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The Pre Nursing course is designed as programme of preparatory study to enter a degree programme in Nursing Studies. Students undertaking this course can also apply for training positions in General Nursing, Psychiatric Nursing, Intellectual Disability Nursing and Childrens Nursing.

The Pre Nursing course introduces students to the caring role of the nurse and emphasises the importance of interpersonal communication. It equips them with the skills and knowledge to care for patients in a safe and hygienic environment.

Students will learn the basic principles of infection control and are taught to apply standard precautions in relation to infection control. They will learn the structure and function of the human body and gain an understanding of the interrelationship between the systems of the body. They study the levels of personal development to understand the concepts of mental age and chronological age in order to be able to relate to people at a level appropriate to their needs.

Qualifications Gained

  • QQI Level 5 Major Award in Nursing Studies - 5M4349

Entry Requirements

Entry to this course is by direct application to the college. Acceptance to Full Time courses is interview based, there are no specific points requirements.

Entry through CAO on to a Nursing Degree

For certain programmes in Higher Education Institutes, there is a quota of places reserved for students holding QQI major awards. In 2017, 144 places on Nursing Degree courses were reserved for holders of the Level 5 Major Award in Nursing Studies. When applying for one of these places, it is the results of the QQI Level 5 award in Nursing Studies used rather than leaving certificate results.

In June 2017, 68% of graduates of Portobello Institute’s nursing studies programme were successful in gaining entry on to nursing degree programmes in Higher Education Institutes. The link below gives the exact number of places available on each nursing programme in each of the Higher Education Institutes in Ireland.

Assignment Support

We understand the challenge of completing assignments at third level, the new skills and the change in thinking sometimes needed to put on paper, all that you have learned. We offer our students the opportunity to submit a draft assignment for informal feedback before submitting the final version. We care about your success, we want you to achieve the best you can and we offer you the individual support to acquire the skills you need to communicate what you have learned whilst studying with Portobello Institute.

Pre-nursing graduate, Nicole Bolger shares her experience.

“The pre-nursing course offered by Portobello Institute was a QQI level 5 Award, and is a full-time course from through October to May. Maria Nolan was a fantastic tutor, and experienced nurse who knew the ins and outs of the nursing world. She helped me to achieve the best results in my exams and also sharing the best nursing knowledge and experiences she had. Everything I learned in class, all the theories and skills I took out into the work experience field and it made me feel more confident in my role as a trainee nurse. Thanks to the help of Portobello Institute, I’m starting Children’s and General Nursing Level 8 in UCD.”

Read her full story read here.

Course Structure

This is a full time course delivered over 4 days a week or 2 days a week

Course Content Modules

  1. Anatomy & Physiology
  2. Care Support
  3. Communications
  4. Human Growth and Development
  5. Infection Prevention and Control
  6. Work Experience
  7. Care Skills
  8. Introduction to Nursing
  9. Safety and Health
  10. Occupational First Aid (additional fee)

Back to Education Allowance

If you are currently unemployed and in receipt of a social welfare payment you may be eligible to the Back to Education Allowance which allows you to return to education and still retain your welfare payment  You must be aged 21 or over and be accepted onto an accredited full time course to meet the criteria. Please speak with your local welfare office to discuss your eligibility as there may be an alternative route.

Protection for Learners

QQI have introduced a mandatory insurance protection policy fee that must be paid by students enrolled on all courses with a duration of 12 weeks or over. This insurance cost is in addition to your course fees. 


Name: Pre Nursing Certificate Full time

Cost: 2995 Euro

To Book this course, please make a payment of 50 Euro deposit using the Book Now button. Please read and understand both the Terms of Enrolment and Course Payment Information before paying for your course. Details of all our policies as well as refunds, cancellations, installment options and how to pay offline are contained in these two important documents.

Course CodePrice and LocationInfo
Portobello Institute, Dublin 1
  • 08/10/18 - 26/04/19
  • Start/end times will vary from day to day

Additional Course Costs

Please read Course Payment Information for full details as to when you will make these additional course payments.

  • Protection for Learners Insurance fee: €166
  • QQI exam fee: included