In a year of pure unadulterated stresses, every 6th year can add today into their calendar as the day yet another incredibly momentous source of stress can be added to their lives; the day the CAO opens for applications.
From noon today students are able to register online on the Central Applications Office's website to create their account and look at deciding what course they will commit the next few years of their lives to.
The process can be incredibly daunting for everyone, regardless of whether they actually have even the faintest inkling of what they'd want to do in college. However, the best thing to do is simply to make an account and begin looking through the courses and even simply the types of courses available.
The normal application window is open between today and February 1, specifically, if you wanna go down this route, until 17:15 on February 1. However, until January 20th, applicants will only be charged a reduced fee of €30.
Some courses, such as Medicine, will have their own separate entry criteria in addition to the standard CAO application process so it is vital to make sure you're up to speed on what exactly are the criteria for the courses you're looking at.
Students are able to change their mind on their Level 8 and Level 6/7 Course Choice Lists up until July 1, so there is plenty of time to consider what you might want to do. And if, like me, you make an absolute hames of it and choose something you realise you dislike, you can always simply drop out, and look forward to going through this whole process again next year to choose the course that is right for you.