Higher Education Access Route (HEAR)
(for school-leavers from socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds resident in the Republic of Ireland)

The Higher Education Access Route (HEAR) is a third level admissions scheme for school leavers from socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds resident in the Republic of Ireland. HEAR has been established by a number of higher education institutions based on clear evidence that socio-economic disadvantage has a negative impact on educational attainment at school and progression to higher education. Before submitting a HEAR application you should read the HEAR Handbook available on the CAO website and discuss this with your parents, guardians or Guidance Counsellor.

HEIs participating in the HEAR scheme in 2018 are listed below:
School leavers who present satisfactory evidence relating to their socio-economic circumstances and satisfy matriculation/minimum entry and subject requirements are eligible to compete for a quota of places allocated to applicants on a reduced points basis across these HEIs. Applicants compete for places based on their results from the Republic of Ireland Leaving Certificate Examination.

Submitting evidence for HEAR Admissions Route:
In order to be considered under the HEAR scheme, you must submit relevant evidence of family financial circumstances for 2016 in support of your application. Disclosing personal details relating to family circumstances will not adversely affect your application in any way.

Closing dates for HEAR Admissions Route:
HEAR is a supplementary admissions route that requires a significant degree of processing on the part of the CAO and the participating higher education institutions. In order to allow adequate time for the completion of this work the following closing dates apply:
17:15 on 1st March, 2018:  Complete all elements of online HEAR application as part of the CAO application process.
17:15 on 1st April, 2018:  Submit relevant evidence of family financial circumstances to CAO.

Further information on HEAR is available from your school Guidance Counsellor or from the Access Office in each of the participating institutions.
Many other HEIs operate other access initiatives and further information on such initiatives is available directly from individual HEI Access Offices.

Disclosing social/economic disadvantage will not adversely affect your application or your legal rights in any way.