Education Budget Includes 2,400 New Teaching Posts for 2017

education budget 2017Minister for Education and Skills Richard Bruton has announced that over 2,400 extra teachers are to be hired in 2017. Work is to commence immediately on a new multi-annual funding model for higher and further education, to build on the recent announcement of the first significant additional investment in higher education in a decade – €36.5million in 2017 and €160million over the next 3 years.

“Budget 2017 represents the start of a major programme of reinvestment in education, and the first phase of implementation of the Action Plan for Education, aimed at becoming the best education system in Europe within a decade”, said Minister Bruton.

The Department of Education and Skill’s budget will increase by €458 million (5.1%) in 2017 compared to the allocation for 2016 announced in last year’s budget. More than 2,400 extra teachers will be hired in 2017 – a 3.5% increase – as a result of the additional measures announced in Budget 2017. The total education budget for 2017 will be €9.53 billion, in excess of 16 per cent of total spending. Minister Bruton announced the details of the Education estimate for 2017 at a press conference in government buildings.

Key items in the Budget include:

Additional posts in schools: 2,515 additional posts in schools in 2017, including 900 additional resource teachers and 115 additional Special Needs Assistants. The remaining 1500 posts are additional mainstream teaching posts arising from various initiatives.

Higher education: An initial additional €160million in total current funding is committed to higher education over three years, the first significant expansion in Government spending on higher education after a decade in which such spending was cut by 33%, with measures in 2017 including:

Over 3000 students from disadvantaged groups will benefit from an additional package of €8.5million to support more disadvantaged students, including lone parents and Travellers, to attend higher level. This includes the introduction of full maintenance grant (worth almost €6000) from September 2017 for 1100 postgraduate students in the lowest income category.

New targeted initiatives to provide skills, and additional flexible learning places
Funding to commence a New Frontiers Research Programme and a new initiative to attract world-leading researchers in the context of Brexit

For the first time in recent years, specific additional funding is being allocated for 2017, 2018 and 2019 to cover the impact of increasing enrolments. Funding for 2017 will support 179,000 full-time enrolments

Provision for expansion in apprenticeship
Provision to implement the new International Education Strategy and increase the value of the sector by €500million per year and attract 37,000 additional students by 2020

On top of this initial three-year funding commitment, the Government will work with the aim of putting in place a new comprehensive and ambitious multi-year funding package for the sector from 2018. As part of this, the Department will undertake a review and consultation with the aim of developing a multi-annual funding model for higher and further education and training. This will include consideration of an Employer-Exchequer investment mechanism and will complement the Oireachtas Committee’s consideration of the Cassells report

School leadership: a new package of support for this crucial area, including additional deputy principal posts for larger second level schools and middle management posts for primary and post-primary schools. The commencement of restoration of middle management posts as part of an agreed distributed leadership model means that we will now be able to lift the rigidity of the longstanding moratorium on these posts at primary and post-primary levels. This recognises the key role school leadership has in promoting a school environment which is welcoming, inclusive, accountable and focused on high quality teaching and learning.

Additional capitation: Capitation investment for an estimated 11,000 additional students, to keep pace with demographic growth.

Disadvantaged Schools: Provision to implement the new Action Plan for Disadvantaged Schools will be announced before the end of the year, including additional measures in areas like school leadership, teaching methods and clusters to improve the outcomes for students in these schools

Guidance –The equivalent of 100 additional guidance posts by September 2017. The 400 guidance posts which have now been restored (out of 600 which were previously cut) will be allocated separately and transparently and outside of the quota on the schedule of posts.

Curriculum Reform – provision for our programme of curricular reform in 2017, including Leaving Certificate economics, politics and society, and physical education. Provision is also being made for the allocation of individual professional time for teachers of Junior Cycle, where the new framework is being fully implemented, and the appointment of 550 additional teachers.

Capital – €690million total capital allocation for 2017, an increase of €95 million on 2016 allocation announced in last year’s budget, to deliver up to 20,000 additional school places. This investment will support almost 8,000 construction related jobs.

Small primary schools – Initial changes in this area including an extra teacher for all one-teacher island primary schools; and capacity for one-teacher mainland schools to apply to the staffing appeals board for an extra teacher where the single teacher has children across 6 or more class groups.

Industrial relations: Among other measures in this area, the Minister welcomed the allocation of funding implement the recent agreement reached with the TUI and INTO on salary increases for new entrants since 2012. TUI and INTO. The Minister again indicated his willingness to conclude a similar agreement with ASTI to benefit newly qualified ASTI teachers, within the Lansdowne Road Agreement.

Minister Bruton said: “Today’s education budget will have a big impact. It will lead to 2,500 additional posts in schools. We will underpin ongoing reforms by providing funding for curricular and junior cycle reform. Strong leadership in schools is a vital ingredient to achieving excellence and innovation. That is why we will be increasing the number of Deputy Principals and restoring middle management positions.”

While the budget goes some way towards restoring the education system towards pre-recession levels, some are not satisfied that it goes far enough, one of those is ASTI General Secretary Kieran Christie.

“In 2006 the OECD Economic Outlook: Report on Ireland provided strong evidence for investment in education in Ireland,” said Mr Christie. “Instead of investment, second-level schools endured years of savage cuts which have had a significant negative impact on the running of schools and the delivery of education services to young people. Now that we are being told the economic crisis is over, it is only reasonable that the cuts to personnel, funding and services would be restored in full. The additional teachers announced in Budget 2017 is noted, albeit many for demographic reasons, however the reality is that much more needs to be done.”

ASTI notes the gradual restoration of the ex-quota guidance counsellor provision for schools (which was abolished in Budget 2012), however the union expressed disappointment that full restoration has not been achieved. “ASTI research has demonstrated the destructive impact which the abolition of ex-quota guidance counsellors has had on school and students. As a result of this particular cut many schools have had to reduce students’ access to one-to-one counselling and other guidance services. If we are to value our young people, then schools must be given the resources needed to support health and wellbeing,” said Kieran Christie.

He also pointed out that Budget 2017 does not address the inadequate capitation grant for second-level schools. “Actual investment in each second-level student’s education in Ireland is less than the OECD and EU average.* The inadequate capitation grant leaves many schools in the position of having to operate on a shoe string with endless fundraising activities. This is not addressed in Budget 2017.”

*Education at a Glance 2016 finds that the cumulative expenditure for each second-level student (for their entire second-level education) is €63,054 in Ireland. The OECD average of €70,810 per student while the EU average is €75,209 per student. 

