Leaving Cert students to receive first round CAO offers today

Leaving Cert students to receive first round CAO offers today

The first round of CAO offers for 2021 are set to be released for Leaving Cert students today , 7th September 2pm.

Points for courses across the country are expected to rise this year matching the increase in demand for college courses.

More than 84 thousand applications for courses were submitted through the CAO this year, a rise from 78 thousand made in 2020.

Carlow-based Guidance Counsellor, Gemma Lawlor, has this advice for students who don't get their preferred course:


“If you’re going to go a different direction, take advice from someone who knows what they’re talking about.”

“Contact your guidance counsellor, they will be delighted to hear from you.”

“There are so many options out there, there are so many ways to get to where you want to go, so take time to make your decision and decide what’s your next step.”

Minister for Further and Higher Education Simon Harris said Tuesday would be “a day of mixed emotions for many people – a day of delight for many, a day of disappointment for some”.


He advised those who did not secure their preferred course to know there are “many opportunities, options and pathways for you to get where you want to get to”.

Leaving Cert results in 2021 were based on accredited grades and/or written exams due to the disruption to school during the Covid-19 pandemic.

A State Examinations Commission report found that over 50% of Leaving Cert students received a higher grade because their accredited grade result was higher than their exam result.

High achieving students have been warned that there's no guarantee they'll get the courses they have the points for, following this year's record-breaking Leaving Cert results.


It's understood that colleges expect to see a rise in the random selection for a number of in-demand courses when CAO offers are published today.

It's been revealed that applicants for medicine, dentistry, law or science may face a random selection process.

If you are awaiting CAO offers this year and need someone to talk to, Samaritans are available for 24/7 by calling 116123.

Alternatively,’s text message support service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Text SPUNOUT to 50808

Earlier this year, Beat gave the spotlight to the Class of 2021 with The Takeover's feature Life After The LC.

All episodes are available here