses at UCD. 

We offer Access to Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences & Law and Access to Science, Engineering & Agriculture (Medicine and Computer Science) courses, depending on the degree programme you are interested in pursuing. 

 

Access courses are designed for you if:

  • You do not meet existing entry requirements to university
  • You already qualify for university but are not ready to commit just yet

Access courses aim to:  

  • Equip you with the skills you need to engage in a full-time degree
  • Introduce you to the methods of study, writing and research required for successful participation in higher education
  • Prepare you to compete for entry to third level and to make informed choices about further study
  • Increase your self-confidence in your capacity to progress and participate in university
  • Offer you the opportunity to experience the fulfilment that can be gained from learning in an academic setting

See what some former UCD Access students have to say:

Learn More

To learn more about our Access to Arts, Social Sciences & Law or Access to Science, Engineering & Agriculture (Medicine and Computer Science) courses, please download our brochure:

Access Brochure 2018/19PDF|3.65 MB

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Click below for a list of our most frequently asked questions about Access.

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What are Access courses?

These are specially designed courses to help adult learners prepare for university. Sometimes called Return to Learning, or Foundation courses, University Access courses equip mature students with the skills and confidence required to take the next step to selected degree courses. The UCD access courses guarantee entry to a number of degree programmes in UCD once course assessment criteria are met.

What types of Access courses are offered?

There are two types of Access courses, namely: Access to Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences & Law and Access to Science, Engineering and Agriculture (Medicine and Computer Science)

How do I know if an access course is for me?

An access course may suit you if:

  • You are a mature student
  • You do not meet existing entry requirements to university
  • You would like to ‘test the water’ and see what you make of the university environment
  • You want to build study skills and confidence before taking the step into a degree
  • You already qualify for university but are not ready to commit just yet

Who is Access to Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences & Law aimed at?

This course is designed to prepare adults, who may not have formal qualifications, for successful study at university. The course is suitable for those who aim to study in the area of the Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences or Law. The course aims to:

  • Equip students with the skills that they will need to engage in an undergraduate course
  • Introduce students to the methods of study, writing and research required for successful participation in higher education
  • Prepare students to compete for entry to university and to make informed choices about further study
  • Increase students’ self-confidence in their ability to advance in university
  • Offer students the opportunity to experience the fulfilment that can be gained from learning in an academic setting

What is the course fee for Access to Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences &
Law?

€850. However, you may qualify for a Cothrom na Féinne Scholarship, and this would either reduce your fee by half, or offer you a free place. Students who are registered as unemployed and/or in-receipt of one of the following payments: Job-seekers Benefit, Job-seekers Allowance or One-Parent Family Allowance or Disability Benefit may qualify for a Mature Years Access Scholarship. To apply for the scholarship or reduced course fees you will need to produce evidence of income.

Who is Access to Science, Engineering and Agriculture (Medicine and Computer Science) aimed at?

This course is designed to prepare adults, who may not have the formal qualifications, for successful study at university, particularly in the areas of Science, Engineering, Agriculture, Medicine, Computer Science and Health & Safety
Access to Science, Engineering and Agriculture (Medicine and Computer Science) aims to:

  • Support students in finding the third level course that best suits their aptitude and interest
  • Give students the confidence and skills necessary to plan and organise study for their particular needs
  • Provide students with analytical skills in order to fully understand the material presented in all subject modules
  • Equip students with the skills and confidence to take on a degree course in Agricultural Science: Engineering/Architecture; Science; Medicine certificate/degree or diploma course in Health and Safety at Work
  • Applicants to this course should note the following guidelines: Access to Medicine 2018 and Applying as a Mature Student - Medicine

What is the course fee to Access to Science, Engineering & Agriculture (Medicine)?

€1,800. However, you may qualify for a Cothrom na Féinne Scholarship, and this would either reduce your fee to €600, or offer you a free place. Students who are registered as unemployed and/or in-receipt of one of the following payments: Job-seekers Benefit, Job-seekers Allowance, One-Parent Family Allowance or Disability Benefit may qualify for the Mature Years Access Scholarship. It will be necessary to produce evidence of income.

Who can apply for a place on an Access course?

Anyone aged 22 or more on 1st of January 2018 may apply for this Access course. For entry to third level programmes applicants must be at least 23 on 1st of January of the proposed year of entry. There is no upper age limit

What are the entry requirements?

There are no formal educational entry requirements. Applicants may apply using prior educational qualifications or life experience. Evidence of recent prior learning is most relevant in an application, ability in maths, and prior learning in at least one of the Science subjects is important.

Will I be the oldest? Am I too old to learn/start college? Will I feel uncomfortable in class with much younger people?

There is no upper age limit. Former students have found that the age-mix helps create an atmosphere which lends itself to sharing information and pooling resources.

I never sat the Leaving Cert., am I still eligible?

It is desirable though not essential. Applicants to Access to Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences & Law and Access to Science, Engineering and Agriculture (Medicine and Computer Science) are not required to have formal qualifications; they will be given the opportunity to make a personal statement outlining their life experience and abilities.

Are the courses full-time or part-time?

Part-time. Access to Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences & Law courses are offered in such a way that students may attend either morning or evening. Students register to six modules over the academic year. Access to Science, Engineering and Agriculture (Medicine and Computer Science) is offered on Monday and Wednesday evenings and on Saturday mornings.

What subjects are available? Is there a choice?

Subject options may change on the Access to Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences & Law course from one year to the next. No matter what subjects are on offer, bear in mind that the acquiring of learning skills and the process itself are the key objectives of Access to Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences & Law. The modules in
Access to Science, Engineering & Agriculture (Medicine and Computer Science) do not change.

How do I apply for an Access course?

Applications are made online

Deadlines for 2018/19 Applications:

  • Access to Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences & Law: September 12th, 5pm
  • Access to Science, Engineering & Agriculture (Medicine and Computer Science): August 10th

 

Guidance

If you need any further advice or guidance in relation to our Access Courses, please get in contact with us and we will be happy to help.

E: ALL@ucd.ie
T: +353 1 716 7123

 

 Deadlines for 2018/19 Applications: 

  • Access to Arts, Social Sciences & Law: CLOSED (September 12th, 5pm)
  • Access to Science, Engineering & Agriculture (Medicine and Computer Science): CLOSED (August 10th)