A Career in Childcare

childacre courses in IrelandThe demand for high quality childcare continues to increase in Ireland and as a graduate in this sector – you are entering a flexible career with a wide range of placements to choose from.

A level 5 QQI award in Childcare could gain you employment in creches, nurseries, playgroups, early start programmes or as a classroom assistant in a special school. Of course your award can also be used as an educational passport to progress further in your career and travel up the national framework of qualifications or it can be converted into points which will allow you to apply for any number of courses in non-childcare disciplines in third level institutions. (see for further information).

If you choose to specialise in an area like Montessori Education – you are broadening the age groups you can work with.  As a graduate in Montessori you can work with children aged 3-6 and 6-9 inclusively. The Montessori Education Higher Certificate in Arts course provides students with the relevant knowledge and skills to empower them to make a significant contribution within the highly acclaimed Montessori sector. The Montessori College AMI (Association Montessori Internationale) offers a full time three year course. At the end of year 3 you can work with children up to 12 years of age. This course is recognised by the Department of Education and Science for teaching in special primary schools for children with disabilities, as is the BA in Montessori Education in St Nicholas’s Montessori College in Dun Laoghaire.

Portobello College also offers a number of different courses including certificate and diploma options with regard to Montessori training. It is important to note that this specialised area of childhood education continues to grow in Ireland. With experience, many teachers set up their own schools, and there are good opportunities for trained Montessori teachers in the rest of Europe and the USA.
childcare courses in Ireland
Throughout their career, childcare and Early Years workers can undertake work-based vocational and professional qualifications and go on to do part-time or full-time degrees. With appropriate training and qualifications staff can become supervisors, managers, open their own business or become Early Years Specialists. Therefore the idea of progressing further in the field you are passionate about is always an attractive option professionally and financially.

NUI Galway’s Early Childhood Studies and Practice degree course offers the student an extensive range of topics to study – ensuring the graduate will be skilled in a wide range of issues and areas that could see them employed in community and outreach settings to family and community resource centres or even in the policy development area. Graduates of this course may even progress further to higher diplomas or master degrees in Early Childhood Care and Education, Community Development and Family Studies and Support.

An example of a progression route would be if a graduate of a 1 year course in Early Childhood and Education course went on to apply for and complete a BA Degree in Applied Social Studies and Social Care. Immediately career opportunities as a graduate expand and arise in the voluntary, statutory and private sectors – in areas such as health care, residential childcare, special education and judicial services.

A variety of opportunities also exist to work with disabled persons, children, adolescents and older people in residential care, in day care and in the community. The BA in Applied Social Studies in Social Care is the nationally recognised qualification for working as a Social Care professional. Other related courses available in higher education to progress to include: Social Science, Psychology, Social and Community Development and other related disciplines.

As a childcare graduate you should be able to find a job that suits your own circumstances, stage of life and work experience. You can work full-time or part-time to suit your family or other commitments. Whatever area of the workforce you choose, you will be doing a job that makes a difference to the quality of life for children, young people and their families.

To see a wide range of childcare courses on offer around Ireland, use the following link –

October 2016 E-News Bulletin

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Education NewsSkills Shortages Highlighted in Latest Skills Bulletin Report
Education News
The National Skills Bulletin 2016 is the latest in an annual series of reports, produced by the Skills and Labour Market Research Unit (SLMRU) in SOLAS. The Bulletin provides an overview of the Irish labour market at occupational level. The objective of the Bulletin is to inform policy formulation in the areas of employment, education/training, career guidance and immigration. The Bulletin also aims to assist students, job seekers, persons returning to the labour force, investors and employers in making labour market decisions.

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NOT GOING TO COLLEGE?Many wish they knew more about career options available to them on leaving school and Pitman Training agrees that more guidance is needed. With the right guidance they could achieve their career goals and find out that College or University is not the only route to a dream career. Past Pitman Graduates have found that the courses open doors to help people work in the industries they really want. If you are focused on progression, then the PA, Admin, Web design and Accountancy courses in particular can open up a huge variety of doors into interesting careers. Contact Pitman Training on 1800-532632, and start earning months from now, not years. Pitman Training – the College alternative at

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SAGE 50 Accounts

SAGE 50 Accounts, Nationwide Locations

Manual and Computerised Bookkeeping Award Using Sage 50. This course provides learners with knowledge of manual bookkeeping systems and procedures. It aims to equip the learner with the skills to set up and maintains a computerised accounts systems. This course can be delivered using QuickBooks, Sage or Big Red Book Accounting software. Upon successful completion of this course learners will be awarded QQI Certificate Level 5, component module 5N1354

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Introduction to Environmental Legislation

Introduction to Environmental Legislation, Dublin, 19th October

This one day course will equip delegates with a knowledge of the structure of environmental law, current and future environmental legislative requirements, and the basic steps that they must take to ensure legal compliance. No organisation can afford to break the law but many are unaware of the full extent of their legal obligations in a situation where lack of knowledge is no defence.

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Online Introduction to Counselling and Psychotherapy

Online Introduction to Counselling and Psychotherapy, October 30th 2016

The Online Introduction to Counselling and Psychotherapy is a great way to develop an understanding and appreciation of counselling and will appeal to those who are looking for personal development, those who need counselling skills in their work, or those who intend to pursue a career in the field of counselling and psychotherapy. This online counselling course is ideal for people who cannot commit to a classroom setting or who would like the flexibility of online study.

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Certificate in Criminology

Certificate in Criminology, Distance Learning

This programme is designed for anyone interested in building knowledge of criminology, crime, terrorism – its causes and prevention. The course examines in detail the range of criminal activity together with detection and prevention methods in common use. Criminology is defined as the ‘scientific study of crime’. At the end of this course, successful learners will receive a level 3 ABC Award certificate in Criminology.

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Category Focus Childcare
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The demand for high quality childcare continues to increase in Ireland and graduates in this sector are entering a flexible career with a wide range of placements to choose from. A level 5 Fetac award in Childcare could facilitate employment in creches, nurseries, playgroups and similar. For more details about Childcare courses view our Childcare Courses Category on or view our Childcare Articles Page at the following link – Childcare Articles
Featured Article Fitness Instructor Courses
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It has been said that if you can turn a hobby or passion into a career – you will never work a day in your life. With an increasing amount of Irish people becoming health conscious and more fitness focused, there is also a growing percentage of sports enthusiasts looking to leisure, sports and fitness as a potential career path.

