Leaving Cert Grading System Changes for 2017

leaving cert changesMinister for Education, Jan O’Sullivan has recently announced the most significant reform of Leaving Certificate grades and CAO points in more than two decades.
The main changes are:

  • A new grading system for the Leaving Certificate – reducing the number of grades from the current 14 to 8
  • Proposals for a revised common points scale for entry into higher education
  • Broader undergraduate entry to high education programmes
  • An analysis of predictability in the Leaving Certificate

The current 14 band ABC grading system will be reduced to eight broader bands, ranging form H1 to H8 at higher level and O1 to 08 at ordinary level.

Minister O’Sullivan commenting on the changes said, “These important reforms have emerged from a broad consultation process. They are intended to better serve students, to encourage them to be ambitious in their choices and reduce the high stress levels that are currently associated with the Leaving Certificate. The grading system of the Leaving Certificate has been left unchanged for more than two decades. The current system of 14 grades increases pressure on students. The majority of grades are separated by just 5%, resulting in students striving to gain minimal percentage increases to achieve higher grades. That will change for those students entering 5th year in September and sitting the Leaving Certificate in 2017”.

“Research shows that the current marking system is out of kilter with practice in other countries. For example A level exams in England, Wales and Northern Ireland use six grading bands, Scotland uses five grading bands and new Zealand has four.”

The reform of Leaving Certificate grades also requires a change to the CAO points system. A new common points system is currently being developed by the universities and institutes of technology and, following review by academic councils, will be published in September.  An example of its key features is being published today. The revised points system is designed to minimise random selection of places at third level and to encourage students to take-up high level course by reducing the risk of students at higher level gaining no CAO points.

The Minister said: “I would like to acknowledge the significant work that the university and institute of technology sector have dedicated to designing a new common points system.  The proposed system will minimise random selection for third level entry – an occurrence that is very frustrating for students and their families as they pin their hopes on each CAO round of offers. The proposed points system will also see students who take a higher level course receiving points for a mark between 30 and 39 on a paper. This is designed to encourage students to be ambitious and have confidence in taking a higher level paper. It will reward students who aim high and work hard.”

Minister O’Sullivan also welcomed the commitment of the higher education institutions to reduce the number of undergraduate courses, which will build on work already underway: “This is a very important area of reform for students. Too many entry routes into higher education programmes provide a bewildering array of choice for second level students in 6th year and many find this complexity very difficult to successfully navigate. Giving students the chance to experience a much broader 1st year and allowing them to defer specialisation to later in their degrees will give us more rounded graduates in the long term. This is good for them and good for wider society as well.”

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April 2015 E-News

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Education NewsApril Evening Courses with CMI
Education News
The Communications and Management Institute (CMI) are offering students the opportunity to start an evening course outside of the normal Autumn and Spring terms. Students have the opportunity to study a range of topics and there is also the option to study several of the courses on a distance learning basis.

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Featured Educator Institute of Art, Design and Technology
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Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and technology offers a wide range of interesting and career focused programmes in a range of creative and technology based subject areas. The college hosts a wide range of evening courses in addition to a large selection of third level and postgraduate options.

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Secretarial Diploma

Secretarial Diploma, Dublin

Gone are the days when being a secretary meant simply taking care of the typing, filing and answering of phones. Today, a great secretary is central to the smooth running of any business, ensuring day to day activities happen in the most efficient manner. With the Pitman Training Secretarial Diploma participants learn the essential skills to be a highly regarded secretary or executive assistant…

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Media Studies QQI Level 5

Media Studies QQI Level 5, Moate, Westmeath

This further education course is suitable for school leavers and adult learners. The course is designed to afford students the opportunity to become fimilare with the various fields of media, photography, games studies and image design. Excellent career and promotional prospects for successful graduates as well as progression options for students wishing to continue onto higher education.

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Category Focus Childcare
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The 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 QQI level 5 award in Childcare could gain you employment in creches, nurseries, playgroups, early start programmes or classroom assistant. For more details about Childcare courses view our Childcare Courses Category on Findacourse.ie or view our childcare articles page at the following link – Childcare Articles
Featured Article Sports Therapy Courses
Featured Article
There was a time – not too long ago, when the word therapy brought to mind visions of a leather couch in an office. However sports therapists do a lot more then advising and talking. They assist people and athletes in preparing physically and mentally for competitions and personal physical activities. They are experts in how to avoid injury, as well as rehabilitation and appropriate treatments, if and when their client is injured.

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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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April Evening Courses with CMI

cmi college evening coursesThe Communications and Management Institute (CMI) are offering students the opportunity to start an evening course outside of the normal Autumn and Spring terms. Students have the opportunity to study a range of topics and there is also the option to study several of the courses on a distance learning basis.

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The April 2015 course schedule is outlined below and any enquiries can be directed to the college using the form alongside or by navigating to their website at the link below.

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APRIL EVENING COURSES
WITH COMMUNICATIONS AND
MANAGEMENT INSTITUTE

Management and Business

Title Start End Time Location Cost (€)
Management & Leadership Chartered Diploma level 7 Weds 29 APR 2015 APR 2015
– APR 2016
18.30
-21.30
Dublin 2 2,750
HR Development Advanced Diploma Thurs 30 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JAN 2016
18.30
-21.30
Dublin 2 2,550
Event Management Diploma Tues 28 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JUNE 2015
18.30
-21.30
Dublin 2 980
Business Management & Psychology Diploma Weds 29 APR 2015 APR 2015
– DEC 2015
18.30
-21.30
Dublin 2 1,850
Retail Operations Management Diploma Mon 27 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JUNE 2015
18.30
-21.30
Dublin 2 1,150
Management Certificate – Class or Distance Learning Thurs 30 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JUNE 2015
18.30
-20.00
Dublin 2 950
Project Management Advanced Diploma Weds 29 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JAN 2016
18.30
-21.30
Dublin 2 1,950
PMP/CAPM Certification -PMI Tues 28 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JULY 2015
18.30
-21.30
Dublin 2 1,250 + PMI Fees

