UCC Postgraduate courses

Occupational Health (Blended)

Course Fact File
Duration24 Months Part-time
Teaching ModePart-Time. See Additional Teaching Mode Information for more info.
NFQ LevelLevel 9
FeesSee Fees and Costs for full details.
Closing DateRolling deadline. Open until all places have been filled. Early application is advised.
Non-EU Closing DateNot currently open to Non-EU applicants
Start Date9 September 2024

Course Outline

Our MSc Occupational Health is a part-time blended learning programme offered by the School of Public Health at University College Cork (UCC). We designed this programme to suit the demands of the busy professional with approximately 70% of the teaching delivered on campus and 30% of content delivered online.

The MSc in Occupational Health will give you the expertise and key skills required to effectively address health & safety issues in all workplaces and promote employees’  wellbeing. This multidisciplinary course is delivered by academics, industry experts and professionals with national and international experience. Health and safety lie at the heart of an organisation’s commitment to its workforce and makes good business sense. Looking after the safety, health and well-being of employees helps to reduce costs and build a healthy,  resilient and motivated workforce.

We offer our students the opportunity to study modern, cutting-edge scientific concepts and research evidence on causation, prevention and management of work-related accidents, injury and disease and the promotion of physical and mental health and wellbeing. The programme incorporates the following subject areas:

  • Public Health & Health Promotion
  • Psychology
  • Risk Assessment and Management 
  • Ergonomics & Safety Science
  • Occupational Medicine and Hygiene
  • Law
  • Training and Development
  • Epidemiology & Environmental Health 

This programme may be suitable for you if you are already working in occupational safety and health, or if you have a strong interest in occupational health and, have a primary degree in a related area. The course consists of three elements — formal coursework, self-directed learning using case studies and project work leading to a thesis.

The MSc in Occupational Health programme received accreditation from the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH) in the Certified Member category. As this programme is accredited by IOSH, eligible enrolled students can access IOSH Student Membership for the duration of their studies and, on successful completion, they will meet the academic requirements for Certified membership. It is important to note that in addition to academic requirements, there are also work experience requirements for progression through IOSH's member grades. The level you progress to will take into account your academic qualification and relevant experience in IOSH. As IOSH is the only organisation in the world that offers Chartered Membership to health and safety practitioners, this can help members achieve the highest professional standards and gain international recognition. Additional information on how you can pursue graduate and chartered membership with IOSH is available through the IOSH website

Purple text for the IOSH logo, against white background accented with a blue circle, for the Institute of Occupational Safety and Health.

Programme Content

The programme comprises 90 credits taken over two years as follows:

Year 1 

Core ModuleTitleCredits
EH6008 Information Retrieval & Interpretation in Occupational Health 5
EH6015 Occupational Health and Safety Management in the Workplace 10
EH6059 Principles of Psychosocial Epidemiology 5
EH6060 Risk Assessment and Management of Psychosocial Work Risks  5
EH6061 Applied Research for Occupational Health 5
LW6107 Legal Aspects of Occupational Health, Safety and Welfare 5
AD6800 Training and Development Issues in Occupational Health 5

Year 2

Core ModuleTitleCredits
EH6017 Principles, Theory and Practical Application of Risk Assessment in the Workplace 10
EH6041 Psychology Applied to Occupational Health and Safety 5
EH6062 Workplace Health, Safety and Wellbeing Dissertation 30 

Plus one elective module from the following, subject to availability:

Elective ModuleTitleCredits
EH6000 Implementation Science in Health 5
EH6130 Critical Appraisal of Publications for Research and Practice 5
EH6140  Environmental Health: Principal Aspects and Burden of Disease  5
EH6159  Health Promotion II 5

Learning Outcomes 

On successful completion of this MSc programme, you will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an awareness of occupational health from a multidisciplinary perspective including occupational medicine, epidemiology, psychology, public health, law and training and development;
  • Practise measures to prevent disease and injury, and to protect and promote health and safety in occupational settings;
  • Perform risk assessments in the workplace including psychosocial risk factors;
  • Identify the role of psychology in improving the quality of work-life and develop basic skills to protect and promote the safety, health and well-being of workers;
  • Employ skills to critically appraise publications and statistics and stay up-to-date with the newest research evidence;
  • Discuss the wider aspects of health protection;
  • Apply research evidence into occupational health and safety interventions and health promotion strategies by taking relevant legislation into account;
  • Design occupational health training and development programmes in line with organisational policy;
  • Carry out a focused piece of scholarly research and health and safety programme evaluation.

Additional Teaching Mode Information

This part-time MSc programme will be taught on most Monday and Thursday evenings from 6.15 pm to 9.15 pm for 18 months followed by a self-directed and supervised research activity over two years.

Our multi-faceted delivery of content includes online teaching and learning components, such as pre-recorded and live online delivery of lectures, tutorials, practical lab work (IT), interactive seminars, student presentations, online discussion boards and online activities including quizzes and interactive case studies.

Typically we will deliver approximately 70% of the teaching on campus and 30% online.

Academic Programme Catalogue

See the Academic Programme Catalogue where you can search for the complete and up-to-date content for this course. Note that the modules for all courses are subject to change from year to year. For complete descriptions of individual modules, see the Book of Modules.

Course Practicalities


There will be continuous assessments through oral presentations, online discussion boards, online activities, group work and written essays. During Year 2, you will be required to undertake a group project and a reflective case study. An important aspect of this year is the formulation of a research project. The thesis assessment will involve submitting a dissertation and a journalistic article based on your dissertation.

Who teaches this course?

Our teaching staff includes professionals from allied health professions and faculty from the School of Public Health at UCC and include:


Why Choose This Course

The MSc in Occupational Health has offered me many career opportunities both within nursing and as an alternative career...

