Liberties College & The TAP Programme


The Access to Higher Education course offers an alternative route to University for students whose social, economic and educational experiences have so far prevented them from realising their full educational potential.

Developed in partnership with the Trinity Access Programmes (TAP), the course addresses the inequalities that influence who goes to college, thus widening participation and access to third level.

The Access course in Liberties College parallels the TAP Foundation Course for Young Adults (18-22 years) in Trinity College and allows participants the same opportunities to apply directly for places in the University. A large proportion of TAP foundation students go on to study in the university and their success rate there is high.

The course is open to young people whose family income is within the range qualifying for a student grant, and who meet the socio-economic criteria for HEAR(Higher Education Access Route).  A distinctive QQI Award in Liberal Arts has been created for Higher Education Access students preparing for entry to third level education. Specially developed modules train learners to research and write to University standards. The Award values participation and rewards the exchange of ideas.

Students are registered and study in Liberties College but participate in a range of activities in Trinity College. These activities include:

  • Library tours and workshops
  • Guest lectures in specialist subjects
  • Educational guidance and study skills workshops
  • Attendance at TCD Broad Curriculum lectures
  • Student shadowing day
  • Family and parents’ day


To be eligible for the programme you must:

  • Meet the same socio-economic criteria as set out for HEAR
  • Achieve a minimum 5 Ordinary grade 6s and at least one Higher grade 5 in the Leaving Certificate (applicants must pass English and Mathematics.  A pass means grade O6/H7 or above on ordinary or higher papers in the Leaving Certificate.  A pass in foundation level Mathematics is acceptable for minimum entry requirements)  We will also consider applications from applicants with a distinction in the Leaving Certificate Applied and applicants with a QQI-FET Level 5 award.
  • Be under 22 years on the year of application.
  • Be eligible for the Government Free Fees Scheme or EU Fees


Students who successfully complete the programme may apply for course places in Trinity College Dublin through the Higher Education Direct Application Scheme. Applications to Trinity College from the Liberties College Access Course are dealt with on the same basis as applications from the parallel Foundation Course for Young Adults run by the Trinity Access Programme (TAP) and based in the university.

Each department within the Faculties of Arts and Social Sciences in Trinity College reserves places for students applying through the Direct Application Scheme. These places are not available to CAO applicants applying in the ordinary way. Students should note that there may be specific subject requirements for entry to certain courses. Please consult the Trinity College Prospectus for further details.