Fact File

Course Code: CKE70 Full-time; CKE12 Part-time

Course Title: Politics

College: Arts, Celtic Studies and Social Sciences


Duration: 1 year Full-time; 2 years Part-time

Teaching Mode: Full-time, Part-Time

The part-time option will be taught during weekday working hours over 2 years.

Qualifications: MA

NFQ Level: Level 9

Costs: 2017/2018 Irish/EU Fee: €6,000 full-time; €3,000 per year part-time; 2017/2018 Non-EU fee full-time: €13,000

Entry Requirements: You will have a 2.1 primary degree (or equivalent) in one of the following areas: arts, humanities, social science or law. If you hold a 2.2 primary degree, you will also be considered subject to a written expression of interest and/or interview acceptable to the director of the course.

Closing Date: Applications now closed for 2017/18

Next Intake: September 2018


Politics is central to understanding both our own lives and the world that surrounds us. This is a course that takes an interdisciplinary approach to a subject that defies traditional academic boundaries. By drawing on the expertise of a variety of specialists from the Schools of History, Government and Philosophy, you will gain an advanced understanding of a range of critical issues in politics.

Course Details

The MA in Politics may be taken full-time over 12 months or part-time over 24 months from the date of first registration for the programme. The taught element of the programme runs from early September to the end of March.

In Part I, students take modules to the value of 30 credits in Teaching Period 1 and to the value of 30 credits in Teaching Period 2.  Students may not take more than 40 credits in a single semester and they must take at least 10 credits of which is chosen from each participating Department/School (i.e. Government, History, Philosophy). The details of the modules offered vary from one year to another, however, they include modules on democracy and rights, terrorism, international relations, and political participation, security, decolonization and moral psychology.

Students take 90 credits as follows:

Part I               
Semester 1

Department of Government

GV6113 Governance and policy processes in the European Union (10 credits)
GV6114 Changing Dynamics of Governance (10 credits)

School of History
HI6092 International Relations Theories and Approaches (10 credits)
PO6003: Revolution, Decoloni­zation & the Arab Spring

Department of Philosophy
PH6054 Philosophy of Economics (10 credits)
PH6016 Territorial Rights (10 credits)
PH6053 Professional Ethics: Advanced (10 credits)

Semester 2

Department of Government
GV6103 Re-imagining Democratic Politics in a Changing World (10 credits)
GV6115 European Security (10 credits)
GV6104 Political Participation and Mobilisation (10 credits

School of History
HI6060 The Politics of Terrorism (10 credits)
HI6063 Work Placement and Portfolio (10 credits)

Department of Philosophy
PH6012 Human Rights 1 (10 Credits)
PH6052 Advanced Moral Psychology (10 credits)

Part II 

PO6001 Dissertation (30 credits)

In Part II, you complete a dissertation to the value of 30 credits, where you conduct advanced research on a topic of your choosing, while working closely with a subject matter expert from one of the three participating departments. You are also supported in this through a series of research seminars, where staff guide you through the various skills, methodologies and research strategies you will need to employ. Outside speakers also share their tips on research practice through guest seminars.

Students studying for the degree full-time take all modules in one year.

Students studying for the degree part-time take 40 credits of modules in Year 1 and 20 credits of taught modules in Year 2.  Students also take the Dissertation module (PO6001) in Year 2.

and PO6001 (Dissertation) (30 credits).

Postgraduate Diploma in Politics  (NFQ Level 9, Major award)
Students passing only the taught modules in Part 1 (60 credits), or choosing not to complete the research dissertation may opt to exit the programme and be awarded a Postgraduate Diploma in Politics.

Students who successfully complete the course will have fostered advanced knowledge and understanding of a range of political issues, methodologies and theories. You should also have developed the ability to critically analyse a range of sources and intellectual debates within a given topic. Finally, those who complete the dissertaion, will have developed good research practice leading to the ability to construct and write a thesis.

Detailed Entry Requirements

If you are applying with Qualifications obtained outside Ireland and you wish to verify if you meet the minimum academic and English language requirements for this programme please click here to view the grades comparison table by country and for details of recognised English language tests. 

Application Procedure

Application for this programme is on-line at www.pac.ie/ucc. Places on this programme are offered in rounds. The closing dates for each round can be found here. For full details of the application procedure click How to apply.

Please note you will be required to answer specific additional/supplementary questions as part of the online applications process for this programme. A copy of these additional/supplementary questions are available to view here: CKE70AdditionalQuestions (56kB)‌‎

All other required supporting documentation (e.g. evidence of non-UCC undergraduate/postgraduate qualifications) must be UPLOADED via the PAC "Application Status" link or sent in hard copy to The Postgraduate Applications Centre, 1, Courthouse Square, Galway (marked with the applicants PAC application number)

Early applications are encouraged for early decisions.

Course Practicalities

Teaching takes place in small group. The standard method of teaching is the seminar, which gives you an opportunity to refine your thinking and communication abilities in a stimulating and collegial environment. You will also complete a dissertation on a topic of your own choice, which gives you the opportunity to work closely with a member of staff and to develop advanced research and analysis skills. Students in the MA in Politics also have access to a wide range of visiting speakers and other activities of the three departments, each of which has a vibrant research culture.


The assessment in the taught element of the course varies from essays to presentations to policy reports to crisis simulation exercises but all module assessments help to build core research and communications skills. These skills are further developed in the 20,000-word dissertation, in which you conduct advanced research on a subject of your choice, working closely with an expert in the area. You are supported in this by a series of research seminars and events.

Who Teaches This Course

The Politics MA is taught by staff members from four academic units; Government, History, French and Philosophy. From History, Drs David Fitzgerald and Mervyn O’Driscoll offer expertise in International Relations and Terrorism. Dr Andrew Cottey from the Department of Government teaches European security. Dr Patrick Crowley(Dept of French) leads students through sessions on the Arab Spring and Decolonization. Drs Clodagh Harris, Emmanuelle Schon-Quinlivan and Laurence Davis from the Department of Government teach on Political Participation, Democracy and Governance in the EU, while Prof Don Ross, Drs Cara Nine, Jason Dockstader and Vittorio Bufacchi teach on the Philosophy of Economics, Territoriality, Ethics, Moral Psychology and Human Rights

Further Contact Information

Ms. Stefanie Wojtek,
Department of Politics,
Email: s.wojtek@ucc.ie
Telephone: 00 353 21 4902325

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