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Learning & Development - Consultancy

This tailored course provides effective/holistic consultant training in the area of organisational learning and development for those working as external consultants with clients or as internal consultants in technical or specialist organisational support functions.

The course is led by the Department of Management and Marketing in collaboration with the Department of Applied Psychology and Adult Continuing Education. Upon completion, graduates of this course may apply for graduate membership of the Irish Institute of Training and Development (IITD).

The key aims of the course are:
to equip those working in or progressing towards learning and development consulting roles with the necessary theoretical, professional and practical skills

to develop a multidisciplinary perspective to organisational learning and development consultancy

to develop co-operative learning and dissemination skills

to foster transferable skills that permit students to become lifelong learners in this field

to undertake substantial research on a real life issues in the area.


Course Details
The MA in Learning and Development (Consultancy) is designed to integrate:

learning and development theory
psychological approaches
consultancy theory and practice
business strategy and approaches
IT approaches.

The course will cover key competencies in:
organisational knowledge
learning and development capability
research methods
intervention diagnoses and implementation
interpersonal capabilities.

Upon completion, students will be able to:

critically appraise existing theories, research and practice in this area

transfer research results into practice and implement scientifically-based learning, development and consultancy interventions programmes

undertake substantial research on a real life issues.

Entry requirements

To apply for this course you will: *hold a relevant Level 8 qualification with an overall 2.1 or distinction, and/or * a relevant qualification(s) considered by the selection panel to be equivalent and two years’ experience, or * have substantial experience in a learning and development role.

Where substantial experience is presented in evidence, you will be required to complete an assessment at interview to demonstrate that you meet this criterion.

English language requirement: all applicants whose first language is not English must have attained IELTS Level 6.5 or the equivalent TOEFL score.


2 years. Available in UCC and Dublin. 2 evenings per week plus occasional Saturday workshops from October to June.

Careers or further progression

Upon completion, graduates of this course may apply for graduate membership of the Irish Institute of Training and Development (IITD). Graduates from this course can go on to embed themselves in their own organisation as internal consultants or establish a consulting service providing interventions into organisations.

Starting Salaries
Salaries typically from range from €68,000-€110,000, with unlimited salary potential in delivering your own consultancy business.

Further enquiries

Louise Fleming
Senior Executive Assistant
T: +353 (0)21 490 4720

Subjects taught

Students will take modules to the value of 90 credits as follows:

Year 1 Modules:
AP6800: Organisational Learning and Consultancy (10 credits)

a. Understanding Learning and Development
b. Consultancy cycle (Entry, contracting, investigation, feedback, action, review)
c. Consultancy roles (internal/ external/ change and project managers/leaders)
d. Consultancy perspectives theory
e. Organisational Learning Environment - Business Aspects
f. Impact assessment
g. Learning and development strategy
h. Ethical Issues.

AP6801: Designing and Leading OD Interventions (10 credits)

a. Models for leading planned change, unplanned and emergent change
b. Inter-relationship of the type of change and OD intervention
c. Fundamentals in Project management
d. Implementation Planning
e. Social and Communication Processes in OD.

AP6804: Consultancy Skills (10 credits)

a. Strategic thinking
b. Decision-making skills
c. Diagnosing Skills
d. Contracting
e. Communication Skills and Report Writing
f. Managing politics and culture
g. Relationship Management
h. Knowledge Management.

MG6801: Leadership and Team Development (10 credits)

a. Understanding Leadership
b. Diagnosing and understanding team development needs
c. Designing leadership Development Programmes
d. Designing and leading educational interventions
e. Coaching and mentoring.

MG6808: Current and Critical Issues for Organisational Learning and Consultancy 1 (5 credits)

a. Learning Strategy
b. Instrumentation for diagnoses and development
c. Knowledge management
d. e-learning and Instructional Design
e. Performance Management.

Year 2 Modules:

AP6803: Consultancy Dissertation and Research Methods (40 credits)

a. Individual Research Project
b. Research Strategy
c. Research Design Methods.

MG6809: Current and Critical Issues for Organisational Learning Consultancy 2 (5 credits)
Individual and Organisational learning and change
Case study approach to the instructional design, development and delivery of distance/blended and e-learning distance learning course material
Co-operative approach to organisational learning.


Unique Aspects of the Course
The course has its origins in a working group comprising of IITD, FAS, IBEC, and SkillNet as well as educational partners. The professional body, IITD, progressively highlighted the need for a level 9 qualification in this field in recognition of the changing and challenging array of roles that the learning and development professional was being asked to engage in. Unlike some UK-based equivalent courses, this MA is delivered with a balance between academic and practitioner perspectives, equipping the student with applied experience and knowledge prior to completion of the course. An active network of students from past cycles is open to students of this course.

Assessment method

The course is assessed through continuous assessment (comprising of practical assignments/essays) and examinations. There is also a requirement to produce a dissertation of 25,000 – 35,000 words.

Application date

How Do I Apply?
Adult Continuing Education now welcomes online applications for ACE programmes from Certificate to Masters level. Students can register and pay online quickly and securely by simply clicking the “apply now” button within course description, and filling out the online application form. Once you are registered on UCC360 you can apply for additional courses without needing to register each time.

ACE also welcomes applications by post and an application form can be downloaded and printed from within each course description (on web).

Course fee

€5,000 per academic year.

Enrolment and start dates

Next Intake: 2017

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