The HELS (Higher Education Links Scheme) provides progression opportunities for learners achieving QQI-Fetac Level 5 and Level 6 major awards and who are interested in applying for Higher Education programmes through the CAO (Central Applications Office). Since its inception over a decade ago, the scheme has expanded progression routes to Higher Education programmes. Programmes leading to Level 5 and Level 6 Major Awards are available with providers who have programmes validated with QQI.
To get full details of the range of Higher Education institutions and programmes available under the scheme, please contact the admissions office of the individual Higher Education institution or visit www.cao.ie
Applicants MUST check both the individual Higher Education institution and CAO websites to ensure they meet any special requirements including for example:
A major award may be achieved over more than one year. Some Higher Education institutions require the achievement of 120 credits within a ‘single sitting’ between 1 August and 31 July of any certification year. Check the CAO and Higher Education institutions’ websites.
The scoring system applies where all the requirements for the major award are met, ie when the specified component awards have been achieved, totalling 120 credits. To calculate your score, you must know the credit value of your component awards.
Achievement of each component award is graded as Distinction, Merit or Pass. Distinction grade is weighted at 3.333°, Merit at 2.222° and Pass at 1.111°.
This is then multiplied by the individual component credit value to a maximum 120 credits. For components with a credit value of less than 5 credits, multiply the credit value by 15. Components leading to the best 120 credits are scored and applicants are ranked accordingly. The best 120 credits come from component awards achieved with the highest grades. A score of 400 points is the most that can be achieved.
We calculate the best score obtained for each applicant and then forward these results to the CAO in July of each year.
Progression an Overview
Progression to Higher Education Courses - Linked Awards
Note: Applicants are advised to confirm linked awards, any additional module requirements, application processes and scoring systems with the Admission Offices of the participating higher education institutions or visit www.cao.ie
Note: All information relating to linked courses has been provided by the participating Higher Education institutions and every effort has been made to ensure it is accurate and current.