Almost 75K Applicants at Close of CAO Deadline

By Gemma Creagh - Last update

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As students being to settle in for their mock exams, the CAO (Central Applications Office) normal application deadline has just passed, with applications closing at 5:15pm on Saturday, 1st February. There will be tough competition for next year’s college places, as the application figure for this particular deadline was 73,035. But don’t worry if you’re not quite sure what educational or career avenue you want to go down,  as a late application facility opens on 5th March and closes on the 1st May – ultimately increasing that number substantially.

Time to Change

A Change of Course Choices facility will become available on the CAO website on Wednesday, 5th February for all registered applicants. This facility can be used by mature applicants to add course choices and for applicants who have forgotten to include a restricted course on their CAO application – a fee of €10 applies.

Most applicants will use the free Change of Mind facility which opens in May and closes on 1st July at 5:15pm, but there are some restrictions. Speaking about the application process, CAO communications officer Eileen Keleghan commented, “Most applicants who have already applied to CAO will have opportunities to change their course choices in May or June for no extra charge. If an applicant has forgotten to apply for a restricted course, or if they are a mature applicant wishing to make changes to their courses, they should avail of our Change of Course Choices facility which opens on the 5 February and is available until 5:15pm on 1 March for a fee of 10 euro”.

CAO Late Applications

“The Late Application facility can be used by most applicants, however restrictions apply. This facility becomes available on the 5 March and closes on the 1 May at 5:15 pm. The Late Application fee is €60 for online applicants and €90 for paper applicants,” she said.

“Students with concerns about their options or their application should consult their Guidance Counsellor, the Admissions Officers in the individual institutions, and read the CAO Handbook. If they cannot find the answer to their application query they can email CAO using the ‘Contact’ page on the website,” she added.

The official website contains a number of resources for applicants including CAO Video Guides, a copy of the CAO Handbook, and resources for parents and guardians. Visit for more information.

Gemma Creagh

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