It will help companies, government and state institutions, defence forces and others to upskill their staff to fill new roles in cyber security so that they can protect their organisations, their customers and the public.

It is designed to facilitate professional learners through flexible blended study options. Lectures are delivered online and complemented by occasional full-day workshops on campus, with a remote option for those who cannot attend in person. The combination of mainly distance but with some on-campus days allows flexible learning but with face-to-face interactions.

In developing the programme we have collaborated with industry and law enforcement practitioners – in particular the Leadership in Security and the Incident Response modules – to ensure that these modules meet the needs of professional learners.

The curriculum is aligned with the ACM/IEEE/AIS SIGSEC/IFIP Cybersecurity Curricular Guidelines so that it will prepare students to take a variety of cyber security roles, including some modules for professionals seeking a managerial role in security.

Who should apply?
Part Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. No

Course Description
Flexible study options for professional learners
The programme is designed to facilitate professional learners through flexible blended study. Lectures will be delivered online and will be complemented by face-to-face, intensive full-day tutorials that will typically be delivered three times per semester. The combination of mainly distance but with some on-campus days allows flexible learning but with face-to-face interactions. We plan to deliver the full-day tutorials in a hybrid mode to allow those students who will not be able to attend the full-day tutorials in person to participate remotely.

Teaching activities will be supported by using security use cases, open-source web applications (e.g., WebGoat), cyber ranges (Kypo Cyber Range and tools (e.g., Metasploit). Where applicable, the modules of the programme will adopt problem based learning.

The online portion of study consists of an engaging mixture of videos, assignments, quizzes and tutorials. In addition to making the study materials available, lecturers will answer student queries through the course discussion boards, or through a virtual classroom environment. Tutors provide regular additional support through the online portal. The full-day tutorial will cover exercises and group activities for all the modules taught in that specific trimester.

The workshops and tutorial sessions are intensive study days on campus. Students are encouraged to attend but online alternatives are available for those who cannot.


The programme will use exams, group projects as summative assessment strategies. It will also use a variety of formative assessment strategies, such as journal writing to promote reflection, debates, presentations, and peer reviews. Students must attend UCD for one or two days at the end of each trimester to take exams in the modules taken that trimester. Students will be informed of the specified exam dates at the start of each trimester. The examination periods can be found in the University calendar.

The Graduate Diploma will require on average around 15 hours of study per week in addition to the workshops, tutorials and exams.

Subjects taught

Year 1
Semester 1 (Autumn term)

COMP47920 Information Security 10
COMP47800 Leadership In Security 5

Semester 2 (Spring term)
COMP47900 Risk Assessment & Security Standards 5
LAW42160 Cybersecurity Law and Regulation 10

Graduate Certificate in Cybersecurity

Students who successfully complete the above 4 modules (30 credits) in the first 2 semesters may exit the programme with the award of Graduate Certificate in Cybersecurity preparing them for a managerial and leadership career in cybersecurity.

Semester 3 (summer term)
COMP47910 Secure Software Engineering 10
COMP47890 Applied Cryptography 5

Year Two
Semester 1 (Autumn term)
COMP47880 Network Security 10
COMP47870 Incident Response 5

Entry requirements

Minimum a 2.1 honours bachelor's degree in Computer Science (or a cognate discipline) or

• 2:2 honours bachelor's degree in Computer Science (or a cognate discipline) and equivalent (>5 years) industrial
experience in software development or software/system security

Application dates

How to apply?
The following entry routes are available:

Graduate Diploma Cybersecurity PT (F249)
Duration 2 Years
Attend Part Time
Deadline Rolling*

* Courses will remain open until such time as all places have been filled, therefore early application is advised


2 Years Part Time Blended

Post Course Info

The programme will help to reduce the cybersecurity skills shortage and prepare professionals for a rewarding career in cybersecurity; for example, to take a role as a security manager, security engineer, security analyst, or IT security specialist. Career development possibilities in this field are excellent. Organizations of all sizes in all sectors, including both Irish and foreign owned companies, are looking for people with these skills. Many global companies have a base in Ireland, including security software and cyber security companies with a security operations centre (SOC). There is a growing cyber security market globally as cyber security is recognized as critical for national security and the smooth functioning of society. Opportunities abound in government, healthcare, critical national infrastructure, ICT, financial services, telecoms, manufacturing and SMEs, which all face growing cyber security threats. Digitization and the move to remote working are increasing the threat surface.

More details
  • Qualifications

    Postgraduate Diploma (Level 9 NFQ)

  • Attendance type

    Part time

  • Apply to

    Course provider