Leading & Innovating in Health Systems

The Graduate Diploma in Leading and Innovating in Health Systems is one of a number of programmes offered by the UCD IRIS Centre for Interdisciplinary, Research, Innovation & Education in Health Systems.

The Graduate Diploma is a 60-ECTS-credit, QQI Level 9 interdisciplinary programme that is taken over two years.

Holders of the Graduate Diploma can obtain the MSc in Leadership, Innovation and Management for Healthcare by undertaking a further 30 ECTS credits of study.

The programme will contribute to your personal and professional development by enabling you to identify, analyse, critique and evaluate the ways in which you and your colleagues currently lead and manage. You will acquire the capacity to locate ways of leading and managing within relevant conceptual frameworks and to situate them in systems, policy, organisational and team contexts.

You will be prepared to be a more responsive, effective and resilient leader and manager who thinks and practices strategically and innovatively to improve patients' and colleagues' experiences of the health system.

You will be equipped with theories, concepts, models, frameworks, tools, techniques and research findings that will enable you to develop a deep appreciation of how the health system works and how you can maximise yours and your colleagues' contribution to it.

Subjects taught

The 2024/2025 timetable will be available in April 2024.

The programme comprises six 10-ECTS-credit modules:
YEAR 1 (2024-25)

Trimester 1 (Sept to Dec):
NMHS 32280: Improving Processes in Health Systems
NMHS 42700: Quality, Patient Safety and Outcomes

Trimester 2 (Jan to April):
NMHS 43830: Collective Leadership and Effective Teamwork
YEAR 2 (2025-26)

Trimester 1 (Sept to Dec):
NMHS 44200: Health Policy and Health Systems
NMHS 44190: Global Health Landscape and Leadership

Trimester 2 (Jan to April):
NMHS 44210: Enhancing Strategic and Innovative Capacity in Health Systems
The programme is delivered through blended learning, entailing face-to-face and online learning supported by Brightspace, UCD's virtual learning environment (VLE).

There is a particular emphasis on experiential learning and on the application of learning to students' professional practice contexts through a range of activities. To optimise student engagement and participation, class sizes are limited to 25 students so early application is advised.

The teaching and learning methods include tutorials, workshops, faculty and peer-led seminars, and group work. Continuous assessment methods include project work, class presentations, student-led seminars, posters and assignments. There are no examinations.

Entry requirements

Applicants will normally hold an NQF Level 8 academic award but consideration will be given to applicants with relevant and appropriate qualifications and experience working in the health system

Experience in a management and/or leadership role is desirable

A willingness to explore your own leadership and management practices and their impact on the systems in which you work is essential.

You are welcome to contact the Programme Director, Professor Martin McNamara (martin.mcnamara@ucd.ie) to discuss the programme and its suitability for you before you make your application.

Application dates

The following entry routes are available:

Grad Dip Leading and Innovating in Health Systems PT (X873)
Duration 1 Years
Attend Part Time (Blended)
Deadline Rolling*

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


1 year, part-time.

Enrolment dates

Next Intake: 2024/2025 September.

Post Course Info

Holders of the Graduate Diploma can obtain the MSc in Leadership, Innovation and Management for Healthcare by undertaking a further 30 ECTS credits of study.

More details
  • Qualification letters


  • Qualifications

    Postgraduate Diploma (Level 9 NFQ)

  • Attendance type

    Part time,Blended

  • Apply to

    Course provider