Part Time Courses

There are numerous options out there in terms of part-time education. Universities, Institutes of Technology, ETB’s, private college’s and various organisations throughout the country all run part time courses in some shape or form. The first thing to do is to decide if you want to do a course purely for interest purposes, or to improve your CV and gain a qualification.

part time courses, evening classes, Ireland

Part time courses usually run for 6 – 10 weeks and cost in the region of 60 – 120 euro. Don’t despair if you’ve missed the last round, there will usually be other courses on offer again soon, and some organisations run classes all year round.

If you are looking for a course to improve your skills or develop your career, there are also plenty of alternatives. Most Universities and Institutes of Technology offer adult and continuing education courses from Certificate to Degree and Post Graduate Level. In addition there are numerous private colleges throughout the country offering courses in anything from law to counselling to computing.

Modes of study and attendance will vary, depending on the college but most are designed to accommodate people in full-time employment and usually offer evening or week-end classes. If you don’t want to attend at all then another option is online or distance learning. Check out Kilroys College or CMIT to name just a few.

It’s all about second chance education these days, so most colleges are flexible in terms of meeting part-time student needs. To that end many courses are offered on a credit basis, which means you get a certain amount of ‘points’ for each section or module of a course you complete. With this method of learning you can progress at your own pace, and work towards your qualification bit by bit. This option is often known as the ACCS mode (Accumulation of Credits and Certification of Subjects) and allows students to study a portion of a full-time programme in a part-time mode.

Another study mode worth noting is the APL mode (Accreditation of Prior Learning) which is a method of assessing a person’s prior learning in relation to particular modules in a course. Basically a college will look at what you have already done in previous studies or through work experience, and decide if you are eligible for credits or exemptions on the course you want to study.

Chances are that no matter what and how you want to study, there will be a college willing to accommodate you. There are a couple of things worth bearing in mind though:

Part-time education costs money – an ECDL for example costs upwards of €500 while a degree will generally cost much more. There is little state funding or grants available for part-time education, though college fees are tax deductable. If you are hesitant at the idea of paying full fees, consider it as an investment in your future. Also, shop around for options – some colleges for example offer courses which are part funded by Solas.

If you are looking for a course to improve your career options, make sure the qualification you receive upon completion is nationally recognised. There are many courses and qualifications out there which are only recognised by the college offering them. Whilst this can be useful if learning for personal benefit it may not be so beneficial for further study or career progression, therefore it is always a good idea to ask who accredits the course.

Follow this link to find Evening courses and Part time education on Findacourse.ie

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July 2016 Findacourse.ie E-News

Follow on Facebook Follow on Twitter July 2016 E-Bulletin
Education NewsSpringboard Plus Offers 5,855 Free Places on 181 Courses
Education News
Springboard+ 2016 is the latest offering of free part-time and full-time higher education places to provide reskilling and upskilling opportunities for up to 5,825 jobseekers.Springboard is designed to encourage a response by educational institutions to meet the emerging skill needs of enterprise.Almost half the places (2,752) are on ICT courses reflecting the continuing demand for skills in this area. Skills for manufacturing are also significant (1,298) reflecting the strong performance of this sector.

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Featured Educator Image Fitness Training
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Image Fitness Training has recruited some of Irelands best and most successful Fitness Tutors, coaches and industry leaders to deliver the NEFPC – a breakthrough syllabus leading to the highest available Personal Training Certificate. Accredited by the European Health & Fitness Association & Reps Ireland.

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Featured Courses
Microsoft Office 2013 (Four Course Bundle)

Microsoft Office 2013 (Four Course Bundle), Special Offer €195

The Microsoft Office Specialist 2013 (MOS) Training Package includes expert instructor-led training modules with customized presentations, practice exam simulators and learning supplements for an all-inclusive training program that provides all the benefits of classroom training at your own pace. Each Office training course can be completed in less than a week. The course is completed online, at your own time, at a location that suits you. You progress through the course materials and complete the online lessons and tests. The online virtual elearning program offers full multi-media lessons, simulated exercises, review questions, practice exams and videos.

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Spray Tanning, 1 day course

Spray Tanning, 1 day course, Thursday 14th July 2016 9-1 am

Learn everything you need to know about spray tanning and become qualified to run your own mobile business or work in a salon. Spray tanning is one of the most popular treatments currently availableIt is much safer than sun beds and a choice of tanning colours are available. Earn up to €20 per treatment with long lasting results. Learn with a fully qualified school – Bronwyn Conroy.No previous experience or qualification required. Students will learn a full understanding of their products to ensure a flawless finish, along with Pre-tanning, requirements, contraindications, preparation of the skin and be able to advise their client on aftercare.

