Online Postgraduate Diploma in Social Policy and Practice Trinity College

Online Postgraduate Diploma in Social Policy and Practice

Shortlisted for GradIreland’s Best New Postgraduate Course of the Year Award, 2016

Applications are now open for the online Level 9 Postgraduate Diploma delivered by the School of Social Work and Social Policy at Trinity College Dublin. This course provides students from all disciplines with the opportunity to develop their understanding of the role that social policies play in shaping our societies. Students will be exposed to the arguments for developing policy interventions in areas such as social security, health and housing, and the challenges of implementing and changing policy in these areas at a national and global level.

The programme attracts those from the community and voluntary sector as well as the public and private sectors who are involved in:

  • delivering and managing social service provision e.g. housing, health, child and family and disability services
  • designing, developing or funding social policy
  • advocating for social policy change
  • seeking career change or career development
  • interested in further study

The programme has particular appeal to graduates who wish to pursue a Master’s programme in social work, social research and social policy but who do not have an undergraduate qualification in these fields. This Postgraduate Diploma can act as a conversion course for such graduates and enhance their application for specialised programme such as a Master in Social Work.

Eligible graduates of the Postgraduate Diploma also have the option of a second year of online study leading to a M.Sc. in Social Policy and Practice.

Online Delivery and Assessment

The course is delivered and assessed entirely online.  Students engage in weekly learning activities in their home or workplace as there is no requirement to attend classes at the Trinity campus in Dublin.  They are given access to online learning materials in a virtual learning environment and engage with other students and lecturers using discussion board and blogs.

The programme runs over three terms from September until May. Students participate in weekly live online tutorials with their lecturer and other students.  There are no terminal examinations on the course. A range of continuous assessment methods are used including projects, blogs, reflective journals, essays and case studies.

The course consists of the following six modules:

International Perspectives on Homelessness Leading Human Service Organisations
The Family and Society Principles of Social Policy
Human Rights in Practice (Disability) Contemporary Social Policy Debates & Analysis


The programme is open to graduates from all disciplines.  Successful applicants will normally hold a level 8 undergraduate degree in any subject at a minimum of Upper Second Class Honours degree (2.2). We are now accepting electronic applications for the 20/21 academic year.


Tuition Fee:                 Please see

Application Fee:          €55 (to be paid online)

Fees may be subject to change

Further Information

If you have any questions, please contact Jason O’Callaghan at

Find out more about this course at: