New CAO points system
Number of grade bands reduced from 14 to 8 to fairly reward scholastic achievement
In 2015 the then Minister for Education Jan O’Sullivan announced a new CAO points scale which will be used for entry to higher education from 2017.
The old grading system – As, Bs, Cs and so on – is ending and in its place higher-level grades ranging from H1 to H8 and ordinary grades from O1 to O8 will be awarded.
Under the new system, any student who gets 30-39 points – a E grade, or fail, under the old system – will receive points.
Students who secure a D1 grade (50-55 per cent) will be deemed eligible for entry to honours degree courses for the first time.
As a result of the new Leaving Certificate grade scale, the universities and institutes of technology will also introduce revised basic matriculation requirements.
* Where the requirements are currently 5 ordinary level D3 grades, in 2017 these will become 5 O6/H7 grades.
* Where the requirements are currently 2 higher level C3 grades and 4 ordinary level D3 grades, in 2017 these will become 2 H5 and 4 O6/H7 grades.
* Where the requirements are currently 3 higher level C3 grades and 3 ordinary level D3 grades, in 2017 these will become 3 H5 and 3 O6/H7 grades.