UCC Postgraduate courses

Psychology - Work and Organisational Psychology/Behaviour

About This Course

Fact File

  • Title

    Psychology - Work and Organisational Psychology/Behaviour

  • Code


  • College

    Arts, Celtic Studies and Social Sciences

  • Duration

    1 year Full-time; 2 years Part-time

  • Teaching Mode

    Full-time, Part-Time. See Additional Teaching Mode Information for more info.

  • Qualifications


  • EU Fees 2021

    €8,130; €4,130 (Year 1 Part-time); €4,130 (Year 2 Part-time)
    See Fees and Costs for full details.

  • Non-EU Fees 2021


  • Entry Requirements

    See Requirements for full details.

  • Closing Date

    Open for EU applications, check rounds closing dates under How to Apply.

  • Non-EU Closing Date

    30th June

  • Start Date

    13 September 2021

Course Outline

Psychology applied to the domain of work is a fascinating area offering many employment opportunities.  From improving recruitment decisions to understanding how technology affects our work performance and experience, from coaching individuals to developing organisational capacity, psychology can be applied to enhancing peoples’ well-being and performance at work and contributing to organisational effectiveness. This programme, delivered partly online, will be of interest to graduates wishing to pursue careers as work and organisational psychologists, human resource managers, trainers, managers, consultants, or researchers

By engaging with the programme, you will develop a range of practical skills in conducting research, critical thinking and analysis, and a range of competencies relevant to professional work psychologists such as selection and assessment, negotiation, consulting etc.  The aim is to equip graduates of this programme with the building blocks to operate as effective and reflective professionals.  

The MA in Work and Organisational Psychology/Behaviour is designed to advance your knowledge of the discipline of psychology applied in work settings. To achieve this the course content emphasises the application of high-quality psychological research to real-world concerns and issues in the workplace.  

PART 1 (60 credits in total)

Core Modules (50 credits)

  • AP6016 Research Methods and Data Analysis (10 credits)
  • AP6169 Learning, Well-Being and Participation at Work (10 credits)
  • AP6166 Personnel Selection and Assessment (10 credits)
  • AP6170 Professional Skills (5 credits)
  • MG6020 Changing, Leading and Developing Organisations (5 credits)
  • AP6168 Designing in Work and Workplaces (10 credits)

Elective Modules (choice of modules below to the value of 10 credits)

  • AP6159 Positive Organisational Psychology (5 credits) - subject to approval
  • AP6160 Private Practice (5 credits)
  • AP6161 Coaching Skills (5 credits)
  • AP6176 Cognitive Enhancement (5 credits)

PART 2 (30 credits)

  • AP6171 Research Dissertation in Applied Psychology (Work and Organisational Psychology) 

Part-time (90 credits in total)

The part-time MA in Work and Organisational Psychology/Behaviour runs over two calendar years (24 months).  Students take taught modules to the value of 60 credits in Part One (running across Semesters One and Two of Year One and Semester One of Year Two).  In Part Two students also undertake a research dissertation (30 credits), which is submitted at the end of the summer in Year Two.

Additional Teaching Mode Information

Two entry routes: i) For psychology graduates - Masters in Work and Organisational Psychology  ii) For non-psychology graduates - Masters in Work and Organisational Behaviour.

Blended learning (delivered partly online and partly on campus) 


Further details on the modules listed above can be found in our book of modules. Any modules listed above are indicative of the current set of modules for this course but are subject to change from year to year.

University Calendar

You can find the full academic content for the current year of any given course in our University Calendar.

Course Practicalities

This programme is delivered via blended learning. This offers students greater flexibility in directing and scheduling their learning. As a guide, this means that students can expect approximately 50% of their core modules to be delivered online and 50% in face to face sessions on campus. The modules incorporate a combination of self-guided online materials, web-based lectures and seminars, occasional online discussion groups and online assessments. All core classes* are scheduled for one day per week from 2-8pm on campus. Students can benefit from face-to-face contact with staff and peers during campus lectures while still enjoying the flexibility and widened access afforded by online learning.

*Electives may vary from this schedule, and will require attendance on campus outside of the core hours of 2-8pm.


There are a mix of assessments for this programme including on-line assessments, written reports and essays, examinations and a research dissertation.

Who teaches this course

This programme is delivered by a mix of academics and practitioners with expertise relevant to work and organisational psychology. Staff from the School of Applied Psychology include Dr Carol Linehan, Dr. Debora Jeske, Professor John McCarthy, Dr Raegan Murphy, Dr Zeldi di Blasi, Dr David O’Sullivan, Dr. Conor Linehan and Dr. Nadia Pantidi and we also have staff contributing from the School of Management and Marketing. The programme also benefits from the input of experienced industry and consultancy practitioners.

Why Choose This Course


The blended nature of this programme (delivered partly online and partly on campus) offers students flexible access to pursue a Masters qualification. In our experience, this combination supports all those students who are already in employment or are sponsored by their employer to attend this programme.


