Entry Requirements

Information on the entry requirements for CAO first year entry

Higher Certificate (Level 6) and Ordinary Bachelor Degree (Level 7):

The minimum Leaving Certificate entry requirement for all Higher Certificates (Level 6) and ab initio Bachelor degrees (Level 7) is Grade O6/H7 or better in five Leaving Certificate subjects including Mathematics and English or Irish with a minimum of 160 points.


Honours Bachelor Degrees (Level 8):

The general minimum Leaving Certificate entry requirement is a Grade O6/H7 or better in six Leaving Certificate subjects including English or Irish and Mathematics, two of which must be passed in higher level papers at Grade H5 or higher.

The courses listed below carry additional entry requirements:



CAO Code


Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Medical Science


A science subject and an O5/H7 in Mathematics

Bachelor of Science (Hons) in General Nursing


A laboratory science subject (Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Physics and Chemistry(joint), or Agricultural Science)

Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Psychiatric Nursing


A laboratory science subject (Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Physics and Chemistry(joint), or Agricultural Science)

Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Education (Design Graphics and Construction)


H5 in Design and Communication Graphics or Construction Studies

ALL Bachelor of Engineering Programmes

AU538, AU638, AU546, AU646, AU545, AU645, AU542, AU648, AU548, AU547, AU647, AU642,

O4/H7 in Mathematics

Bachelor of Engineering Common Entry

Bachelor of Engineering in Manufacturing Engineering Design

AU549, AU649


O6/H7 in Mathematics

Bachelor of Education (Honours) in Art, Design & Graphics


H5 in Art or Design & Communication Graphics

Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Contemporary Art



Bachelor of Arts in Contemporary Art




A pass in any FETAC/QQI Award at Level 5/6 meets the entry requirements for Higher Certificate or Bachelor Degree (Level 6 or Level 7) programmes.  A pass with distinction grade in at least three modules in any FETAC/QQI Award at Level 5/6 meets the entry requirements for Honours Bachelor Degrees (Level 8) with the exception of nursing degree programmes, BSc (Hons) in Education (Design Graphics and Construction) and Bachelor of Education (Honours) in Art, Design & Graphics.

The Higher Education Links Scheme, through specifically linked FETAC/QQI awards with specific module requirements, remains in place for progression to nursing degrees.

With the exception of a small number of programmes with limited places and Nursing degrees, FETAC/QQI award holders are ranked with the Leaving Certificate holders for admission to ATU.

There is a specific quota of places reserved on nursing degree programmes and 5% of places are reserved for FETAC/QQI award holders on the programmes with limited places. The programme currently designated is Medical Science

Note 1: Additional places may also be offered to applicants coming through the Access route.
Note 2: FETAC/QQI Level 6 award holders are eligible for admission to year 2 of approved ATU programmes.

From 2020-21, QQI FET applicants for engineering programmes in ATU must have completed awards including a mathematics module (5N1833, 6N3395, 5N18396, 5N0556 or 5S2246) or LCE maths.


GC(S)E and other School Leaving Examinations

A combination of Northern Ireland or British GCSE and GCE A-Level and AS Level at certain grades will be considered. See details on CAO Applicant Scoring    


Other European Union (EU) School Leaving Examinations

Other European Union (EU) School Leaving examinations will also be considered. These applications are assessed and scored by the Institute.


QQI FET Foundation Certificate and Joint ATU/NUI Galway Foundation Certificates

Students who successfully complete programmes are eligible for admission either through the guaranteed places process or through the mature student process.

Contact the Access Office for more information.


Leaving Certificate Vocational Programme (LCVP)

The LCVP 'subject' will be considered as a passing subject provided the student achieves a pass grade.

This will apply to entry for Higher Certificate (Level 6), Ordinary Degree (Level 7), and Honours Degree (Level 8) programmes with the exception of nursing degrees.

The 'Link Modules' result is considered and may be used as one of the best six subjects.

Points are awarded on the basis of the classification below:

  • Pass - 28 points
  • Merit - 46 points
  • Distinction - 66 points


Foundation Level Maths

A pass in foundation level mathematics at F2 level or higher will be accepted as meeting the minimum entry requirements for programmes which currently require a minimum entry level of O6 in ordinary Leaving Certificate mathematics, with the exception of engineering (including all programmes at Letterfrack) and nursing. Where foundation level mathematics is accepted as a passing subject, at a minimum F2 grade, the following points scoring system will apply:

  • F1 - 20 points
  • F2 - 12 points

Note: Applicants are advised that while foundation level mathematics may meet the minimum mathematics requirement for entry to certain academic programmes, some employers require mathematics at ordinary level or higher to meet minimum educational attainment for some positions.


Maths Entry Exam

ATU is running an exam for students who have not achieved the required grade in maths for admission to their chosen course in ATU (excluding courses in Engineering, Nursing and the BEd (Hons) in Design, Graphics and Construction). Further information on this course can be found in the Maths Entry Exam page


Foundation Level Irish

Foundation Level Irish, at minimum F2 level, meets the minimum language requirement for entry to all programmes with the exception of nursing. No CAO points are awarded for Foundation Level Irish.


Leaving Certificate Applied (LCA)

The Leaving Certificate Applied does not meet the minimum entry requirements to Institute programmes. Holders of the LCA may gain entry following completion of a FETAC Level 5/6 Award.


Advanced Craft Certificate (QQI FET Award Level 6)

The Advanced Craft Certificate qualifies applicants for entry to Year 1 of Level 6, Level 7 or Level 8 programmes (HETAC) or for entry to year 2 of linked/cognate programmes (e.g. electrical to electronic or energy engineering) either direct or after completion of a short bridging programme especially in Mathematics.

Apprentices who have successfully completed phase 6 of the craft apprenticeship (Advanced Craft Certificate), will be deemed eligible to meet the minimum entry requirements to all programmes in ATU