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Law & Political Science

Higher Education CAO

The law degree will appeal to you if you are interested in society and how it works, and with the broader question of the regulation of inter-personal relationships. A general interest in history and political developments, will be an advantage, as the law is deeply linked to its historical and political context. However given the wide range of legal modules on offer, this degree attracts students with a broad range of interests.

Political Science is the study of governments, public policies and political behaviours. Politics affects us all in our daily lives. It is easy to think of issues that we all have opinions about.

Award Name Degree - Honours Bachelor (Level 8 NFQ)
NFQ Classification Major
Awarding Body University of Dublin
NFQ Level Level 8 NFQ
Award Name NFQ Classification Awarding Body NFQ Level
Degree - Honours Bachelor (Level 8 NFQ) Major University of Dublin Level 8 NFQ
Course Provider:
Dublin City Centre
Attendance Options:
Daytime, Full time
Qualification Letters:
BA (Hons)
Apply to:


4 years full-time

Specific Subjects or course requirements

Minimum Entry Requirements: Irish Leaving Certificate

To be considered for admission to a degree course at the University you must:

Present six subjects, three of which must be at grade 5 or above on higher Leaving Certificate papers or at least grade 5 in the University matriculation examination.

The six subjects above must include:

A pass in English.

A pass in mathematics (or foundation-level mathematics (see note 2)) and a pass in a language other than English
A pass in Latin and a pass in a subject other than a language.

Specific Subjects Required


Political Science

Leaving Certificate General Entry Requirements

Admission Requirements 2024

To qualify for admission to an honours degree course at the University you must:

1 meet the minimum entry requirements (see above).

2 satisfy course specific requirements (where applicable), see above.

3 where there is competition for places, have good enough examination results to be included among those to whom offers are made (see the Leaving Certificate scoring system or Advanced GCE (A Level) scoring system).

Minimum entry points for recent years are available at:

Also see ‘Other Requirements’ below.

1 A pass means grade O6/H7 or above in the Leaving Certificate and grade 7 or above in the University matriculation examination.

2 Mathematics at foundation-level is acceptable for minimum entry requirements only, for all courses except nursing or midwifery courses.

Irish at foundation-level is not acceptable for minimum entry requirements, course requirements or for scoring purposes.

3 Students may combine grades achieved in different sittings of their Leaving Certificate/Matriculation examinations for the purpose of satisfying minimum entry and/or course requirements, but not for the purposes of scoring. This is not permitted for Medicine.

4 Combinations of Leaving Certificate subjects not permitted:

Physics/chemistry may not be presented with physics or chemistry.

Biology and agricultural science may not be presented as two of the six subjects required for minimum entry requirements, and they may not be presented together to satisfy course specific requirements. However, both may be used for scoring purposes.

Art and music may not be offered as two of the three higher Leaving Certificate grades for minimum entry requirements, but both may be used for scoring purposes.

Bonus Points for Higher Level Mathematics
All students resenting H6 or above in higher level mathematics will have 25 points added to their score for mathematics. The bonus points will only be relevant where mathematics is scored as one of a student’s six best subjects for points purposes.

An applicant’s six best results from one sitting of the Leaving Certificate will be counted for scoring purposes. Applicants may combine results from the Leaving Certificate and the Trinity matriculation examination of the same year for scoring purposes.

The minimum entry levels (points) for Trinity in recent years are available at:

University Matriculation Examination
A matriculation examination, graded in equivalent terms to grades used in higher Leaving Certificate examination papers, is held in Trinity every year, usually in April. The subjects of the matriculation examination are Biblical Studies and Geology. You may take one or both of the subjects available, but you should note that the range of university matriculation examination subjects available is not sufficient for the fulfilment of all minimum entry requirements.

The closing date for application for the examination is 1 March of the year of proposed entry to study. Application forms and a syllabus can be obtained from:
Academic Registry, Watts Building, Trinity College Dublin,
the University of Dublin, Dublin 2,
T: +353 1 896 4500,

Other Requirements

English Language Requirement
All applicants must present an English language qualification. Accepted/permitted qualifications are:
1 Irish Leaving Certificate: a grade 6 or better in ordinary level English.

