The Higher Education Access Route (HEAR) is a third level admissions scheme for school leavers from socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds.  


The Disability Access Route (DARE) is a third level admissions scheme to promote equity of access to higher education for school leavers with a disability.

UCD has a reserved number of places to offer eligible HEAR and DARE students. For details of application procedures please see www.accesscollege.ie. You will be considered if

  • You have a minimum of 300 points
  • You have met all of the entry requirements for the course
  • You are within 20% of the points required (e.g. if the cut-off is 500 you must have at least 400 points)

There are approximately 5% of UCD places reserved for HEAR eligible applicants and 5% for DARE eligible applicants. Please click here for details of the target number of places we have to offer.

For 2018 entry, students will be prioritised when allocating reduced points places if they:

  • are both HEAR and DARE eligible
  • OR have a physical disability
  • OR have a sensory disability

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Link to admissions page for further information on how HEAR and DARE places are allocated in UCD.


Places and post-entry support:

As well as being allocated a place on a reduced points basis, students who secure a place through HEAR or DARE are offered a variety of academic, personal and social supports while studying at third level such as:

  • Welcome Programme to introduce students to university.
  • Budgeting and goal setting meetings.
  • Academic and exam accommodations.
  • Advice regarding grants and scholarships.
  • Mentoring.
  • Assistive technology.
  • Academic Skills workshops
  • Social gatherings.

Students can apply online at the CAO website www.cao.ie from 5th November 2018. Students wishing to apply to the HEAR and/or DARE Schemes must have done so before the 1st February 2019.

Further information on both schemes can be found on www.accesscollege.ie

Information Sessions

21st November 2018 - in UCD Access & Lifelong Learning, Dublin; 7-9pm


One to One Application Clinics

19th January 2019 - Nationwide; 10am-2pm


UCD Open Day

3rd November 2018 - UCD, Belfield, Dublin 4; 10am - 4pm. More information at ucdopenday.ie


Applying to UCD/CAO Clinics

8th January 2019 - UCD Belfield, John Hume Institute; 5-7pm