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Computer Applications

By Aedín Dunne - Last update


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Have you a mind for computers and applications? Do you want to learn the ins and outs of computer software, how it’s made and put your knowledge into practice? We might just have the course area for you.

What are computer applications?

Computer applications are programs designed to help users perform activities. They are different softwares that are designed to carry out specific tasks, operating computer software while doing so. Examples include Microsoft Word, Powerpoint, Excel etc.  

What third level courses are available?

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

  • Computer Science
  • Computer Applications
  • Business Studies and Computer Applications (PLC)
  • Computer Applications (PLC)
  • Computer Applications and Mobile Technologies (PLC)
  • Computers and Business Applications (PLC) 

Studying Computer Applications in college

There are a number of PLC courses available in this area. Undergraduate courses can be found in related areas but not many under the specific title of Computer Applications. However, courses such as Computer Science are available. PLC courses are 1 year long while undergraduate courses can range from 3-4 years depending on the exact course. 

In a PLC course you will learn the basics of computer applications and gain a strong foundation in the area to continue on your studies. In an undergraduate course, your first year will be your introductory year where you will also learn the basics and be introduced to different areas and get a taster for what is ahead in your studies. 

As your course continues, you will look at more in-depth and complex subjects. The main aim of courses in Computer Applications is to allow students to learn how to use different techniques and principles from disciplines such as software engineering, databases, multimedia, artificial intelligence and more. Other disciplines include writing computer programs and computer security, to name a few. 

These courses have a major emphasis on the practical element and allowing students to apply their knowledge practically. In some cases you may have the opportunity to take work experience such as in DCU’s 4 year undergraduate course in Computer Applications. 

Career Options

A large number of courses in this area are PLC courses which can be used to further your study at undergraduate level and help you go forward in courses such as computer science, for example, or courses in a relevant area. Following on from undergraduate study, you may study at postgraduate level to specialise in a particular area. 

The computer and software world has a wide range of roles and opportunities across a number of different sectors. A computer scientist role, for example, is a complex role and requires an undergraduate qualification at the very least as do many roles in this area. You could work as a computer scientist, software developer or many other roles, examples of which are below. There is also the opportunity to work in research roles in colleges and universities. 

Skills and qualities important when working or studying in this area include strong math skills, excellent knowledge of computers and technology, able to analyse problems and trace them to the origin of the problems, a problem solver, a critical thinker, analytical skills, organized and strong time management, attention to detail and accuracy, systematic approach to working and strong communication skills. Many of these skills you can develop throughout your course. 

Related Jobs

  • Computer Scientist
  • Application developer
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Programming
  • Multimedia Technology
  • Software Developer
  • Computer Hardware Engineer
  • Web Developer
  • Computer System Analyst

Further Study

Visit postgrad.ie for more information.

FAQ

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. 

PLC courses will accept Leaving Certificate results and in some cases, especially in this area, courses may carry out an entrance interview. Specific courses may have their own requirements. For example, some courses may have a certain interview process or expect a portfolio of sorts so it is always important to look into these things in depth. Some PLC course may go on an interview basis also. 

Where can I study?

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

Did you know?

  • Facebook was the world’s most popular/most used app in 2020
  • Many consider ‘Snake’ to be the first mobile app which was created in 1997 on Nokia 6110 phones.
  • Windows have over 669,000 apps for phones, laptops and other devices.

Resources

A closer look at a course example

Student Grant Scheme 

Courses  


Aedín Dunne

Careers in Production Design
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