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Open days can be a great way of evaluating a college and getting a flavour of what you can expect in term of facilities, location and class tutors. See a selection of upcoming open days and open evenings on

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Pitman Training Courses, BSM Building, Parkmore Business Park West, Galway

Skills Shortages Highlighted in Latest Skills Bulletin Report

skills shortages reportThe National Skills Bulletin 2016 is the latest in an annual series of reports, produced by the Skills and Labour Market Research Unit (SLMRU) in SOLAS. The Bulletin provides an overview of the Irish labour market at occupational level. The objective of the Bulletin is to inform policy formulation in the areas of employment, education/training, career guidance and immigration. The Bulletin also aims to assist students, job seekers, persons returning to the labour force, investors and employers in making labour market decisions.

Some findings of the report are outlined below..

Employment Statistics
Overall employment rates increased by 1.6 percentage points to 63.3% annual average (1.98 million persons employed in Q4 2015). This brought down the annual average unemployment rate down to 9.5%. Long term unemployment rates were placed at 4.7%. It is worth nothing that emigration will have accounted for some of the decline in unemployment figures, with over 11,600 more leaving the country than arriving here. The unemployment rate remained high for certain segments of the labour market including the under 25’s (19%), former construction workers (16%) and persons with lower secondary or less education(15%).

Employment by Sector
In 2015, the strongest employment growth was seen in the construction sector (8.5%). Employment increased in most sectors except financial where it declined, education and agriculture remained almost unchanged. During 2015, shortages were observed in an increasing number of occupations and sectors compared to recent years.

The skills in short supply related to experienced candidates associated with the pharmaceutical, pharma, and food innovation industries. In particular there was a demand for scientists with experience in compliance, regulatory affairs and new product development.

At professional level, shortages of engineers, typically for roles in pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturing, have been identified. The demand relates largely to those who lack experience, 5 years in industrial settings. Job titles in short supply include;

  • Process/bioprocess engineers
  • Automation/validation/commissioning engineers
  • Quality/QC/QA engineers & other regulatory affairs professionals
  • R&D engineers: (e.g. gene and stem cell therapy; biologics, etc.)
  • Chemical/chemical process engineers
  • Mechanical engineers: with skills in polymer engineering & injection moulding
  • Electrical engineers
  • Global and industrial managers and engineers

At technician level, shortages have been identified for:

  • Quality assurance technicians
  • Injection moulding technicians
  • Polymer engineering technicians
  • Biotechnology technicians
  • Extrusion technicians
  • Process technologists
  • Maintenance technicians.

ICT (Information and Communications Technology)

Shortages of the following skills have been identified in the ICT sector:

  • Programming and software development:
    programming languages (Java, .net, C++, Python, PHP, Scala, AKKA, Ruby on Rails, VBA); operating systems (iOS, Linux); mobile applications development; web development (CSS, HTML)
  • Cloud computing: MS Azure, AWS (amazon web services), cloud architect
  • InfoSec (IT security): IoT (internet of things), BYOD (bring your own device), data/information security; IT internal audit
  • Web design (niche areas only): particularly web related applications focusing on enhancing users’ online experience (UX) and supporting user interaction (UI)
  • DevOps engineering (developing/testing, process re-engineering and communication skills)
  • IT project management
  • Networking and infrastructure: networking engineer
  • IT business analysis: business intelligence and search engine optimisation
  • Database administration (DBA), big data analytics, data architecture (ETL – Extract, Transform and Load – a process in database usage/data warehousing) and data warehousing: SQL, Hadoop , Hive, Apache, PIG and Cassandra
  • Testing and troubleshooting: software testers; automation test developers; automated performance testers
  • Technical support: user support with foreign language skills (German, Nordic).

Business and financial

Shortages have been identified in the following areas for business and finance:

  • Accounting: accountants and tax analysts with experience (5 years+) in niche areas (e.g. cost, fixed assets, solvency, international and/or manufacturing settings, languages (German & Nordic)
  • Compliance & risk: experienced (5 years+) regulatory affairs and insurance compliance professionals; auditors
  • FinTech: business and financial professionals with skills in specific software packages and experience (inc. international)
  • Business intelligence & data analytics: experienced (5 years+) statisticians; entry level and experienced revenue managers (specific sectors, e.g. hospitality); financial systems analysts; economists and data scientists (big data, data visualisations and quantitative modelling)
  • Fnancial management/financial analysis: trustee managers; deposit managers; payroll managers
  • HR managers and recruitment specialists
  • Fund accounting/fund administration: mostly entry level or with some experience
  • Multilingual financial clerks: credit controllers; accounts payable/receivable; payroll specialists; fund accounting and transfer pricing specialists.

Construction professionals

Shortages of the following skills have been identified in construction:

  • Construction and quantity surveyors with BIM (building information modelling, CAD)
  • Construction project managers with experience.

Construction craft Shortages have been identified in relation to the following roles:

  • Curtain wallers
  • Glaziers
  • Steelfixer, steel erectors
  • Pipelayers
  • Shuttering carpentry
  • Shift managers and supervisors.

Other craft

A shortage of TIG/MIG welders continues to persist, with demand expected to remain strong particularly due to the growth in the construction and metal fabrication/machining (e.g. high tech manufacturing) industries.

The new proposed apprenticeships – advanced craft welder – are expected to alleviate the shortage in the medium term.

A shortage of tradespersons with expertise in making highly complex precision tools continue to persist. A number of new courses and modules have been introduced in recent years, including new manufacturing apprenticeships proposed by the Irish Medical Devices Association (IMDA), which in addition to the increased in output from FET (Further Education and Training) courses and apprenticeship is expected to alleviate the shortage in the medium term.

Arts, Sport and Tourism

A shortage of chefs continues to persist, although a recent increases in the training output and the proposed new apprenticeships are expected to alleviate the issue over the medium term.

While the supply is sufficient to meet the demand for lower skilled hospitality roles (waiters/bar staff and catering assistants), the availability of persons willing to take up those roles is expected to be negatively affected by the greater availability of job opportunities across other growing sectors.


Shortages continue to persist for the following healthcare occupations:

  • Medical practitioners (especially locum and non-consultant hospital doctors, registrars and medical specialists (e.g. general and emergency medicine, anaesthetists, paediatricians, consultant radiologists)
  • Nurses: advanced nursing practitioners (e.g. intensive care, operation theatre, theatre nurse managers), registered nurses (e.g. general nurse, cardiovascular care, elder persons’ care, children’s care; intellectual disability care, mental health care) and clinical nurses
  • Radiographers (clinical specialists, MRI and CT radiographers)
  • Niche area specialists (radiation therapists, audiologists, prosthetists, orthotists, cardio-technician)
  • Health service managers; nursing home directors.