Health & Safety / Environmental

Title Start End Time Location Cost (€)
Environmental Management Diploma Weds 29 APR 2015 APR 2015
– DEC 2015
18.30
-21.30
Dublin 2 2,550 Incl Exam Fees
Environmental Studies level 5 Mon 27 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JUNE 2015
18.30
-21.30
Dublin 2 980
Health Safety Occupational International Diploma Mon 27 APR 2015 APR 2015
– APR 2016
18.30
-21.30
Dublin 2 3,550
Health & Safety International General Certificate Tues 28 APR2015 APR 2015
– JAN 2016
18.30
-21.30
Dublin 2 2,250

Procurement Supply / Logistics

Title Start End Time Location Cost (€)
Procurement & Supply Diploma Tues 28 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JAN 2016
18.15
-21.30
Dublin 2 1,950 + CIPS Fees
Procurement & Supply CIPS Advanced Diploma Weds 29 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JAN 2016
18.15
-21.45
Dublin 2 2,150 + CIPS Fees
Procurement & Supply CIPS Professional Diploma Thurs 30 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JAN 2016
18.15
-21.45
Dublin 2 2,350 + CIPS Fees
Logistics & Supply Chain Foundation Diploma Mon 27 APR APR 2015
– JUNE 2015
18.30
-21.30
Dublin 2 1,150
Purchasing Procurement FETAC Level 6 Certificate Mon 27 APR APR 2015
– JUNE 2015
18.30
-21.30
Dublin 2 980

CSI & Psychology Courses

Title Start End Time Location Cost (€)
CSI & Forensic Science Advanced Diploma Thur 30 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JAN 2016
18.30
-21.30
Dublin 2 1,950
CSI & Criminology & Diploma Weds 29 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JUNE 2015
18.30
-21.30
Dublin 2 980
Criminal Psychology Diploma Thurs 30 APR 2015 APR 2015 -JUNE 2015 18.30 -21.30 Dublin 2 980
Digital Forensics & Cybercrime Investigation Diploma Thurs 30 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JUNE 2015
18.30 -21.30 Dublin 2 1,150
Addiction Studies Mon 27 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JUNE 2015
18.30
-21.30
Dublin 2 950
Child Psychology Mon 27 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JUNE 2015
18.30
-21.30
Dublin 2 980

 

Distance Learning Courses

Title Start End Time Location Cost (€)
Retail Operations Mgmt Subject Diploma Mon 27 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JUNE 2015
Home Study Dublin 2 980
Logistics & Supply Chain Subj Diploma Mon 27 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JUNE 2015
Home Study Dublin 2 980
Event Management Diploma Tues 28 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JUNE 2015
Home Study Dublin 2 980
Procurement & Supply Professional Diploma CIPS Thurs 30 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JAN 2016
Home Study Dublin 2 2,150+ CIPS Fees
CSI, Criminology & Forensics Diploma Weds 29 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JUNE 2015
Home Study 980.00
Criminal Forensic Psychology Diploma Thurs 30 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JUNE 2015
Home Study 980.00
Environmental Management Diploma – NEBOSH Weds29 APR 2015 APR 2015
– DEC 2015
Home Study Dublin 2 1,850.00 (incl.) NEBOSH Fees
Environmental Studies Mon 27 APR 2015 APR 2015
– JUNE 2015
Home Study Dublin 2 980.00
Management Cert Thurs 30 APR 2014 APR 2015
– JUNE 2015
Home study Dublin 2 950.00
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Counselling Courses

counselling and psychology coursesIn Ireland we are quickly catching up with the extensive ‘talking therapy’ culture that exists stateside. We can now readily access: life coaches, psychotherapists, guidance counsellors, counselling psychologists or a general counsellor. Yes, there are various professions that come under the umbrella term of ‘Counselling’. What do they have in common? They all help clients resolve issues in a non-judgemental and productive manner within the framework of an agreed counselling contract.

Counsellors help people to explore feelings and emotions that are often related to their experiences (past and present). This allows their clients to reflect on what is happening to them and consider alternative ways of seeing, feeling and doing things. It is both the confidential and caring setting that enables the client to open up and to express their feelings; perhaps understand themselves from a different perspective. Fundamental to almost all forms of counselling is establishing trust by listening attentively and non-judgementally. The role is also likely to involve asking open questions in order to help people understand why they feel a certain way.

The role of a counsellor is to actively listen to people in need. Those seeking counselling may include individuals, couples, families or groups and the role of the counsellor is to help resolve the conflict presented to him/her. Conflict may include personal conflicts: such as coming to terms with bereavement, infidelity, dealing with anxiety attacks or social phobias perhaps. Counsellors also work with difficulties between a group of people, such as resolving difficulties in a marriage or making a team of individuals work together in a more efficient manner. Many counsellors will choose to specialise in a particular area.

Counselling will likely be tailored to meet the needs of the client, the group and the circumstances involved. The techniques used will depend on the training the counsellor has done and often their preferred way of working. Most common techniques include:
– Non-directive counselling
– Problem-solving therapy
– Cognitive and behavioural techniques
– Behavioural therapy
– Interpersonal therapy
– Psychodynamic counselling

One of the most popular techniques now being sought by clients is cognitive behaviour therapy. Recognising that our thoughts inform and influence our feelings and behaviour; this therapy focuses on cognitions and the part they play in negative feelings and inturn behaviour not conducive to good mental health or living a fulfilling and fear-free life. There is a great sense of achievement for a counsellor who assists a client once immobilised by panic attacks to regain their confidence and ability to overcome such attacks.

Yes, as a career, it is becoming increasingly popular, as there is a majority of us who have a sense of ‘I could do that’ or ‘I want to change the world’; so they look at counselling as a career destination. It isn’t always as simple as that. Like any other industry, the helping industry can be challenging, especially if you work for yourself and in an helping industry – word of mouth sometimes will make you or break you. Besides, the idea of ‘changing the world’ does not easily transfer to that cosy counselling setting as you will face people who do not want to follow your vision for change. You will meet reluctance, resistance, projection, transference; which tests the best of those in the field.

