Using your QQI qualifications to progress to University or an Institute of Technology

It can be difficult to understand how this system works, however it is working and 20% of 1st years in the Third Level sector came through the QQI route.

How it works

To put it simply – Any student with a full QQI award at Levels 5 or 6 can use this qualification to compete for a place in a third level college if that college is one of the 38 higher education colleges  offering progression to QQI students.

A full award consists of 8 modules including mandatory modules.

Differences between Universities and Institutes of Technology

The universities only allow students to progress from QQI courses that are linked to the specific programme in the university.

Generally the Institutes of Technology allow QQI students to progress on to non-linked programmes. In other words students can use their QQI cert to access almost all programmes in the Institutes. Students need to check out all the links themselves or speak with a guidance counsellor for advice

There are rules about minimum entry requirements such as number of distinctions required. Students may also have to achieve grades in certain subjects such as Maths.

How to find out if a course has a progression route to third level?

To find out if a course is linked you can use :

Enter the QQI award code( which will be on the top of the course page on the prospectus or on the qualifax website,) for example 5M5146 and a full list of degree programmes linked to this will be supplied

Alternatively you can go to the website, click on Student Resources and open QQI Information. Again you can search for progression routes for your QQI award on this site.

Important to Note

Applicants are advised at all times to confirm linked awards and any additional requirements for progression.

The career guidance service at TCFE or your course coordinator at TCFE will be able to advise  you on this and help with any queries you may have.