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Progression Overview

Progression for LCFE learners means a student who successfully completes a QQI Award may progress in their education to an Institute of Technology, University or other College. All QQI Awards have been placed on the National Framework of Qualifications. Below you may see at a glance where the Award you wish to pursue stands on the 10-Level Framework. LCFE offers QQI Awards at Level 5 & Level 6.






FETAC-Further Education and Training Awards Council

QQI-Quality and Qualifications Ireland (replaces FETAC)

CAO-Central Applications Office

HELS-Higher Education Links Scheme

UCAS-Universities and Colleges Applications System (UK)

LIT-Limerick Institute of Technology

MIC-Mary Immaculate College

WIT-Waterford Institute of Technology



Higher Education Links


Progression to Universities, Institute of Technologies and other Colleges from QQI programmes is possible through the Higher Education Links Scheme (HELS). Applicants must apply through the CAO. For details of participating institutions please view http://www.cao.ie/index.php?page=fetac_search

Universities only offer places to a reserved quota of QQI Award holders who have received a certain number of distinctions. Institutes of Technology may also operate some of their courses under this quota system for example in Nursing Degree programmes. Generally Institutes of Technology will accept any QQI award to any Level 6/7/8 programme where applicants are in competition with Leaving Certificate students. Some programmes may have additional requirements for example a portfolio for Art programmes.

Applicants are advised at all times to confirm linked Awards, any additional module requirements, application processes and scoring systems with the Admissions Offices of the participating higher education institutions or visit http://www.cao.ie/ for further information.


Scoring a QQI Award

A minimum of 120 credits must be presented. Points will only be calculated if the required awards and /or modules are presented. Starting with Distinctions, then Merits, then Passes, add all the credits until a cumulative value of 120 is reached. Ignore any credits above 120. For the credits that you are including, multiply the credit value by the grade weighting, i.e. multiply by 3 in the case of a Distinction, by 2 in the case of a Merit, by 1 in the case of a Pass. Add these scores. Multiply the total by 13, then divide the answer by 12. If you get a decimal place, round your result to the nearest whole number. All QQI Level 5 and QQI Level 6 awards will be scored to deliver a maximum of 390 CAO points. Further information may be obtained from the QQI website https://www.qqi.ie/

Alternatively use the free online QQI Level 5 & Level 6 points calculator at https://careersportal.ie/qqi/

Further information may be obtained from the CAO website (www.cao.ie) or the QQI website (www.qqi.ie).



LIT WIT MIC Progression Agreements


LCFE Progression Agreement to Limerick Institute of Technology


LCFE and LIT have signed a collaboration agreement offering seamless student progression from LCFE to LIT. This means learners who successfully complete a QQI/FETAC Certificate Level 5/6 with LCFE will be offered entry to LIT programmes based on this collaboration agreement.  Learners who achieve a Major Award at Level 5/6 and apply through CAO for a programme of study at LIT, are guaranteed access to any Level 6 or Level 7 programme. A  Major Award at Level 5 requires 3 Distinctions which will guarantee entry to any Level 8 programme. Learners must also apply through the LCFE/LIT Progression Agreement. Contact your Course Coordinator for further details. Please note for Restricted courses at LIT, the portfolio conditions must still be met. This is a Pilot scheme and will be reviewed annually. Learners who complete QQI/FETAC Level 6 (Advanced Certification) with LCFE may apply for advanced entry straight into second year for linked programmes.


LCFE Progression Agreement to Mary Immaculate College


A bilateral agreement exists between LCFE and Mary Immaculate College, offering graduates of LCFE’s four designated media programmes the opportunity to apply through CAO for entry to the BA (Hons) in Liberal Arts (MI002). To gain entry to the Liberal Arts Programme, LCFE learners must gain a full award with four Distinctions from a prescribed list of modules. This agreement is subject to review on an annual basis. Learners must also apply through the LCFE/MIC Progression Agreement. Contact your Course Coordinator for further details.


LCFE Progression Agreement to Waterford Institute of Technology


Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) offers preferential entry to learners who successfully complete a linked QQI FET course in partner Colleges of Further Education where LCFE is one such partner college. For further information on WIT Further Education Progression Scheme see www.wit.ie/progression . Learners must also apply through the LCFE/WIT Progression agreement. Contact your Course Coordinator for further details.


Nursing CAO

LCFE learners are eligible for consideration for entry to Nursing degree programmes when they achieve the QQI Level 5 Award (5M4349) Nursing Studies. An applicant must possess distinctions in 5 modules which must include a Distinction in 5N0749 (Anatomy and Physiology), 5N4325 (Nursing Theory & Practice) and 5N0749 (Human Growth and Development or 5N2746 (Biology). Entry to nursing is extremely competitive and a quota of reserved places is allocated to applicants presenting with QQI qualifications. For further details please visit http://www2.cao.ie/fetac/FETACNursingQuota.pdf

Nursing UCAS

Many of Limerick College of Further Education’s Nursing QQI Level 5 learners are successful in securing places on selected Nursing degree programmes in the UK.  Students must apply through UCAS (Universities & Colleges Application System). https://www.ucas.com/

Every University in the UK is different in terms of entry requirements. A number of Universities not all accept QQI awards from Ireland. It is essential for potential nursing students to do their research on the UCAS website and contact the individual admissions office of each University.

In recent years LCFE’s nursing studies learners have successfully secured places in The University of Stirling, University of Dundee, Bucks New University, University of Southampton and many other UK Colleges.

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