Advanced Entry/Add-on

If your education terminated at second level (NFQ level 5) you are not eligible to apply for Advanced Entry.

Applicants for Advanced Entry will usually either:

  • already hold a Higher Education qualification and are now seeking to progress to the next level or 
  • will have already successfully completed at least 1 year of a related Higher Ed programme elsewhere and are now seeking a transfer into ATU Donegal in order to continue and complete a course at the same level.

Standard Applicants, will present a qualification recognised by the QQI (Quality and Qualifications Ireland) at an appropriate Level (6 or 7) on the National Framework of Qualifications.  

Non-standard applicants must present equivalent Higher Education awards, i.e. those that have the necessary number of ECTS credits and/or appropriate learning outcomes.

List of Courses

To view a full list of all add-on courses click here

How do I get an Application Form?

Download a Direct Entry Application Form (to be used for year 2, 3, 4 entry or for ACCS entry). 

If you are unable to download the application form contact us here or call us on 074 918 6125/6126/6129

The Direct Entry Application Form is appropriate for those who are:

  • Applying for advanced entry, i.e. into years 2, 3, or 4,
  • Applying on the basis of a QQI level 6 major award
  • Applying having already successfully completed 1 or more years in Higher Ed.
  • Making application to study in ACCS (part-time) mode.

If your education terminated at second level (NFQ Level 5), and you wish to study in full-time mode, you must apply via the CAO for first year entry. 

If you are an external candidate it is necessary for you to supply supporting documentation with your application such as a Transcript of your Higher Education Exam Results to date.  In some instances you may also be requested to supply detailed syllabi on which those results are based.  Where documentation is not in English/Irish, notarized translations should be provided.  Supporting documentation can be provided to ATU Donegal using one or a combination of the following means:

  • Appended in hardcopy to your application, or
  • Submitted by email to, or
  • If you have a Digitary or My eQuals account, you may share your documents with ATU Donegal using your Digitary/My eQuals account

In the absence of appropriate supporting documentation it will not be possible to process the application.

Completed Advanced Entry Applications should be returned to the address at the bottom of the page by April 1st.

How to Apply QQI_1If my application is successful, at what stage/year can I start?

Standard Applicants who qualify for Advanced Entry will normally have successfully completed an NQAI programme of either 2 or 3 years duration and will normally enter the next stage (i.e. year 3 or year 4) of a directly related programme. Entry into year 2 is less usual, but may be considered in the case of an application for:

  • Transfer from another college on successful completion of year 1 of a directly related NQAI programme.
  • Transfer from another college on successful completion of year 2 of an in-directly related NQAI programme.
  • Entry following successful completion of a QQI FET Level 6 award that has learning outcomes that closely match the learning outcomes of our year one programmes.
  • Entry following successful completion of any Non NQAI Higher Ed Award which has learning outcomes that closely match the learning outcomes of our year one programmes.

Can I apply for advanced entry if I don’t have standard NQAI qualifications?

Yes.  Eligibility will depend on the suitability of the non standard programme you are presenting and how well the learning outcomes and grades you have achieved match those required for our programmes.  For instance, applicants from Northern Ireland or the U.K. who are presenting a HND are, generally, eligible for advanced entry into level 7 degree programmes.  If the HND is directly related to the programme for which they applied, they may be accepted into the award year (year 3 of a degree programme).  If it is indirectly related, they may be accepted into year 2.

Applicants who are presenting qualifications other than the usual NQAI Level 6 & 7 awards should attach the following to the ATU Donegal Advanced Entry Application Form:

  • A copy of the syllabus on which their award is based.
  • A certified copy of the examination transcript, showing the both the award title and the grades/marks achieved.
  • Where the above information is not in English/Irish, notarized translations must be provided.
  • Non standard applications that do not include all of the above information cannot be processed or assessed.

When will I know if my application has been successful?

The first notification to successful applicants for Advanced Entry is issued in July.  If a programme is not filled from the first round of offers, those who do not receive an offer in July may receive an offer at a later date. When there are more qualified applicants than there are places available, applicants are ranked on their Higher Education results.  Those with the best grades will have the highest ranking and will receive offers first, normally during the later half of July.  We will proceed down through the ranking, in order of merit, until all places are filled. 

If applying for advanced entry, can I also apply for year 1 -  as a fall-back position?

Yes.  It is possible to apply for both advanced entry (e.g. into year 2) and, in parallel, to submit a CAO application for year 1. 

Applicants may choose to make dual applications when, for instance, they are presenting non-standard awards and are worried about their chances of acceptance into year 2.

When dual applications are submitted, the CAO application is essentially a fall-back position - just in case their advanced entry application is not successful.

Please note that at ATU Donegal the CAO and Advanced Entry applications are currently entirely separate application procedures, dealt with in different ways and by different processes.

For details of how to make an CAO application see: how to apply to first year courses or

The CAO application, and any offer arising therefrom, applies to year 1 entry only. Should you make a dual application and get a CAO offer before a decision is reached on advanced entry, you should go ahead and accept the CAO offer.

Accepting a first year offer via the CAO will not prevent you from getting an advanced entry offer if you are eligible.