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Transitions Reform

Transitions Reform

The HEA is working in partnership with key stakeholder organisations to enhance the transition from second-level education to higher education in Ireland. This process commenced in September 2011, when the HEA and the NCCA hosted a one-day international conference, ‘Transition or Transaction: Moving from Second to Third-Level Education in Ireland’. The discussion paper prepared in advance of the event by Professor Áine Hyland, ‘Entry to Higher Education in Ireland in the 21st Century’, is available here; and the conference report, From Transaction to Transition: Outcomes of the Conference on the Transition from Second to Third-Level Education in Ireland, is available at http://www.transition.ie/files/HEA_NCCA_Transitions.pdf

On 27th March 2013, the Minister for Education and Skills, Ruairi Quinn, T.D., launched the Supporting a Better Transition from Second Level to Higher Education: Key Directions and Next Steps report, which details commitments to address problematic predictability in the Leaving Certificate examination; to reduce the number of grading bands used in this examination; and to broaden entry-routes into higher education. This report is available below. To provide an open forum for the discussion of the recommendations of this report, a one-day, national conference, ‘Supporting a Better Transition from Second-Level to Higher Education: Directions for Change’, was held at the National University of Ireland, Maynooth on 24th June 2013. The conference programme, presentations and videos are available at http://www.transition.ie/

Further to the publication of a Report on the Consultation with 5th and 6th-Year Students on the Reform of the Transition from Second-Level to Third-Level Education (November 2013), an update on the transitions reform process was issued at Easter 2014. This report and the Easter 2014 update are available below.

On 29th April 2015, the Minister for Education and Skills, Jan O'Sullivan, T.D., launched the report, Supporting a Better Transition from Second Level to Higher Education: Implementation and Next Steps (April 2015). Setting out the 4 main components of the reform which is in train, this report presents a new 8-point grading scale for the Leaving Certificate examination as well as outlining a new CAO points-scale for entry into higher education, both of which will come into effect from 2017. In addition the report provides briefing on the findings of research commissioned from Oxford University's Centre for Educational Assessment and Queen's University Belfast on problematic predictability in the Leaving Certificate examination, and provides an update on the broadening of entry-routes into higher education. On 3rd September 2015, the Minister launched the new grading scale and accompanying points-scale, full details of which are available at www.transition.ie and in the leaflet available below.

Further updates on the transitions reform process will be made available on this web-page in due course.





Supporting a Better Transition From Second-Level to Higher Education - Key Directions and Next Steps - March 2013
Report on the Consultation with 5th & 6th-year Students
Transition Reform Steering Group - Key Directions Update - Easter 2014
Supporting a Better Transition From Second Level to Higher Education - Implementation & Next Steps
Transitions Reform - New Common Points Scale Leaflet
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