Applied Social Studies - Dual Diagnosis

The Applied Social Studies programmes are designed to meet the continuing professional development needs of those staff working in the care professions (social work, psychology, education, nursing, teaching, medicine, etc).

With the current emphasis on a flexible, accessible, streamlined and seamless post-qualifying continuum, and one that aims to offer a more continuous range of opportunities for progression, we offer a range of modules and courses within an overall PG Certificate/PG Diploma/MSc programme.

The programmes present opportunities to study a range of areas including direct practice in child care, management and leadership within organisations and adult mental health at postgraduate level. In addition, they aim to maintain educational coherence whilst covering diversity and choice.

You can access a range of modules that accumulate into an award, affording the flexibility to work within their own time schedules.

This PG Certificate in Dual Diagnosis is intended to enable practitioners who work in health and social care settings to develop the range of knowledge and skills associated with a higher level competence in a specific area of work.

Nurses will enjoy a number of benefits from pursuing the Dual Diagnosis programme of study at Queen's University Belfast. The course will expand their knowledge and skills through academic and clinical inter-professional development, by acquiring up to date, evidence-based specialist knowledge for application in practice in dual diagnosis. The course will also qualify as part of the Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) registration validation process, which is now required on an annual basis. Beyond this, the three 20 credit modules could also contribute towards a programme of Master's Study within the Postgraduate Nursing framework at Queen's University Belfast. Further information can be provided by the Programme Director.

Please note that this course is not eligible for a Tier 4 visa.

Applied Social Studies - Dual Diagnosis highlights
For Social Work candidates only the Certificate meets all six of the professional requirements in the 'Specific' category in the Professional in Practice framework, and on completion candidates will be conferred with the Specific Award.

Professional Accreditations
•The Applied Social Studies programmes have been accredited by the Northern Ireland Professional in Practice Education and Training Partnership and offer a range of professional awards and requirements at the specific, specialist and leadership levels.

Industry Links
•For all workers, the programme reflects the principles of recent policy in relation to working with drugs and alcohol and mental health within Northern Ireland and the UK contexts. For social workers, the programmes reflect the Department of Health policy in relation to social work and social care training and development (The Personal Social Services Development and Training Strategy, 2006-16), including links with the Northern Ireland Professional in Practice Education and Training Partnership's professional requirements and awards in the three categories: specific, specialist and leadership.

Career Development
•Professional Development For multi-disciplinary applicants the programmes offer relevant CPD opportunities as well as recognised qualifications accredited by the University which will augment their professional development and enhance the development of further opportunities in their chosen field of practice.

Student Experience
•The Dual Diagnosis programme is delivered on a multi-disciplinary basis with tutors from the social work, nursing, mental health and addictions specialist professions.
•Each pathway leader has developed and nurtured their subject proficiency via their own practice, teaching and research in relation to their specialist area and they impart this trilateral expertise to the students via teaching on the Applied Social Studies programme.

Entry requirements

Entrance requirements
Normally a 2.2 Honours degree or above or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University in Social Work or a cognate area. Equivalent qualifications include the Pre-2007 Post-Qualifying Award in Social Work. Where this is not met, applicants must demonstrate that their experience and qualifications enable them to study at postgraduate level through the uptake of references and through completing a reflective assignment on their practice.

Please note that this programme is only open to applicants who are working as Social Care Professionals within NI/UK.

Social work applicants must possess a social work qualification recognised by the Northern Ireland Social Care Council, be registered with the Council and should have completed the Assessed Year in Employment or have at least one year post-qualifying experience if graduated prior to the AYE implementation. It is important that Social Work applicants include their NISCC Social Care Registration Number in the Additional Information section of the application form.

The programme is open to prospective applicants from a range of allied health and social care professions and from those employed within the voluntary and statutory sectors.

All non-social work applicants must hold a 2.2 Honours Degree or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University in a cognate area.

Applicants who do not meet the above entrance requirements are required to satisfy the Programme Director of their suitability for postgraduate study by completing a 2,000-word assignment.

In addition, prospective applicants must have experience of working with clients with a mental disorder and/or substance misuse problems. Where an applicant does not have prior experience of working with people with a mental disorder and /or substance misuse problems they should undertake appropriate preparation before and/or during Module 1 of the training programme.

Closing date for applications: Wednesday 31st July 2019.
Late applications may be considered.

International Students
For information on international qualification equivalents, please check the specific information for your country.

English Language Requirements
Evidence of an IELTS* score of 6.5, with not less than 5.5 in any component, or an equivalent qualification acceptable to the University is required. *Taken within the last 2 years.

International students wishing to apply to Queen's University Belfast (and for whom English is not their first language), must be able to demonstrate their proficiency in English in order to benefit fully from their course of study or research. Non-EEA nationals must also satisfy UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) immigration requirements for English language for visa purposes.

For more information on English Language requirements for EEA and non-EEA nationals see:

If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this degree programme, INTO Queen's University Belfast offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability for admission to this degree.
•Academic English: an intensive English language and study skills course for successful university study at degree level
•Pre-sessional English: a short intensive academic English course for students starting a degree programme at Queen's University Belfast and who need to improve their English.


1 year part-time.

Careers or further progression

Career Prospects
Continuing professional registration in all areas of health and social care is predicated on continuing professional development..

The DoH has highlighted that health, social care workers and social workers demonstrate their competence covered in the curricula of the Applied Social Studies programme and its pathways.

Further enquiries

Dr Anne Campbell 
Applied Social Studies Director

Subjects taught

Core Modules (20 CATS points each)
Assessment and Intervention in Dual Diagnosis
Introduction to Dual Diagnosis
Working with Specific Service User Groups

Assessment method

Assessment methods include written assignments case study material based on candidates' practice.

A variety of assessment methods for the Certificate will be used including written assignments, a reflective analysis on how the student applies relevant theory to their practice in two different cases and an assignment critically reflecting on how the student has enhanced the practice of colleagues drawing on the knowledge in this module.

Application date

How to Apply
Apply using our online Postgraduate Applications Portal and follow the step-by-step instructions on how to apply.

Enrolment and start dates

Entry year: 2019

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