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
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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

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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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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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europassEuropass is an EU initiative to help people make their skills, and qualifications clearly understood throughout Europe. Europass brings together documents that have been developed at European level to facilitate the movement of both learners and workers throughout Europe.

These documents are Europass CV, Europass Language Passport, Europass Mobility Document, Europass Certificate Supplement and Europass Diploma Supplement (described in detail below).

The 5 documents are collectively referred to as the Europass Portfolio.

People can use Europass documents when they are seeking jobs and when they wish to enter education and training programmes. The documents are especially helpful when people move between countries to work because they make it easier for employers to understand the qualifications and competences of job seekers from other EU Member States. Europass also helps education, training and guidance practitioners to advise people about the most suitable learning paths and opportunities.


Europass portfolio
Europass CV is a standard CV format you can use to detail your qualifications and skills in a straightforward and understandable manner. The Europass CV can be completed online at the Europass portal.

Europass Language Passport allows you to describe and detail your language skills and competences. It is a self-assessment document and allows the user to detail their ability to understand, speak and write a language. The Europass Language Passport can be completed online at the Europass portal.

Europass Mobility is a personal document, which is used to record an organised period of time (a mobility experience) that a person spends in another European country for the purpose of learning or training. This might include a work placement in a company or an academic term as part of an exchange programme.

The mobility experience is monitored by two partner organisations, the first in the country of origin and the second in the host country. Both partners agree on the purpose, content and duration of the experience and a mentor is identified in the host country. The partners can be universities, schools, training centres, companies and Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs). You obtain the Europass Mobility by contacting the organisation sending you abroad and asking them to contact the National Europass Centre.

Europass Certificate Supplement provides extra information about vocational education and training awards. It supplements the original certificate, making it more easily understood, especially by employers or institutions outside the issuing country.

Europass Diploma Supplement is issued to graduates of higher educations institutions along with their degree or diploma. It helps to ensure that higher education qualifications are more easily understood, especially outside the country where they were awarded.

There is no charge for the Europass document and application is free of charge. However, there is also no funding available under this programme towards the costs of training abroad. EU funding is available for mobility programmes through Socrates and Leonardo da Vinci and you should talk to Leargas or the Higher Education Authority about the possibility of grant aid from these programmes.

How to apply
The National Europass Centres are the first point of contact for any person or organisation interested in using or learning more about Europass. The National Qualifications Authority of Ireland is the designated National Europass Centre in Ireland.

Where to apply
Irish National Europass Centre
26-27 Denzille Lane
Dublin 1
Tel:(01) 905 8100
Homepage: http://www.europass.ie/

information provided by citizens Information Board ©
reproduced under Licence
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Findacourse.ie December 2014 E-News

Follow on Facebook Follow on Twitter December 2014 E-Bulletin
Education NewsThe Bane of Christmas Exams
Education News
The Christmas season is a busy time of year when thoughts turn to celebrations, shopping, travel arrangements, friends to catch up with and family to see. Add in revision and study for those vital Christmas examinations and a third level student’s lot begins to look less attractive, especially as the entire nation seems focused on winding down, socialising and preparing for Christmas Day.

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Featured Educator College of Management and IT
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Established in 2004, College of Management and IT (CMIT) is a leading provider of certified / accredited elearning and distance learning education in Ireland. The aim of the college is to provide the opportunity for people to gain a recognised qualification in the most convenient and flexible way possible, while providing clear value for money.

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CIDESCO Full Time Beauty Therapy Course

CIDESCO Full Time Beauty Therapy Course , Apply Before 13th Jan

The CIDESCO Diploma is a prestigious qualification in the field of Aesthetics and Beauty Therapy. The prestigious CIDESCO Diploma is awarded to students who have passed the CIDESCO examinations, both theory and practical and given proof of having gained at least 600 hours work experience in a Beauty Salon/Centre or Spa. The pass rate for CIDESCO is 70%.