Josephine Mc Carthy, Occupational Health Nurse/Advisor in Pfizer

Find Out More
The MSc in Occupational Health offered a theoretical grounding to some of my work practices and introduced new subjects and abilities ...

Aine Molloy, Risk Manager

This course has greatly improved my confidence and provided me with a broader knowledge of health and safety issues.

Maurice Fehilly, Occupational H&S Professional

The MSc in Occupational Health is an excellent course that covers both the theory and the practicalities of this complex topic...

John Murphy, EHS Manager, Global EHS, LEO Pharma

Find Out More

This course offers you the opportunity to study ‘classical’ occupational health and safety issues, together with contemporary approaches that integrate and strategically combine workplace health and safety prevention with health and wellbeing promotion.

A particular focus of this course is on the management of psychosocial risks and work stress which constitutes a growing concern for health, safety, and wellbeing in industry and the private sector. Looking after the safety, health, and wellbeing of employees helps to reduce costs and build a healthy, resilient, and motivated workforce and is, therefore, a very attractive programme for employers to promote.

The interactive format of the teaching sessions helps student networking, and the sharing of knowledge and practical experience. In several modules, you will work with practical case studies, engage in project work and reflective inquiry. There is an opportunity to specialise in one area of occupational health by choosing a 5-credit elective module.

Throughout the course, you will be invited to masterclasses held by experts in the field. The experience and expertise of our previous graduates are also deployed through lecturing, mentoring new students, and student tutoring. We support our MSc students to professionally engage in health and safety practice and research and to provide leadership to others. The course offers the opportunity to professionally network face-to-face with local academic and industry health and safety experts.

The flexible scheduling of this programme facilitates an easier combination of course engagement for your personal or/and professional life.

Skills and Careers Information

There is a continuous demand for experts trained in the area of occupational health, safety and wellbeing across all sectors of work with many career opportunities. The course encourages a proactive approach in assessing and controlling both physical and psychosocial work hazards in an effort to prevent disease, injuries, and accidents at work; to promote health and wellbeing, and to create safe and healthy work cultures and conditions.

After completion of this MSc in Occupational Health, some of the many career options open to you include work in the following areas: consulting; Health and Safety Authority; Health Service Executive; human factors-ergonomics; safety engineering; human resources; welfare; managerial responsibilities in industry or public sector; occupational health care specialist responsibilities; academia including research and lecturing.


Candidates for the MSc programme in Occupational Health must meet one of the following criteria:

  1. A Level 8 honours primary degree (minimum Second Class Honours, Grade 2) in a relevant area, e.g. health-related (Public Health, Nursing, Medicine, Environmental Health, Psychology/Behavioural Science, Physiotherapy); Engineering and Human Resource Management and relevant professional experience¹ or work placement in an associated Occupational Health, Safety and Welfare area;
  2. A minimum of a Diploma/Higher Diploma in Occupational Safety, Health and Welfare (minimum Second Class Honours, Grade 1), from UCC, or an equivalent qualification² from another Institution (Level 8 Diploma, minimum second class honours, grade 1) and a minimum of two years relevant professional work experience¹ in an area associated with Occupational Health, Safety and Welfare;
  3. Applicants with a minimum of three years' professional work experience in an associated area¹ of Occupational Health, Safety and Welfare may be invited for an interview to satisfy the selection committee of their suitability for the programme, under Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL).

¹Relevant professional work experience, job title examples: Health and Safety Officers/Advisors/Managers/Coordinators; Environmental Safety Officers/Managers; Safety Engineers, Health Promotion Officers; HR Officers/Managers; Occupational Health Nurses, Health Scientists, Professional Trainers, Health and Safety Consultants.

²Level 8 examples: Diploma/Higher Diploma/International Diploma in Occupational Health and Safety; Diploma in Environment Management, Diploma in Health Promotion, Diploma in Learning, Development and Work-based Training.

Technical Requirements

To access and interact with the online course content and assignments, students will require access to at least a PC/Laptop running Windows 7 or later and Mac OSX 10.7.4. Common plug-ins such as Microsoft Silverlight, Java and Flash will also be required. Students must have access to MS Office or an equivalent suite of applications such as Libre Office. They must also have access to a modern standards-compliant web browser. UCC recommends either Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox.

To engage productively and successfully with the content, basic technical computer skills such as familiarity with word processing, web browsing and email is recommended.

For Applicants with Qualifications Completed Outside of Ireland

Applicants must meet the required entry academic grade, equivalent to Irish requirements. For more information see our Qualification Comparison page.

International/Non-EU Applicants

For full details of the non-EU application procedure 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.
  • Note that not all courses are open to international/non-EU applicants, please check the fact file above. For more information contact the International Office.
English Language Requirements

Applicants who are non-native speakers of the English language must meet the university-approved English language requirements. Visit our PG English Language Requirements page for more information.

Fees and Costs

Postgraduate EU and International Fees 2024/2025

See our Postgraduate EU and Non-EU (International) Fee Schedule for the latest information.


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

Fee payment 

Fees are payable in two equal instalments. First payment is at registration and the balance usually by the end of January.

How can I pay? 

See different options on our How Do I Pay My Fees? page.

Any questions? See the 'Contact Us' section on the Fees Office page.

See our Postgraduate EU and Non-EU (International) Fee Schedule for the latest information.

How To Apply

1. Check dates

Check the opening and closing dates for the application process in the fact file boxes at the top of the page.

2. Gather documents

Scanned copies of supporting documents have to be uploaded to the UCC online application portal and include:

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

3. Apply online

Apply online via the UCC online application portal. Note the majority of our courses have a non-refundable €50 application fee.

Any questions? 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 application process for this programme. This form is viewable here - Supplementary Questions - MSc Occupational Health (Campus Based) CKX06.



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