By Aedín Dunne - Last update

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Do you have an interest in working in the area of commerce? DO you have a problem solving mind and analytical skills? Can you work with numbers and research? Do you want to work in a world of wide variety? If you answered yes to the majority of these questions, the area of commerce could be for you. 

What is commerce?

Commerce is the buying and selling of goods, services or items of value between different businesses or entities. It is the trade between economic agents, usually on a large scale. 

What third level courses are available?

Universities and colleges in Ireland are offering courses in the following subject areas:

  • Commerce
  • Commerce (Gaeilge)
  • Commerce (Global Experience)
  • Commerce (International) with Chinese Studies
  • Commerce (International) with French
  • Commerce (International) with German
  • Commerce (International) with Spanish
  • Commerce – Accounting
  • Commerce in International Hotel Management 
  • E-Commerce in Retailing

Studying commerce in college

There are quite a few courses to choose from in the area of commerce and many with the option of studying language with commerce. There are many PLC courses to choose from also which will give you a grounding in the area and aid you if you’d like to go forward and study commerce at an undergraduate level. PLC courses will typically be 1-2 years long. Undergraduate courses will typically be 3-4 years. 

Undergraduate Commerce programmes are generally quite flexible in their content and cover a wide range of areas in business. You will be required to study particular subjects and will also have a wide range of optional modules. Generally, in your first year, the required modules could include Management and Enterprise, Introduction to FInancial Accounting, Mathematics for Business, Business Information Systems, Data Science for Business Analytics and Principles of Macroeconomics. 

Second and third year will introduce you to some more complex and in depth modules. Areas that may be covered include Skills for Business, Organisational Psychology, Employment Relations, Macroeconomics and the Business Environment, Ireland in the Global Economy and Ethics and Corporate Responsibility. These are just a small number of areas that may be covered.

Optional modules range from a number of different languages and market research to brand management and quality systems, to name just a few. 

In many courses, you may have the opportunity to study abroad and/or take work experience opportunities in order to develop your skills and knowledge in the area as well as develop your linguistic skills and gain an insight into the area of commerce abroad. 

Career options

The area of commerce and business are both very broad and offer a wide range of opportunities in both employment and further study. This allows you to focus on the areas that interest you the most and bring your strengths to the fore. Jobs in commerce include a chartered accountant, investment banker and retail manager. These are just a small number of options. There are more below. 

Postgraduate study in commerce is mostly desired by employers. If you do a PLC you can move into an undergraduate degree and then to a postgraduate degree and similarly if you start your third level education at an undergraduate course you can go into a postgraduate degree also. This gives you the opportunity to specialise in a particular area, such as accounting, for example, and become more desirable to employers.

Skills and qualities important in commerce include a knowledge of the business work, analytical skills, mathematical skills, research and analysis skills, communication skills, time management skills, organisation skills, the ability to work well with others, the ability to carry out and understand research, attention to detail and problem solving skills. 

Related Jobs

  • Chartered Accountant
  • Investment Banker
  • Retail Manager
  • Actuary
  • Financial Analyst
  • Business Management
  • Economist


Different courses and different colleges will have different entry requirements. It’s always safest to check with the individual higher education institution which is available on their websites. As a general rule Leaving Cert students should have a minimum of six subjects which should include: Two H5 (Higher Level) grades and Four O6 (Ordinary Level) grades or four H7 (Higher Level) grades. Subjects must include Mathematics, Irish or another language, and English. 

The highest points required for a course in commerce last year was 521 points to study COmmerce in UCD. The lowest number of points was 307 to study E-Commerce in Retailing in TU Dublin. Points typically range from 400-500 points. 

Where can I study?

For other courses in the area you would like to explore, you can do so here.

Did you know?

  • By the year 2040, it is estimated that 95% of all purchases will be done by e-commerce. 
  • The most productive working day of the week in businesses is reported to be Tuesday.
  • Yahoo” is an acronym for “Yet Another Hierarchical Officious Oracle


Student Grant Scheme 

Courses and points

Why choose commerce and industry?

Aedín Dunne

Digital Marketing


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