UCC Postgraduate courses

Nursing - Gerontological Nursing

About This Course

Fact File

  • Title

    Nursing - Gerontological Nursing

  • Code

    CKU04 Part-time

  • College

    Medicine and Health

  • Duration

    6 months Part-time

  • Teaching Mode


  • Qualifications

    PG Cert

  • EU Fees 2018

    See Fees and Costs for full details.

  • Entry Requirements

    See Requirements for full details.

  • Closing Date

    Will open for 2019/20 applications, dates to be confirmed

  • Non-EU Closing Date

    Not currently open to Non EU applicants

  • Course Delivery Method


  • Start Date

    August 2019

Course Outline

The philosophy underpinning this postgraduate course values the concept of positive ageing and the unique individual characteristics of the older person. The course seeks to validate this through the development of expert gerontological nursing to meet the complex needs of older people in a variety of care settings. This course is a Postgraduate Certificate, 30 credits of a level nine programme of the National Framework of Qualifications (National Qualifications Authority of Ireland (NQAI), 2003).

The course comprises of four modules:

Pathway 1: Gerontological Nursing

Theory modules (blended learning):

  • NU6005 Research Methods (10 credits) (Shared module across all pathways)
  • NU6053 Ethics for Specialist Practice (5 credits) (Shared module across all pathways except 9)
  • NU6078 Ageing and Older People: Bio Psychosocial Perspectives (10 credits)

Clinical Practice/Practicum module:

  • NU6130 Clinical Practice in Specialist Nursing 1 (5 credits)

For more information see our postgraduate calendar 

Non-EU Applications

Applicants who are interested in applying for the programme can also apply online at PAC.

For full details of the non-EU application procedure please visit our how to apply pages for international students.


**All Applicants please note: modules listed in the course outline above are indicative of the current set of modules for this course, but these are subject to change from year to year. Please check the college calendar for the full academic content of any given course for the current year. 

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. 

Course Practicalities

For each 10 credit module there is an estimated 200 hours Student Workload. The breakdown of these hours is: 184 hours distance online and technology learning, and 16 hours of face-to-face contact in Brookfield Health Science Complex. The breakdown for 5 credit theory modules will be half the hours stated above for 10 credit modules. Each 10 credit model runs for 6 weeks and each 5 credit module runs for 4 weeks. The practice modules involve direct clinical placement learning to meet Nursing & Midwifery Board of Ireland requirements.

Semester 1

September to December (16 weeks) contains 2x 10 credit modules and 1x 5 credit module, and 1x5 credit module (practice module). The student is required to attend 3 x 8 hour days and 4 x 4 hour days on campus in semester 1 for workshops, lectures and tutorials. The remainder of content is delivered online using our virtual learning environment Blackboard. Learning strategies include module study guides, discussion boards, audio/visual resources and online assessments/activities. 

Semester 2   

January - May (16 weeks) contains 1x 5 credit module (practice module).

Students will be required to prepare and submit a E-portfolio on professional development activities relating to clinical practice placement.   

Prior to commencing the course each student taking a blended module will be provided with an orientation to Blackboard and training on how to use the online technology within the course.  IT support will be given to students throughout the duration of the course.  


A range of assessments are used throughout the programme including written assignments, online activities (E. activities) and a competency book is completed for the practice modules. 

Who teaches this course?

Why Choose This Course

With the rapidly growing older-adult population and the changing healthcare services of today, it is vital that nurses working in older-adult settings are competent to provide the highest quality of nursing care and maintain professional standards of care. The curriculum encourages you to develop an enquiring and creative approach to both the theory and practice of gerontological nursing.

Students who successfully complete the Postgraduate Certificate in Nursing to the value of 30 credits will be granted exemptions for these modules in the relevant MSc/Postgraduate Diploma exit pathway within the School of Nursing and Midwifery at UCC.

Skills and Careers Information

This course will give registered general nurses, registered intellectual disability nurses and registered psychiatric nurses the knowledge and skills to work as members of the older-adult care team in a variety of gerontological settings to meet the complex needs of older people.