Although no shortage of teachers has been identified overall, issues continue to exist in relation to sourcing teachers (in both second and third level) with a high level of expertise in specific fields, such as science and mathematics. As the economy recovers further, the ability to attract persons with science and maths skills into teaching may become more challenging given that such skills are also in demand in other sectors (e.g. IT, biopharma, financial).


Shortages of skills relevant to supply chain management have been identified; these include transport management, warehouse management, materials management, raw materials forecasting/planning (junior roles), inventory control/planning, freight sales, and freight forwarding (air & ocean); the demand is particularly strong for those with experience, industry specific knowledge (e.g. high tech manufacturing, FMCG), foreign languages and relevant technical skills (e.g. SAP BI and analytics).

Difficulties have been identified in relation to sourcing suitable candidates for a number of driving skills including:

  • Fork lift drivers
  • Articulated truck drivers/heavy goods vehicle (HGV) drivers
  • Reach truck drivers
  • Rigid truck with Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC).

Social & Care

While there is no shortage of nursing aids and healthcare assistants, geographical mobility and a lack of attractiveness of the job have been identified as issues in relation to the availability of some healthcare skills.

Given the high level of turnover, as well as the high volume of job vacancies advertised and job ready job seekers, it is recognised that some employers may be experiencing difficulty in attracting and retaining qualified care and childcare workers.

Sales & Customer Care

Shortages of the following skills continue to persist:

  • Technical and product/service knowledge (e.g. pharmaceutical, medical devices, Software B2B, SaaS products, etc.)
  • Communication skills, cultural awareness and foreign languages (especially German, French and Nordic)
  • Marketing expertise required to lead product strategy development and management continues to exist.


Shortages of the following operative skills have been identified:

  • Qualified CNC (computer numeric control) operatives, particularly in high technology manufacturing and engineering
  • Production operatives.

While there is currently no shortage of construction operatives, evidence points to an increasing demand for experienced tower crane operatives and pipelayers.

The report is positive overall, indicating that the employment rates are increasing. Skilled, qualified and experienced personnel are in high demand in a broad range of professions. There are many job opportunities for those seeking new employment or career changes in various sectors. The education institutes are now offering many qualifications and training courses, both part-time and full-time, to enable job seekers to up-skill and qualify for these employment opportunities. Employment providers are also benefitting from a skilled and plentiful labour market in Ireland and abroad. However it remains to be seen how the UK’s exit from the EU will affect the Irish economy and if this will have further knock on effects on some of the sectors highlighted above.

The full report can be viewed online by clicking here.

Converting College Courses

Converting college coursesHave you ever wanted to convert your degree into something else? Have you ever wanted to specialise in a specific area of interest? Do you want to equip yourself with the necessary skills and qualifications that are currently in short supply? If you have answered yes to any of these questions, conversion courses could be the perfect fit for you to fulfil personal or professional ambitions.

The good news is that your existing undergraduate degree is not defunct; in fact it is the necessary foundation to allow you to gain access to a conversion programme of study. These courses are usually one-year taught postgraduate courses with a range of subject areas to choose from. Employers put a lot of weight on these courses as they are evidence of your ability and motivation to move with the changing economic forces currently at play in today’s jobs market.  A conversion course is the ideal way to address your lack of current skills, broaden your knowledge, or to progress further in your current career.

As with any course it is important to check with the individual HEI to ascertain the minimum entry requirements. Usually, the minimum requirement is a degree; the more competitive courses will require an honours degree of 2:1. Most conversion courses are open to graduates from any discipline, and this is the main advantage of undertaking a conversion course. However, there are certain programmes that will require specific subjects or specific undergraduate degrees.

There are a number of areas that are proving to be extremely popular at the moment; IT and Medicine being an example of these. In relation to IT, students do report how easy it was to convert to this area. IT conversion courses welcome students with degrees in unrelated disciplines, and other applicants with relevant experience who are looking to up-skill. Given the current shortage of IT graduates, it is little surprise to hear of the demand and interest for related courses. Participants who complete these types of conversion courses will have gained theory and practice in one year comparable to the level of competence of a computer science graduate.

Medicine is an area that was made inaccessible to those who failed to make the exorbitant points as leaving certificate applicants. The much welcome news is that The Graduate Entry Medical School at the University of Limerick and The Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland both offer a four-year medical degree programme to graduates of any discipline. These four year programmes are not the typical conversion courses but they also do not require their students to have studied medicine at undergraduate level. Applicants must hold a minimum 2:1 bachelor honours degree and then pass the GAMSAT (Graduate Australian Medical Schools Admissions Test) to be accepted.

Before considering whether to undertake a conversion qualification, it is recommended to research thoroughly the area/discipline you are considering going into and speak to the individual HEIs in question. The obvious criteria would be:

  • Do I have a real interest and aptitude/ability for this area?
  • What are the career opportunities after graduation?
  • What percentage of graduates get employment from this course?
  • What will it cost me?

An example of an innovative and exciting conversion programme is the Master of Arts in Technology, Learning, Innovation and Change on offer from Saint Angela’s in Sligo.  This is a one year full-time professional development programme which aims to equip individuals with the knowledge, skills and understanding necessary to utilise technology in an innovative way to enhance practices at the level of the individual and/or organisation.

This course is part-funded by the HEA under the Graduate Skills Conversion Programme 2011-2012 (NDP 2007-2013) and it consists of four College based modules and a ten-week workplace practicum:

• Module 1: Innovation and changing practices: contemporary debates and issues.

• Module 2: Technology, innovation and changing practices

• Module 3:  Enhanced learning and research practices

• Module 4: Implementing the Innovative use of technology to enhance learning and facilitate change. (includes a ten week workplace practicum)

The HDipPsych Conversion programme from NUIG is a one-year, full-time programme designed for students who have completed the BA with Psychological Studies at NUI Galway, or its equivalent. By combining the HDipPsych (Conversion) with the BA with Psychological Studies, students will have covered the course content equivalent to that of the NUI Galway BA in Psychology programme, thus qualifying graduates for entry to postgraduate professional programmes in Ireland and in the United Kingdom. This is the idea course for anybody who failed to access a pure psychology degree course but who still wishes to pursue a career in this field.

