Applying to college

Find out more about applying to College generally, and about our College’s admission process.


Your School’s Career Guidance teacher will be a very important source of information and help to you in this process.  Once you have chosen which course(s) you would be interested in studying you need to make an application to your chosen College/University. Usually your application will need to be made through the Central Applications Office (CAO)


Applications procedures will differ depending on the College and the course you have chosen to study but you may be invited to attend an interview, complete tests or submit examples of your work as part of this process.

You should also think about declaring your autism on your application form which will allow you to apply to the Disability Access Route To Education (DARE) , this will not impact on the College’s decision to offer/not offer a place but it will enable you to access support and adjustments if required.

The Disability Access Route to Education (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 as a result of having a disability have experienced additional educational challenges in second level education.


How to Apply Through DARE (2024)

How could this affect me?

Knowing more about the application and admissions process will enable you to prepare, and think about whether you require any support or adjustments through this process e.g. extra time for interviews. If you have any concerns about the admissions process and would like to talk about your options for support, you can contact the Disability Service team.

What to do next?

Become familiar with the admissions process and consider telling the College about your autism

Practical tips

  • Check if you need to apply through CAO (in most cases), or if you apply directly to the college
  • Find out what evidence you need to support your application; examples of work, a portfolio or a personal statement, for example (see below for advice on writing a personal statement).
  • Check when you should apply. Make a note of important deadline dates.
  • Consider if you will require any adjustments or support during the interview or selection event; contact the Disability Service team if you feel that this would be useful for you.


Research the course that you are applying for thoroughly, and identify the skills and interests that you will need to study it.  Your statement should highlight:

  • What interests you about the subject
  • Why you have chosen this course in particular
  • What skills you bring to the course
  • Your relevant experience
  • Your ambitions and how you see this course fulfilling those ambitions.

Questions to think about

  • What is the application process for your chosen course?
  • What do you need to submit to support your application?
  • Do you need to provide evidence in the form of a portfolio of work?
  • When are the deadlines for applications?
  • When should you expect to hear if your application has been successful?
  • Who do you need to contact at your chosen college/university to discuss disability support?

Additional information and links

You can find out more about the admissions procedures at Admissions Office DKIT . You can also declare your autism and contact the Disability Services DKIT team directly.