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Under the Education, Training and Development Option you may continue to get your Jobseeker’s Allowance or Jobseeker’s Benefit while attending certain short education, training or development. Your Intreo centre may make special signing-on arrangements so that you can attend your chosen course.


The Education, Training and Development Option is an administrative scheme. This means you cannot appeal a refusal to the Social Welfare Appeals Office. However you can seek a review of a decision. This will be made by an officer of the Department of Social Protection not involved in the decision being reviewed or by a more senior officer. The review will look at whether the guidelines were applied correctly and that the correct processes were followed.


To qualify for the Education, Training and Development Option and keep your Jobseeker’s Allowance or Jobseeker's Benefit you must be:

  • At least 21 years of age or
  • Between 18 and 20 and out of the formal education system for at least 2 years


Courses covered

The Education, Training and Development Option allows you to attend short courses , typically no longer than 10 weeks. For example, courses may be one-day courses, half-day courses for a number of weeks or evening courses. You must be able to show that the course chosen will improve your chances of getting a job. Courses you can take part in include:

  • Personal development courses
  • General training courses
  • Specific job skills courses
  • Evening courses

The course must be approved by a case officer and should form part of your DSP Personal Progression Plan. You can arrange an appointment with a case officer by contacting your Intreo centre- see 'Where to apply' below.

Finding a course

To find out about available courses and get advice on how to get a place on the course of your choice, you should contact your local ETB, school or college, public library or Citizens Information Service.


You will continue to get your weekly Jobseeker’s Allowance or Jobseeker’s Benefit at your usual rate and any other secondary benefits.

Secondary benefits may include:

Signing for unemployment credits

If you have been signing on for unemployment credits, you will continue to get credits while you are participating in the Education, Training and Development Option.

How to apply

All applications for the Back to Education - Education, Training and Development Option should be made on form BTE1(pdf). You will be asked to provide information about your course, for example:

  • The course timetable
  • Written confirmation from the relevant organisation or school that you have registered for the course
  • You may be asked for confirmation of on-going course attendance
  • You are also required to notify the Department when you finish the course.

Where to apply

Apply for the Education, Training and Development Option at your Intreo centre or DSP office.

Last modified:30/09/2015

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