CAO Change of Mind: Here's What You Need To Know

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The CAO change of mind process closes on July 1st every year so here are some common questions that will help you, should you decide to use the service.

We also have some new things to consider this year, given the effect COVID-19 has on the CAO process and how its changes will affect you. 

When does the CAO Change of Mind process close?

17:15 on July 1st.

How much does it cost?

It’s free to change.

How do I make changes?

Log in to your CAO application using the “My Application” button on the CAO website.

What about the courses I selected before?

A Change of Mind cancels and replaces the choices you made the first time around.

What if I just change my level 7/6 choices?

The choices you make in each of the two categories remain separate. If you change your course choice in the level 8 category this will not affect your choices on your level 7/6 category.

What about Restricted-Application Courses?

Restricted application courses are exactly that so you cannot add them now if you have not already entered them in the past.

What happens once you fill in your Change of Mind?

If you make a Change of Mind then you will receive notice of your changed course choices by 7th July at the latest. If you do not receive this you need to contact the CAO immediately.

What if I’m still not sure what course to do?

Now that you have a bit of time on your hands you should be spending some time researching the detailed descriptions of the courses on the websites or prospectuses of your chosen college. There’s a lot more information on how to pick the right course in these 5 things you should know about filling out your CAO form

If you're still on the fence of where you want to go next year, check out what IT Sligo has to offer:
Studyclix is based in Sligo, so we can guarantee it's a great place to be 😉


I know what my dream course is but I'm afraid I won't get the points.

This is true of every year, but make sure you put your most preferred course first, no matter how high the points are. You'll be awarded the highest possible place when the offers come out so it's always worth putting that dream course down as you never know. This year, with a lot of the spaces reserved for internation students freed up, it's likely a lot of courses are going to take a drop in points as there's more places available on that course. 

This is good thing to remember if you're looking to do Medicine and are discouraged by a low HPAT score, the cut off point this year is likely to lower than previous years. 

I know what course I want to do and I'm confident I don't need to make any changes.

A lot has changed since the CAO forms were first submitted in February this year and it's so important you take one final look at that form and are confident you've covered all your bases. You need to make sure you're happy with the outcome for every potential scenario come results day. 

You might not be aware of this but new courses are constantly being added to the CAO database and old ones get taken away. So it's important to take a look at that list on the CAO or Qualifax website and see what all your options are. Especially considering if there's a new course that you're interested in, given the fact that it's new and relatively unknown, the points will be lower for it as they're won't be as much competition.

You also need to consider how your chosen course will be taught during these socially distanced times. Do you still love the subject, even if you had to do a lot of the learning remotely? 


I'm afraid of missing out on the real college experience and I'm thinking of deferring my course until next year.

It is ultimately up to you whether you choose to defer your place or not but we would recommend avoiding it if you can. If a large number of students this year choose to defer, this would lead a shortage of spaces for next year's Leaving Cert students applying. 

Considering the changes that will be made to third-level education this year, it's important to look at colleges which are very technology driven and are already well equipped to provide a high-quality remote learning experience. 

IT Sligo have been delivering this standard of online learning for years and are assuring incoming students that with measures being put into place to gradually ease restrictions, they're hoping to introduce more on-campus learning in the new year. 

Other important things to remember:

EUNiCAS: This is the service which helps you apply for universities and colleges in Europe. It's well worth looking into as you might find your dream course is in a foreign country where the fees could potentially be lower.

SUSI: The SUSI grant is usually means-tested on a family's income on the year before, however considering redundancies happening this year on account of the pandemic, they will now be taking that into account as well.

PLC courses: If it's not possible for you to go onto third level right away after the Leaving Cert, it's always worth your time looking into PLC courses. Many people say it's one of the best things they've ever done and the perfect bridge between secondary school and college. 

CAO Change of Mind Facility from CAO on Vimeo.

Best of luck with whatever course you decide on : )

Luke, Studyclix Team



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