2 GCSE: a grade C/grade 5 or better in English language.

3 US High School: a grade C in English taken in final year.

› Paper-based 570 (with a TWE score of 4.5)
› Computer-based 233 (with a score of 4.5 in essay)
› Internet-based 90 (with a written score of 21)

5 Cambridge Advanced/Proficiency: grade C

6 IELTS (academic version) 6.5 (no individual band below 6)
› For Dental courses: IELTS (academic version) 7 (no individual band below 7)
› For Clinical Speech and Language Studies: IELTS (academic version) 7 (no individual band below 7)

7 Pearson Test of English (Academic) – PTE Academic: a minimum score of 63 (with no Communication Skills section score below 59)

8 International Baccalaureate: English A1, A2 or B: 5 at Higher Level (4 at Standard Level if presenting IB through English).

9 QQI/FET: a pass in Communications module (5N0690).

10 Duolingo English Test: Minimum overall score of 120/160, with no section below 105.

Note: Examination results are only valid for two years.

Age Requirement
Applicants seeking admission in 2024 must have a date of birth before 15 January 2008.

Garda Vetting
Students on courses with clinical or other professional placements may be required to undergo Garda vetting procedures prior to commencing placements. If, as a result of the outcome of the Garda vetting procedures, a student is deemed unsuitable to attend clinical or other professional placement, he/she may be required to withdraw from his/her course. Students who have resided outside Ireland for a period of 6 months or more will be required to provide police clearance documentation from the country (including different states) or countries in which they resided.

Students who accept an offer will be informed of the procedures to be followed to complete the vetting process (as part of the student orientation information).

Fitness To Practice
Professional courses demand that certain core competencies are met by students in order to graduate and practice professionally after qualification. Trinity has special responsibility to ensure that all students admitted to all professional programmes will be eligible for registration by the relevant professional body upon graduation. It is important to us that our students are able to fulfil the rigorous demands of professional courses and are fit to practice.

Health Screening
Offers of admission to the following courses are made subject to certain vaccination requirements and/or certain negative test results:
› Clinical Speech and Language Studies
› Orthodontic Therapy, Dental Science, Dental Hygiene, Dental Nursing, and Dental Technology
› Medicine
› Nursing and Midwifery
› Occupational Therapy
› Pharmacy
› Physiotherapy
› Radiation Therapy
› Social Studies (Social work)

Full details are available at:

Leaving Certificate Vocational Progamme LCVP

Leaving Certificate Vocational Programme Link Modules
These modules are accepted for scoring purposes only and are awarded the following points: Distinction 66, Merit 46, Pass 28.

QQI FET Applicants General Information

QQI/FETAC Qualifications
There is an entry route to a number of degree programmes in Trinity for applicants presenting appropriate QQI/FET Level 5 or 6 Major Awards. Applicants presenting distinctions in five modules can be considered for admission.

Full information on courses with QQI entry routes, requirements etc., can be found at the link below.

QQI FET General Information Link

QQI FET Entry Requirements

Careers / Further progression

Graduate skills and career opportunities
Trinity’s LL.B. degrees prepare students not only for life as ‘lawyers’, but also enables them to enter many career fields such as business, journalism, accountancy, banking, insurance, politics, foreign affairs and public policy, both in Ireland and abroad. The skills learned through studying law are useful in all walks of life. A law degree teaches students to think logically and analytically. It also equips students with the ability to carry out research, to apply relevant information to problems, to use language precisely, carefully and objectively.

Political Science
Graduate skills and career opportunities
There are careers for which a demonstrated interest in politics and advanced research skills are a definite plus and will give you a real head start. Journalism, finance, the civil service, public relations, business, and work in international organisations and not-for-profit organisations, all come into this category. A demonstrated knowledge of how the world works is obviously an asset for many types of career. In addition, Political Science students develop exceptional communication, writing and critical thinking skills which are highly sought after by employers. An increasing number of graduates go on to do further postgraduate study.

Points for Joint Honors

Course Web Page

Further information

Mature Students
All undergraduate courses in Trinity are open to mature applicants. Mature student applicants are not required to satisfy the normal minimum entry requirements and are not required to meet competitive academic entry levels (such as Leaving Certificate points), but are considered in the first instance on the basis of how relevant their life, work and educational experiences are to the course(s) that they wish to pursue. In addition, all applicants should demonstrate an interest in and knowledge of their course choice(s).