They say that some of us will change our career up to six times in our lifetime; for some that will be out of personal choice but for the majority it will be a case of necessity. Whilst conversion courses can be the ideal way to follow that preferred career path denied to you at an earlier stage or perhaps you only realised your real career interests later in life; these courses are evidence of ‘it is never too late’ to change from one discipline to the other. In fact your current degree puts you at the starting line for further study in areas related to Education, law, IT business, Medicine, Social Work etc.

All HEIs in Ireland have Programmes funded under the Graduate Skills Conversion Programme 2012-13. You can contact the HEI of interest to find out about conversion courses and funding available to you.

Catriona Lowry

ECDL Courses

ecdl courses in IrelandThe European Computer Driving License (ECDL) is run as a selection of qualifications, with the aim of empowering individuals and companies by teaching essential skills in modern computer technology. The courses are designed to account for anybody and everybody, from those sitting down in front of a computer for the first time to those looking to lay the foundations for a career in web design, or working with digital images. The more advanced ECDL courses even allow you to train as an IT Instructor.

ECDL courses are internationally recognized, currently running in 148 countries and 41 languages worldwide, and therefore provide a highly transferrable skill set that’s well established amongst employers as a good demonstration of necessary modern IT skills. Each course features a regularly updated syllabus that takes into account the ever-changing world of computing (the syllabus is currently on it’s 5th revision), and so won’t leave you lagging behind the times, and is taught by a highly qualified instructor who’s able to give plenty of hands on assistance.

ecdl courses

Both individuals and employees can access ECDL courses, making them an affordable way for companies to enhance the skills of its workforce as well as an exercise in personal development. While the content at the easier end of the spectrum is fairly self explanatory (using the Internet, email and common programs), the complexities of web design and system usage are targeted skills for people aiming to develop a career in – or at least a strong understanding of -IT, and targeted at individuals with an undergraduate level of education.

ECDL Courses cover the following areas:

• Beginner: Computers for beginners; Internet and Email.

• Intermediate: Essential Computer Skills.

• Advanced: Advanced Computer Skills; 2D Computer Aided Design; Website Creation; Working with Digital Images; Health Informatics System Usage.

• Professional: The standard for IT professionals; IT Training Skills.

Courses are structured in a format that first teaches the material, and then requires students to demonstrate their understanding of it in a series of modular tests (or, for the shorter classes, with a single test). Completion of a course can take anything from 8 hours to hundreds of hours, depending on both the course and the candidate’s ability.

To give an example, the intermediate level ‘Essential Computer Skills’ course requires candidates (by the completion of the course) to have a good knowledge of the use of File Management, Word Processing, Spreadsheets, Databases, Web Browsing and Presentations, and comes with plenty of online practice tests and training materials to get candidates started. A typical candidate might be expected to take a few hours to complete each of the seven modules.

To examine any one of these courses in more details, head over to the downloads section of the Irish EDCL website, where you can get hold a series of syllabi and program brochures giving an extremely thorough overview of exactly what’s on offer. The Irish office also runs a series of free, helpful seminars in order to assist HR, Training and IT managers in finding the correct course for their staff, and identifying the areas in which their business’ technological outlook needs to improve.

For listings of ECDL Courses and other computer training courses view the following link; ECDL Courses & Computer Training courses in Ireland

QQI and Hong Kong Education Bureau Co-Operation

QQI nad Hong Kong Education Bureau sign MOUQuality and Qualifications Ireland (QQI) and the Education Bureau of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Government (HKSARG) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)for cooperation in the area of qualifications frameworks.

The two agencies are responsible for quality assurance in education and training in their respective countries. Under the terms of the MOU the agencies will cooperate in the development and understanding of qualifications frameworks.

The MOU was signed on 23 September 2016 by the Deputy Secretary for Education, Mr Brian Lo and QQI’s Director of Quality Assurance, Mr Brian Maguire. The signing ceremony was witnessed by the Permanent Secretary for Education, Mrs Marion Lai, and the Deputy Consul General of Ireland in Hong Kong, Ms Isobel O’Connor.

“Today’s signing reflects a high level of mutual respect and confidence between our two organisations and a shared commitment to quality learning experiences for our students. We hope that working together we can increase recognition of qualifications in both countries to facilitate transparency and mobility,” said Dr Maguire.

This MOU will build on the results of a joint project carried out by the EU Commission and the Education Bureau, which compared the Hong Kong Qualifications Framework with the European Qualifications Framework. Understanding how these two frameworks relate to each other, makes it much easier to compare Hong Kong qualifications to those in other European countries. The results of this comparability study were published in March 2016 and can be found here.

Erasmus Learning Area Launched at Botanic Gardens

erasmus plusUnder the Erasmus Plus Scheme Ireland currently sends over 3,000 students on study and work abroad schemes each year drawn from 35 higher education institutions. In excess of 7,000 students come to Ireland on similar activities each year.

“50,000 students from Ireland have participated in the EU’s study and work abroad programme since 1987” according to Higher Education Authority (HEA) Chairman Michael Horgan. Speaking at the launch of the Erasmus Learning Area at the National Botanic Gardens in Dublin Mr. Horgan added “The Erasmus+ programme has played a vital role in improving the cultural awareness and employability of Irish graduates as well greatly facilitating collaborative opportunities between academic and technical staff in this country and their colleagues across the continent of Europe – all essential elements in the internationalisation of higher education in this country.”

The new facility at the Gardens provides a horticultural learning space mainly targeted at primary school children and is a joint venture between the Erasmus+ National Agency at the HEA and the Office of Public Works. It was officially opened on Friday 23 September 2016 by Mairéad McGuinness MEP and Vice-President of the European Parliament.

Speaking at the event Ms McGuinness said “The Erasmus+ programme is a great example of European cooperation. Young people have the opportunity to get to know their peers across Europe, making connections that last them a lifetime. As the EU comes under pressure, it is programmes like Erasmus+ that remind us of the value of European integration. And we must work to make sure it is as inclusive in practice as in principle. In that regard, I have worked to ensure that the needs of students with disabilities are addressed when participating in Erasmus+.”

Ms Felicity Gaffney of the National Botanic Gardens commented “Having a dedicated space for education in the gardens will help us further develop our education programmes. There is increasing evidence of the disconnect that our young people are experiencing with regards to nature, it is our ambition that with the development of this new garden, we will be able to deliver an expanded education programme which will provide children with a more hands on experience in the gardens and develop a deeper and more meaningful connection with soil and nature.”