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Childcare, QQI Level 5, Kinsale College

Childcare, QQI Level 5, Kinsale College, September 2016

This full-time award leads to a QQI level 5 Certificate after year one. The course is structured to provide students with a high standard of training and assessment leading to a recognized qualification for those wishing to work in the childcare sector in a variety of areas such as; working with the child in a day care nursery/crèche, preschool or with a child with a specific need. The course is also designed for those who intend to pursue further training in the childcare sector in Institutes of Technology and in Universities

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Management Practice and Team Leadership Diploma

Management Practice and Team Leadership Diploma, Dublin City

The Management and Team Leadership Diploma part-time programme is a top rated level 7 course awarded by the Chartered Management Institute. This Management course ensures that you are able to develop both academic knowledge and practical management skills. There are 6 key modules to cover:Managing Organisational Culture – Ethical Organisational Management – Planning a Change Process – Leading Equality and Diversity – Personal Development as a Strategic Manager – Managerial Decision Making

Course Details ››

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Category Focus Business and Accounting
Featured Category
Are you interested in becoming an Accounts Technician? Maybe you would like to learn more about Credit Control or pursue a career in Business Management. If so then check out our Business and Accounting Category for courses in these and other Business and Accounting related areas. You can also check out our Business Training Articles page on Findacourse.ie.
Featured Article PLC Courses as a Route to Third Level
Featured Article
There was a time, not too long ago, when your Leaving Certificate grades and the points that they translated into determined whether you would become a third level student, go directly into employment or head for distant shores. Thanks to the Further Education system, more options have become available for those leaving secondary education or those wishing to return to education.

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College Open Days
The Centre for Adult Learning and Professional Development, NUI Galway, offers an extensive range of professional, part-time and evening courses. Anyone interested in part time learning is invited to the NUI Galway Information Evening on Wednesday 15th June (5:30-7:30pm) in the Orbsen Building on NUI Galway campus.

College Open Days ››

Upcoming Open Days
Findacourse.ie, BSM Building, Parkmore Business Park West, Galway
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Springboard Plus Offers 5,855 Free Places on 181 Courses

springboard plus coursesSpringboard+ 2016 is the latest offering of free part-time and full-time higher education places to provide reskilling and upskilling opportunities for up to 5,825 jobseekers.

Springboard is designed to encourage a response by educational institutions to meet the emerging skill needs of enterprise. All courses approved for funding under Springboard+ are selected by an independent panel following a competitive tendering process.

Almost half the places (2,752) are on ICT courses reflecting the continuing demand for skills in this area. Skills for manufacturing are also significant (1,298) reflecting the strong performance of this sector.

There are 180 courses, both full- and part-time, in 36 educational institutions across all of the regions.

Announcing the 5,825 free places Minister Bruton said: “Springboard+ embodies the core ambition set out earlier in the year in the National Skills Strategy – to ensure that we have a system that is flexible; responsive to the needs of enterprise and adult learners; and that delivers the maximum impact for our public resources.”

“I am delighted to announce that this year, the ICT Conversion courses will also be available to eligible participants on a pilot part-time, two year option. This is due to the continuing demand for high quality ICT graduates”.

In 2016, priority has been given to ICT, high-level manufacturing, entrepreneurship and international financial services. Also included are new courses in culinary skills in order to address emerging skills gaps in that area.

Minister Halligan underlined the importance of cooperation with industry. He noted that “the strong ties with enterprise are a key feature of Springboard+ programmes.  All the courses available under the programme are in areas of identified skills needs based on industry input and guidance from the Expert Group on Future Skills Needs. This engagement with industry allows Springboard+ to help us in responding quickly to developing areas of skills needs.”

The 5,825 places now on offer represent a €28,634,030 investment from the National Training Fund and will equip jobseekers with new skills in sectors with good employment prospects.

To date over €113 million has been allocated to Springboard from Exchequer funding, providing for over 33,000 places.

Springboard continues to demonstrate good employment outcomes. A recent survey of all Springboard graduates 2011 – 2015 indicates that within three to six months of completion of a Springboard course, 54% of respondents are employed or self-employed, with progression to employment increasing steadily over time. In addition, a survey of ICT Conversion Course graduates indicates that 75% of graduates are in employment within the same time scale. 95% of these graduates are employed in Ireland.