A lot of counsellors who are making a very good living out of counselling work for an agency or for themselves or sometimes both. Those who have a viable income are well established and are expert practitioners in their field. Some actually donate hours to agencies like ACCORD or Child-line. Most counsellors charge anything from 50 to 100 euros per hour.

Responsibilities are likely to differ substantially depending upon the area of practice; however, common to most will be:
– Forming a counselling/therapeutic contract with clients.
– Listening to the client’s story as presented and sometimes advising on the best course of action/care for individuals, couples, families and/or clients to resolve issues.
– Providing comprehensive and methodical analysis and notes to assist in the diagnosis or resolution of a problem.
– Challenging the perceptions, cognitions of clients that produce maladaptive behaviour – all done in an empathetic and productive manner.
– Referring clients to qualified medical professionals as and when necessary.
– Supervising discussions between parties to help them resolve a situation in the most amicable means possible. This may involve acting as a formal mediator but is unlikely to include any form of binding arbitration.
– Acting within the ethical bounds of the profession, maintaining client/ patient confidentiality and ensuring that emotional distress is minimised.
– Keeping records of discussions.
– Attending supervision

The core skills you will require to be a counsellor is an empathetic way of being and listening that is genuine, non-judgemental and respectful. You have to adhere to strict ethics when dealing with clients in a counselling relationship. It is imperative that you are able to remove yourself from the work environment and maintain a professional distance from the subject when appropriate.

Many counsellors will tell you they started working as a volunteer before they realised their wish to pursue it as their main career. You do not need a qualification to work for charities like The Samaritans for example, but expect to receive excellent training in active-listening skills. Working voluntarily is the ideal way to establish have you got all the necessary skills and patience to be a counsellor.

To become a counsellor, one has to go on their own journey to self-discovery and healing, as it is often the case that clients will evoke painful memories or issues for you, that might be overcoming unless you have dealt with them yourself in a counselling setting. Once trained as a counsellor, you will have to attend supervision on a regular basis also.

If you wish to become a professional counsellor it is advisable to only study courses that are accredited. The majority of accredited courses can be taken full time (one year) or part time (over two to three years). The courses centre on the fundamental skills needed to counsel professionally and provide you with a broad spectrum of skills and techniques to employ on a day-to-day basis.

PCI College offer an Intensive Foundation in Counselling and Psychotherapy in various locations around the country. This course is the stepping stone for those who want to prepare for a professional qualification. It also may appeal to those who are looking for personal development or those who need counselling skills in their work place. The aim of this course is to introduce you to a basic knowledge of counselling, its key skills and selected approaches to the process. In particular you will be expected to explore interpersonal communication, personal development issues and the application of theory to practice.
Learning Outcomes – Participants may expect to:
– develop an understanding and appreciation of counselling as a distinct interpersonal form.
– learn and practice key frameworks for counselling and the skills required to implement them.
– reflect on personal growth and experience of life as a primary source of your understanding of counselling.
– become familiar with some of the main issues presented in counselling and an outline of how each is treated.

PCI also offer students the opportunity to study for a BSc (Hons) in Counselling and Psychotherapy. This course is designed for qualified professional therapists who have an opportunity to use counselling skills as part of their work or simply want to broaden their qualifications. PCI College provides a BSc in Counselling and Psychotherapy, validated by Middlesex University, for those students (including Diploma graduates from other Counselling and Psychotherapy training institutes) who wish to add to their qualifications and achieve a degree.

The course is Integrative and Evidence-based in approach, and includes Humanistic, Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy, Motivational Interviewing and other styles. The course modules will cover these different theoretical approaches as well as focusing on skills training and various special issues.

CMITrun a Drug and Alcohol Counselling course. This programme is designed for people who wish to gain an awareness of drug and alcohol misuse and practice methods of counselling clients who misuse substances. The objectives of the course are to enable learners to:
– obtain a better understanding about drugs and alcohol misuse.
– obtain knowledge about the different types of drugs available and their side effects.
– obtain a better understanding why people take drugs.
– gain a better understanding about why people use Alcohol.
– find out what treatment is available in your area and how to access it.
– find out how to set up a drug or alcohol abuse treatment programme in your area.
– understand the principles of drug and alcohol misuse counselling.

This course is ideal for people considering a career in Counselling; parents, teachers and youth workers. It is ideal for those who wish to gain an introductory qualification in Drug and Alcohol Counselling and wish to study at their own pace, and in their own time.

At the end of this course, successful learners will receive a level 3 NCFE Award certificate in Drug and Alcohol Counselling. CMIT also run a Certificate in Counselling. This programme is designed for people who wish to gain an understanding of the role of a counsellor and the basic skills required to become a counsellor.

You can also enter this rewarding career area via CAO. The National Counselling and Psychotherapy Institute offer a Level 8 Honours Degree in Counselling and Psychotherapy. They also offer an ordinary degree in counselling skills and addiction studies, an ordinary degree in youth and counselling studies, along with a degree in counselling incorporating psychometric testing.

There are many ways to progress in counselling and there are also many areas that you can specialise in: bereavement, adoption, couples’ therapy, addiction or anger management. It is also possible to move into counselling psychology; however, this will require full-time study commitment and most likely a three year full-time psychology degree.

Counselling can be intense, stressful and emotionally draining. Most counsellors practising full-time will be expected to work 9-5 but you may also be asked to do shift work or work with clients and patients outside of normal office hours; especially if you work in rehabilitation or medical setting. Counsellors will normally work from an office but may have to travel extensively and work at hospitals, schools or prisons. For example, counsellors who work for the Department of Education can be called on, at all hours to travel, if a critical incident occurs at a school that requires counsellors to assist students and staff.

Counselling and attending a counsellor is no longer a taboo subject amongst the majority of us. In every town and city in Ireland, there are practicing counsellors. They exist because there is a need for the helping service they provide. Of all the career areas, it is not one to be entered to lightly; counselling is a privileged position where clients trust you with their story and their difficulties. It is often the case that a counsellor becomes the difference in someone choosing to live rather than to end life. That is without doubt – a very serious responsibility that requires amazing interpersonal and counselling skills.

