NCI Blog

Applying To College Through The CAO

Posted by Emily Ferns on 31 January 2013


Are you, or is anyone you know, applying to college this year? You are probably aware that the closing date for applications is February 1st (check out some other key CAO dates here), but you may have other questions about applying to college through the CAO, which we have attempted to answer here.  

Applicants with a Disability

NCI is committed to providing equal access to education and equal opportunities for students with disabilities. We encourage students to be open about their disability so that we can support their individual needs. We would urge people to indicate a disability or specific learning difficulty on their CAO form, so that supports can be accessed in an open, relaxed, friendly and confidential way. More information can be found on the Disability Support Services Section of the NCI website.


NCI participates in DARE and HEAR, which are schemes that offer college places on reduced points to people with disabilities. The first step with both schemes is to apply through the CAO, after which applicants should submit additional information – details are available on the HEAR and DARE section of the NCI website.

Useful Websites:

  •  search all courses from PLC to college
  • information on special entry routes for students with a disability or coming from disadvantaged backgrounds

If you have any questions about applying to NCI through the CAO, just give us a call on 1850 721 221 or email

Find out about NCI's School Liaison service
Questions? Feedback? Leave us a comment below. All commenters on NCI's blog get added to a raffle, to win a weekend away!

Topics: CAO, Leaving Certificate