This Masters is underpinned by three key themes that differentiate it from other programmes in Ireland. These themes are based on our school’s particular areas of expertise and address contemporary workplace concerns and challenges.  Drawing on our digital futures research team we address themes around technology mediated work and organisations; from our resilience and transition team we address themes of well-being, resilience and diversity at work; and finally from our individual differences experts we address themes of recognising and assessing individual abilities and potential in the workplace.


We welcome students from all walks of life. As a result, we tend to have a good mix of students with and without human resource/training/coaching/consulting experience in our cohorts. This combination usually supports knowledge exchange (e.g., research methods know-how in exchange for practical insights).


Dissertation supervision is managed by a number of faculty associated with this MA programme, but also other MA programmes in our Schools. This ensures that our students have access, via our faculty, to different areas of expertise and knowledge of different professional domains (e.g., mental health/healthcare, coaching, and guidance counselling).

Students are positively encouraged to select a dissertation topic that may pave the way for their envisioned future career goal. When students are already in employment, the option to study a topic close to their employers’ interest is supported as long as the dissertation requirements are met. Students are encouraged to seek out potential dissertation advisors within one month of starting the programme to facilitate a well-coordinated and timely delivery of the dissertation in the first (for part-timers second) year. 

The benefits of linking research to practice are apparent in a number of success stories, for example:

My dissertation supervisor emphasised the importance of making sure that my research was directly applicable to the workplace. Having a large piece of work, with findings and recommendations relevant to organisations really makes you stand out during the interview process. The organisation I worked with as part of my research actually asked me to interview for a position that became available during the year.”

Skills and Careers Information


Graduates of this programme can look forward to a wide range of career options across both the public and private sectors applying psychology at work.  Graduates may enter careers as work and organisational psychologists, or may consider careers in human resource management, human resource development, consultancy, organizational research or academic/research careers.

To date, a number of our alumni have been recruited nationally and internationally as an outcome of completing this MA in Work and Organisational Psychology/Behaviour. For alumni who were already in employment, a number of our former students were subsequently promoted to new roles. Examples of areas where alumni ended up working include: Human Resources positions, organisers/facilitators of Organisational Development and Change / Community Development initiatives, occupational psychologists in training, consultants (e.g., recruitment and selection).

The success is also reflected in student experiences:

The course emphasised the application of theory in the workplace and I found this to be very useful when going to interviews. Completing this course helps you to develop a diversity of thought that makes you stand out amongst other applicants at interview stage and has played a pivotal role in helping me secure my current job.

The lectures and content were a good mix of interesting and challenging. Working now as a trainee occupational psychologist it’s really evident how practical the course is.


Several of our alumni and graduating class shared their thoughts on the programme and described their experience as following:

I really enjoyed the course and would recommend it to anyone looking to apply psychology in the real world.

I am really delighted I decided to do this masters. From beginning to end the department and the staff supporting the course have been really helpful and supportive. I originally completed my undergrad in psychology in UCC and have found my experience in the department to be top class on both occasions.

This MA gave me a whole new perspective and pushed me to develop my critical thinking.  In addition to self-directed learning, it challenged the class through engaging discussions, to look at every day work related issues, bringing a new open minded perspective.

One of the most enjoyable aspects of the MA in Work & Organizational Psychology/ Behaviour was the diverse mix of experience within the class and a learning environment which encouraged students to learn from each other’s experiences.  Having worked in Human Resources for many years it was great to listen and learn from the workplace experiences of others with a variety of work backgrounds and of recent graduates preparing for the workplace.


Where possible, we also support practical skills training. A number of our alumni have been introduced to practitioners in the field who offered internships and other training opportunities. We continue to support such initiatives to marry the academic with the practical aspects of this degree to support graduate employability.

This is also confirmed by reports our graduates:

The cross over between theory and application has been fantastic and my experience of the masters has left me very confident in embarking on a career as an occupational psychologist.

The emphasis that is placed on applying your knowledge in the real world helps you communicate to interviewers the value that your skills and psychology can bring to the workplace.

During the year we had many interesting guest speakers and I was lucky enough to be offered a paid internship in one of their companies. The experience of working alongside a fellow work and organizational psychologist was invaluable and my employer has since offered to be my supervisor as I begin the journey of becoming chartered.

The MA certainly helped me secure my current position as the Further Education and Training Recruitment Officer […]. With the moratorium on recruitment of new staff, the ageing workforce, restructuring, the changing expectations from both employers and employees, the psychological contract, I am actually putting into practice my learnings from the Masters programme on a daily basis.

For those students interested in research careers, our graduates may also consider progressing to doctoral studies in the area or engage in further specialisation in the area of work psychology. Our School offers both funded and self-funded PhD opportunities.


MA in Work and Organisational Psychology 

  • A primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8) in Psychology.
  • Satisfy the eligibility requirements for graduate membership of the Psychological Society of Ireland or the British Psychological Society.  This can be demonstrated by:
    • Evidence that your undergraduate degree is accredited by the PSI or BPS (see bps.org.uk) or
    • Evidence from the BPS that they consider your undergraduate degree to be equivalent to a PSI/BPS accredited degree, in terms of granting you eligibility for graduate membership of the society.
  • A second class honours grade one degree is required. Consideration under Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) will be given to second class honours grade two (level 8 degree) candidates, where for example an applicant has relevant work experience or has performed impressively in another Master’s degree acceptable to the School selection committee.  In such cases, the applicant should set out the grounds upon which they wish to be considered in the supplementary statement and/or interview.