To view more resources you can view the following link; www.findacourse.ie/psychology-courses-c34.html

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March 2015 Findacourse E-News

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Education NewsRag Week and Student Safety Concerns
Education News
The annual tradition of student RAG week has once again caused havoc in cities around Ireland with numerous arrests for anti-social behaviour and drunkenness. Overworked Gardaí and other front line workers were on duty to maintain public order and keep the hundreds of revellers from harm.

Continue reading ››

Featured Educator Distance Learning with Kilroys College
Featured Educator
Kilroys College is one of Ireland’s longest running distance learning colleges. The college offers a wide range of courses with subjects varying from subject area such as sports and fitness to business training. The college also has an interesting selection of leaving cert revision courses.

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National Qualification in Neuromuscular Physical Therapy

National Qualification in Neuromuscular Physical Therapy, Dublin

The National Qualification in Neuromuscular and Physical Therapy is a part-time programme which qualifies students to offer soft tissue manipulation techniques and therapeutic interventions in the treatment of acute and chronic pain problems. This programme is delivered at the National Training Centre, 15 – 16 St Josephs Parade, Dorset Street, Dublin 7.

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Waste Management and Resource Minimization

Waste Management and Resource Minimization, Nationwide locations

Ever-expanding waste legislation, consumer pressure and growing business awareness of the benefits of sustainability have all increased the need for organisations to improve their environmental performance. Many companies are unaware of the true cost of waste to their business. Implementing a structured waste minimisation programme saves on costs..

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Category Focus Languages
Featured Category
From Arabic to Vietnamese, our languages category page offers a wide range of courses from languages for beginners to more advanced course options for improvers.Check out our Languages Course Listings for more information and our Languages Articles for language learning tips and information.
Featured Article National Framework of Qualifications
Featured Article
The National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ) is a ten level system that provides a way to compare qualifications and ensure that they are recognised nationally and abroad. Each of the ten levels are used to describe the Irish qualifications system and each level is based on national standards of skill, knowledge and ability ie. what a person is able to understand and do after completing a process of learning, with the higher numbers indicating a higher level of education.

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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
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Findacourse.ie, BSM Building, Parkmore Business Park West, Galway
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Make Up Training Courses

beauty and hairdressing coursesMake-up training can be undertaken for personal use or as a way to enter an exciting and glamorous industry. A professional make-up artist is involved in some of the most exciting events in somebody’s life – from intimate events like weddings to public occasions like award ceremonies. Some make-up artists get to work with politicians, actors, models and musicians. Typical employers include: Modelling agencies, Magazines, Film/Television, Theatre, Department Stores etc. Their job can be to promote a certain image to creating special effects such as wounds or ageing – depending on what is required. They may work alone, as assistants to a more senior colleague, or as part of a make-up design team. There are huge opportunities for self-employment also.

There are certain desired skills and qualities one needs to be a make-up artists. They include:
• Excellent communication skills.
• Ability to improvise.
• High level of organisation skills.
• Excellent attention to detail and accuracy.
• Resourcefulness and ability to manage several tasks and projects simultaneously.
• Ability to work under pressure.

There are many make-up training courses throughout Ireland. Some are set-up for those who just want to learn how to apply their own make-up, to internationally accredited courses, for those who wish to become formally trained in the area.

The Colour and Image Academy run both part-time/evening make-up training technique courses and Make-up Artistry Courses. Their courses are run nationwide, in Cork, Dublin, Kerry and Limerick. They see the world of a make-up artist as a ‘fantastic and rewarding business to be in’. A qualification from this academy will assist you in setting up your own business to working for an employer. Their past students have progressed to work for leading cosmetic houses, others become session make-up artists working in the fashion, television & film industries.

Bronwyn Conroy Beauty School in Blackrock, County Dublin offers a range of hair and beauty courses from the CIDESCO full time beauty therapy course to the part time manicure and pedicure course. Whether a beauty professional seeking to add new skills such as spray tanning or threading or a part time learner hoping to get that perfect fake tan then this college will have something to offer.

The Portobello Institute run a Diploma course in Make-up Artistry – offering both part-time and full-time courses. This course was set up as a result of the huge growth in the Irish entertainment and cosmetic industry. Portobello Institute’s course provides you with the skills required for this exciting and challenging industry. Their all-embracing courses are specifically designed to completely equip you with the necessary tools to work in all areas of Make-Up Artisty. On completion, your portfolio will prepare you for work in the retail and fashion arena, with brands, catwalk, catalogue and editorial. The curriculum of the ITEC Facial Make-Up certificate is covered on this course, giving you the opportunity to take this particular examination at the end of this course if you wish.

Malahide Community School also offer a part-time/evening Make-up Artistry course as part of their Adult Education Programme. This course also covers everything from the basics of make-up application to creating special looks for various occasions.

Some courses provide certain tools for this trade, whilst others require you to come equipped with certain brushes/applicators and make-up. Always check with your course provider what you are required to bring and/or additional costs for materials provided.

Whilst not necessary, completing an accredited course in this area will assist you in travelling the  world with your qualification. The ITEC (International therapy examination council) qualifications are the best way to start your career in the beauty industry. Recognised in over 33 countries worldwide; an ITEC qualification will help you wherever you choose to work. ITEC is the premier International Awarding Organisiation for qualifications in Beauty. However, all colleges and academies offering make-up courses, will have their own certificate to award on completion of the course.

There is no doubt that this is perhaps one of the most glamorous careers to be in and some make-up artists go on to  become celebrities in this field, as a result of the high-profile clients they work with. There are make-up artists like Bobbi Brown, for example, who have their own prestigious brand of make-up for sale world-wide. Other make-up artists are hired by make-up brands to travel the world as ambassadors for their make-up.

This is a practical skill that you can use in your own personal life or turn into a profitable career. If you don’t wish to do it on a full-time basis, it is the perfect part-time income earner to combine with another career. There are many make-up artists in Ireland who specialise in weddings or other special occasions, whilst pursuing other careers. Another added advantage is you do not have to have a studio to offer this service, as most make-up artists operate as mobile make-up artists.