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Fitness Instructor and Personal Trainer Course

Fitness Instructor and Personal Trainer Course, Apply Before 2nd February

This course is open to anybody who wants to attain a professional qualification in fitness instruction and personal training. The qualification is awarded by the University of Limerick and it is the only fitness qualification in Ireland that is university accredited. It is also recognised by the European Health and Fitness Association.

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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 level 5 Fetac award in Childcare could gain you employment in creches, nurseries, playgroups, early start programmes or as a classroom assistant in a special school. 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 January Evening Courses in Dublin
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Are you looking for a positive way to start 2015? There’s no better time to enrol in an evening course where new experiences, knowledge and friends will guarantee to get the year off to a great start. There are plenty of courses on offer all over the city and the wide range of subjects available means that there is something to suit everyone’s interests. Evening classes are a convenient way to enhance skills needed for the workplace or to start a new hobby.

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The Bane of Christmas Exams

christmas examsThe Christmas season is a busy time of year when thoughts turn to celebrations, shopping, travel arrangements, friends to catch up with and family to see. Add in revision and study for those vital Christmas examinations and a third level student’s lot begins to look less attractive, especially as the entire nation seems focused on winding down, socialising and preparing for the holidays.

Many third level colleges in Ireland have changed over to a semester based system, where modules are taught along with continuous assessment of the student. Credits are gained for each module and examinations take place at Christmas/New Year and again in Summer. Dividing the academic year into two parts definitely has merit and dual examinations avoid the added burden of extra revision and study that would be otherwise required at the end of the year.

With exams at Christmas, students can complete the exams and have time to enjoy a relaxing break with a fresh start to look forward to in the new semester on return to college. By partioning the year, it means performance is spread across two semesters and overall results do not depend on just one final push at year end finals. For the student who is forced to miss summer final exams due to ill health or other circumstances, with one round of exams completed, they already have half a year completed. Therefore to repeat exams or repeat a semester is not as bad as repeating a whole year.

On the other side of the argument, many students feel burdened by continuous assessment. They feel under scrutiny at all times which in some cases leads to stress and anxiety. Many students speak of having to adapt to the way a module is going to be assessed or choosing to opt out of modules if it does not suit their style of learning. For example, if a module includes a presentation, essay and end of semester exam there are rigid dates to work to and while this is not necessarily a bad thing, there are plenty that do not like this highly structured approach.

With everybody in a holiday mood students are often distracted from the exams with all the college events taking place. It takes a lot of discipline to remain focussed at this time of year. Shorter holidays mean there is less opportunity for work, which many students are reliant on to earn extra income to support themselves in college. The Christmas exams can preclude them from seasonal work as the exams finish late in December or in early January.

There is also a point to be made about the timing of the Christmas exams. Many students understandably want to get the exams out of the way, but some colleges do not have the exams until January upon returning to college. This can mean additional pressure for those who may be travelling over the Christmas season or who may have other commitments such as part-time work. On the plus side, the Christmas holiday allows for study and revision days once the celebratory days are out of the way. While there are no hard and fast statistics regarding exam timing & exam results correlation, exams after Christmas are likely to favour more disciplined students who can set aside distractions.

As more colleges move over to the semester system, it looks like Christmas/New Year examinations are here to stay. The system is popular with the academic community as it puts the student in a position to be assessed and mentored throughout the education process relying on standard metrics to assess performance. Many students are not quite as enthusiastic as it means additional pressure, where they feel they have to be in examination mode for large and sometimes inopportune parts of the year.

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Author: Denise Colebrooke

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Evening Courses in Dublin

January Evening Courses in DublinThere are a wide range of evening courses available in Dublin in Spring and Autumn terms. These are excellent times to enroll in an evening course where new experiences, knowledge and friends will guarantee to make the experience a worthwhile one.

There are plenty of courses on offer all over the city and the wide range of subjects available means that there is something to suit everyone’s interests. Evening classes are a convenient way to enhance skills needed for the workplace or to start a new hobby.