Springboard+ is co-funded by the European Union under the European Social Fund, as part of the ESF Programme for Employability, Inclusion and Learning 2014-2020.

Full details on Springboard+ together with the eligibility criteria, are available on www.springboardcourses.ie

A Freephone Guidance line, run by the Irish National Organisation of the Unemployed (INOU) is available to offer advice on course choices and applications on 1800 303 523.

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CMI Forensic Course Receives Endorsement

The popular Advanced Diploma in CSI and Forensic Science offered by CMI College was recently reviewed by Mr Brian Rankin, Chair of Standards at the Chartered Forensic Science Society (UK). Attending the audit was Mr John O’Toole CEO of CMI, Julia Leo Courts and Criminology Lecturer and Mr Michael Moore CSI & Questioned Documents lecturer.

According to Mr Rankin from the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences, ‘the professional body I represent is pleased to recognise and endorse this Advanced Diploma from crime scene to court. Following ongoing reviews, the Advanced Diploma in CSI & Forensic Science is well structured, receives excellent learner feedback and has become one of the best applied CSI courses in the Republic of Ireland,. Even members of An Garda Siochana attend. It was great to see CMI’s internal quality process so robust and that the institute is continuously improving and revising its courses to be current and up to date’.

cmi college receives endorsement

From left to right; Mr Michael Moore – Garda Siochana Technical Bureau, Ms Julia Leo – Barrister and Lecturer, Mr Brian Rankin – Chartered Society of Forensic Science, John O’Toole – CEO of CMI.

CMI Quality team is delighted to continue to work with the Chartered Society of Forensic Sciences to offer the very best in crime scene investigation and forensic science qualifications and training.

View CSI and Forensic Science Advanced Diploma on Findacourse.ie

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Students Urged to Consider ICT Course Options As CAO Deadline Approaches

In advance of the CAO change of mind deadline on 1st July, the Minister for Education and Skills, Richard Bruton TD and the Minister for Training and Skills, John Halligan TD, encouraged students to consider a career in ICT.

Commenting ahead of the deadline, Minister Bruton said: “The ICT sector currently employs 105,000 people, an increase of 40% since 2010. The sector is growing and changing. Vacancies will continue to arise both within the ICT sector and in the wider economy, and there are many different types of roles to suit different interests and talents.”

Ireland is home to 10 of the top 10 global technology companies, 9 of the 10 global software companies and all of the top 10 ‘born on the internet companies’. In addition, indigenous ICT companies are growing and many are on their way to becoming tech multinationals in their own right.

Minister Halligan noted that “to meet the demand for ICT skills, higher education institutions around the country are offering a range of ICT courses. I would encourage students to consider these courses prior to the CAO change of mind deadline on the 1st of July. Those not applying through the CAO process, can consider courses on offer through Springboard+”.

Over 2,700 free ICT course places are on offer via Springboard+, with part-time and full-time options available. See www.springboardcourses.ie to view courses and eligibility requirements and apply.

Minister Bruton also underlined the importance of parents, saying “Parents are a major influence in their children’s career development and career decision-making and I would encourage parents to help their children explore university and career options in the area of ICT.”

A dedicated website, www.SmartFutures.ie, is also available to support people in the career decision-making process. The site features real life career stories and video interviews with people working in a range of diverse industries including space technology and cybersecurity.

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June 2016 E-News

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Education NewsContinued Improvement in Opportunities and Salaries for Graduates
Education News
Employment opportunities for graduates of Irish universities continued to improve last year, according to a report published in May 2016 by the Higher Education Authority (HEA).‘What do graduates do?’ is published each year and provides insights into the first destination of graduates of Irish universities and colleges of education, nine months after graduation.

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Featured Educator Stillorgan College of Further Education
Featured Educator
Stillorgan College of Further Education is a specialist centre for Post Leaving Certificate (PLC) and Further Education courses. Since 1986 it has developed an enviable reputation for its delivery of Further Education and Adult Education programmes. The staff have extensive industry experience in their respective fields and are dedicated to ensuring that, whether aiming to move to Higher Education or entering the employment market, students leave the college with every skill necessary for the future

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Featured Courses
Positive Psychology Workshop

Positive Psychology Workshop, Dublin City, 11th June

Positive Psychology is a science of optimum human functioning. Put simply, it is a study of you at your best. Psychologists all around the world dipped into the latest science, in an attempt to find the best activities to help you live your live to the full. Their quest culminates in an array of evidence-based interventions many of which will be discussed during this programme.

