Economics explores how and why ordinary people – consumers, business people, public servants and politicians – make decisions, and how they choose between alternative ways of spending their money and using their skills, energy and time in a wide range of human endeavour.

If you are interested in people’s behaviour and in current affairs, enjoy problem solving and are naturally analytical with good numeracy skills, then Economics will appeal to you.

How old do I have to be?

If you are at least 23 years of age on 1 January of the year you want to enter, you can apply on grounds of mature years.

To enter in September 2022, you must have been born on or before 1 January 1999.

What is the closing date?

Apply by 1 February 2022. Late applications will not be considered on grounds of mature years.

How do I apply?

EU applicants* apply via the Central Applications Office (CAO) for:

DN710 Economics

In addition you must successfully complete and present one of the following:

1. Recent academic qualifications equivalent to NQF Level 5 or above

     (e.g. University Access courses, QQI-FET, Irish Leaving Certificate etc.)


   Evidence of ongoing learning (i.e. completed module(s) with a minimum passing grade) in a related area.


2. UCD Open Learning Module(s)


3. MSAP Ireland score (separate MSAP Ireland registration required)

What documents do I need to send to CAO?

You must post the following documentation to CAO, Tower House, Eglinton Street, Galway:

  1. Results, Certificates or other evidence of any qualifications that you have mentioned in your online CAO application.
  2. A CV 
  3. Any additional information you wish to supply to support your application. You may find this template helpful in recording this additional information.

Remember to include your CAO application number on all supporting documents that you send to CAO.

Please note that documents should be with CAO no later than 15 February. Documents received after this date may not be available to us in time for assessment.

 What is MSAP Ireland?

The MSAP Ireland assessment is designed to allow you to demonstrate your skills in written English (Module 1) and your capacity for critical reasoning in the area of Sciences, Mathematics and Social Sciences (Module 3). You must register for MSAP Ireland by 30 January 2022.

     Main Online Test Window:  Saturday 5 March 2022 - Wednesday 9 March 2022

The cost of applying to the MSAP-Ireland assessment in 2022 is €97 per candidate for those who apply by 30 January. An additional charge of €35 will apply for late registrations up to 24 February.

This fee will cover online registration for the test, delivery of the test, provision of test results to the candidate and the transfer of results to the CAO.

 What is UCD Open Learning?

UCD Open Learning gives you the opportunity to study a range of undergraduate modules in UCD. There are no formal entry requirements and the Open Learning modules are open to everyone.

N.B. Module(s) must be taken for credit in order to avail of this entry route.

How will my application be assessed?

Your application will be assessed initially on the basis of your written application under the following headings:

Academic Ability:

i) Recent academic qualifications equivalent to NQF level 5 or higher (e.g. University Access courses, QQI-FET, Irish Leaving Certificate etc.) or evidence of ongoing learning (i.e. completed module(s) with a minimum passing grade) in a related area.

ii) UCD Open Learning Module(s) GPA – minimum GPA required: 2.0

iii) MSAP Ireland score – minimum score required: N/A - all scores will be considered

Note: MSAP Ireland score and Open Learning module results are valid for two years only i.e. results from this year are valid for entry in this year and next year only.

Work Experience, Personal & Professional Development:

Provide a brief CV detailing all relevant experience gained through employment and/or volunteer work which indicate readiness for the degree programme; any other experiences relevant to somebody embarking on this degree (e.g. contribution to family, evidence of ethical responsibility and concern for others and their communities in their daily lives, interests, activities, etc.)
Motivation and Interest: A completed Personal Statement should be included, demonstrating your interest in academic study and learning.
Motivation to pursue an Economics degree: Your Personal Statement should also include interest in studying an Economics degree in UCD, clearly articulated and linked to future plans.

Applicants will be assessed on a competitive basis based on the information provided with the CAO application. 

Is there an interview?

In general interviews are not held. In some cases an interview may be required to facilitate a decision on an application.

When will I know the decision on my application?

Offers for mature applicants will issue via CAO in Round A (early July) and must be accepted within a week.

Successful applicants will receive notification of an offer from CAO when the round issues.


If the decision of the Assessment Board is a Conditional Offer, UCD Admissions will contact the applicant by email, in advance of round A, to explain the conditions which must be fulfilled to receive an official CAO offer.


If places remain when Round A closes, these will be offered in the following CAO offer rounds to applicants on the waiting list*. As above, CAO will notify applicants if an offer has issued.

*Please note that the Assessment Board may have decided to offer all eligible applicants in Round A and therefore there may not be a waiting list for your chosen degree.

You may also be interested in the QQI-FET entry pathway.

* Non-EU applicants apply via

If you are unsure if you are EU or Non-EU please see