In order to apply to Trinity as a mature applicant you must:
› be an EU applicant (see page 218)
› be at least 23 years of age on 1 January 2024
› submit a CAO application form to the Central Applications Office (CAO) by 1 February 2024

Late applications will not be considered from mature students.

CAO applications may be made online at:

Further information about applying through the CAO as a mature student can be found

Applicants to all courses may be required to attend an interview. Interviews are usually held between April and May.

Certain courses may also require applicants to meet other assessment criteria. For information on additional assessments for specific courses please refer to the Mature Student Guidelines booklet available from:

Academic Registry, Watts Building, Trinity College Dublin, the University of Dublin, Dublin 2, T: +353 1 896 4500, E:

The Mature Student Guidelines booklet is also available to download at:

Trinity will inform mature applicants of the outcome of their application before the end of May to allow successful applicants the maximum time possible to prepare for the start of the academic year 2024. Official offers to successful applicants are made through the CAO in early July. To secure your place you must return a formal acceptance notice to the CAO by the specified reply date.

An information seminar to prepare all successful mature applicants for starting in Trinity will take place in July 2024. An orientation programme for all successful mature applicants will take place in August 2024.

For further information on studying in Trinity as a mature student please contact the mature student officer, T: +353 1 896 1386, E: For more information, visit:

Please Refer to:

Entry 2024

Early online application (discounted): Fee €30 Closing Date: 20 January 2024 at 5pm

Normal online application: Fee €45 Closing Date: 1 February 2024 at 5pm

Late online application - restrictions apply (see page 3 2024 CAO Handbook): Fee: €60 Closing Date: 1 May 2024 at 5pm

Change of Mind - restrictions apply (see page 3 2024 CAO Handbook): Fee: Nil Closing Date: 1 July 2024 at 5pm

Exceptional online late application (see page 34 of the 2024 CAO Handbook): Fee €60 Closing Date: 22 July 2024 at 5pm

Be sure to complete any action well in advance of closing dates. You should avoid making an application close to a closing date. No extensions to closing dates will be allowed and all application fees are non-refundable.

Late Applications are those which are received after 5pm on 1 February 2024. The closing date for late applications is 5pm on 1 May 2024, subject to the restrictions listed on page 3 of the 2024 CAO Handbook. The online facility for late applications opens on the 5 March 2024 at 12:00 noon - a fee of €60 applies.

Exceptional Late Applications (Exception to the timetable)
The exceptional closing date of 22 July at 5pm applies only to applicants who are registered as an undergraduate student on 1 May 2024 in any year in any one of the participating HEIs (subject to the exclusions listed below). In order to avail of the Exceptional Late Application facility you must have entered the HEI through the CAO system. This is an exceptional late closing date and all steps must be completed by 5pm on 22 July. No changes may be made after this date.

If you did not enter your current course through the CAO system, you must first contact the Admissions Office of the HEI to which you wish to apply and they will inform you if you may submit an application direct to the institution.

You may submit a late application only for entry to courses other than your existing course. If you wish to repeat the year in the same course you must arrange this within your HEI.

Mary Immaculate College Limerick, Marino Institute of Education, Trinity College Dublin, University of Limerick and Maynooth University have special procedures in place in the case of current or previous students who wish to apply for entry to another course in the same HEI. Such applicants must contact their Admissions Office to determine the application procedure. However, if you are a student in another HEI and you wish to apply to any of these five HEIs, you should apply through CAO.

Refer to page 34 of the 2024 CAO Handbook on how to make an Exceptional Late Application.

As a CAO applicant you may experience one or more of the following restrictions based on your course choices, your category of application, or restrictions imposed by the HEIs that you wish to apply to. Please read the section on 'Restrictions' on page 3 of the 2024 CAO Handbook carefully. This section includes information on:

General Restrictions
1. Making a late application
2. Making changes to your course choices

Restricted Courses
3. Applying for a restricted course

Mature Applicants
4. Mature applicants

Supplementary Admissions Routes
5. Applying for DARE and/or HEAR

What is Law?
Law governs every aspect of our lives, from food labelling and football transfers to elections and crime. It regulates our social life from the contracts that we make when we buy products to the laws that determine when people can be jailed for committing criminal offences, and through to significant political decisions, such as constitutional reforms on marriage or abortion. As a law student, you will learn what laws are, how they work and how they change.

Law: The Course for you?
The law degree will appeal to you if you are interested in society and how it works, and with the broader question of the regulation of inter-personal relationships. A general interest in history and political developments, will be an advantage, as the law is deeply linked to its historical and political context. However given the wide range of legal modules on offer, this degree attracts students with a broad range of interests. Studying law involves learning legal rules, and interpreting, applying and critiquing legal principles. It requires the development of the skills of argument and advocacy as well as of critical analysis and reasoning. Legal training requires the ability to think logically and critically. Precise and careful use of language, good writing skills and a facility for articulate expression are key attributes for legal scholars.

Law at Trinity
Trinity’s School of Law, is Ireland’s oldest and most internationally renowned law school and the highest ranked Law School in Ireland. We have a long established history for producing some of the most prolific lawyers of the modern era in Ireland. Our strong network of alumni in Ireland and abroad comprises leading lawyers, judges, a former UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Chief Justices, Presidents of Ireland, policy-makers and public representatives. We have a tradition for innovative teaching and curricula which is the lynchpin in ensuring our graduates are self- motivated, ethically aware and critically reflective citizens.

Law degrees and professional qualifications
No law degree entitles a person to practise law as a solicitor or barrister. If you wish to go on to obtain a professional qualification, the governing bodies for the profession require that you study certain modules in your primary law degree. Our Single and Joint Honours Law degree programmes are designed to ensure that you have the opportunity to take these required modules. Students reading for a joint honours law programme, who would like to go into professional legal practice after their degree, will need to ensure they pursue the professional pathway (i.e. taking law as a major subject) from the second year of studies onwards. Our programmes also offer additional modules currently required for entry into the UK professional bodies.

All students considering a career as a lawyer should consult the relevant professional body of their preferred jurisdiction to ensure they satisfy all entry requirements.

Study abroad and internship opportunities
Third year students may apply to study abroad in a prestigious European university with the EU funded Erasmus programme. We also have links with leading universities in North America, Australia, Hong Kong and China which you may choose to apply to spend a semester or year in. These programmes are highly successful and are an extremely popular amongst our students each year. Participating students find that they are hugely enjoyable, academically and culturally rewarding, and a valuable asset to prospective employers. Further information on the year abroad programme, and a list of partner universities, can be found at: www. year-abroad

Visit the Law school:
If you are considering studying for a Law degree at Trinity but want to be sure, you are most welcome to attend first and/or second year Law lectures. If you would like to avail of this opportunity, please contact us by email to arrange a visit and meet with an academic advisor or current student.

See our website and Facebook page for details of the Law Open Day.

Political Science

What is Political Science?
Political Science is the study of governments, public policies and political behaviours. Politics affects us all in our daily lives. It is easy to think of issues that we all have opinions about. Should the government tax the rich to try to achieve greater equality? Should it introduce ‘green taxes’ in order to protect the environment? How high a priority should development aid be? What are the causes and consequences of ‘Brexit’? Questions such as these, along with analysis of political systems, political behaviour, international relations and how democracy works, are at the heart of the study of political science.

The study of politics as an academic subject involves, among other things, thinking about how these decisions get made. If it is not possible to keep everyone happy, whose views should prevail and why? If governments do not always make what seems to be the most ‘rational’ decision on economic policy, why not? How much say do ordinary people have in policy-making, and is it feasible to make the decision making process more open? Other big questions we study include issues such as: why don’t democracies go to war with each other? Why do civil wars last so long and why are ethnic conflicts more difficult to resolve then other forms of conflict?

Political Science:
The course for you?
Political Science will appeal to students who are excited about exploring the background to current events, the nature and use of power and how decisions are made that impact on wider society. If you are interested in having an in-depth knowledge of public affairs, developing critical and much sought after research skills and if your career interests lie in journalism, public service, teaching, public policy, international organisation and/or business then Political Science may be for you.

Political Science at Trinity
Political Science has been an important part of the curriculum since 1855 and Trinity has developed an international reputation for its research work on the European Union, comparative politics, comparative public opinion, international relations as well as democracy and development.