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Hair & Beauty Courses, Mayo

Hair & Beauty Courses, Mayo, Kiltimagh, Co. Mayo

St Louis Community School in Kiltimagh, with its dedicated training salon, offers a range of hairdressing & beauty courses. Courses lead to QQI level 5 in Beauty Therapy, and ITEC Level 2 diploma for beauty specialists,and at Level 6 the QQI Award in Beauty Therapy with the Level 2 certificate in bridal make up, Level 2 certificate in Thermal Auricular Therapy and Level 3 Award in Body massage are available.

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Child Development QQI Level 6

Child Development QQI Level 6, Distance Learning

With this QQI Child Development home study course you will become knowledgeable, skilled and competent in the theory and practice of child development.The purpose of this award is to equip the learner with the knowledge, skill and competence relevant to the theory and practice of child development when working autonomously and with others in Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) settings.

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Certificate in Payroll Techniques

Certificate in Payroll Techniques, Nationwide locations

The Certificate in Payroll Techniques (CPT) qualification provides payroll personnel with a nationally recognised qualification by which they can be evaluated. The syllabus for this IPASS qualification was prepared following consultation with payroll specialists in industry, commerce and in the public sector and it reflects the diverse range of skills and knowledge which all payroll professionals require in order to function efficiently.

Course Details ››

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Category Focus Medical and Healthcare
Featured Category
There are a wide array of training options in the medical and healthcare category. These include medical secretarial and administration programmes, nursing and pre-nursing programmes, counselling and psychotherapy courses and many more. View our medical and healthcare category page for a huge variety of medical education options. Or view our medical and healthcare articles for information and features on this category.
Featured Article CAO Change of Mind
Featured Article
Choosing a third level course is a key decision in any young person’s life. Dedication, focus and commitment is essential to gaining that all important qualification after several years study, so time should be taken to consider all options. This is why the opportunity to change course choices is important and should be given serious thought. The deadline to change courses is July 1st which gives sufficient time to consider CAO options.

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College Open Days
The Centre for Adult Learning and Professional Development, NUI Galway, offers an extensive range of professional, part-time and evening courses. Anyone interested in part time learning is invited to the NUI Galway Information Evening on Wednesday 15th June (5:30-7:30pm) in the Orbsen Building on NUI Galway campus.

College Open Days ››

Upcoming Open Days
upcoming courses
distance learning courses
Pitman Training Courses
Findacourse.ie, BSM Building, Parkmore Business Park West, Galway
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Continued Improvement in Opportunities and Salaries for Graduates

graduate opportunities and earningsEmployment opportunities for graduates of Irish universities continued to improve last year, according to a report published in May 2016 by the Higher Education Authority (HEA).
‘What do graduates do?’ is published each year and provides insights into the first destination of graduates of Irish universities and colleges of education, nine months after graduation.

The latest report looks at how 2014 graduates – from Degree, Postgraduate, Masters and Doctorate courses – have fared in relation to employment and further education.
It shows that employment rates for Honours Bachelor Degree graduates have risen significantly in recent years: from 45 per cent in 2009 to 58 per cent in 2014.

Other key findings include:

  • Sixty-five per cent of all graduates are in employment, with 82 per cent employed in Ireland.
  • Thirty-five per cent of Honours Bachelor Degree graduates; 14 per cent of Higher and Postgraduate Diploma graduates; and 10 per cent of Masters and Doctorate graduates are engaged in further studies / training.
  • As education increases, so too does salary: over half of Honours Bachelor Degree grads earn €25,000 or over; this increases to 91 per cent for those with Doctorates with thirty-one per cent of Doctorate graduates earning over €45,000.
  • At Honours Bachelor Degree level, Computer Science / ICT graduates are the highest earners, with 62 per cent earning €29,000 or more.
  • Overall, there was an increase in salary for Honours Bachelor Degree graduates in 2014: 48 per cent of 2013 Honours Bachelor Degree graduates commanded an initial salary of €25,000 or more, compared to 51 per cent for the 2014 cohort. Likewise, a higher proportion (49 per cent) are earning between €25,000 and €45,000, when compared to the previous year (45 per cent). The proportions gaining initial salaries between €25,000 and €45,000 have also increased for Postgraduate Diploma, Taught Masters and Research Masters graduates.
  • Dublin remains the region with most employment opportunities for graduates, followed by the South-West region.