MA in Work and Organisational Behaviour 

  • An undergraduate degree that includes subjects related to the area (e.g. business, psychology, human resource management, organisational behaviour, sociology of work).  Applicants with a Second Class Honours Grade I in a primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8)in any discipline and a minimum of three years’ relevant work experience will also be considered.
  • A Second Class Honours Grade I in a primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8) degree is required.  Consideration will be given to Second Class Honours Grade II in a primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8) candidates, where for example an applicant has relevant work experience or has performed impressively in another Master’s degree acceptable to the School selection committee.  In such cases, the applicant should set out the grounds upon which they wish to be considered in the supplementary statement and/or interview.

Eligible candidates may be interviewed.

Entry criteria

The criteria for selection will include:

  • Academic performance.
  • Demonstrated interest in, or work experience relevant to, work psychology.

Application process
Application must be made online at the UCC application portal and includes a 500-word personal statement, giving reasons for applying to the course including a statement about career objectives.

Statements will be evaluated on the basis of:

  • Demonstrating some awareness of work and organisational psychology.
  • Showing evidence of how this master fits with careers interests and objectives.

Shortlisted candidates may also be interviewed.

English Language Requirements

Applicants that are non-native speakers of the English language must meet the university approved English language requirements available here.

For applicants with qualifications completed outside of Ireland

Applicants must meet the required entry academic grade, equivalent to Irish requirements, please find our grades comparison by country here

International/non-EU applicants

For full details of the non-EU application procedure please visit our how to apply pages for international students. In UCC, we use the term programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools, and departments.

Not all courses are open to international/non-EU applicants, please check the fact file above.

For more information please contact the International Office.

Fees and Costs

The EU fee for this course is €8,130; €4,130 (Year 1 Part-time); €4,130 (Year 2 Part-time).

The Non-EU fee for this course is €18,080.


If your course required a deposit, that figure will be deducted from your second semester fee payment in January.

EU student fee payment:

Fees for EU students are payable in two equal instalments. First payment at registration in August and the second in January.

International student fee payment:

Fees for Non-EU Students are payable in one instalment in August.

How can I pay?

By Credit/Debit card online or by credit transfer.


If you have any questions on fee payment please email our Fees Office at fees@ucc.ie .

Non-EU Fees

The fee schedule for 2019/2020 is available here.

How Do I Apply

1. Choose Course

Firstly choose your course. Applicants can apply for up to two courses under one application. Details of taught courses are available on our online prospectus.

2. Apply Online

Once you have chosen your course you can apply online at the online application portal. Applicants will need to apply before the course closing date. There is a non-refundable €50 application fee for all courses apart from the Education - Professional Master of Education - (Secondary School/Post-Primary Teacher Training) which has a €100 application fee.

Applicants for the Postgraduate Diploma in Public Health Nursing must apply on the PAC website when the programme opens for applications.

3. Gather Supporting Documents

Scanned copies of the following documents will need to be uploaded to the online application portal in support of your application. Applicants may need to produce the original documents if you are accepted onto a course and register at UCC.

  • Original qualification documents listed on your application including transcripts of results from institutions other than UCC
  • Any supplementary items requested for your course.

Please log into the online application portal for more details.

4. Application processing timeline

Our online application portal opens for applications for most courses in early November of each year. Check specific course details. 

5. Rounds

For courses that are in the rounds system (Irish and EU applicants), please check the rounds closing dates here.

Questions on how to apply?

Please use our web enquiry form to contact us.

Additional Requirments (All Applicants)

Course Codes: 

MA in Work and Organisational Psychology MAWOP
MA in Work and Organisational Behaviour MAWOB

Please note you will be required to provide additional information as part of the online application process for this programme. This will include the following questions:

  • You may enter the details of professional or voluntary positions held. We strongly encourage you to complete this section with all relevant work experiences that will support your application.

  • In addition to your previously declared qualifications, please outline any additional academic courses, self-learning and professional training relevant to this programme.

  • Please describe your motivation and readiness for this programme. All Applicants will be asked to complete a statement as part of the online application process for this programme. This 500-word statement should outline

a) the applicant’s reasons for applying to the course at UCC, and;
b) a statement about how this programme fits with the applicant’s career objectives. Where appropriate applicants may also wish to specify how their previous degree course and work experience will contribute to their performance on this MA programme.

  • Applicants for the MA in Work and Organisational Psychology option will also be required to show evidence that their qualifications in Psychology satisfy the eligibility requirements for graduate membership of the Psychological Society of Ireland (PSI) or the British Psychological Society (BPS).

Please note the following:

  • Eligible candidates may be interviewed at the selection stage.
  • Please note that if your application is successful, deferrals are not permitted on this programme


Please note that successful EU applicants will be required to pay a non-refundable deposit of €500 on acceptance of their place.


Deferrals are not permitted on this programme

The closing date for non-EU applications is 30th June

Apply Now

For queries regarding course content or timetables please contact