For more information about Erasmus Plus visit the Erasmus website at

Reproduced under licence from ©Higher Education Authority

Massage Training Courses

massage coursesMassage therapy is an effective drug-free way to reduce stress, promote well-being, to help rehabilitation after injury, and to complement sports training. An increasing number of people are realising the benefits of massage therapy and the demand for massage therapists is on the rise. Therapists are employed with sports teams, in sports and leisure centres, health clubs, hotels and spas, and in all areas of the care industry. Many graduates have also successfully set up their own practice from a private clinic or from home.

Massage courses provide students with a thorough understanding of human anatomy and physiology, the theory of massage, client care, and business and professional conduct. Many of the courses take place in the evenings or at weekends. After completion, graduates are eligible to join professional organisations like the Irish Message Therapists Association for support, and can also continue their education, obtaining additional certification in different massage techniques such as Indian head massage or sports massage.
Massage training courses in Ireland

Institutes that offer training towards these qualifications include The Natural Healing Centre, The Tree of Life Holistic Centre, Motions Fitness, Image Fitness Training, and the Institute of Massage and Sports Therapy.

In Dublin, Galway and Cork City, Image Fitness Training offers an ITEC level 3 sports massage course. Participants will be equipped to deal with sports and fitness clients and provide massage to aid and speed up recuperation from strenuous sports activities.

Motions Health and Fitness Training in Dublin offer the ITEC diplomas in both Holistic Massage and Sports Massage. The ITEC diploma in Sports Massage teaches massage for injury and training. Each of the diploma programmes are offered on a part-time basis at the Palmerstown Sports Complex in Dublin and take place on Wednesday nights starting in October and finishing with examinations in May.

The Institute of Massage and Sports Therapy in Annacotty, County Limerick and Galway City offers the ITEC Diploma in Holistic Massage as well as several others including a Sports Injury Therapy Course and a Sports Equipment Diploma. All courses are run on a part-time basis, from September to June for two years, running on Saturdays or Sundays in Galway and Annacotty.

The National Training Centre (NTC) offers a national qualification to provide full body holistic and relaxation massage to the general public. Students study the foundational concepts of massage including: posture, draping, positioning, hygiene and massage techniques. The course is run in mornings and also as an evening course for those with busy schedules.

For other massage training and fitness training options, check out our Sports Massage course listings on

Taking a Gap Year

gap yearA gap year is a deferred year of study, usually taken between second and third levels of education. However it can also be taken during a college course for reasons such as lack of funding, accommodation issues or other reasons. Sometimes a gap year taken during a college course allows a student to catch up on areas of the course they may be struggling with or to gather funding to enable them focus more completely on study for the remainder of the course without financial struggles.

A Gap year before embarking on third level can be that necessary bridge to enlightenment and maturity for young adults before hitting college life. It can also be used if CAO choices did not work out as planned and the student wishes to choose an alternative CAO course for the following year. For students who may have financial worries, a year out may be a good opportunity to set aside funds for education in the years ahead. Whatever the reason, good planning is a must and with the right plan in place, it could one day be the talking point to get you that much sought after position and sometimes it reveals to ‘gappers’ a career that is for them as opposed to their subsequent ill-thought out one. A gap year can be a positive addition to your C.V as it often demonstrates independence and diligence (if you fill the year well).

A gap year can include a multitude of activities and experiences. Generally gap years will take the form of either travel, volunteer work (charity work), paid work or supplementary study (for example a one year pre-nursing course might be advantageous if planning to go the nursing route). A gap year can give the opportunity to take time out to do something that might not normally be possible. Some students may be forced into looking at taking a gap year if the offers are not taking them in the direction they are looking for. This is preferable to taking a course that might not be suitable and lead to drop out. With high drop out rates on many courses in first year of college, it is preferable to take a year out before college and reapply for a course that will hold more interest for the student. If a student does drop out in first year, they will not qualify for any funding if applying again so it is important to bear this in mind.

Of course, being away from education can be frowned upon and there are those that might never go back to a formal education setting after taking a year out – but they would be in the minority.

Why take a Gap Year?

  • Working in Ireland or abroad can be a good opportunity to raise cash to be more financially secure when entering college as the registration fees, book costs, living expenses are rising each year (and college grants do not cover everything).
  • A chance to help those less fortunate or worthy causes. Whether helping children, animals or rainforests, just one individual can make a big difference.
  • A chance to travel and experience new cultures. Living and working alongside local people will really let you into the heart and soul of any country. This might be a good time to try teaching English as a foreign language (TEFL).
  • A gap year can promote self-confidence and self-esteem if used wisely.
  • A chance to reassess CAO options and reappply for courses more suiting to interests and points achieved, It might also be wise to look into UCAS options for the year ahead if taking the year out for reapplication reasons.

gap year from college
With agencies available to plan your gap year, many parents/guardians see both the safety surrounding them and the benefit of the year out in the long term. If you do source an agency to help you plan your gap year; ensure that the work they do is genuinely helpful, or is it just a profit-making venture? The huge growth in the gap-year market has given rise to some spurious schemes that can do more harm than good, according to Voluntary Service Overseas, an international-development charity. VSO has warned that badly planned, so-called ‘voluntourism’ schemes could have a negative impact on young people and the communities they worked with. One reputable agency is European Voluntary Service (EVS), funded by the European Commission, offers young people the opportunity to do voluntary work in other European countries. Unlike many other gap-year schemes, the scheme does not require volunteers to pay a fee.

There is always the option to spend your gap year in Ireland and to work here. Some students take on paid jobs in order to get work experience and to make themselves financially secure before going into college. As they say on the underground in London when disembarking: “Mind the gap”. Three words of caution that are worth taking on board if taking a year out.

Author: Catriona Lowry

Time To Move Conference Explores Study Opportunities in Europe

time to move conference, study options in EuropeEurodesk Ireland and Léargas are inviting youth workers, guidance counsellors, career professionals and everyone working with young people to join them at the “Time To Move” event on 11 October 2016 in Dublin Castle. This is a one-day national event, celebrating the Europe-wide Eurodesk campaign “Time To Move”. The campaign promotes mobility opportunities for young people in Europe. The event will bring those in the Youth sector together to:

  • Discuss benefits and challenges of youth mobility in the current context in Ireland and in Europe
  • Meet and network with organisations interested in supporting young people in their mobility projects
  • Find out about opportunities for young people to work, train, study and volunteer in Europe

Educators and youth workers can come and join the discussion, attend the workshops and gather useful information for education options in the EU.