In a world where people are struggling to survive on a sole income, a qualification as a make-up artist could assist you in supplementing your income.

View more hair and beauty courses at www.findacourse.ie/hair-beauty-courses-c27.html. More information on hair and beauty training options can also be viewed at www.beautycoursesireland.com

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RAG Week and Student Safety Concerns

college rag weekThe annual tradition of student RAG week has once again caused havoc in cities around Ireland with numerous arrests for anti-social behaviour and drunkenness. Overworked Gardaí and other front line workers were on duty to maintain public order and keep the hundreds of revellers from harm.

The official aim of RAG week is to raise funds and awareness for charities and traditionally involves dressing up for street collections, organised events and entertainment. RAG is a latter day acronym for “Raise and Give” but in recent times, this seems to have been forgotten and RAG week has spiralled dangerously out of control in some cities to the extent that RAG week was banned by the student unions in Galway NUIG and GMIT in 2011.

In spite of the ban, Galway RAG week celebrations continue unofficially and are more aligned to the original Oxford English Dictionary definition of “Rag”; “an act of ragging; esp. an extensive display of noisy disorderly conduct, carried on in defiance of authority or discipline.”

This years RAG week in Waterford resulted in drunken students spending the night in cells when an event spiralled into chaos. Gardai attempted to control the hoard of drink-fuelled party goers as they spilled onto a street and refused to disperse. Most had been drinking all day. There were several arrests but fortunately no injuries.

In Galway, crowds massed near Supermac’s, Eyre Square after a pub had been cleared on the advice of the fire services who were concerned the number of people in the pub constituted a fire hazard. Another pub was accused of exploitation as they advertised a “Donegal Tuesday” event extensively which had students queuing in the streets from early morning wearing Donegal jerseys in order to enter the pub at 11am.

So what can be done to keep students and the general public safe during events of this type?
It is important that students are educated on the dangers of alcohol and its potentially lethal effects. Clearly a Gardaí presence is essential but also it may be an idea for student safety officers to be appointed to mingle in the towns, cities and venues to offer assistance or to monitor student behaviour that presents a threat to themselves or others.
Responsible student unions do give clear guidelines and safety tips to students participating in RAG week and encourage proper planning and help to arrange transport facilities, rendezvous points and support. However, none of this exists with the current unofficial Galway RAG week and it may be worth considering making the RAG week official again and get back to the core values of structured events, fundraising and entertainment that can be monitored.
Discouraging pubs from promotion of gratuitous consumption of alcohol may be of some help to the situation but would require venues to be proactive on RAG week policies.

There may be hope for safer times ahead as in 2011 DCU students decided to develop the concept of RAG and created RAG Ireland. The group encourages students to volunteer and challenge social problems. The organisation encourages students to be more hands on using their personal skills and ideas to raise money for charity with more focus on fundraising while still enjoying the celebrations.  RAG Ireland is working hard to rectify perceptions of trouble filled, chaotic RAG weeks and if the original values were introduced back into RAG week, then this could be a compromise between student revellers and colleges and help bring RAG week back from the dangerous levels it seems to have risen to in recent years.

Author: Denise Colebrooke

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Journalism Courses – Write Your Own Story

journalism and writing coursesThe Internet has opened up a whole new world for certain professions, and journalism is one of them. As a result, there are many more journalist positions going all over the world than ever before. Unfortunately more people are looking to get into the profession as well. As a result, you do need to have an edge to get noticed and get ahead. Along with writing talent, you need to have a CV to back it up, and no CV is complete without a good educational background. It seems that editors want the full package these days and writing experience combined with a good educational foundation gives them just what they are looking for. So, as a result, if you want to get yourself noticed then it could be a good idea to consider a journalism course sooner rather than later!

Whether you are fresh out of school, pursuing an alternative career or writing alongside a day job at the moment, there is a journalism course out there for you. You can choose from a variety of night courses, distance learning, part time courses and full time courses, all of which offer various qualifications and course content so that you can choose what you want and need and tailor your education to those ends!

Journalism courses may last anywhere from weeks to years depending on the level. There are also writing workshops that can be of benefit to aspiring writers. These workshops tend to tour the country and may only visit a certain area once or twice. Short term evening courses are more regular and many adult education colleges offer these each Spring and Autumn in the form of creative writing and journalism intro courses.

Journalism Media Courses Ireland

Shorter journalism courses tend to deal solely with certain aspects of journalism, including photographic media, broadcasting skills, writing for magazines and visual media. They tend to deal with one specific aspect of each of these areas and are meant for offering an introduction into the area or honing certain skills rather than giving you a comprehensive overview. More long-term courses actually look at journalism in far more depth and give you a firmer foundation to build a career upon. These courses tend to include the history of media, social studies, shorthand, media law, layout, design, news media, sports journalism, reporting, business journalism, online journalism, freelancing, creative writing, video production and any number of other elements that could help to advance your career.

Another option is to train on the job. There are apprenticeships available today but they often require starting at the very beginning as an office junior. These places are very few and far between so education may well seem like the best option. As there are so many courses to choose from, it is probably more viable to choose one of those than hold out for an office job.

The career paths that extend from a journalism course are plentiful, both within the media industry and outside of it. You could choose to go into publishing, public speaking, public relations, marketing, advertising and a number of other fields. However, should you choose to stick within the media then you will probably be choosing from the following – broadcast journalist, magazine journalist, news reporter, columnist, editor, press officer, researcher and other news and media related roles.

The following institutions and journalism courses may be of interest to you and provide a good starting point for your research

• http://www.dit.ie – Dublin Institute Of Technology – MA Journalism – If you have a degree in journalism or another related discipline then this may be the course to get you into the field.

• http://www.cmit.ie – College of Management and IT – Diploma in Freelance Journalism – A distance learning course that can give you the way in you want around your current job.

• http://www.dcu.ie – Dublin City University – A selection of Masters and Bachelors degrees, both full and part time.

