Deferral of Offer (CAO Applicants)

If you are offered a place through the CAO and find that you are unable to take it up in the current year, it may be possible to reserve your place until the following year.

How do I qualify for deferred entry at ATU Donegal?  In general, ATU Donegal only agrees to grant Deferred Entry in the case of certified medical illness – in the case of deferral requests related to Covid-19 this includes evidence that you have been advised to isolate and will therefore not be in a position to attend college We would not normally grant deferral requests where you tell us that you wish to:

  • repeat the Leaving Certificate
  • undertake another course of study
  • save
  • seek/undertake employment
  • travel
  • take a year out

If a deferral is not granted you may still take up the place offered in the current year, provided you have left sufficient time to meet CAO acceptance deadlines.

Are there conditions related to CAO deferrals?  Yes.

1. If a deferral is granted, it is valid for one year only, and only for the course deferred.

2. If, for any reason, the deferred course should be discontinued, the applicant will not, automatically, be entitled to a place on any other course.

3. Applicant must formally re-apply for the deferred course via CAO the following year in order to signal continued interest.

4. In making their re-application the deferred course must be the ONLY course listed on the CAO application

How do I apply to defer entry based a CAO offer?  Time is of the essence. Do not accept the offer via the CAO. Instead, write immediately to the Registry at ATU Donegal. This letter must arrive with us at least two days before the reply date shown on your CAO Offer Notice.  This is a busy time of year, so, to make sure your application is not overlooked, mark both the envelope and the letter clearly with the words “Deferral Application”. Make sure the letter includes:

• Your name

• Your CAO Application number

• The code of the course that you wish to defer

• The reason(s) why you are seeking a deferral.

• A Medical Certificate, where applicable.

If I am granted a deferral do I need to re-apply? Yes. Those holding deferrals often change their minds. So, if you have a deferral, you must show your continued interest by reapplying, via the CAO, the following year.  The deferred place must be the only course listed on your reapplication.  If you fail to re-apply you will lose your deferred place.  If you list additional courses, we will assume you are no longer certain about the one you deferred and that you have opted to enter a new competition. In this case you will be treated as a new applicant. You may be re-offered the deferred course, or you may not, depending on how your new application goes. 


Deferral/Deregistration (Registered students only)

It’s perfectly normal to wonder whether or not it’s right for you to stay in college.  Maybe your circumstances have changed which now make it difficult for you to continue your studies, or maybe college is not quite what you thought it might be.  Deferring or deregistering from your course is a big decision, and therefore it is important that you consider your options and the financial implications of such a decision.

Deferring involves withdrawing from a course with the intention of returning to the same course, while deregistering involves withdrawing from a course with no intention of returning to that course.  Before you decide to defer your place for one year or deregister from your course, we recommend that you meet with your Head of Department (HoD) to discuss your options.  Additionally, ATU Donegal has various Support Services available if you would like some advice or guidance in reaching the best decision for you; these include the Careers Officer, the Curve, the SU Welfare Officer and the Admissions Office.  Information on the financial implications of withdrawing is available here .

Deferral of Place (Registered Students)

A deferral is where a student, due to exceptional circumstances beyond their control, formally withdraws from the course they are registered on, with the intention of returning to the same course the following academic year.  Exceptional circumstances can include, but are not limited to the following - medical condition, significant financial difficulties, bereavement in family.  The procedures for deferring are as follows:

  1. Students seeking a deferral must complete this Application Form.
  2. The form must be submitted with supporting evidential documentation (if applicable) to the relevant HoD, who must co-sign the form in order to indicate their approval. 
  3. The student should submit the approved form to the Admissions Office, together with their student card.
  4. Fees and refunds are calculated based on the date of Head of Department approval.  It is important that forms are submitted promptly to Admissions once completed and co-signed by the HoD.
  5. Admissions Office will contact the student in advance of the next academic year.
  6. Students must contact the Admissions Office prior to returning to confirm their intention to return.

Deregister from Course

If you wish to leave and you have no intention of returning to the same course, you should complete the official deregistration process.  Prior to undertaking the deregistration process please make sure you get as much advice as you can from an appropriate staff member, including your School Office and Student Services.  You should also familiarise yourself with the fee implications of your deregistration.

Instructions for Deregistering:

  1. Click on the deregistration link and logon using your ATU Donegal username and password.
  2. Complete the survey – all information is treated in the strictest of confidence and will only be seen by those staff processing your request.
  3. You will be asked if you have discussed this request with a staff member. If you have not spoken to anyone then you may be contacted by a staff member.
  4. After you have answered all questions, submit your request. You can choose to receive an email receipt of your responses.
  5. Once you receive confirmation of your withdrawal, you should return your ATU Donegal Student Card to the Admissions Office.