The programme includes the following:

  • Eurodesk Ireland will be launching the new European Voluntary Service video, comprised of interviews with Irish volunteers
  • Guest speakers on the day will be Mary Cunningham (National Youth Council of Ireland), Hilary Tierney (National University of Ireland, Maynooth), Helen Walmsley (Voluntary Service International) and Michael Ward (ex-EVS volunteer with Youth Work Ireland Galway)
  • Discussion will be moderated by Patrick Burke (Youth Work Ireland)
  • The day will also include an information fair and workshops.
  • This event is a joint initiative of Eurodesk Ireland, Youth Information Services, Europe Direct Information Centres and Spunout, in cooperation with Euroguidance. The event is free of charge, but places are limited and will be allocated on a first-come, first-served basis.

For further details and to register click here

Stepping onto The National Framework of Qualifications

National Framework of Qualification - NFQIf you are a student progressing onto third level or perhaps you are a mature learner who is thinking of returning to learning to either up-skill or take your training to the next stage; the National Framework of Qualifications is there to assist you – making both education and training easier to understand in terms of qualifications and progression. The National Framework, which is in place since 2003, is also recognised by employers and it assists them in understanding your level of learning and training. In addition, this framework provides a mechanism to compare and contrast qualifications. It has the added benefit in ensuring that whatever course you undertake that quality is guaranteed and that it is recognised both at home and abroad.

At the centre of the NFQ rationale is the learner. It allows you the learner to formally position yourself and your current level of educational attainment onto this frame, whilst indirectly encouraging you to progress further ‘up the framework’. Simply explained; the NFQ is a ‘fan diagram’ and it is made up of ten different levels. Each level stands for certain standards of competencies in terms of skills, training and knowledge acquired. This 10 level structure comprises qualifications gained in the workplace, the school, the community, training centres, colleges and universities, from basic to advanced levels of learning. On completion of any level, a specific award is made at that level of learning. The National Qualifications Authority of Ireland (NQAI) overlook the Framework and its’ development.

Everything from the Junior Cert, The Leaving Certificate, QQI awards, are all included in the Framework. All qualifications in the NFQ are quality assured, ensuring that you ‘the learner’ can have confidence that your course and the institution at which you are studying, are continually monitored. Quality assurance is intended to ensure that all learners have a high quality learning experience regardless of what college or training provider you are studying with – therefore setting a certain standard that has to be met by educators and trainers in the delivery of programmes.

There is also a very important European and International dimension to the NFQ, which is very important from a learner’s perspective. All qualifications in the NFQ are recognised at home and abroad. It is essentially akin to an educational passport with your qualifications on this framework recognised internationally. The NFQ is used to compare Irish qualifications with foreign qualifications. It acts as a mechanism for Irish citizens travelling abroad who wish to use their Irish qualifications in the pursuit of employment, for example. In addition, those travelling to Ireland with qualifications gained abroad can use the NFQ to have these qualifications measured and recognised.

As an employer and/or recruiter, the NFQ is there to assist you in the comprehension of the education and training system in Ireland, so that you can employ and develop a workforce that possess the necessary skills needed for your own business success. In fact the NFQ is a workplace resource, which can help you to;

  • Stipulate the level of  competencies required for vacancies in the recruitment process
  • Evaluate qualifications presented: the NFQ can widen the amount of suitable applicants as individuals with comparable qualifications to those required and those with comparable foreign qualifications can be considered for positions
  • Avail of a free of charge service called ‘Qualifications Recognition’, which provides employers with a way of comparing and contrasting foreign qualifications with qualifications within the Irish system. The European and International dimensions of the NFQ, and its connection to the European Higher Education Area & the European Qualifications Framework (EQF) help you make sense of foreign qualifications

The NQAI hosts the National Europass Centre in Ireland, which is an initiative that aims to help people state their skills and qualifications clearly in a way that is universally understoodnfq

The 10 levels of the NFQ are based on specified learning outcomes. Learning outcomes and the clarity provided by the NFQ regarding progression opportunities helps you to plan your educational needs and objectives. With the NFQ overlooking quality assurance along with supporting the development and certification of all learning wherever it takes place including the workplace; the learner is put at ease regarding their course or training that they are undertaking. It is also a welcome to know that even in-company training can lead to nationally and internationally recognised qualifications and therefore employees are rewarded for their participation in continuous professional development programmes.

Returning to education or training can be challenging, but with the National Framework of Qualifications as your starting point, you will be reassured knowing that you are about to undertake a course that is both recognised and quality assured.

Catriona Lowry


Courses Suited to E-Learning

courses suited to e-learningEducation via the internet provides exciting opportunities for both educators and learners. The internet and World Wide Web have made the computer a dynamic and credible force in distance education, providing a new and interactive means of overcoming time and distance to reach learners. Education is now completely accessible, regardless of your age and geographical location. Points or previous educational attainment is not necessary for entry to the majority of courses on offer.

Whilst there is much qualitative and quantitative research that indicates the benefits and success rates in e-learning. The most recent research concluded that students’ learning styles were statistically significant for knowledge performance. Indicators do show how e-learning is more suitable for those with a certain learning style. Yes, some of us learn better in the traditional ‘chalk and talk’ setting, whilst there are others who can learn independently and don’t necessarily need the interaction and environment that the typical classroom provides. We call these students ‘thinkers and doers’. Learning styles do determine how we learn best.  It doesn’t necessarily mean you won’t be able to cope with an e-learning course if you are a ‘traditionalist’. However, you might have to put in that little bit of extra work though, to stay focused, interested and motivated. Regardless of the findings – testing yourself is the key to ensuring that new information goes into the long-term memory!

There is another issue when it comes to e-learning courses and the individual learner. There are some courses that are more suited to e-learning compared to others on offer. If a course heavily relies on demonstration or practical work – then you might want to consider the practicalities of doing the course on-line. This should not prove vital in the majority of courses as nearly all e-learning courses are supported with visual components for the course; videos, animations, on-line tutor support etc.
e-learning courses in Ireland

There are a lot of employers and managers who value e-learning and what it can offer their workforce. For example, many directors of corporate training believe that web-based learning is the future method for their training programmes. They believe that if you want to improve the skills, knowledge and performance of your employees, e-learning offers an excellent opportunity for consistent and reusable learning resources for employees. E-learning can have a key role to play in management training, especially for those who are already experienced in their role. Those with confidence in their abilities are able to learn best when they can progress at their own pace. Click here to view some online management training courses on

There is no doubt that e-learning plays a huge part in providing up-skilling when there is a skills deficiency in the workforce or if you want to equip yourself with certain knowledge/skills if you are going for a new position and you lack one certain skill. An example of this is: if you are going for a teaching position with a requirement to have knowledge of challenging behaviour – Portobello Institute have a range of such courses (click here to view examples) you can do an e-learning course with Portobello Institute via their department of their Institute.