The following are just some examples of the courses to be found:

Dun Laoghaire Further Education Institute offers a wide selection of evening courses such as emarketing, first aid, scriptwriting for film and television, bookkeeping and much more. Enrolment for the Spring courses, starting in January, can be done online, in person, by post or by fax. Courses range from 4 weeks to 20 weeks in length. Visit www.dfei.ie for more info.

Institute of Technology Tallaght is partnered with the Government’s Labour Market Activation Programme as well as other back to education schemes and tailors training programmes to suits employer’s specific needs. Check out www.ittdublin.ie for more information on the courses and trainings on offer.

Dublin Cookery School provides evening courses that cover all aspects of cooking and baking. Classes include Modern Bistro Cooking, Focus on Fish, Bread Making and Gourmet Pizzas. Courses range from one evening to a few weeks in length and prices vary accordingly. Visit www.dublincookeryschool.ie

Sandford Languages Institute has a new term of classes starting in February and courses in every language imaginable are on offer, from Lithuanian to Vietnamese. Classes typically run from 6pm-7.30pm and 7.30pm-9pm. Visit www.findacourse.ie/sandford-languages-institute-cg23.html for more details.

The Grafton Academy of Dress Design provides courses on dressmaking, fashion design and hat making. Courses run for between 10 and 18 weeks from 7pm-9pm and prices vary accordingly. Visit www.graftonacdemy.com for further info.

Lucan Community College runs 8 and 10 week courses in subjects such as computers for beginners, pottery and digital photography. Classes are typically held between 7pm and 9pm and fees start at €50 with senior citizens paying €60 for all courses. Visit www.lucancc.ie for details.

Ballsbridge College of  Further Education provides courses in arts and crafts, computers and business, hobby courses, languages and development and lifestyle courses. Everything from courses in Latin American Development Issues to Practical Computing for the Older Adult is on offer. Website can be viewed at www.ballsbridgecollege.com

Crumlin College of Further Education begins a new term of evening classes in January and have a selection of courses to choose from such as creative embroidery, advanced excel and introduction to make up artistry. Courses are between 5 and 10 weeks in length. More info at www.crumlincollege.ie

Liberties College have plenty of QQI level 5 and 6 courses to choose from in the area of Early Childhood Care and Education. Courses include Child Development and Social Studies. There is also a Screenwriting course on offer. Visit www.libertiescollege.ie

Ringsend College begins their Spring Programme on January 27th and enrolment begins on January 13th. Spanish, Pilates and Marine Engine Maintenance are a sample of the courses available. Visit www.ringsendcollege.ie for more details and to download a full brochure.

Communications and Management Institute provides part-time courses in areas such as marketing and PR skills, management and business and health and safety. Courses vary in length and fees. Visit www.cmi-ireland.com for more information or view courses on Findacourse.ie at www.findacourse.ie/cmi-communications-management-cg109.html

Evening Courses Dublin City – https://www.findacourse.ie/part-time-evening-courses-dublin-city-centre-ireland-11-0.html


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Law Courses

So you’re dreaming of witty courtroom banter, 6-figure salaries and a holiday home on the French Riviera? Law is certainly a decent route into the world of corporate fun and rich city life, but here’s the bit they don’t tell you: there’s a whole host of dull cramming, ladder climbing and late nights nosing around the finer points of legal principle to be done first. If that doesn’t put you off, there are several ways to get started.

The most common route into law is also the most simple: take a law degree. It’s intense, but three years of undergraduate study will put you in the perfect place to make an informed choice about exactly what area of law you’d like to go in to. If you do well, you’ll get to choose from a number of lucrative routes, and (if you’re right at the top of the class) might even have the pick of a host of training contracts and further qualification options from the top law firms, who regularly headhunt from courses at the most prestigious universities. The first decision you’ll have to make is simple but important: solicitor, or barrister?

