Trauma Studies

University College Cork

Trauma Studies

This course aims to enable students to develop their theoretical knowledge of trauma, but also enables them to critique existing approaches to trauma at the individual and societal level. The programme offered in partnership with Wave Trauma Centre, Belfast and is taught by a mix of academics and practitioners. There is a particular focus placed on the importance of understanding and engaging with the lived experience of those who have experienced, responded to, and survived trauma.

Course Practicalities

This course will begin with an orientation week, which involves engaging with tutors online, completing a library tutorial online, and familiarising yourself with the online learning platform. Throughout the duration of the course, students will have access to both academic and pastoral support via both ACE and their module tutors.

In year one and year two, students will attend an hour-long online tutorial once a week, and a 2-hour masterclass every second week. In year three, semester one, students will attend an hour-long online tutorial once a week, and a 2-hour masterclass every second week. In year three, semester two, students will have scheduled meetings with their dissertation supervisor(s), small group meetings, and continue to attend the masterclasses every second week (12 masterclasses total per year of study). Students will be expected to engage in online self-directed learning, complete quizzes and engage in online discussions. We recommend that students set aside approximately 10-15 hours a week over the course of a 12-week semester (depending on if the module is 5 or 10 credits).

This course is not a practise-based course but does address issues that some participants may find upsetting and triggering. Given this, it must be noted that the course is not delivered in a therapeutic environment and students should be mindful of the impact engaging in some topics may have on their own well-being.

Why Choose This Course

This course is the only MA in Trauma Studies being offered in Ireland. It is designed and delivered by the Department of Criminology and Sociology, University College Cork in partnership with WAVE Trauma Centre Northern Ireland. WAVE is a grassroots, cross-community, voluntary organisation formed in 1991 to support people bereaved of a spouse as a result of violence in Northern Ireland. It was expanded later to incorporate the needs of children and young people, and anyone injured or traumatised through ‘the Troubles’. WAVE have also worked in international conflict contexts.

The course brings together an experienced team of academics and practitioners in order to address the complexity of trauma and investigate the means through which both the individual and society can be relieved of its impact.? ??

The MA will enable you to develop your research and analytical skills in Trauma Studies. It will also give you several other skills including data analysis, research, communication, writing skills, critical, systematic, and independent thinking, and presentation skills, all done with the support of a team of academics and practitioners.

Subjects taught

Modules Year 1:

CR6801 Trauma and Victimology: Key issues, methods and structures (5 credits)?

CR6802 Research Methods (5 credits)?

CR6803 Trauma and Addiction: Key issues, methods and structures (10 credits)?

CR6804 Trauma and Post-traumatic Growth (10 credits)?

Modules Year 2:?

Students select 30 credits from the following:?

CR6805 Complex Loss: Grief, Trauma and Social Context (10 credits)?

CR6806 Social Approaches to Trauma: Family, society and international (10 credits)?

CR6807 Public Health Challenges in Post Conflict Societies (10 credits)?

CR6808 Trauma and Frontline Workers (10 credits)??

Modules Year 3:

CR6809 Advanced Research Methods (10 credits)

CR6810 Dissertation in Trauma Studies (20 credits)?

Entry requirements

Entry Requirements for the three-year part time MA programme are as follows:

Candidates must hold an honours (NFQ level 8) primary degree with a minimum 2H2 in a relevant discipline. ?Relevant disciplines include, but are not restricted to psychology, sociology, criminology, social work, counselling, conflict studies, women's studies, epidemiology, medicine and nursing.

Recognition of Prior Learning:

Candidates without an NFQ level 8 award are eligible to apply, subject to the approval of the programme Academic Director if they can demonstrate at least three years professional experience in a related field – examples include (but are not restricted to) therapeutic practice, community work/engagement experience, government/policy experience and medical/para-medical experience.

English Language Requirement:

Please see? PG English Language Entry Requirements ?

Technical Requirements:

To access and interact with the course content, assignments and assessments etc. 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. Students will require a webcam and microphone, either internal or external.

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

Please note that students must achieve at least a second-class honours grade 1 in year 2 in order to be permitted to continue into year three. Students who do not achieve this result must exit the programme with the Postgraduate Diploma in Trauma Studies. Exceptions to this rule can only be made by the Programme Committee. Students seeking an exception can enquire for terms to the Programme Coordinator.

From 2024/25 we will be offering a one-year option for graduates of the Postgraduate Diploma in Trauma Studies. We will open for applications for the 1 year option in Spring 2024. Students who wish to enrol directly into year three must:

Have completed the Postgraduate Diploma in Trauma Studies, in which at least a second-class honours grade 1 was awarded.

Applicants may be required to attend for interview as part of the application process. At interview, each applicant will be invited to:

Discuss how they have applied the knowledge gained in the PG Diploma.

Outline any learning since completing it.

Demonstrate the progression of learning from the PG dip to the MA by linking (synthesising) their knowledge with the project proposal.

Identify and discuss a possible focus for their dissertation.

Demonstrate their ability to cope with the academic demands of the programme (20 marks each per point highlighted above)

Final selection of candidates will be subject to the approval of the Programme Team

Application dates

CLOSING DATE 1 September 2023


Part-time, online.

Enrolment dates

START DATE September 2024

More details
  • Qualifications

    Degree - Masters (Level 9 NFQ)

  • Attendance type

    Part time

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    Course provider