With legislation constantly changing in areas like health & safety and in relation to childcare; e-learning allows you to complete relevant modules as required and as they are up-dated. Currently in Ireland the minimum qualification required to work in childcare is QQI Level 5. If you are not in a position to commit to a full-time course – an e-learning course might be your only option to give you essential knowledge and documentation to gain employment in this area. If you are an existing child-care worker but you do not have the official accreditation, choosing to do an on-line course is ideal for you, as you are already aware of specific terminology and practices that will make up the course content.

The QQI Level 5 Care Provision and Practice course from CMIT is an excellent example of a course translated into a credible e-learning course. The course is ideal for all people who currently work within childcare, residential home care or institutional care for adults. Students have 24×7 access to CMIT eLearning for the duration of the course. This includes a comprehensive Course Manual, Video, Quizzes and personalised Tutor Support. The course documentation for this QQI certified course is detailed and easy to read. You will also be able to upload assessments online and receive online feedback. You can use the eLearning system from any computer that has internet access. Click here to view other distance learning Childcare courses on

ICT and computers is another area suitable to e-learning. The most suitable, are those that are quite basic to teach and are very structured to ensure learning is possible. There are also more advanced courses suitable for those with knowledge of IT systems but be aware of the level you are at before attempting an advanced IT course online. These courses are ideal for those competent in IT, who would not have a problem coping with extensive technical language specific to this area. Click here to view some online computer course listings.

Hair and Beauty is another category of training suited to online learning. There are many skills and new techniques that can be displayed online via videos and images. These can be practiced at home and are especially suited to those starting out in the industry or looking to pursue a hobby in this area. Some of the online courses available include, beauty therapy, nail technician courses, fashion styling and hairdressing. Click here to view some examples of online hair and beauty courses.

Remember, an e-learning course can add power to your CV and open up a world of employment opportunities. It shows your current or future Prove employers that you have the commitment to study and to up-skill. It shows committed to developing your role. It allows you to meet and exceed the requirements for job vacancies and hopefully stand out from other job applicants.

The following link provides more information on e-learning courses and training providers –

CAO Vacant Places

CAO Vacant places (also called Available Places) is a facility which enables students to apply for CAO places on courses that are not yet filled. After round one offers have been made a continuously updated list of courses with available places can be found on the CAO website – More details about applying for vacant or available places can be viewed on the video below (video created by

Applicants who have already registered with the CAO may make an application for a vacant place at no extra cost. Applicants who have not yet registered with the CAO may apply for vacant places for a fee of €40. All applicants must meet the minimum entry requirements for the course they are applying to, they will then be ranked on points in comparison to other vacant places applicants.

More information about vacant (available places) can be found at the following link –

September 2016 E-News Bulletin

Follow on Facebook Follow on Twitter September 2016 E-Bulletin
Education NewsAutumn Options for Part Time Learners
Education News
Autumn is largely associated with the return to school. Many of us remember the apprehension of giving up our freedom enjoyed during Summer holidays to return to school corridors and routines. If your school days are behind you, it might be time to replace those experiences with more positive ones. September and October are jam-packed with exciting opportunities to sign up to new learning experiences with many evening courses and part time classes on offer throughout the country.

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Featured Educator Dorset College Dublin
Featured Educator
Dorset College Dublin offers a wide range of Academic and Career focused courses. These courses are Accredited by QQI (Quality and Qualifications Ireland). The courses include Business Studies Degree Programmes Level 6, 7 and 8, BSc in Computing and Multimedia level 7, JAVA Programming Special Purpose Award at Level 7, Computing and IT Essentials Special Purpose Award at Level 6.

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Featured Courses
BA in Community and Family Studies

BA in Community and Family Studies, Distance Learning – October 1st

Interested in the community and voluntary sector? Then this part-time course could be for you! The BA in Community and Family Studies is a four-year, part-time distance learning course. Students are awarded a Diploma in Arts (NFQ Level 7) in Community and Family Studies upon successful completion of the first two years of the course. After four years, students are awarded a Bachelor of Arts in Community and Family Studies (NFQ Level 8).

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Administration Courses

Administration Courses, Swords, County Dublin

Administration is a popular career choice for people of all ages and backgrounds. It is a rewarding career choice with a variety of routes for progression, and it’s a simple industry to enter with no previous experience. What counts in administration is having the right skill set and understanding to dive straight into your new role. Which is why career training courses are a highly popular option for those looking to kick-start their administrative career.

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Event Management QQI Level 6

Event Management QQI Level 6, October 2016

The Diploma in Event Management is 11 weeks in duration. Classes are held once a week, off dame street, Dublin 2. Course is also offered through Distance learning. CMI have been delivering Event Management courses since 2004 and bring over 40 years of event management experience. Many past students now successfully work in event management, festival organising, wedding planning, and conference management.

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Manual and Computerised Bookkeeping Award using QuickBooks

Manual and Computerised Bookkeeping Award using QuickBooks, Galway – 26th September

This course provides learners with knowledge of manual bookkeeping systems and procedures. It aims to equip the learner with the skills to set up and maintains a computerised accounts systems. This course can be delivered using QuickBooks, Sage or Big Red Book Accounting software.

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Category Focus Fitness and Health
Featured Category
Interested in becoming a Fitness Instructor, Personal Trainer or Nutritionist? If so then why not check out the Fitness and Health Course Listings Page. Fitness and Health features and articles can be viewed on our Fitness Features Page.
Featured Article Learning JAVA
Featured Article
Many of us associate the word ‘Java’ with coffee and coffee houses. However, if one was to scan through any number of job sites – Java is a frequently occurring word in the list of job vacancies. So what is Java? Created in the early 90s for Sun Microsystems, it is the underlying technology that powers state-of-the-art programmes including utilities, games and business applications. You might not know this, but Java actually runs on more then 850 million personal computers worldwide..

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College Open Days
Open days can be a great way of evaluating a college and getting a flavour of what you can expect in term of facilities, location and class tutors. See a selection of upcoming open days and open evenings on

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Upcoming Open Days
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Pitman Training Courses, BSM Building, Parkmore Business Park West, Galway