Careers rarely develop the way we plan them. Our career path often takes many twists and turns, with particular events, choices and people influencing our direction.

We asked Aoife Lyons from Civil and Public Service Jobs to give some advice for people considering this job:

Aoife Lyons

Occupational Psychologist

Civil and Public Service Jobs

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Aoife Lyons
Psychology is a very broad area and I would encourage people to reflect on the field that would suit them best. If you study pharmacy, you will graduate as a pharmacist. It is different in psychology. The role of a Clinical Psychologist differs significantly from the role of an Educational Psychologist, a Forensic Psychologist or a Sports Psychologist. A post graduate qualification will be required to practice in any of these fields. Regardless of the area of psychology that interests you, respect for and an interest in people is a key value that is required. Once you have qualifications, networks and professional bodies are a good way to meet prospective employers.
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Administrative?
Administrative
Administrative people are interested in work that offers security and a sense of being part of a larger process. They may be at their best operating under supervisors who give clear guidelines, and performing routine tasks in a methodical and reliable way.

They tend to enjoy clerical and most forms of office work, where they perform essential administrative duties. They often form the backbone of large and small organisations alike. They may enjoy being in charge of office filing systems, and using computers and other office equipment to keep things running smoothly. They usually like routine work hours and prefer comfortable indoor workplaces.
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Adult Learner

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Further Education - (2 & 3)


Courses in Ed Zone 2 include the Leaving Certificate and many one-year PLC (Post Leaving Cert) and FETCH (Further Education and Training) courses.

Some PLC colleges also offer two-year programes (Advanced Certificates: Level 6) which may also fall into the Ed Zone 3 category.

PLC & FetchCourses

PLC courses are run around the country and provide an excellent opportunity to study an area of interest, for either the fun of learning, or to gain an award that can be later used to access employment or a third level education. Most PLC courses are QQI accredited, though some are not. Those that are not may be accredited by a internationally recognised UK body (e.g. City & Guilds, ITEC etc.).

Notes:

  • Most PLC courses lead to a QQI Level 5 Certificate and last one year.
  • Competition for places is competitive.
  • Entry requirements are usually a pass Leaving Cert or QQI equivalent qualification and normally be subject to an interview.
  • Many courses allow progression into a second year in the same college.
  • Some PLC courses lead to a QQI Level 6 Advanced Certificate or equivalent, and last 2 years.
  • Most PLC courses can be used to enter Third Level courses using what is known as Progression RoutesNote: If the course that interests you offers or accepts progression pathways to level 6, 7 and 8 courses this green link   will appear beside the course information.
Go to PLC Search Wizard hereSearch for PLC Courses here.

FetchCourses.ie is a course search for Further Education & Training courses in Ireland.

Leaving Certificate

Many adult learners decide to do the leaving certificate, particularly if they did not get an opportunity when they were younger and use it as pathway to returning to education.

If you want to do the Leaving Certificate, you should contact your local ETB (Education and Training Board) and ask for information. 

Find your local ETB

Repeat Leaving Certificate

Education and Training Boards offer repeat Leaving Certificate courses in a number of colleges throughout the country. Some private colleges also offer repeat Leaving Certificate courses. Repeat classes tend to be small, which allows for individual attention. They also typically have a big focus on study skills.

Enrolment and advice on subject choices generally takes place from the beginning of August to mid September each year, depending on the college.

The cost of doing a repeat Leaving Certificate varies. ETB colleges are the less expensive option. Students are advised to check with their local ETB to see exactly what costs are involved. If you opt to repeat with a private college the cost is likely to be considerably higher.

Contact your local Adult Education Guidance Service (AEGI) based in the ETB if you are thinking of repeating your Leaving Certificate. 

To find contacts for your local Adult Guidance Initiative or ETB visit OneStepUp.ie

Access Programmes

These are an alternative entry route to Third Level education. Access programmes are usually aimed at mature students (over 23 years) who missed out on getting into college directly from school. They involve doing a 'foundation' year college concerned which is designed to prepare learners for university-level learning and life, while studying in a subject area such as the humanities, or science. The main universities all offer access programmes. Some  guarantee entry to a certain degree programmes, once course assessment criteria are met. For more information about access programmes in universities and colleges in Ireland, follow the links below:

CIT - click here

DCU - click here

DIT - Click here

NUI Galway - click here

TCD - click here

UCD - click here

University of Limerick (UL) - click here