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To be called to the bar (as those in the profession refer to the process of becoming a barrister), you’ll need to follow up your degree with further qualifications. If you took a law degree to start with, this is a relatively simple process involving a challenging entrance exam, and a yearlong intensive course (which can also be fulfilled over two years, somewhat less intensively). It’s worth remembering, of course, that though it’s generally considered to be the higher position for a lawyer, barristers tend to have a much harder early professional life than solicitors. Barristers rely on reputation, and newcomers can find court assignments (and therefore income) hard to come by. The flipside is that established barristers can earn quite ludicrous amounts of cash working an endless stream of high profile cases. But you have to get there first.

If you’re look for the stability of a regular monthly salary, as well as a strong workload and the chance to work your way up to partner (and that French seaside villa), becoming a solicitor is probably the route for you. Sadly, simply having a law degree doesn’t make you a solicitor. You’ll need to wiggle your way in to a firm – perhaps the hardest part of the process – and win a coveted position as a trainee solicitor. From here, you’ll be taking on minor cases and assisting the firm’s solicitors for the following year, and ultimately hoping to win a full time contract. After 11 months of long hours, small cases and coffee fetching, you’ll still be fully qualified solicitor, even if you don’t win the long term contract, and many take the option to hunt around for a firm that suits in terms of location and legal specialties at this point.

Those who’ve come from a different academic background have a slightly longer road to take. That’s not to say it’s a bad thing: a degree in other areas – particularly a science, language or engineering based field – can be a great advantage in the legal profession. But you are going to need to take a crossover course (or ‘diploma in legal studies, as they’re more formally known), which often takes as long as two years to complete. If you’re highly academic, you might find a law firm willing to sponsor you, but most mere mortals have to settle for part time courses mixed with moneymaking employment.

The long-term rewards of the crossover route can be financially lucrative, however, as a mixed background often appeals to law firms, enabling them to take on specialist areas such as environmental cases, or accidents revolving around structural claims. Patent law – which examines the originality and technical accuracy of patent claims – is another particularly lucrative area for multi-discipline students to aim for. Employment law – protecting employers from the overzealous employee (or vice versa!) – is another high-demand niche area, and has its own specialist courses.

Of course, there are other routes into the legal profession. If you’re not the type to battle it out in the courtroom, you can still spend your days at the solicitors by pursuing a career as a legal secretary, which will give you access to all the juicy courtroom drama without needing to make the speeches yourself. Several institutions offer course targeting the legal secretary position specifically; this can lead to secure positions working alongside bright minds in a vibrant workplace.

Ireland’s best universities all offer law as a basic degree, and are best researched through their own websites. For more details on full tima and part time law courses on this website use the following link on Legal Courses on Findacourse.ie

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Medical Administration, The Role of a Medical Secretary

medical secretary coursesMedical administrators play an important role in the successfull operation of medical or healthcare facilities. They work in a wide range of environments, including hospitals, research establishments, GP practices, and community healthcare services. They keep the working environment running smoothly at all times and help medical professionals focus on their busy roles. This is an extremely important position as the secretary/administrator often becomes the face of the clinic or medical centre they work for, not to mention ‘the right arm’ of a doctor, dentist or researcher.

Patients can be apprehensive, even fearful about a visit to their doctor, so they need that reassuring welcome on arrival. They also want to visit a well-organized, clean, and efficient environment. This is where a medical secretary demonstrates their interpersonal and organisational skills. Their responsibilities include ensuring that patients have a good experience from the moment they enter the office doors.

Medical administrators/secretaries on any given day could be transcribing dictation, preparing correspondence, or assisting physicians or medical scientists with their daily responsibilities. They also record simple medical histories, arrange for patients to be hospitalized, order supplies, and liaise with laboratories. In some cases they will prepare reports, speeches, articles, and organise conferences. In addition, medical administrators use computers to create spreadsheets, compose correspondence, manage databases, create presentations, reports, and documents. Dependent on the employer; they work with vendors, track leased equipment, manage stockrooms or libraries, and retrieve data from various sources.
medical administration courses in Ireland
On progression in this role: a medical administrator could end up supervising other staff and performing less clerical tasks, if working in a larger medical environment. They are often tasked with conducting research for their doctor/superior and preparing statistical reports. In a number of situations, they work with secretarial teams in hospitals and with medical scientists to share their expertise.