Findacourse.ie lists a range of Literature & Journalism courses on our course listings section

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Adult Education Options

adult education coursesIf you want to learn something new, make a change in your daily routine, challenge yourself, or just meet people with similar interests, there is no shortage of learning opportunities in Ireland today. In fact trying to figure out where to take a course, may be the hardest decision of all. Community schools, continuing adult education at third level,  further education colleges, undergraduate and post graduate courses, private colleges, and distance learning all offer education in many different forms and areas with varying degrees of time and financial commitments. There is overlap between the schools and understanding what you want from a course will help to narrow the choices. Introductory courses or those taken for general interest usually do not have any qualification associated with them. The benefit of these classes is that they don’t cost a lot in time or money. The flip side, naturally, is that courses with awards granted at the end, which may be useful in terms securing a job, a place in another education programme, or getting more money in your current job, demand extra commitment at additional cost.

Part-time and evening classes are perfect for people who have never studied a particular subject area before or who want to know more about a discipline in which they’re already interested. Community Schools, such as Malahide Community School or Old Bawn Community School in Dublin, are a popular option for hobbies, crafts, or introductions to specific topics. These informal classes (most of which do not have any qualifications associated with them) range from yoga and meditation to creative classes such as pottery, woodworking, and photography to language courses and many general interest subjects such as first-aid, public speaking, DIY and law. These courses run for about ten weeks and cost between €100 and €120 (although computer courses are often more expensive). For the majority of classes anyone, regardless of educational background, can apply.

Other part-time and evening class options, similar in time and financial commitment, are the adult continuing education programmes provided by third level institutions, including the technical institutes and universities. Here, subjects are offered for both interest and credit. Short courses taken for interest only, in which no qualifications are awarded, are open to anyone and geared towards specific topics. Examples include NUIG’s Introductions to Contemporary Irish Writing series that focuses on specific writers, or AIT’s hobby classes among which are the Introduction to the Global Music Industry or the Introduction to Oil Painting, or Trinity’s Introduction to Neuroscience. On the other hand, many third level schools award certificates and diplomas for specific subjects, such as UCC’s one-year part-time certificate in the Japanese Language. These programmes demand a longer time commitment, cost more, and may have entry requirements.

Further Education Colleges offer Post-Leaving Certificate (PLC) courses that teach technical and craft based skills needed for employment in many industries such as IT or the fashion industry. These colleges also provide adult learning opportunities either for general interest or to upskill in specific areas. Many certificate courses are offered part-time, at evenings, or on the weekend and range from several weeks to several years. It is important to note that anyone, of any age, can enrol in a PLC course. The awards granted vary between colleges, but most are approved by FETAC and many can lead to certification by professional organisations. Some Further Education Colleges specialise in specific areas, such as the Kinsale College of Further Education, which has strong ecological and artistic emphases. Both the Outdoor Education Instructor Training and the Permaculture / Practical Sustainability/Organic programme take advantage of Kinsale’s geographical location, while the Theatre Performance, TV and Film and Multi Media Production, and Art courses contribute to the creative focus of the college.

If third level education is of interest, another alternative is the pre-degree programme offered by the third level institutions themselves. The Access Course is a one-year part-time evening course specific to Arts and Humanities, Commerce, or Science and Engineering. It’s designed to prepare the adult student, both personally and academically, to undertake a three or four year full-time undergraduate degree. Applicants are given the opportunity to make a personal statement outlining their life experience and abilities and while a Leaving Certificate helps, it’s not essential.
Potential third level students don’t have to take the Access Course, but regardless if you do or not anyone over the age of 22 applying for a third level degree programme must apply through the CAO as a mature student. In general, the mature student applications are evaluated for academic ability or potential, relevant work and life experience, and motivation and interest in the programme area.

If you already have an undergraduate degree, there are many postgraduate options available. The most common reasons for taking a postgrad course are to broaden academic achievements, improve chances of advancement at work, or to fulfil an interest. Postgraduate students have an opportunity to argue about the finer issues of subject matter, from engineering to philosophy, and in doing so develop skills, broaden knowledge, widen future job prospects, or enable a career change. Overall most postgraduate programs are taught at all third level institutions as well as several independent colleges (such as Griffith College in Dublin) and The Open University.

Distance learning, either correspondence or e-learning, combines the benefit of studying at any time with the close contact and feedback from experienced and qualified instructors over email. The College of Management and IT (CMIT) provides career focused training in IT, business, health and education, creative arts and travel and tourism all by distance learning. The awards are approved by FETAC or some lead to certification by professional organisations such as Cisco and Oracle among many others. Kilroy’s College also offers a huge variety of distance learning courses including, beauty and health, childcare, business, creative and leisure, and IT.

Private Colleges offer detailed training in specific subjects oriented for employment. Griffin Training College in Dublin and Kilkenny have a strong technical focus with courses in IT, the built environment, facilities and property, as well as accounts and finance among others. Options range from day-long sessions, such as Marketing Via Online Social Networks to training that runs for three hours one night for five weeks including the Introductions to CAD, or the Lighting Design Course. Many of the diplomas and certificates available are accredited by professional organisations such as Engineers Ireland and the Institute for Commercial Management.

Pitman Training also has short courses and longer diploma programmes in business and IT, as well as legal and medical secretary training. Diploma programs are accredited by FETAC and can be undertaken either full-time (approximately eight to twelve weeks) or part-time. Griffin Training specialises in short intense Corporate and Business Training and offer a wide variety of specific courses in the areas of customer service, communication, multicultural training, sales training, human resource training.

The amount of choice can be overwhelming and confusing and run the gamut from hobby based courses to those that will provide skills to increase employability. Knowing what you want out of the course and how much time and money you are willing to spend will help to focus in on the options and eventually maximize the enjoyment and value of learning new ideas or skills.

Find adult education courses and evening classes at the following link; www.findacourse.ie/part-time-evening-courses-ireland.html

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Findacourse.ie February 2015 E-News

Education NewsComputer Studies for Leaving Cert
Education News
These days knowledge of computers is essential for many second level pupils making the transition to third level education. To date, there has not been adequate provision and there is a clear need for Computer Science and Computer studies within the second level junior and senior curriculum..

