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Third Level Admissions

Dáil Éireann Debate, Thursday - 20 May 2021

Thursday, 20 May 2021

Ceisteanna (154)

Alan Farrell

Ceist:

154. Deputy Alan Farrell asked the Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science the measures he is taking to address additional demand for university course places later in 2021; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [26946/21]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Further and Higher Education)

I am aware of the high number of CAO applications this year, and officials from my Department are engaging regularly with representatives from the higher education sector in relation to the 2021/22 academic year and demand for places.

€18 million has been provided in Budget 2021 which will build additional capacity in the system and address demographic growth pressures. This is in addition to additional places commencing in 2021, funded through the Human Capital Initiative Pillar 2, which will be on undergraduate courses in areas of identified skills needs.

The CAO process applications for undergraduate courses on behalf of the Higher Education Institutions. Decisions on admissions are made by the HEIs who then instruct the CAO to make offers to successful candidates. As such, neither I nor my Department have a role in the operation of the CAO.

However, my Department is monitoring the situation as it develops and my officials are working with the HEA and the Higher Education Institutions to identify where there is scope for additional places to be provided. All bodies involved will continue to work to ensure the availability of a full range of further and higher education options for applicants in 2021 and in future years.

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