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New CAO Points Scale to come into effect from 2017



In April, Minister O’Sullivan announced a new grading scheme for the Leaving Certificate from 2017 as part of an overall package of reforms designed to support students in the transition from second-level to higher education. The new grading scheme will apply to students commencing the Senior Cycle in September 2015 and will reduce the current number of grade levels as follows: -

NewGrades% Marks
 H1 / O190-100
 H2 / O280<90
 H3 / O370<80
 H4 / O460<70
 H5 / O550<60
 H6 / O640<50
 H7 / O730<40
 H8/ O80<30


The change in grading scheme means the Common Points Scale (CPS), used by the CAO to determine entry into higher education institutions, also needs to be revised. The table below shows the revised CPS that will be introduced from 2017


HigherOrdinary
GradePointsGradePoints
 H1100  
 H288  
 H377  
 H466  
 H556 O156
 H646 O246
 H737 O337
 H80 O428
   O520
   O612
   O70
   O80


The points awarded for achievement in both the Leaving Certificate Vocational Programme (LCVP) and QQI-FET (formerly FETAC) awards are also being revised to maintain the current equivalences.

From 2017 Leaving Certificate Vocational Programme (LCVP) grades will be aligned as follows:


LCVP
Grade
Current PointsRevised LCVP
Points
Distinction7066
Merit5046
Pass3028


For QQI-FET awards the maximum possible total score of 360 (120 credits x 3 for a distinction) is currently multiplied by 10 and divided by 9 to give a maximum overall points score of 400.

From 2017, this 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 from further education and training.

Students who sat the Leaving Certificate before 2017 will be awarded revised points as set out in the tables below. In line with the decision to awards points to students who achieve a grade of H7 under the new Leaving Certificate grading scheme, students who achieved an E grade (25-39%) at Higher Level under the earlier grading schemes will from 2017 be awarded 33 points.

The points available under the new scale cannot be directly compared with the points awarded currently. An entirely new scale is being introduced from 2017 and all students applying through the CAO from 2017 will be awarded the new points, no matter when they sat the Leaving Certificate. This means that all students applying through the CAO will be on a level playing-field.

The points which will be awarded to students who sat the Leaving Certificate from 1992-2016 are as follows:

Current (pre-2017) Leaving Certificate Grade SchemeNew Leaving Certificate Grade SchemeNew Points  Higher levelNew Points
Ordinary level
A1H1 / O110056
A2H2 / O28846
B1
B2H3 / O37737
B3
C1H4 / O46628
C2
C3H5 / O55620
D1
D2H6 / O64612
D3
E 330


Pre-1992 Leaving Certificate students will from 2017 be awarded points as follows: - See more at:

From 2017, the universities and Institutes of Technology will also introduce new basic matriculation requirementsto take account of the new grade scheme –


o  Where the requirements are currently 2 higher level C3 grades and 4 ordinary level D3 grades, in 2017 these will become 2 H5 and 4 O6/H7 grades.

o  Where the requirements are currently 5 ordinary level D3 grades, in 2017 these will become 5 O6/H7 grades.
o  Where the requirements are currently 3 higher level C3 grades and 3 ordinary level D3 grades, in 2017 these will become 3 H5 and 3 O6/H7 grades.

Subject requirements which form part of basic matriculation remain unchanged. Any revised subject requirements specific to individual courses for 2017 will be approved and published by each HEI over the coming period.”

Source: Dept of Education

Full details of the measures coming into effect in 2017 as part of the Transition Reform programme can be found on www.transition.ie