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Featured Educator Litton Lane Training
Featured Educator
Litton Lane Training has been running health and fitness courses since 1987. As the years pass an increasing number of students are enrolling and graduating from an expanding list of courses. The head office is currently based at Dunboyne Business Park while courses run at a variety of other venues around the country.

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Chinese Level 1

Chinese Level 1, Merrion Square, Dublin

Absolute beginners Chinese (Mandarin) aimed at students who have no previous knowledge of the language. Course held in Merrion Square. All of the main language skills of Reading, Writing, Listening, speaking and Use of language (Grammar) are developed in classes.

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Admin Assistant Diploma

Admin Assistant Diploma, Distance Learning

This Pitman Training Diploma course takes 150 hours flexi-study and there are eight core subjects, plus one elective module with a wide range of choices such as telephone techniques, receptionist skills and health and safety essentials.

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Category Focus Business and Accounting
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Are you interested in becoming an Accounts Technician? Maybe you would like to learn more about Credit Control or pursue a career in Human Resources. If so then check out our Business and Accounting Category for courses in these and other Business and Accounting related areas. For more information on business and accounting courses view our Business articles on Findacourse.ie
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

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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Computer Studies for Leaving Cert

computers for leaving certThese days knowledge of computers is essential for many second level pupils making the transition to third level education. To date, there has not been adequate provision and there is a clear need for Computer Science and Computer studies within the second level junior and senior curriculum.

It appears that on the surface, this need is being addressed within the controversial Project Maths curriculum by introducing a new Applied Maths syllabus that will incorporate computer programming, vectors, matrices and calculus, subject matter that was originally dropped from higher level Maths. This new syllabus attempts to squeeze three subjects into one which may appease critics of Project Maths but in practical terms, more would be achieved by separating the subjects. This separation would allow access to individual subjects appropriate to the student needs and choice. Although Computer Science may be considered a maths subject, by including it within the highest level of maths will scare many students away.

Only 3% of leaving certificate students study Applied Maths and often this subject is taught off timetable. This new option by definition will exclude other students from pursuing study in Computer Science. This seems counter intuitive given it is by no means a forgone conclusion that a career in commercial computing needs a qualification in Applied Maths as many programmers and analysts can testify. While there is synergy between the subjects for future study in scientific computing, it is hard to see the benefit of squeezing Computer Science into just 46 hours of tuition.

There are many programming languages, different types of hardware and software used in a diverse range of applications across all industry sectors so unless standardised hardware, software are used and specific parameters for scientific or commercial programming it is hard to see how the Computer Science element can be assessed by teachers, some of whom may not have computing qualifications themselves.
It is a step forward for Project Maths but is still a token gesture given the issues surrounding this new Applied Maths syllabus.

Other Education Systems
Compared to other countries including the UK, Ireland has a way to go before students can join the global excitement of computing in school.
The international experience of Computer Science varies due to educational system diversity but many countries have inclusive Computer Science programmes in schools, with numerous schools starting at primary level.
For example, the UK aim for computing is to make sure students understand and apply basic concepts and principles of computer science, including logic, abstraction, data, and algorithms. Students are taught computational analysis to solve problems and have access to plenty of practical experience coding that they can translate into the real world. There is a new stand-alone GCSE that gets students working with the real world and understanding how technology works. The syllabus was developed with industry, teachers and the computer science industry and provides skills that employer’s desire.
The new GCSE examination also provides a clear pathway through to study at university via “A” levels.

There is a wealth of resources available to Irish educators to enhance the Computer Science experience for every student that will allow them progression to third level education via Junior cert and Leaving cert qualifications in the individual subject of Computer Science. While there may be difficulties in rolling out a Computer Science programme across schools in a meaningful way, and cost involved, there are economical ways for implementation. The use of open source software and Raspberry Pi computer has proven successful. The Raspberry Pi is a UK developed single board computer that is the size of a credit card. The Pi was developed expressly for the purpose of teaching basic Computer Science in schools.

Ireland is a country that embraces technology and is at the forefront of research and development across many industry sectors. It makes sense that a dedicated Computer Science pathway is available for students, especially as there are industry shortages for people with computing skill sets.

Author: Denise Colebrooke

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Fitness and Nutrition Courses

fitness and nutritionWhy isn’t chocolate a food group and is it really possible to get abs of steel without doing a single sit up? Understanding how our bodies work is not only interesting, it can be beneficial in allowing us to make educated choices about what we eat and how we exercise. Diet, nutrition, and fitness courses are excellent opportunities to learn more about taking care of yourself as well as for people who are interested in pursuing a career in this field.

Course options vary from in-depth study that range from three days a week for four months to three-hour online introductory seminars. There are several courses that deal with nutrition specifically or fitness specifically and other that combine these two areas.

The Institute of Massage and Sports Therapy in Galway City and Limerick offers an ITEC Level 3 Diploma in Diet and Nutrition for Complementary Therapists. The course teaches both the science of nutrition and the therapeutic nature of dietetics. Areas of study include nutrient metabolism, disease development, the anatomy of the digestive system, dietary needs of specific groups including pregnant women, children, and seniors, and the skills required to compose dietary plans. The course is offered on alternate Saturdays from 10am to 4pm from early October to the end of May. Students must hold a recognised qualification in a complementary therapy, e.g., ITEC Diploma in Holistic Massage or higher. The qualification gained is the ITEC Diploma in Diet and Nutrition for Complementary Therapists. The fee is €1,500.

Motions Fitness in Dublin City offers a Certificate in Exercise and Health Fitness. months from Mondays to Wednesday, 9am to 4pm.The qualification is awarded by the University of Limerick and it is the only fitness qualification in Ireland that is university accredited. Students learn technique and instruction strategies in circuit training, resistance and weights, body conditioning, step, flexibility, exercising to music, and at the end of the course students are qualified to teach classes in each of these areas. Students are also trained to carry out fitness assessments and design fitness programmes. The course takes place over four months from Mondays to Wednesday, 9am to 4pm
Diet and nutrition courses
Distance education courses are an excellent way to learn about a new discipline and study at your own pace and in your own time. Kilroy’s College offers a distance course in fitness, health, and nutrition. The course examines how to assess your own fitness level and current state of health. Course content includes classes in anatomy, nutrition, exercise techniques, as well as exploring different careers in fitness. The course takes from six to twelve months.