The general duties and responsibilities for both medical secretaries and medical administrators include:

– Updating patient records
– Making appointments for patients and arranging the general schedule of the employer
– Dealing with correspondence and general queries from patients
– Dealing with enquiries from members of the press. This is particularly applicable to those working for a research establishment
– Writing letters and sending them to the appropriate recipients
– Setting up a filing system and updating it regularly
– Filling in complex forms
– Sending away samples for medical testing and, if appropriate and accepting samples for medical testing
– Sending the samples to the appropriate internal hospital department
– Updating patient notes with accurate test results
– Phoning patients to inform them of the results of medical tests
– Making appointments with hospitals on the behalf of patients who require minor medical procedures
– Performing numerous general and personal tasks for the employer throughout the working day
– Undertaking medical research on a particular subject
– Writing reports on this research
– Presenting the results of the research to the employer and explaining its wider significance

In order to become qualified there are a number of different options for those interested. A popular choice is to get an actual qualification related to medical administration or medical secretarial  studies rather than getting a general secretarial qualification and then trying to gain work experience in a medical setting. These type of courses will teach both basic and more complex skills relevant to this medical role. Of course, training continues once you obtain a position in a medical environment.

Recommended Courses:

Pitman Training run a part time/evening Medical Secretarial Diploma. This Pitman Training Diploma will give you the necessary skills you need for this career; from keyboard skills to typing speed and audio; to total mastery of the most commonly used Microsoft software; to knowledge of the necessary medical terminology. Shorthand is an additional option, if you wish. They have nationwide locations including a swords branch (Pitman Training Swords)

College of Management and IT (CMIT) run a Medical and Clinical Administrative Distance learning Course. This programme is designed for people who wish to gain a recognised qualification to enable them to begin work or improve their career in Medical Reception and Medical Administration roles. Students will learn how to: manage front office services, manage clinical administration, use technology within clinical practices, use and understand medical terminology, work with medicine and hygiene, and understand confidentiality practices. The course is ideal for all those working in administration or customer service roles within Private Consultant clinics, Hospitals, Doctor or Dentist surgeries, and private Health Clinics.

There are also various PLC courses that also qualify you for this area of employment. The aim of these PLC courses are to prepare students for employment opportunities in a medical setting using the latest software. Emphasis is also placed on developing good communication and interpersonal skills. These courses are FETAC Level 5 accredited.

Yes, medical secretaries/administrators will usually work in a comfortable office, but it is often the case that the comfortable office is situated in a reception area. That entails working in the eye of the public and often with many disruptions to the work you are doing. However, this is a highly thought of position as it is a secretarial role in a medical setting with a lot of responsibility.

What makes an excellent medical administrator/secretary? You must be highly organised to start. Secondly, you have to be a ‘peoples person’, especially if you are working in a GP/Dentist/Clinic setting. You have to have the ability to deal with pressure whilst being calm and polite to the public you will be dealing with. Attention to detail is a necessary requirement along with excellent computer skills. The ability to adhere to ethics and rules of confidentiality is essential. If you do move onto to working for a pharmaceutical company, a research institute or perhaps into a community health care; as a medical secretary/administrator, you would often have the additional responsibility to provide support for a team of employees and sometimes work to deadlines.

If you are interested in such a position – perhaps contact your local GP/Dentist to see can you avail of some work experience or work shadowing in order to get some first-hand experience of this important role or discuss your interest with any one of the course providers mentioned.

A medical secretary/administrator is a specialised role but it is a role with many progression routes in the medical world, available to those with relevant qualifications and experience.

View Medical Administration and Secretarial Courses on Findacourse.ie

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