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22 June 2024  

NUI Exemptions going fully digital


The National University of Ireland is moving its exemptions system to a digital platform. From today, students who need an Irish and/or Third Language exemption for their CAO application to an NUI institution can apply using a streamlined online form.

While NUI will still be here to talk you through the process at (01) 439 24 24 or at exemptions@nui.ie, this new system will make it a lot easier for students to provide all the information and documents that will help them secure their exemption in time for CAO Offers Day.

There is a requirement to present Irish in order to enrol in an NUI institution, and for many courses there is also a requirement to present a Third Language. There are some situations in which a student can avail of an NUI exemption:

  1. Applicant is born outside Ireland: can avail of an Irish exemption

  2. Applicant was educated outside Ireland up until the age of 12, or for three or more continuous years in primary and post-primary combined: can avail of an Irish exemption

  3. Applicant has a specific learning difficulty or other diagnosed medical condition which affects their language learning: can avail of an Irish and/or Third Language exemption

The full matriculation guidelines are available here.

Apply online


In keeping with NUI’s 2023-27 Strategic Plan, “Deep Roots, New Horizons”, in particular its focus on Education & Research and Sustainability, this new system will streamline the application process and make it more accessible for all. The Registrar, Dr Patrick O’Leary, said of the new system: “I am delighted to see the rollout of this project, which will help students apply more easily and help us process applications quickly. This is the first of several such projects that will help incoming students and graduates of NUI institutions interact more easily with NUI when using our services.”

Those who have applied using the old form will be contacted to ensure they apply using the new system. Applicants are advised to keep an eye on their phone or email to ensure they are kept up to date on the status of their exemption. They are also asked to note that if NUI has not been provided with their CAO number, the exemption cannot be activated for CAO offers.