Graduate Certificate in Public Policy at DCU

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Graduate Certificate in Public Policy

NFQ Level: Level 9 About NFQ
Delivery Method: Online
Mode: Part Time
ECTS Credits: 38
Department: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences
Application Deadline: 14/08/2020
Start Date: 05/10/2020
End Date: 15/05/2021

The global financial crisis exposed flaws in the policymaking systems around the world, and very markedly in Ireland. In part, these flaws reflect the technical capacity of policymakers to do effective public policy analysis. This relationship is recognised by the Irish state, the EU, and other international bodies as they attempt to increase the number of professionally qualified policy specialists working with them.

In response DCU is offering a bespoke, interdisciplinary course designed to suit the needs of a new generation of policymakers. The Graduate Certificate in Public Policy is a new type of professional programme with an intellectual base and methodological rigour that reflect the needs of a sector facing more nuanced and complex challenges.

Participants in the programme will join the growing number of professional policy specialists working directly for state, national and international organisations; or serve as a policy specialist in a private sector or civil society organisation with an increasing need to be informed in public policy.

In addition, participants will become more informed actors in the policymaking system by developing their skills and knowledge in quantitative methods, policy design and implementation, research design, communications skills, law, and policy analysis. They will also increase their expertise in specific policy areas and gain real-world experience of policymaking in a variety of fields through the range of policy challenges presented to them as part of the programme.

Finally, participants will be facilitated to build relationships and contacts with colleagues from a variety of backgrounds, a range of specialists and policymakers that will give them a head start as they build their careers.

Public Law and Political Philosophy: Explores legal & political philosophy questions to give insights to current policy
debates (100% CA)
Public Policy Analysis: This module enables students to analyse policy proposals for their likely impacts (CA 100%)
Policy Challenges: This module addresses a series of real-world policy challenges (100%, CA)
Career Transitions and Success: Online module focused on enhancing job readiness (7.5 credits, 100% CA)


– Viewing public policy analysis as the technology to the science of social science is central both to the delivery of courses and to student assessment.
– The course prepares students to perform, understand and communicate professional policy analysis in the public sector and sectors working to it.
– Along with online lectures, the programme employs problem-based learning (PBL) — this involves you becoming versed in the most up-to-date aspects of and science behind a relevant discipline, observing these elements in operation by working through case studies, and then using the knowledge gained to solve set problems.
– To prepare you for the working world, you’ll be prompted to collaborate with other students to define problems, identify relevant data to solve these and divide work in fair and efficient ways.

Entry Requirements

Second class honours level 8 degree or equivalent in line with Dublin City University’s Recognition of Prior Learning Policy. International candidates who are non-native speakers of English must satisfy the University of their competency in the English language.

Gemma Creagh

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