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Student supports

This section offers information on topics of general concern to students, such as funding supports and equal access to education.

Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI)

Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI) is Ireland’s national awarding authority for further and higher education grants and offers support to eligible students in approved, full-time courses at PLC, undergraduate and postgraduate levels and in some cases, to students studying outside Ireland. Please check for more information.


Maintenance grant

A maintenance grant scheme for which PLC students can apply is available. The maintenance scheme is means tested and grants are paid along the same lines as the current third level student support schemes.  SUSI (Student Universal Support Ireland) is Ireland's single national awarding authority for all higher and further education grants. For information on grant eligibility, grant process or to make a grant application go to SUSI.


Back to Education Allowance (BTEA)

You can apply for the Back to Education Allowance if you are hoping to attend a Post Leaving Certificate (PLC) course or Institute of Education, full-time.  For further information on moving from Social Welfare to training or education please check for benefits and supports.


Student Finance

This website is a convenient and user-friendly source of information on financial support for further and higher education.  Please check  for more information.


FET Training Allowances

Training courses provided by the ETB Training Centres are free (except for evening courses) and you may be paid a training allowance for the duration of your course.  You can also claim an accommodation allowance if you need to live away from home for the duration of the course or a travel allowance.  You may qualify for a free childcare place for your child.  FET allowances are not taxable. Your local Intreo office can advise if you are entitled to any allowances while on a training course.

The Disability Access Route to Education (DARE)

DARE is a third level alternative admissions scheme for school-leavers whose disabilities have had a negative impact on their second level education. DARE offers reduced points places to school leavers who, because of having a disability, have experienced additional educational challenges in second level education.


What is DARE? - Access College


The Higher Education Access Route (HEAR)

The Higher Education Access Route (HEAR) is a college and university scheme which offers places on reduced points and extra college support to school leavers from socio-economically disadvantaged backgrounds who are resident in the Republic of Ireland.


HEAR has been set up by several colleges and universities as evidence shows that long-term poverty can have a negative effect on how well a student does at school and whether they go on to college.


HEAR - Access College


Find a list of all higher education access officers here.

Jigsaw - Young People's Health in Mind

Jigsaw has remained steadfast in their commitment to help create an Ireland where young people are connected to their community, have easy-to-access support and services to face challenges to their mental health.


Visit Jigsaw