Physiotherapy – alternate routes


Decided you want to become a Physiotherapist?

What alternate routes are available to those who are committed to their goal but don’t get an offer for the undergraduate course?

  • One option is to take a course taught through English at a European university – checkout EUNICAS and note how many are at lower fees!
  • Not on the cards?  Here are some alternatives and these back-up plans can be a dream-saver – you need some insurance options.   Identify the closest courses which are of similar study to Physio and serve as a good foundation.  Then check/ask if they’re acceptable to the university of your choice as broadly scientific enough for entry to Physio at a later stage – either advanced entry to 1st or 2nd year in an Undergraduate degree or accelerated intensive Professional Masters (pre-registration) conversion course.

So your list might look something like this (in order of relevance);

  1. Physio (your TOP choice, at as many Uni’s as possible)
  2. Athletic Therapy & Training,  Sports Rehabilitation & Athletic Training, Physiology & Health Science
  3. Health & Performance Science, Sports Strengthening & Conditioning
  4. Sports Science, Sports & Exercise/Health Sciences, Sports Science & Physiology or even Health & Disease
  5. A broad Science degree with Biology in 1st year and stated Degree Specialism in either Physiology or Anatomy plus other useful secondary subjects like Biochemistry/Chemistry/Physics

Your  insurance options do not all need to be at the same level – you can choose to take them at a lower lever with the ultimate aim of moving up the academic ladder to your goal.   You could take one at Certificate or Diploma level, or perhaps avail of the Further Education to Higher Education routes – if you choose the latter make sure that your FE/FET/QQI course is accepted (& relevant) for the HE course of your choice, eg a Physiology/Anatomy based course.

If you struggle to find the information you need then ask your friends, family or Guidance Counsellor for help (we all need a hand at times) and then talk it through with them.


This list is a guide only – there could well be other routes which you should investigate.

    13 Responses to “Physiotherapy – alternate routes”

  1. I was curious if you ever considered changing the layout of your website?
    Its very well written; I love what youve got to say. But
    maybe you could a little more in the way of content so people could
    connect with it better. Youve got an awful lot
    of text for only having one or 2 images. Maybe you could space it
    out better?

    • Joe


      Thanks for your comments. You make a valid point and I will look into adding more content.


  2. iona

    hi, I work as a beauty therapist at the minute and am considering advancing my career and becoming a pysiotherapist, i am just wondering what my next options would be?

    • Joe

      Hi Iona,
      There’s a lot of available information on the national qualifications database Qualifax or CareersPortal. You can access details on the course and career entry requirements.
      If you would like help exploring career or course options please feel free to call to discuss your needs.
      Regards, Joe

  3. Sally

    Hi I’m in 6th year now and interested in Physio, I have trinity and UCD on my cao but just wondering which would be better as a back up, Athletic Training and Theraphy or Sports Science and Health both in DCU?

    • Joe

      Hi Sally,

      For your CAO you should consider including all undergraduate degrees in Physio, assuming you can take up an offer outside Dublin (what about the RCSI in Dublin – get a full list on Qualifax). The Post-Graduate Conversion Masters at UL will probably cost you more in the long run, apart from the extra 2 years on top of your first degree.

      If Physio is your 1st Preference then Athletic Therapy is probably closer than Sports Science. Have a looks at Health & Performance Sc in UCD also. It’s very important that you research the postgraduate and career options for any open-ended degree. You might also consider taking Physio in one of the EU niversities where it is taught through English – checkout

      If I can be of further help please call.


      Jope Casey

  4. Joe

    Hi Tadgh,

    These are different kinds of smartness/intelligences. Knowing how to channel your strenghts towards reaching your target is an important part of the formula for success.

    As I don’t know you I cannot give an opinion on your chances and so would suggest you assess this yourself and the people who know you well, or seek assistance. Remember, there are a number of routes to reach the same end goal.

    Feel free to call to discuss an appointment to help you with your options.


    Joe Casey

  5. Conor

    Hi,I would like to be a physio I am currently in 6th year and I was wondering what back routes is there into physiotherapy that would be in Dublin I am aware of the courses in Carlow and Sligo but I was just wondering is there any courses in Dublin thanks

  6. Conor

    Thanks for your reply joe,Would a broad science degree in Maynooth be sufficient in pursuing physiotherapy and if so on completion of that degree could you do physiotherapy, once again thanks for your time!

  7. Chris

    Hi, what physiotherapy qualifications are available in belfast?

  8. Patrick

    Hi, I’m trying to figure out the best way to physiotherapy. I don’t do a third language or biology in school also I’m exempt from Irish. Also I know I won’t achieve the points required, so what back roots in what colleges to physiotherapy ? Thanks.

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