Key Trends

Tom Boland, CEO of the HEA, said: “The findings of this report highlight many positive outcomes for graduates. Overall, employment levels – and employment in Ireland in particular – have improved from last year, and fewer graduates are going overseas for work.
“The report also shows that there are strong employment opportunities in Computer Science and ICT, with graduates in those areas reporting high levels of employment and pay.
“Finally, in relation to international students, we see larger proportions of such graduates choosing to stay in Ireland rather than move overseas, nine months after graduation. This would suggest that Ireland continues to be a popular destination of employment.”

Mr. Boland said the ‘What do graduates do?’ report provides important data on the quality of Irish higher education provision and allows Ireland to benchmark its performance internationally.
“Because of increasing higher education participation worldwide, it is imperative that we regularly assess the employability of graduates and their entry into the labour market. The high quality of our graduates is key to their success, and ours as a country, which is why we have to guard that quality zealously and resource it,
” he said.

The report’s findings are based on 18,500 survey responses, representing 69 per cent of Level 8-10 graduates from Ireland’s universities and colleges of education.

View Full Report on HEA.ie

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Adult learning Open Evening, NUI Galway

NUI Galway Open DayThe Centre for Adult Learning and Professional Development, NUI Galway, offers an extensive range of professional, part-time and evening courses. You can select a course from a wide range of subject areas such as Science & Technology, Early Childhood Studies, Humanities & Social Sciences, Business & Management, Training & Education and Community Education.

The courses are offered with Certificate, Diploma, Degree, and Master awards. They can range from a short 8-week course in Creative Writing to a Masters in Software Engineering & Database Technologies.

There are a number of flexible ways in which participants can study these courses that allow you to study at your own pace and fit your studies around your work and personal life. The flexible formats include:

  • classroom-based
  • online learning
  • blended learning
  • modular learning
  • continuing professional Development (CPD) credit

So, whether you are upskilling for employment or for your own personal development, NUI Galway have the course for you!

Come along to our Information Evening on Wednesday 15th June (5:30-7:30pm) in the Orbsen Building on NUI Galway campus.

For more information visit: www.nuigalway.ie/neverstoplearning

View more College Open Days at www.findacourse.ie/courses/open-days/

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Payroll Training

payroll training coursesOne of the challenges for those working in Payroll administration is that it is constantly evolving, changes are usually based on new legislation, regulation, or requirements for new information, there is therefore a requirement for the payroll operators to be aware of these changes to be sure that they are operating under the latest regulations and paying the correct rates. Keeping up to date and ongoing learning is vital.

Payroll training is covered with a wide range of courses covering all Payroll related topics, from the Basic Principles of Payroll (understanding PAYE, PRSI and the Income Levy) to the more advanced details of Management of Payroll (Policies and Legislation) and also the application of ‘Benefit In Kind’ (non cash benefits). Some also provide details on various potential refunds and savings for employees. Average refunds can be in the region of €500 (plus) per tax year.

Some of the more popular payroll training courses are outlined below;

Certified payroll Technician
This qualification provides Payroll personnel with a nationally recognised qualification by which they can be evaluated. The syllabus for this qualification reflects the diverse range of skills and knowledge which all payroll professionals require in order to function efficiently.
The course material includes numerous examples and self assessment questions which students can use to develop their knowledge while they study.

Diploma in Payroll Management
The Diploma course builds on previous learning acquired while studying the Certified Payroll Technician course and has been specifically designed for the needs of Irish payroll managers. The Diploma course is aimed at providing payroll managers with the skills necessary to manage a payroll department. Candidates will be provided with a stimulating and intellectually challenging management development programme along with a thorough education in the concepts and techniques of management specially adapted for the payroll environment. Successful candidates at this level will be able to display to their employers a proven knowledge of their professionalism and competence at an advanced level and they will have acquired a professional qualification which will enhance their career prospects and improve confidence and self esteem in their chosen career.

This course is available through a mixture of home based and classroom based learning. The classroom course is currenly available in a number of locations throughout the country including Dublin, Athlone, Cork, Limerick & Waterford.

Certified VAT Technician
Value Added Tax (VAT) is the single largest tax liability which most companies incur and the single largest source of tax recoveries on Revenue audits. Yet the people responsible for the management and administration of their company’s VAT liabilities often have to do so with the benefit of minimal VAT training.

The course assumes no prior knowledge of VAT on the part of students and it introduces them in a logical and progressive manner to the VAT implications and treatment of a huge range of business transactions.

