Pre-Paramedic Fire and Ambulance


Pre-Paramedic Fire and Ambulance Course - Dublin

At BFEI, located in Blackrock village, Co.Dublin we offer a one year QQI Level 5 Pre-Paramedic Fire and Ambulance course.

Can you see yourself as a Fire Officer, Paramedic, Garda, or Officer in the Defence Forces? Are you calm, work well under pressure and have a desire to help people? Do you want to work in a caring environment? Are you currently a member of the many volunteer organisations and enjoy the experience? Or would you like to progress to study for a degree? Yes? Then an exciting and challenging career in the Emergency Services may be for you. This course will equip you with the knowledge and skills to embark on a career in this field. You will learn Occupational First Aid and Anatomy & Physiology. You will also be offered optional training in Emergency First Responder (EFR) and in Emergency Medical Technician (EMT).

Career Opportunities

There are careers in the public service for fire and ambulance personnel (  There are also employment opportunities with private ambulance and event support companies.  The qualifications gained on completion of this course are internationally recognised.

Graduates are pursuing careers in a range of areas including:

  • The Public Sector - HSE Ambulance Service & Dublin Fire Brigade Ambulance Service*
  • Private Ambulance Services
  • Dublin Airport Fire Service
  • London Ambulance Service NHS
  • Care/Nursing Homes

* The HSE recognise the BFEI Level 5 course as the equivalent of 2 years full-time Ambulance Service experience at EMT level

Companies who have hired BFEI graduates include:

  • Diageo
  • Dublin Airport
  • ECAS
  • ESTI

Course Structure

Core Elements
  • Anatomy & Physiology
  • Safety & Health at Work
  • Exercise and Fitness
  • Statistics
  • Emergency Department Care Skills and First Aid Responder (FAR)
  • Word Processing
  • Communications
  • Work Experience
  • Work experience is a mandatory part of the course. Students are required to undertake a minimum of 10 days work experience which offers students the opportunity to further develop their skills and gain an understanding of the workplace.
  • Course Code

  • PFA
  • Duration

  • 1 year – full time September to May
  • Number of places

  • 120
  • Number of contact hours per week

  • 20
  • Timetable contact

  • 5 days

“After qualifying from the Fire & Ambulance Course in SCD 2012-2013, I was fortunate to be selected as a member of the Guinness Fire Brigade. SCD, now BFEI, helped me to achieve and educated me in the tools and skills involved in the fire & ambulance service setting, and with the helpof ESTI, I was guided onto the path and careerI wanted to achieve. As of recently, I am lucky to say I am an active member of the NHS, London Ambulance Service, front line staff. I can honestly say, I have the best job. I had the expertise from BFEI lecturers and the experience from front line instructors to help me progress to where I am today.”

- Peter Collins, Fire & Ambulance Graduate, 2013 -

Support Elements
  • You will be given the opportunity to do some additional optional training certified by external agencies relevant to this field e.g. Fire Warden, Breathing Apparatus, Hazardous Substances, Manual Handling, Safe Pass
  • Pre-Hospital Emergency Care Council (PHECC) Courses - Emergency First Response (EFR), Emergency Medical Technician (EMT)
  • Study Skills
  • Career Advice and CV Preparation
Assessment and certification
  • This course is certified by QQI.
  • Assessment is based on a combination of work submitted during the year and exams.
  • Learners who successfully pass all 8 subjects will be awarded a QQI Level 5 Certificate in Community Health Services (5M4468).
  • Optional training is certified by external training agencies.
  • Pre-hospital care courses are certified by the Pre-Hospital Emergency Care Council (PHECC) and delivered by PHECC recognised institutes and tutors.
Optional Certification*

These optional certificates will incur additional costs. Training takes place during term breaks.

  • Fire Warden (Fire Safety and Fire Extinguisher Training)
  • Breathing Apparatus
  • Manual Handling
  • Safe Pass
  • Hazardous Substances
Pre-Hospital Emergency Care Council  (PHECC) Courses*
  • Emergency First Response (EFR) incorporating Defibrillator Training
  • Emergency Medical Technician (EMT)

*These optional training courses will incur additional cost and take place during term breaks. EMT training commences in June with final exams in September/October.

More Level 5 Courses at BFEI



If you want to get a degree, then this course opens up a range of progression routes both in the UK and in Ireland.

BSc (Hons) Paramedic Science Anglia Ruskin University London (Cambridge and Chelmsford) -

You may also apply through the CAO system for entry into degree courses in the QQI Higher Education Links Scheme such as:

BA Applied Social Studies in Social Care Technological University Dublin [Blanchardstown] -

BA (Hons) in Social Care Practice Technological University Dublin [Tallaght] -


Check out the updated BFEI CAO Progression Pathways Chart with new progression options included for TCD, NUI Maynooth and University of Limerick.  CAO data shows that many BFEI graduates from 2019/2020 secured excellent CAO offers.


Mature Students (over the age of 23)

Third level Colleges reserve a number of places on degree courses for mature students.  Students have to apply to each College individually.

Entry Requirements

  • Leaving Certificate

​You must have achieved 5 passes or 5 O6/ H7s or a combination of 5 O6/H7s or have achieved the LCA with a Merit profile, or have achieved a full relevant QQI Level 4 Award.

  • Mature Applicants

Mature applicants (aged 21 and over) and other applicants without the formal entry requirements will be assessed individually for suitability.

Advisory Meeting

Applicants will be invited to attend an advisory meeting to offer guidance and to ensure course suitability. Information on course costs and the registration/induction process will also be provided at this meeting. 

Places will be offered, on a first come basis, subject to the applicant meeting the entry requirements and subject to a place being available. 


At course commencement, students are required to pay for books, exams, €200 PLC Government Levy (unless exempt), a Student Services charge and where applicable professional body registration fees.  There are no tuition fees for EU students.


Sign up to mailing list

Please, select one category...

Contact us

Main Street
Co Dublin


Beauty Therapy, Make Up and Holistic Therapies

Business, Accounting, Marketing & Auctioneering

Community, Emergency and Health Care

Computing, Networks and Digital Design


< Back


Beauty Therapy, Make Up and Holistic Therapies

Business, Accounting, Marketing & Auctioneering

Community, Emergency and Health Care

Computing, Networks and Digital Design


Level 5 Courses

Level 6 Courses

< Back


Accounting and Business

Art & Design

Beauty & Holistic Therapies

< Back