Occupational Health

University College Cork

Occupational Health

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
Risk Assessment and Management
Ergonomics & Safety Science
Occupational Medicine and Hygiene
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.

Subjects taught

Programme Content

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

Year 1

Core Module Title Credits
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 Module Title Credits
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 Module Title Credits
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

Entry requirements

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

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;
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;
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.

Application dates

Closing Date Rolling deadline. Open until all places have been filled. Early application is advised.

Assessment Info

There are four written exams in year 1 of the course. In addition to exams, there will be continuous assessments through oral presentations, 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 in this year is the formulation of a research project. The thesis assessment will involve submitting a dissertation and journalistic article based on your dissertation.


24 months part-time.

Enrolment dates

Start Date 9 September 2024

Post Course Info

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.

More details
  • Qualification letters


  • Qualifications

    Degree - Masters (Level 9 NFQ)

  • Attendance type

    Blended,Part time

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