Springboard+ 2021 Call for Proposals

The primary objective is to provide upskilling and reskilling courses to develop the talent base in Ireland in key growth sectors of the economy. Further information is available at:


Springboard+, which is managed by the Higher Education Authority on behalf of the Department of Education and Skills, began in 2011 as part of the Government’s Jobs Initiative. It complements the core State-funded education and training system and provides free and heavily subsidised upskilling and reskilling higher education opportunities in areas of identified skills need. The initiative’s primary target group when it was established was unemployed people with a previous history of employment. Over recent years with the decline in numbers on the live register the focus was changed to include more people in employment and those returning to the workforce.

ICT skills Conversion Courses were introduced in 2012 as a means to address concerns by industry and the enterprise development agencies about continuing difficulties in sourcing ICT graduates with requisite skills.

Springboard+ courses are at Level 6 (Certificate) to Level 9 (Masters) on the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ) and are delivered by public and private higher education providers around the country. Courses are not all a full award at each level – they may also be minor awards or special purposes awards. All courses provide job-readiness training and most offer the opportunity for work placement, project-based learning or industry site visits where appropriate.

All courses approved for funding under Springboard+ are selected by an independent panel with experts from industry and education following a competitive tendering process.  In particular, courses with a proven track record in getting people back into employment are recommended for funding.

The 2021 Call for proposals is being launched today, 21st January.

Applications will be submitted through an online portal at http://skillsdirect.hea.ie

The application portal will open in the week beginning 25th January 2021.

The closing date for submission of proposals is 13.00hrs Thursday 11th March 2021.

The Call for Springboard+ is available here: https://hea.ie/skills-engagement/springboard/

A Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) document has been prepared to coincide with the Call document and will be circulated to all Providers. Any questions not addressed in this document can be submitted to springboard@hea.ie

The FAQ document will be updated and uploaded to the website on Wednesday each week. Questions received up to close of business each Tuesday whilst the call is open will be included. The final FAQ will be uploaded on Thursday 4th March 2021.


Indicative* timetable 2021

Call for Proposals issues: Thursday 21st January 2021

Deadline for submission of proposals: Thurs 11th March 2021, 13.00 hrs

Providers notified of approved courses; May 2021

Contracts agreed with HEA, Providers upload information for applicants to www.springboardcourses.ie : May 2021

Applications for Springboard+ 2021 open via www.springboardcourses.ieMay 2021


*The HEA will endeavour to adhere to these indicative dates. However, it may prove necessary to amend them as the initiative rolls out. Any changes in the timetable will be notified to prospective course Providers.


Springboard+ 2021 Call Document

Provider FAQs - 04.03.21

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