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The Common Points Scale

For applicants to CAO from 2017 a new Higher Education Common Points Scale will come into effect. The new scale will apply to all applicants applying to CAO on the basis of their Leaving Certificate examination results (1988 - present).

If you sat the Leaving Certificate before 2017 you can calculate your points under this new scale using the Common Points Scale Calculator or the Points Calculation Grid below.

A pre-2017 applicant's points will change when calculated using the New Common Points Scale. The old points will no longer apply, and a new points score will be calculated by using the new scale.

In many instances an applicant's points will actually go down when compared with a pre-2017 points score; this should not cause alarm, as such applicants will be competing with current year applicants using the same Common Points Scale. The points available under the new scale cannot be compared with the points awarded up to 2016.

Leaving Certificate Points Calculator
Common Points Scale Presentation
Applicants presenting Leaving Certificate results 1992 to 2016

1992 to 2016 LC Grade New Points Awarded Higher Level New Points Awarded Ordinary Level
A1 100 56
A2 88 46
B1 88 46
B2 77 37
B3 77 37
C1 66 28
C2 66 28
C3 56 20
D1 56 20
D2 46 12
D3 46 12
E 33 0
F 0 0
NG 0 0

1992-2016 Foundation Level Maths Grade New Points Awarded
A1 20
A2 / B1 12
Points for Foundation level Mathematics will be awarded by certain institutions. Applicants should refer to the literature available from each HEI for full details.

Applicants presenting Leaving Certificate results pre-1992

1985 to 1992 LC Grade New Points Awarded Higher Level New Points Awarded Ordinary Level
A 100 56
B 77 37
C 66 28
D 46 12
E 33 0
F 0 0
NG 0 0

Entry requirements from 2017

From 2017, a Higher Level E grade will contribute to the new basic matriculation requirements which the universities and institutes of technology have introduced to take account of the new grading scheme. These basic matriculation requirements for 2017 applicants and the grades required from pre-2017 applicants are detailed in the Table below:
2017 Matriculation requirements Pre-2017 Leaving Cert grades required
2 H5 and 4 O6/H7 grades 2 HD1 and 4 OD3/HE grades
5 O6/H7 grades 5 OD3/HE grades
3 H5 and 3 O6/H7 grades 3 HD1 and 3 OD3/HE grades

Please note that courses also have course-specific entry requirements and you must meet these requirements in order to be considered for entry. Detailed information in relation to specific course requirements is available on the website of each Higher Education Institution.

Revised scoring for QQI-FET awards
From 2017, the maximum possible total score of 360 will be multiplied by 13 and divided by 12 to give a revised maximum overall points score of 390 for applicants presenting QQI further education and training awards. For further information about how points are calculated for QQI-FET applicants, click here.

Why were these changes introduced?
For more information on the changes to the grading scale and Common Points Scale go to