With a wide range of courses available for many different levels, there are no excuses for not understanding how your body works.

To view more Fitness and Nutrition courses you can view the Fitness and Health course category on Findacourse.ie at – www.findacourse.ie/fitness-health-courses-c5.html

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Travel Reservations Systems Training

tour operator software trainingFor those considering a career in the travel business, a training course in one of the main travel reservation systems, such as Amadeus, Galileo, Sabre and Worldspan, can be very beneficial. These are the most commonly used computer reservation systems by tour operators world-wide, storing travel information and conducting transactions related to hotels, car rental, activities or air travel.

Working in the travel business requires a travel agent to be able to assess travellers’ needs and help them make the best arrangements suitable to them. Using the travel reservations systems, agents are able to complete a range of tasks at the click of a button and organise travel arrangements quickly and conveniently for their clients.

There are two main types of travel agents; wholesale agents who organise tours and sell them to tour operators who sell them to the public and retail travel agents; those who offer travel advice to the public, make reservations and provide travellers with travel literature and timetables. Travel agents are often required to travel to overseas destinations in order to familiarise themselves with locations and the opportunity for promotion is typically good. Many agents specialise in a particular area of travel such as business, safaris or tailor-made holidays.

The first automated booking system was set up by American Airlines in 1946 and in 1976 United Airlines extended the use of their ‘Apollo’ reservation system to travel agents for the first time.

Amadeus was formed in 1987 by Lufthansa, Air France, Scandinavian Airlines System and Iberia Airlines. Galileo was formed in 1989 by nine European airlines; KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, British Airways, Austrian Airlines, Alitalia, Swissair, Aer Lingus, Sabena, Air Portugal and Olympic. Sabre was formed in 1964 by American Airlines but is now privately owned and Worldspan was formed in 1990 by Delta Airlines, TWA and Northwest Airlines but it is now a part of the Travelport GDS business.

The College of Management and IT (CMIT) is offering a 6 month Armadeus Travel Company Certificate though distance learning. The course is suitable for those who wish to work with a tour operator or in a travel agency and no previous qualifications are needed to enrol. The course provides students with a series of online tutorials, training and tutor support and assessment is carried out through 21 lessons and 3 quizzes which are completed at home. The course is accredited by IAOT and students receive a ‘Certificate of Achievement in Amadeus GDS Training’ on successful completion.

Portobello Institute, Dublin, is offering a part-time Galileo Computerised Reservations training course. The college has a strong team of well-respected, industry based lecturers whose experience will add value to students’ learning. There are no previous academic required and the course is delivered over 12 weeks.

With an increasing amount of people looking to travel the world and see exotic and foreign places, the job of the travel agent is perfect for those who have good marketing and organisational skills as well as a love for travel.

Click here to view Travel Reservations Software Training Courses on Findacourse.ie

Author: Fiona McBennett

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January 2015 E-News Update

Follow on Facebook Follow on Twitter January 2015 E-Bulletin
Education NewsSpring Forward with an Evening Course
Education News
Get your Spring off to a good start in 2015 with an evening course. Evening classes can change your life, boost your career, or help in discovering a new hobby. Many people are turning to spring evening courses to brighten up the winter months and start the New Year in a positive way.

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Featured Educator Communications and Management Institute (CMI)
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CMI, Communications and Management Institute is a leading provider of part-time night courses offering Graduate Diploma, Advanced Diploma, Diploma and Certificate courses. Based in Dublin city centre, CMI provides nationally and internationally recongised FETAC, ICM, CIPS, CQI, NEBOSH and PMI courses in a range of key subject areas. All courses provide excellent career opportunities.

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RLSS National Pool Lifeguard

RLSS National Pool Lifeguard, Apply Before 13th Feb

The RLSS NPLQ is an internationally recognised professional qualification designed by the Royal Life Saving Society (RLSS) to ensure pool lifeguards and operators are equipped to deal with almost any water emergency including CPR and the use of an Automated External Defibrillator (AED). The NPLQ will provide the skills necessary to work in the leisure industry and could open the door to a career as a professional lifeguard working on a full time, part time or casual basis.

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Certificate in Counselling and Psychotherapy

Certificate in Counselling and Psychotherapy, Apply Before 17th January

For personal Development or for those who want to prepare for professional qualification. Taught and Designed to Level 6 on the NFQ.This course is accessible to all and is a great way to develop an understanding and appreciation of counselling. It will appeal to those who are looking for personal development or those who need counselling skills in their work. This course is also a stepping stone for those who want to prepare for a professional qualification.

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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 Online Degree Courses
Featured Article
Distance learning has become increasingly popular in recent years, however, the idea of distance learning is not all that new; there have been distance education programmes available in Ireland for over 25 years. These courses were print-based at the beginning, however, today it is easy to enrol in an online course, with the selection of subjects, colleges and courses, including degrees, greater than ever.

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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

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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Career Information Day in Kiltimagh, Mayo

st louis plc courses in MayoSt Louis Community School, Kiltimagh will showcase their Transition Year & 5th year student’s research into specific career sectors on Saturday 10th January 2015. This will be relevant to anyone interested in viewing a ‘snap shot’ as to what’s involved in various career sectors, for example the skills & attributes needed, potential annual salary, courses available in the National Universities of Ireland and Institutes of Technology and the subjects required at Leaving Certificate.

So why not go along this Saturday the 10th of January and join other future college students in the school Gym between 11.00am & 2.00pm. GMIT will be available on the day to speak about the great courses available in Mayo and Galway. A stand outlining the Post Leaving Certificate courses available at St Louis Community School will also provide invaluable advice for any mature students thinking about up skilling in the college.

For more information on St Louis Community School, view their Findacourse.ie page at https://www.findacourse.ie/louis-community-school-cg514.html

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