UCC Adult courses

Arts (Psychology) - Cert

About This Course

Fact File

Course Outline

This Certificate will be of interest both to those who wish to pursue careers in psychology, and to those who are motivated by an interest in the area. It provides prerequisites for all modules of year 1 of the Higher Diploma in Psychology (although completion of the Certificate course does not guarantee entry to the H Dip). The course will provide students with a general introduction to the discipline of psychology. Students will be introduced to key domains of academic psychology, along with having exposure to research and analytic techniques. Students completing the Certificate course should have a good basic understanding of the fundamentals of academic psychology. 

This Certificate course is designed to map closely onto the first year of the BA (Hons.) in Applied Psychology. Thus it focuses on the key areas of psychology as identified by the Psychological Society of Ireland and the British Psychological Society – the accrediting professional bodies on these islands.

The areas addressed include

  • Social Psychology: How the presence of others influences our thoughts and behaviours, and how we interact socially. Prejudice, discrimination, helping behaviour, obedience etc.
  • Developmental Psychology: Particularly child development. How we develop from dependent infants through the various social and intellectual stages to becoming an adult.
  • Biological Psychology: The physiological underpinnings of experience and behaviour. Describing the anatomy and physiology of the nervous system and endocrine systems (e.g. the brain, neurons, neurotransmitters), and how they influence behaviours such as sleep, eating, and stress.
  • Cognitive Psychology: How we think, perceive, learn, and remember.  Understanding the structure and function of brain regions and how they relate to sensation, perception and memory. Describing attention and memory theories.
  • History of Psychology: How the discipline began and developed. Introductions to such seminal thinkers as Freud and Skinner.
  • Practice of Psychology: The different strands of professional psychology, and how different types of psychologist work.
  • Research and data analysis: An introduction to how we expand and develop knowledge in the field.

Course Queries

For Academic Queries and Course Content Queries please contact the Programme Coordinator Helena O Connor at h.oconnor@ucc.ie.

For Online Application Support please click here. 

If you require further assistance with your online application please contact the Programme Administrator Deborah Kerrisk at deborah.kerrisk@ucc.ie. 

Additional Teaching Mode Information

This course takes place on Wednesday evening from 6.00pm - 10.00pm from September/October to December and January to April. Tutorials will be held on Tuesday evening from 7.00pm -8.00pm.

Course Practicalities


End of module examination. Continuous assessment.

Who teaches this course?

Staff and doctoral students from School of Applied Psychology


This course is open to adult learners and will be of interest both to those who wish to pursue further study in pscyhology and to those who are motivated by an interest in the area. Minimum entry age: 18.

Fees and Costs


For further information on fees and financial supports please click here.

How Do I Apply

Applicants need to be aware of the IT student checklist below before applying:

  • You will need access to a laptop or desktop computer running a modern supported operating system with all software updates.
  • Some of UCC’s services (e.g. the Canvas Virtual Learning Environment) link to an external site and also have mobile apps for iOS and Android Devices that you may wish to use as part of your studies.  However, we recommend using your desktop web browser for submission of assessments.
  • You should always use the most current version of your preferred browser. In general, we recommend the Chrome Web browser (Important Note: Internet Explorer will not work with Canvas).
  • We recommend a reliable broadband connection with at least 2Mbps or more.
  • You will require an Office suite of software (Microsoft Office or equivalent) and a PDF reader. You should always use the latest version of this software.  All UCC students will have access to Office 365 which includes software such as Word/Excel/Powerpoint etc. once registered.

To Apply for this course please follow the steps below:

When you log into the Application Portal:

Click Apply Online

Select Start a new Adult & Continuing Education Application 

On the 2nd tab Academic Level 
Select the following options:
Academic Level: Adult Continuing Education (ACE at UCC)
Course Type:  ACE Part-time Courses
Academic Programme: The course title you are applying for.

During your online application you will be required to upload the following documents:

  • Birth Cert or Passport
  • Passport Photograph 
  • English Language Test Report [if applicable]
  • 50% of the fees are also required to complete your application. 


Apply Now

Year 1 Modules

  • AD1063: Science and the Practice of Psychology (5 credits)
    Psychology as a scientific discipline and as a domain of professional practice. Introduction to the history of psychology; Overviews and case studies of specialisms in Applied Psychology.
  • AD1064: Introduction to Biological and Cognitive Perspectives on Psychology (5 credits)
    The brain as the organ of the mind. Biological bases of behaviour. An introduction to cognitive psychology which includes memory, perception, reasoning and language.
  • AD1065: Introduction to Developmental and Social Perspectives on Psychology (5 credits)
    Key findings and key theories concerning perceptual, motor, cognitive, emotional and social development in childhood, adolescence and adulthood. An introduction to theories and research in social psychology. Social cognition (e.g. attitudes and attribution). Social influence (e.g. inter-group behaviour and conformity). Social Relations (e.g. group identity and prosocial behaviour).
  • AD1066: Introduction to Research and Statistical Analysis (5 credits)
    The scientific method. The concept of measurement in psychology. Basic principles and skills of data analysis (quantitative and qualitative). Evidence based practice. Ethical principles of human research.

Year 2 Modules

Year 3 Modules

Year 4 Modules

For queries regarding course content or timetables please contact