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 Brian O'Connor from Smart Futures to give some advice for people considering this job:

Brian O'Connor

Analytical Chemist

Smart Futures

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Brian O'Connor
Science is a fascinating subject and you truly have to immerse yourself in it. When you do the rewards are fantastic. It is of course a tough subject but once complete you learn how to solve many problems yourself.

Realists are usually interested in 'things' - such as buildings, mechanics, equipment, tools, electronics etc. Their primary focus is dealing with these - as in building, fixing, operating or designing them. Involvement in these areas leads to high manual skills, or a fine aptitude for practical design - as found in the various forms of engineering.

Realists like to find practical solutions to problems using tools, technology and skilled work. Realists usually prefer to be active in their work environment, often do most of their work alone, and enjoy taking decisive action with a minimum amount of discussion and paperwork.
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Advice for Parents and Students Awaiting Leaving Cert Results

Be prepared and informed before the results arrive

Advice for Parents and Students Awaiting Leaving Cert Results

Click here to read our Leaving Cert Guide 2018

The long wait is finally coming near the end for 2018 Leaving Cert students. In a week’s time the results will be released. Nervous anticipation will be building in households across the country as students and parents alike eagerly await as the next chapter is yet to be written.

You will be required to make some tough decisions in the coming weeks. Here at CareersPortal we have all the information you need to support you and help you make informed decisions for your future. 

Start here and get a heads up on what to expect next week when the results are out.

How will I receive my results?

  • Results will be made available to students on Wednesday 15th August.
  • Results are issued to your school or education provider early in the morning. Check in with your school to find out what arrangements they have in place to release results to students.
  • Alternatively exam candidates can access their results online. Results are available from 12:00 midday on 15th August, using the SEC Online Results service, click here. You will need your PIN and exam number to access results. (All candidates were issued with their PIN before sitting their exams.)
  • Your results will also be sent to the Central Applications Office (CAO) in preparation for the course offers process.

Your Results Envelope

  • You will receive a Statement of your Results.
  • Note: Results appear in the H1/01, H2/02 … grading system. You will not receive your percentage grade. You also will not receive your points. You will need to add up your points yourself.

To find out how to calculate CAO points click here


Top Tip
Download the CareersPortal Points Calculator to accurately add your points.

Get the app here.


Leaving Cert Appeals Process

If your results are not what you anticipated, you have the option of viewing your marked scripts and requesting an appeal. Let's say a particular grade falls below your expectations - you can ask to view your exam script - there is no charge for this. If you then wish to do so, you can appeal the result.

How do I apply to view my exam scripts?

When you receive your results your school will also have a personalised application form provided by the SEC which will show your examination details including your subjects.  If you decide you would like to view a particular script you must complete this form. You must then return the completed form to the school where you sat your examination by Tuesday 21stAugust 2018.

In order to make an appeal application, you should use the online Appeals Application and Service on which will be available from 12 noon on the 20th August 2018.  You access this service online using your Examination Number and Pin.   To find out more about this click here.

[For detailed information see the Leaving Certificate Candidate Information Booklet 2018 available here]

CAO Offers and the Acceptance Process

  • CAO Round One offers will be made online at 6:00am on Monday 20th August 2018. Offers will also be posted and sent by SMS text.
  • The cut-off points for courses will be available online here from 6.00am, and on the CAO website.
  • Applicants have until 5.15pm on 24th August to accept or reject this offer.
  • Further rounds of offers from the CAO continue until all course places are filled.
  • Applicants who have not received an offer will receive another Statement of Application Record.

To help you to understand how the CAO course offers process works, click here or watch this short video from CAO

The Offer and Acceptance Process from CAO on Vimeo.


CAO Vacant Places

Every year CAO have vacant places available. New courses are sometimes added after the CAO Change of Mind deadline and sometimes not enough people apply for the available places on courses. So it is always worth checking out the list of vacant places. To access the list click here and to find out more about CAO vacant places click here.


Money Matters

To find out about how to fund your college education and the grants available click here.

Note: Susi is still accepting applications for the 2018/19 academic year.


Other Options

Sometimes not everything goes according to plan. Here is a list of other options that you may need to consider


The IGC / NPCpp HELPLINE number 2018 1800 265165

The Institute of Guidance Counsellors and the National Parents Council post primary helpline will be open again this year to offer help and advice, for the six days following the Leaving Cert results.

The CareersPortal Team









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