1.0 Introduction

This article provides an overview of the recruitment and selection process for Irish Air Corps officer cadets wishing to join the Irish Defence Forces (IDF).

2.0 Eligibility Criteria

  • Be 18 years of age or over and under 26 years of age on the date mentioned in the notice for the current competition.
  • School Leavers:
    • Must possess a minimum of (in a single sitting of the Leaving Certificate Examination (LCE)):
      • Grade C3 in three Higher level papers; and
      • Grade D3 in three Ordinary/Higher level papers.
  • Graduates:
    • Must possess a Bachelor Degree (Honours) (Level 8 of the National Framework of Qualifications) or equivalent; and
    • Must possess a minimum Grade D3 in specific Ordinary/Higher level LCE subjects.

3.0 Cadet Competition

The recruitment and selection process for Irish Air Corps officer cadets is an annual event known as the Cadet Competition. Dates for competitions are advertised in national newspapers and the IDF website.

The process includes:

  • Online Application.
  • Phase 1 of Selection:
    • Fitness Testing:
    • Initial Interview:
      • This interview is competency-based and includes:
        • Leadership and supervising;
        • Personal motivation and discipline;
        • Working with others; and
        • Technical aptitude.
      • Successful candidates will progress to Phase 2.
  • Phase 2:
    • Personality questionnaire.
    • Psychological interview.
    • Psychomotor and psychometric testing:
      • Psychometric testing includes:
        • Verbal reasoning;
        • Numerical reasoning; and
        • Job simulation exercise.
    • Realistic job preview involving a familiarisation visit to the Flight Training School and informal interaction with instructional staff.
    • Successful candidates will progress to Phase 3.
  • Phase 3:
    • Competency-based interview including:
      • Maturity;
      • Technical aptitude;
      • Working with others;
      • Leadership and supervising;
      • Personal motivation and discipline;
      • Communications; and
      • High stress tolerance.
  • Psychometric & Psychomotor Testing:
    • All candidates who meet the minimum eligibility criteria are invited to undergo an online psychometric test.
  • Medical Exam.
    • Successful candidates will attend a medical examination, to include a full air medical, undertaken at St Bricin’s Military Hospital, Dublin.
  • Security Clearance:
    • In conjunction with the medical exam candidates will undergo security vetting by An Garda Siochana.

Candidates are placed in a competition’s order of merit, with only the top scoring candidates being offered an Air Corps officer cadetship.

4.0 Recruitment Statistics

In 2016, the Air Corps recruited (or inducted) 12 cadets from a total applicant pool of “4,807” (DOD, 2016, p.39).

5.0 References

DOD (Department of Defence). (2016) Department of Defence and Defence Forces Annual Report 2016. Available from World Wide Web: http://www.military.ie/fileadmin/user_upload/images/Info_Centre/documents/Annual_Reports/Annual_Report_2016__English_.pdf. [Accessed: 08 January, 2019].