Study abroad
The Department of Political Science is a partner in Erasmus exchanges with leading universities in Europe. Students taking Political Science as a subject in Joint Honours may also go abroad on an exchange administered by other departments, subject to approval of their course of study abroad by the Department of Political Science. In addition there are opportunities for students to go on one of several international exchanges. These are open to all students on a University wide basis. Further information on student exchanges can be found at: study/study-abroad/outbound/option

Your degree and what you’ll study
Law at Trinity College Dublin is a four-year honours degree programme. In the first two years, you will take foundational and professional modules, ensuring there is an appropriate balance between the academic and practical aspects of law. The Single Honours degree in law offers students the opportunity to study law in depth and breadth – with a wide offering of modules available to choose from in your final years of studies. This allows you to tailor your studies to develop specialised areas of interest — for example media law and Intellectual property law, corporate law or human rights law — or to continue down a general route. You will apply and enhance the research skills that you have developed in the previous three years of the programme by completing a Capstone Project. Working as part of a research group, you will work both independently and collaboratively to explore in-depth a topical issue. You will learn the skills of a lawyer: how to research the law, how to make legal arguments, how to use the law to protect and serve your clients.

A distinctive feature of the Single Honours law degree is that you will also complete some modules outside of the School of Law. This will give you the opportunity to choose to study modules in a related discipline, or an unrelated discipline that is of interest to you. This is relevant both if you choose to pursue a career in the legal profession or if you follow an alternative career path.

First and second years
Modules that students can take in their first two years of study include:
› Constitutional Law
› Foundations of Law
› Jurisprudence
› Land Law
› Torts
› Contract Law
› Criminal Law
› Equity
› Legislation and Regulation
› Private Law Remedies

Third and fourth years
Modules that students can take in their latter years of study include:
› Administrative Law
› Collective Labour Law
› Critical Perspectives on Law
› European Human Rights
› Family and Child Law
› Industrial Property Law
› Intellectual Property Law
› Information Technology Law
› Legal Philosophy
› Medical Law and Ethics
› Responsible Business, EGS and Ethics
› Commercial Law
› Corporate Governance
› Current Issues in Constitutional Law

Offered in the final year of the LL.B. programmes, 35-40 students undertake a placement in a legal practice setting in a partner organisation in the private, public or not-for-profit sectors. Students also attend a lawyering class in which they develop their understanding of professional legal skills and legal ethics. We are privileged to have many of the leading legal practice settings in the State, in each of the private, public and not-for-profit sectors, among our partner organisations which offer placements. The lawyering class complements the placement by enabling students to identify and develop the skills, values and knowledge necessary for making the transition from the academic study of law to its application in a real-world setting.

Political Science

Your degree and what you’ll study
Please see the individual course descriptions for Philosophy, Political Science, Economics and Sociology (PPES), and Business, Economic and Social Studies (BESS) and Joint Honours pages for Geography, History, Law and Social Policy for the Joint Honours courses offered with Political Science.

First year
First year students will be given a grounding in core topics related to the course material, including Introduction to Political Science, Introduction to Sociology, Introduction to Economics

Second year
Second year students will advance their understanding of the core concepts covered in the first year to take in subjects such as History of Political Thought, International Relations, Comparative Politics

Third and fourth years
The following is a list of the modules typically on offer: Research Methods, Irish Politics, Democracy and Development, European Union Politics, Political Institutions of the US, Political Psychology, Political Violence, Political Theory: Contemporary Topics, Issues in Contemporary Politics, Contemporary International Relations, African Politics, Autocracy, Economic Inequality and Democracy.

Assessment in law degrees is by a combination of coursework and semester examinations. As a reflection of the different teaching practices, a diverse range of assessment methods is used, including case notes, essays, reflective journals, mock parliaments, contribution to web-discussion boards, response papers and research dissertations. Students are advised at the beginning of the teaching semester about the assessment methods in each module.

Political Science
Some courses are examined by a combination of assessed essays and formal examination; some others are assessed through coursework only. Normally, each course has two hours of lectures and one tutorial per week. In fourth year, students specialising in Political Science will have the opportunity to research and undertake a Capstone research project on a topic of their choice. Final year classes are typically run as small group seminars.

Course Provider:
Dublin City Centre
Attendance Options:
Daytime, Full time
Qualification Letters:
BA (Hons)
Apply to: