Trinity College Dublin

Skip to main content.

Top Level TCD Links

TAP/CDETB Partnership Access Courses

What are the TAP / CDETB university access courses?
TAP has partnered with three colleges of further education to run access courses in:

Why were these courses set up and who are they for?
The courses were set up in 2004 to build on the success of the TAP foundation courses. TAP/CDETB courses offer another way to third-level for students who have the ability to benefit from and succeed in higher education, but who come from socio-economic groups where few people go on to college.

What do students study on the course?
Students attend classes in Pearse, Plunket or Liberties college in subjects such as: social studies, English literature, history, political studies, philosophy, psychology, statistics, classical studies, study skills, educational guidance and information technology.

What involvement do students have with Trinity College?
Students take part in a range of ‘taster’ activities in Trinity including:

  • an orientation programme
  • library workshops
  • study skills workshops
  • educational guidance workshops
  • ‘Mini Trinity Week’

At the end of the course, students receive a certificate of participation in the university access programme from TAP.

What is the time commitment?
The course is full-time and runs from September to May over one year. There are up to 20 hours of lectures and tutorials each week and we would expect you to spend another 15 hours studying in your own time.

How are students assessed?
Students are assessed through a combination of assignments during the year and final exams.

What does the course cost?
Tuition is free but there may be a registration fee. Students may be eligible for a local authority grant. For more information about local authority grants, please click here.

What student supports are available?
Students have access to all supports and services in whichever college they are studying in. They may also use TAP supports such as the Writing Resource Centre and Maths Help Room.

What happens after the course?
Students who successfully complete the course get a QQI level 5 certificate in 5M3114 General Studies. 
Students who get a full QQI award, with a minimum of three distinctions in academic subjects, may compete for places on degree courses in the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences in Trinity College.

Students who get a full QQI award, with a minimum of five distinctions, may apply for reserved places in other colleges and universities through the Higher Education Links Scheme (HELS). 

How many former students have gone on to degree courses?
Since 2005, 230 students have gone on to degree courses in Trinity. Many others have gone on to other colleges and universities.

What are the entry requirements?

Liberties College:

  • applicants must meet the same entry requirements as set out for the TAP Foundation Course for Young Adults, although they may have attended a school in Ireland that is not linked to an access service.

Pearse College and Plunket College:

  • applicants must meet the same entry requirements as set out for the TAP Foundation Course for Mature Students
  • applicants may be 22 years of age or older on January 1st in the year they apply.

How do I apply?

Liberties College:

  • If you are applying for both the access course in Liberties College and the TAP Foundation Course for Young Adults, you only need to complete one application form. To complete the form click here.
  • If you are applying to Liberties College only, you should apply directly to Liberties College.

Pearse College and Plunket College:

  • If you are applying for the courses in Pearse College or Plunket College only, you should apply directly to the college.

How many places are there on the courses?
There are 75 places in total.

  • Liberties College, Dublin 8 – 25 young adults each year
  • Pearse College, Dublin 12 – 25 mature students each year
  • Plunket College, Dublin 9 – 25 mature students each year

What former students say

"This course has given me the chance to realise a life-long ambition of going to third-level" Pearse College student

"It was a very tough year but I believe now I am prepared for anything and I am excited about my next few years in Trinity" Plunket College student

Need more information?

Phone: Grainne McInerney – 01 896 3346

Alternatively, you can contact the colleges directly:

Liberties College

Plunket College

Pearse College

Bull Alley Street, Liberties
Swords Road, Whitehall
Clogher Road
Dublin 8
Dublin 9
Dublin 12
Tel: 01 454 0044
Tel: 01 837 1689
Tel: 01 453 6661
Fax: 01 454 6348
Fax: 01 836 8066
Fax: 01 454 1060

Last updated 14 December 2017 by Trinity Access Programmes (Email).