Starting with first principles, the course explains the basic principles of the Irish VAT system, for all kinds of businesses from sole traders to multinational organisations and includes State and semi State bodies and VAT exempt institutions. The course outlines the most common problems which businesses have to contend with on a day to day basis and it teaches students how to recognise these problems and more importantly how to deal with them, without having to refer to third parties for information.

To see payroll training courses and view a selection of accounting and business training courses around Ireland view the following link; Business and accounting courses in Ireland on Findacourse.ie

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May 2016 E-News

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Education NewsNational Student Engagement Programme
Education News
The launch of the National Student Engagement Programme was recently announced by Dr Padraig Walsh, CEO of Quality and Qualifications Ireland (QQI). In doing so, he highlighted the value it can represent for enhancing student involvement in higher education institutions. Dr Walsh also identified the corresponding benefits for higher education institutions themselves: “it can equally build their capacity to facilitate high quality student engagement”.

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Featured Educator Hibernia College
Featured Educator
Hibernia College is a specialist in teacher education programmes offering a Professional Master of Education in both Primary and Post-Primary school teaching. The unique blended learning approach combines online content, virtual learning environments and face-to-face tuition to offer a more accessible route into teaching.

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Featured Courses
Payroll Skills Course

Payroll Skills Course, Limerick City, 12th May

Manual and Computerised Payroll Award – QQI Level 5. This course aims to provide participants with the knowledge and skills in the practical use of understanding the concepts of manual payroll and implementing a computerised payroll system. Covers PAYE, PRSI, USC, Revenue Forms & Computerised Payroll. Apply before 12th May. Other locations and courses also available.

Course Details ››

Safe Pass Course

Safe Pass Course, Mayo, Saturdays 8.15am-5pm

The Solas Safe Pass Health and Safety Awareness Training Programme is to ensure that, over the course of time, all workers in construction will have a basic knowledge of health and safety, and be able to work on-site without being a risk to themselves or others who might be affected by their acts or omissions. From a health and safety perspective, construction workers are bound by law to hold a valid Safe Pass card.

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IADT Summer Courses

IADT Summer Courses, Dun Laoghaire, County Dublin

The Institute of Art, Design and technology in Dun Laoghaire, County Dublin are running a range of short term Summer courses starting in June. The courses are from 1 to three weeks in duration. Many of the courses are aimed at pre-college students who require a portfolio of work to apply for third level courses in the creative fields. Others are open to anyone interested in art, photography or creative writing.

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Body Beautiful

Body Beautiful, 14th May, South Dublin City

“The Body Beautiful” Diploma course offers the very latest training techniques and practical learning for those who wish to qualify as a Massage Therapist. This beginners course teaches the art of Holistic Massage, Anatomy and Physiology and Indian Head Massage. If you are interested in becoming a “Beauty Therapist” and not a “Beautician” then adding massage to your skills is the next step.

Course Details ››

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Category Focus Fitness Training
Featured Category
Interested in becoming a Fitness Instructor, Personal Trainer or Nutritionist? If so then why not check out the Findacourse.ie Fitness and Health Course Listings Page. Fitness and Health features and articles can be viewed on our Fitness Features Page.
Featured Article Further Education, The PLC Application Process
Featured Article
There are many further education providers around the country, offering a wide variety of QQI level 5 and level 6 courses often known as Post Leaving Certificate (PLC) courses. Students mostly enter into these courses following the Leaving Certificate or when returning to education. Most courses require applicants to have five passes in the Leaving Certificate or a pass at Leaving Certificate Applied, however, mature applicants without these requirements are also considered.

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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 Findacourse.ie

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Upcoming Open Days
upcoming courses
distance learning courses
Pitman Training Courses
Findacourse.ie, BSM Building, Parkmore Business Park West, Galway
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QQI Launches National Student Engagement Programme

student engagement in decision makingThe launch of the National Student Engagement Programme was recently announced by Dr Padraig Walsh, CEO of Quality and Qualifications Ireland (QQI). In doing so, he highlighted the value it can represent for enhancing student involvement in higher education institutions.  Dr Walsh also identified the corresponding benefits for higher education institutions themselves: “it can equally build their capacity to facilitate high quality student engagement”.

The National Student Engagement Programme is commencing immediately with a pilot project. The participants in the pilot were selected following a Call for Proposals issued by the Union of Students in Ireland (USI), QQI and the Higher Education Authority (HEA). The aim of the pilot is to develop tools and resources that can be more widely applied to improve student engagement practices. The call was open to all higher education institutions with students’ unions (affiliated to USI or otherwise) and a relationship with QQI and/or the HEA. The successful institutions were, Cork Institute of Technology (CIT), Letterkenny Institute of Technology (LYIT), NUI Galway, the National College of Ireland (NCI) and Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT). The institutions will participate in the pilot in partnership with their students’ unions.

