General Requirements - Undergraduate

Who is eligible to apply?

Irish, EU and EFTA students* are eligible to apply for admission to all undergraduate courses and apply via the Central Applications Office (CAO):

Overseas (i.e. Non-EU)* students are eligible to apply for admission to a limited number of places in all courses, except Nursing. Non-EU applicants apply direct to UCD. Applicants presenting qualifications gained outside the EU are assessed for admission purposes on an individual basis. Guidelines of the assessment method are given on the UCD International website.

EU/EFTA or Non-EU status is based on fee assessment criteria. If you are not sure whether you are considered as an EU applicant or a Non EU applicant please check your fee status. Non-EU applicants will not be considered via CAO (with the exception of refugees and asylum seekers). Likewise, those eligible for EU/EFTA fees will not be considered through non-EU application routes.

Are there age limits?

Students must normally be seventeen years of age by 15 January following entry: i.e. for entry in 2019, date of birth must be on or before 15 January 2003. There is no upper limit.

How are applications assessed?

Admission to all courses is competitive (i.e. there are more applicants than places) and, other than access routes (e.g. mature years or FETAC), is based on the Leaving Certificate points system or equivalent. In the case of Medicine, the HPAT-Ireland results are taken in combination with the school-leaving results.

When must my documents be submitted?

You should submit your documents within 10 days of applying. For examinations being taken in 2019, documents must be with the CAO no later than the dates below:

It may not be possible to gain entry in the current year if documents and/or results are presented later than the relevant dates. This includes Leaving Certificate rechecks.

When will UCD issue offers?

CAO offers are made in a series of rounds:

Round A Early July For mature applicants and those who have deferred from the previous year.

Round 0 Early August QQI-FET, graduate entry and any remaining mature offers
Round 1 Mid-August All remaining applicants - this includes Irish Leaving Certificate, EU, DARE and HEAR

UCD aims to fill all places in round 1. Any places unfilled will be offered in a series of subsequent rounds during September.

As the Academic Year starts in early September, UCD does not make any offers for the current year after 30 September. (For CAO applicants, the last offers will be Round 5).

Amended Results

We usually receive two main batches of amended Leaving Certificate results.

If your appeal is successful and you now have points sufficient for a higher preference, the CAO will notify us of this.

For early amendments, we endeavour to offer all such applicants a place for the current year but we cannot guarantee that you would be permitted to enter this year. Possible entry this year will depend on when the upgrade is received and if places are available in the programme. If we are unable to offer a deferred place will be given.

However we do not make offers after 30 September, as the Academic Year starts in early September. This means that for the amendments received in October, eligible applicants can only be given a deferred place for the following year. We have been advised by the Department of Education and Skills that any student who accepts a deferred place in UCD as a result of an upgrade and who has already accepted and begun another university programme is permitted to remain in this programme for the year, without a fees penalty.

Please note that we cannot act on amended results until we receive official notification via CAO.

It is very rare but occasionally results are downgraded. If this means that you no longer qualify for the course you have accepted, your application will have to be reviewed.

Do any courses have health requirements?

If you are admitted to any of the following

You will be are required to pass a health screening following admission and from time to time thereafter, in accordance with the health policy of the College of Health and Agricultural Sciences. The screening includes testing for Hepatitis B and Tuberculosis. This will cost you approximately €225.

If you have any concerns about whether your health would affect your ability to complete a course, please contact our Access Office.

Will I have to have my background checked?

If you are admitted to some programmes (currently: Human Nutrition, Medicine, Physiotherapy, Radiography and Nursing) you will be required to undergo checks with the National Vetting Bureau. In the event that a relevant offence is disclosed, you may not be permitted to register.

If you have lived outside Ireland for more than 6 months since the age of 18, you must provide Police Certificates for any countries in which you have lived.

Does it matter if I’ve been in third level before?

You must include details of all previous third level attendance when applying. For some courses restrictions apply. Previous third level attendance may have fees implications.

What is my responsibility as an applicant?

As an applicant, it is your responsibility

  • to check entry criteria for the programmes for which you are applying. Please note, criteria can change from year to year.
  • to provide full and accurate information in the application and to notify the University and CAO of any changes or corrections made to the original application. We (UCD) may request verification from the issuing authority of any or all details on documentation presented. If documents are found to have been falsified the awarding body will be notified.
  • by accepting an offer, you agree to abide by the rules and regulations of the University.

    In the light of additional information which was not available at the time of selection, an offer may be amended or, in exceptional circumstances, withdrawn. We also reserve the right to correct errors where they have been made in the communication of decisions and offers.

    We (UCD) reserve the right to exclude a candidate who is considered on justifiable grounds to be unsuitable for a place on a particular course according to individual circumstances.

    Full conditions of an offer are available here.

    What is UCD's responsibility?

    UCD's responsibility is to

    When will I start, if I'm offered a place?

    Prospective undergraduate students should note that the University holds induction events for freshers in the week prior to the commencement of lectures. This involves registration, academic advisory, social and orientation meetings. It is anticipated that these meetings will commence from 2 September 2019. Lectures will commence on 9 September 2019. Further information on academic term dates can be found here.

    Will I have to pay fees?

    Fees consist of three elements: Tuition Fees, Student Contribution Charge and Student Centre Levy.

    Under the terms of the "Free Fees" Initiative, the Irish Exchequer pays tuition fees to the University on behalf of EU students registered for the first time on qualifying, full-time, undergraduate degree programmes. Such programmes must be of a minimum duration of 2 years. 

    However, the Student Contribution Charge and Student Centre Levy must still be paid by you.

    Please check the website for up-to-date information on fee requirements.

    How do I know if I am eligible for "free tuition"?

    Please also check the website with regard to your fees status, particularly if you answer yes to any of the following questions:

    Will there be any other charges or costs?

    Yes, for all courses you will need to buy books. Depending on your course, you may also have to pay for health screening, lab coats or other equipment. And, of course, you will need money for accommodation and living expenses.

    All offers of a place are subject to UCD's Terms and Conditions of Offer.
    All students must comply with the general regulations of the university