Ask Brian: UCD arts has changed. How does this affect my deferred place?

Applicants can choose between the arts programme or social sciences in 2018

The overall UCD arts and humanities and social sciences offering has been re-imagined and now includes study-abroad opportunities and internships to better equip graduates for the rapidly-evolving job market.

Question: I secured 431 points in my Leaving Cert this year but deferred my offer of an arts degree in UCD. The CAO application process is open again and I am planing to reapply for my reserved place – except the arts degree is now in social science. What's happened?

Answer: UCD, which runs the biggest arts course in Ireland, has re-imagined its arts and humanities and social sciences offering and now includes study-abroad opportunities and internships to better equip graduates for the rapidly-evolving job market.

When you deferred your place, UCD would have advised you by letter and email that you have the option to choose between the BA arts programme or the BSc social sciences in 2018.

If your preferred subjects are within arts and humanities, you should choose BA arts (DN520). This allows you to specialise in two subjects within this long-established degree.


If your preferred subjects are within the social sciences, you should choose BSc social sciences (DN700).

You need to examine each of the new entry routes and programme offerings and identify the programme that now best suits your needs.

To take up your deferred place, you will need to re-apply for the relevant course under the CAO.

If you have changed your mind about your subject selection, you can choose other subjects in either programme and your deferral will still stand.

It’s worth noting that these broader changes also include a new BA Humanities (DN530).

Under this new four-year interdisciplinary multi-subject programme, students choose from one of nine pathways ranging from Celtic studies, art history & history to English with creative writing.

It gives students the opportunity to take internships and study abroad programmes.

BA modern languages (DN541) is another four-year course designed for students who wish to study at least two languages, choosing from French, German, Italian and Spanish. The programme includes a study-abroad year.

In the new four-year common entry social sciences programme (BSc, DN700), students can choose from a wide range of joint major options in subjects ranging from archaeology to philosophy or a range of new interdisciplinary pathways including, for example, politics, philosophy and economics.

This new programme includes options to take an internship, to study abroad and deepen in-demand research skills.

These are important factors to consider given that employers are increasingly looking for skills such as communication, team working, leadership and familiarity with other cultures.

The three-year joint major in social policy and sociology (BSocSc, DN750) continues to offer the recognised standard qualification for those who are interested in social policy and social services.

UCD also continues to offer three-year single major programmes allowing specialisation in economics (BSc, DN710) and psychology (BSc, DN720). These two programmes are now classified as part of the social sciences offerings, leading to the award of the BSc degree.

If you need more information you should consider attending UCD’s pen Evenings which are taking place in November: Arts and Humanities, November 16th, and Social Sciences, November 21st. Registration is via