Dr Walsh underlined the importance of the collaborative approach taken to the project to date: “QQI and the USI have been working together on the development of the National Student Engagement Programme since 2015. The HEA is co-financing the initiative and will actively support its implementation. A working group will be established to oversee the pilot project and will of course include representation from the higher education institutions participating in the pilot project. In addition, the working group will include representation from the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning (NFETL) and the Project Manager of the Irish Survey of Student Engagement (ISSE)”. He also identified that the breadth of involvement in the project reflected the national interest in the topic and the enthusiasm for the developmental and concrete nature of the initiative.

The National Student Engagement Programme will be further and greatly supported by the appointment of a National Student Engagement Coordinator. Ms Cat O’Driscoll has now taken up this role and her previous experience as VP Academic Affairs & Quality Assurance of the USI is expected to be very beneficial to the project. In addition, Student Partnerships in Quality Scotland, sparqs, has been engaged to advise and assist on the development of the programme and Ms Eve Lewis, Director, has provided input to the programme’s design.

QQI and USI worked with the HEA and the higher education institutions and representative bodies in the development of the report Enhancing Student Engagement in Decision-Making which was launched by Tom Boland, CEO of the HEA, on 14 April. The National Student Engagement Programme is referenced within that report and Dr Walsh emphasised that its implementation will be directly informed by the principles for effective student engagement that the report is seeking to embed.

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Engineering Your Future Event at IADT

IADT, caoThe Institute of Art, Design and Technology in Dun Laoghaire, County Dublin are hosting an engineering ‘taster’ event, primarily for transition year students who may wish to see what a future education in engineering may hold for them.

The course team for IADT’s BSc in Creative Media Technologies (CAO Code: DL835) is running a three day workshop under the STEPS to Engineering/Engineers Ireland programme ‘Engineer your Future’ from Wednesday 18th May to Friday 20th May 2016.

This three day workshop will suit students who have an interest in Physics, computing and electronics and an enthusiasm for music and video technology.

The cost for the workshop is €35.  You can book your place here: http://steps.ie/Students/Engineering-Your-Future/IADT-2016.aspx

The workshop is free of charge for students from DEIS schools local to IADT (please check with your guidance counsellor if you school is one of them). These studnets wuill not be required to complete their booking on the web link above, but will be required to complete a registration form. Please email elena.somoza@iadt.ie for this form.

 

Should you have any query on this workshop, please do not hesitate to contact Elena Somoza at elena.somoza@iadt.ie

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Further Education – Recent Trends and Statistics

plc statsQuality and Qualifications Ireland (QQI) has recently published details of QQI awards achieved by learners in 2015.

The information shows the popularity of Further Education (including PLC courses) in recent times and analyses details such as age-bands, gender, provider-locations, award types and levels.

The new infographics system in use by QQI is an impressive tool which displays the information in graphic formats which make for easy display and analysis. More can be seen at http://infographics.qqi.ie/

The data published shows that in the previous year;

  • 278,236 learners achieved QQI awards
  • Over 220,000 achieved minor awards*
  • Over 37,000 achieved major awards**
  • Almost 19,000 achieved Special Purpose awards***

*Major awards are the main class of award made at a level, for example the Leaving Certificate, the Advanced Certificate or the Honours Bachelor Degree. There are 16 major awards in the Framework which can be viewed on NFQ.ie.
**Minor awards provide recognition for learners who achieve a range of learning outcomes but not the specific combination of learning outcomes required for a major award. These awards allow learners to build up units of learning at their own pace to meet their own needs.
***Special-purpose awards are made for very specific purposes. An example of a special-purpose award is Driving – Heavy Goods Rigid.
Supplemental awards are for learning which is additional to a previous award. They could, for example, relate to updating and refreshing knowledge or skills, or to continuing professional development.

Some more statistics are outlined below.

Gender

Gender participation was quite equal overall between male and female students, with females edging it at 51%. This varied in different locations (For example Cork had a greater imbalance with 61% female participation) and also varied by field of study (For example Health and Welfare courses had 87% female participation).

gender

Field Breakdown

The fields of study breakdown show that Services was the most popular field studied in 2015. This was largely swayed by the numbers studying the QQI level 5 minor award in Occupational First Aid. This course is required by many employers and there were over 26,000 awarded in this field of study in 2015. Other popular minor awards included agriculture courses such as Pesticide Application and more generic modules including Communications and Work Experience.

