How to Apply

Application Procedure

Application Procedure

Am I a Mature Student?

In UCC, a mature student is someone who is aged 23 years or above on 01 January in the year of entry; who wishes to pursue a full-time undergraduate degree programme.

Central Applications Office (CAO)

All interested applicants must make an application through the CAO to be considered for a place in UCC as a mature student. The CAO is an online application form that opens in early November and closes on 01 February each year.

Please check out the CAO website for more information on the application process as a mature student. There is a specific video guide for mature applicants, which can be accessed HERE. There is also an easy to understand presentation available HERE.


Statement of Interest/Personal Statement

What is a Statement of Interest?

Your statement is possibly the single most important document that you will write to gain entry to UCC.  In an increasingly competitive world, your statement is your chance to impress.  It is a letter, job application and interview all in one. 


What information is most useful to the university?

Your fundamental aim is to demonstrate to the university that you really want to study the course of your choice. You will need to write about your previous work experience (if any) and your life experience that is relevant to your chosen course. 

It can be helpful to write about your aims – what you hope to gain from your course – your long-term plans may be interesting to include. 


Use your statement to make the best impression.  To do that you must:

  • Show your motivation to study in the university
  • Show genuine enthusiasm in your chosen course
  • Show your academic enthusiasm – hopefully, you have already demonstrated this to your school / college through examination results or your life experience to date
  • Show more than purely academic achievement. The university wants to know what kind of person you are
  • Show insights into your personality, interests, achievements, and relevant work experience.
  • To clearly state how you meet the entry requirements (if applicable).


Tips:  Making the right start:

  • Find out as much as possible about your chosen course and structure your personal statement under the following headings:
  • Why – why have you chosen this course?
  • What – what have you done to demonstrate your passionate interest in the course?
  • Academic – how do your academic subjects / results relate to this course?
  • Interests – what have you learned from your activities that is relevant to your chosen course and university life?
  • Future – what do you plan to do on completion? This doesn’t have to be set in stone
  • Conclusion – what personal experience or ambitions can you link to your chosen course to give your personal statement a sense of completion.



  • Your Statement must be planned, logical and as clear as possible. Put your name and CAO number on each page.
  • Make the most of the space available. You can submit up to 1,500 words. You send this by post to the CAO so that it can be attached to your application.
  • Get somebody to check your personal statement before you submit it. Contact if you have any further questions on this requirement.



External Assessment Tests

Entry in to some of our undergraduate programmes is only possible on completion of an examination. The list below provides confirmation of which examination is relevant to which course(s).


External Examinations 

MSAP – Required for entry to our undergraduate programmes in the College of Arts, Celtic Studies and Social Sciences. Click HERE for further information. Some exemptions apply. Information is available on the course page. They can be accessed by clicking HERE. 


NMBI Nursing – Entry requirement for all mature student nursing applicants. You can find out more HERE. 


HPAT – Entry requirement for all mature student applications to Medicine (CK701). Click HERE for further information 

Internal Assessment Tests

A number of our degree programmes require mature students to sit specific in-house tests. You will be contacted directly by the relevant department in UCC with details of these tests, if applicable to you.


CK104 Arts with Music – Music Entrance Test. Further details can be found HERE. 


CK112 Drama and Theatre Studies - Further details can be found HERE. 



Some of our courses require an interview. You will find this information in the Entry Requirements section HERE 

There is also information on interview techniques on our Career’s Service website HERE. 

Mature Student Office

Oifig na Mac Léinn Lánfhásta

Room 1.10, The Hub, College Road, Cork, T12YF78