The Postgraduate Certificate in Nursing is a part-time programme running for 6 months from the date of first registration for the programme. The Certificate has six pathways and applicants choose their pathway at the application stage. The pathways are as follows:

Pathway 1: Gerontological Nursing
Pathway 2: Contemporary Issues in Intellectual Disabilities (Not on offer for 2018/19)
Pathway 3: Medical and Surgical Nursing
Pathway 4: Nursing in the Community (Not on offer 2018/2019)
Pathway 5: Nurse/Midwife Prescribing
Pathway 6: Orthopaedic Nursing (Not on offer 2018/2019)
Pathway 7: Oncology Nursing

Entry Requirements

Applicants for the Postgraduate Certificate in Nursing should normally:

(a) hold active registration on a division of the professional register maintained by the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland or be eligible for such registration as required for individual pathways:

  • Pathway 1: Applicants must be Registered General Nurses or Registered Intellectual Disability Nurses or Registered Psychiatric Nurses.
  • Pathway 2: Applicants must be Registered Nurses in Intellectual Disability or Registered General Nurses/Registered Children's Nurses/Registered Psychiatric Nurses currently working in an intellectual disability setting.
  • Pathways 3, 6 and 7: Applicants must be Registered General Nurses.
  • Pathways 4 and 5: Applicants must be either Registered General Nurses or Registered Intellectual Disability Nurses or Registered Children's Nurses or Registered Psychiatric Nurses or Registered Midwives.

(b) have clinical practice experience (and support structures, if applicable) as required for individual pathways:

  • Pathways 1 and 3Applicants must have a minimum of six months' post-registration experience (excluding courses) and at least three months experience in the speciality pathway applied for.
  • Pathway 2: Applicants who are Registered Nurses in Intellectual Disability must have a minimum of six months' post registration experience (excluding courses) and at least three months experience in intellectual disability nursing OR if a Registered General/Children's/Psychiatric nurse must have a minimum of one year's post-registration experience (excluding courses) in intellectual disability nursing.
  • Pathway 5: Applicants must have a minimum of 3 years post-registration experience (excluding courses). The required experience must have been gained within the past 5 years with at least one year in the area in which prescribing is proposed. In addition, applicants must (ii) demonstrate continuous professional development and ability to study at Level 9; (iii) provides support from employer and completed Site Self-Declaration Form, signed by the Director of Nursing/Midwifery/Public Health; (iv) provide nomination and confirmation of a designated medical practitioner mentor (completed Site Self-Declaration Form, signed by the Medical Practitioner/Mentor) who will provide the student with supervision, support and opportunities including shadowing opportunities. Applicants must contact their Director of Nursing/Midwifery/Public Health to discuss the identified need for nurse/midwife prescribing in his/her practice area/organisation.
  • Pathway 6: No experience required but must work in orthopaedic speciality area.

Note Re. Pathway 4: Applicants for Postgraduate Certificate in Nursing in the Community are not required to have community nursing experience at the point of entry to this programme pathway.

Note Re. Pathway 7: Applicants for Postgraduate Certificate in Nursing Oncology are not required to have oncology nursing experience at the point of entry to this programme pathway.

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. 

View the grades comparison table

Non-EU Candidates

Non-EU candidates are expected to have educational qualifications of a standard equivalent to Irish university primary degree level. In addition, where such candidates are non-native speakers of the English language they must satisfy the university of their competency in the English language. To verify if you meet the minimum academic requirements for this programme please visit our qualification comparison pages.

For more detailed entry requirement information please refer to the International website .

Fees and Costs

The fee for this course is €3,900.

Part-time students:

If your course is offered full time and part time, normally the fee for part time course is half the full time fee per year, please check the fact file for confirmation.


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 2017/2018 Postgraduate Fees Schedule is available here

How Do I Apply

1. Choose Course

Firstly choose your course. Applicants can apply for up to three 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 Postgraduate Applications Centre (PAC). Applicants will need to apply before the course closing date. There is a €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.

3. Gather Supporting Documents

Scanned copies of the following documents will need to be uploaded to PAC 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 forms requested for your course.

Please log into PAC for more details.

4. Application processing timeline

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

Questions on how to apply?

Please use our web enquiry form to contact us.

Additional Requirements (All Applicants)

Please note that you will be asked to fill in a supplementary information form as part of the applications process for this programme. This form is available to view from here - Supplementary Questions 2017/18 Postgraduate Cert Gerontological Nursing CKU04 

The closing date for non-EU applications is Not currently open to Non EU applicants

Apply Now

For queries regarding course content or timetables please contact