Popular major awards fell mostly in the Health and Welfare field, with the three most popular major awards being Healthcare Support level 5, Early Childhood Care and Education level 5 and Nursing Studies level 5.

Business and Administration was another popular field of study. The numbers here were largely distributed between many minor awards. Most popular of these were QQI level 5 Word Processing, level 3 Computer literacy and level 5 Payroll Manual and Computerised. The most popular Major awards in this field were level 5 Office Administration and Level 5 Business Administration.

qqi-field-study

Award Numbers

The numbers achieving further education awards in 2015 stood at 278,236. This was a 9% increase on the previous year. It was also the first increase in numbers since 2010 which saw record levels of over 340,000 entering further education, coinciding with the recessionary years post-2008.

further-ed-numbers

Award Type

By far the most popular award level was the Minor award with just under 80% of the total (221,632 awards). Major awards (mostly PLC courses) numbered 37,253 (just over 13%). Special purpose awards numbered 18,888.

further-ed-award-type

Age Group

The 20-24 age group continued to dominate as the most popular age-band achieving further education awards. However it is interesting to note that awards for this age-band dropped 16% from the previous year, whilst awards for the 15-19 age band jumped hugely by 154% from 11,157 awards in 2014 to 28,369 awards in 2015.

further-ed-age

Locations

Unsurprisingly, Dublin City with it’s high population ratio, achieved the highest number of further education awards with the numbers coming in at  68,555 awards. Cork City showed 16,271 awards and Limerick city 9,685 awards. The most surprising statistic perhaps was the high number of awards for North Tipperary which showed 11,364 awards for 2015.

plc-courses-county

Overall the Further Education sector shows healthy numbers. 55,577 students sat their Leaving Cert in 2013, 56,990 in 2014 and 57,929 in 2015.
26,756 PLC students received a QQI Level 5/6 Major award in 2015 so this is a significant portion of third level students entering the Further Education system and successfully completing a PLC course.

Higher Education is of course still the route of choice for most second level graduates with HEA statistics showing 42,264 first year entrants in 2015. This is almost 73% of school leavers entering the hgher education system. However the higher education system also has a higher dropout rate with an Irish Times article showing that one in six students did not progress to second year between 2012 and 2014 and up to 80 per cent of students in maths-related courses failed to progress beyond their first-year in college.

For more information on Further Education statistics view the QQI Infographics and statistics system on QQI.ie. More information on Higher Education can be viewed on the HEA statistics page on http://www.hea.ie/node/1557.

To view Further Education and PLC courses on Findacourse.ie, view our Further Education and PLC Courses Page.

 

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Sligo IT in New Pathways Collaboration

sligo collegeA new educational partnership, which aims to enhance the third level opportunities for Post Leaving Certificate (PLC) course students in the North West region has been established at IT Sligo.

The collaboration aims to identify and map the pathways from Further Education (FE) programmes in the Mayo, Sligo and Leitrim Education Training Board (MSLETB) into IT Sligo programmes.

The initial partnership with Sligo College of Further Education strives to promote interaction between programme teams in IT Sligo and specific PLC programmes and is made easier by the colleges’ geographical proximity to one another in the Ballinode area of Sligo.

“We are neighbours so it makes sense that we give PLC students instant visibility of the third level programme they can progress to at IT Sligo,” said Professor Vincent Cunnane, President of IT Sligo. “It’s a win-win situation for both institutions, and especially for the students of this region.”

Several Further Education Colleges offer courses specifically designed to allow students to build skills and knowledge to prepare them for third level courses in institutes of technology and universities. These include pre-science, computer science, pre-nursing and liberal arts. There are currently approximately 700 courses on the CAO that will consider any further education courses for entry.

Welcoming the new agreement, David McGuinness, Principal of Sligo College of Further Education said: “The main benefit for our students will be the progression route to IT Sligo. It’s a natural fit. A lot of our students come do us to do post-leaving certificate courses because they want to progress to third level. This seems like a natural opportunity for us”.

Project co-ordinators from IT Sligo’s three main Schools of Learning – Engineering & Design, Science and Business & Social Sciences – are liaising with SCFE programme co-ordinators to identify specific PLC programmes around which the pathways project can be based.

While Phase 1 of the collaboration focuses on Sligo, work has already started on extending similar partnerships across the region’s Further Education colleges.

Resources

Sligo College of Further Education Website
Sligo IT Website

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