Nursing - Neonatal Nursing

This is a pathway of the MSc/Postgraduate Diploma in Nursing designed to meet the needs of nurses working in neonatal care who wish to undergo a specialist programme. The programme facilitates students to become more knowledgeable and skilled in neonatal nursing including developing skills in implementing evidence-based practice in neonatal care.

The programme consists of taught modules in neonatal nursing, practice modules to obtain competencies in neonatal care and shared modules in research, ethics and practice enhancement with nurses undertaking other specialist programmes. The shared modules are offered using blended learning (part online and part attendance at workshops/tutorials).

The programme is delivered over one academic year and on successful completion of the postgraduate diploma, students can progress to the MSc in Nursing.

Why Choose This Course

The programme is deliver in partnership with neonatal services in Cork University Maternity Hospital, much of this content will be delivered in CUMH by experts in neonatal care.

Entry requirements

There are 11 clinical pathways to the degree of Masters in Nursing, all of which have an exit route available for the award of a Postgraduate Diploma in Nursing. The pathways to degree of Masters including Postgraduate Diploma exit route are all available to view in the College Calendar.


Applicants for this MSc in Nursing, including Postgraduate Diploma exit route, should normally:

1.Hold active registration on a division of the professional register maintained by the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland or be eligible for such registration as required for individual pathways. For the Neonatology Nursing Pathway, applicants must be Registered General Nurses OR Registered Children's Nurses OR Registered Midwives:

2.Have clinical practice experience (and support structures, if applicable) as required for individual pathways. For the Neonatology Nursing Pathway, applicants must have a minimum of six months of post-registration experience (excluding courses) and at least six months experience in the speciality pathway applied for;

3.Applicants must provide written evidence of support from their Director of Nursing/equivalent authorised Nurse Manager stating:

(a) The applicant will be working in the relevant specialist area for the duration of the programme for a minimum of 19.5 hours a week

(b) They will be released from practice to attend the programme requirements

(c) A Clinical Preceptor and/or Clinical Facilitator can support learning in the specialist area of practice for the duration of the programme.

NOTE: In exceptional circumstances applicants who do not fulfil the entry requirements may be recommended for entry to the programme following a review of their individual qualifications and experience by the programme committee. Such applicants may be invited for interview to satisfy the selection committee of their suitability for the programme. Admission of such applicants will be subject to the approval of the School of Nursing and Midwifery.

If you are applying with Qualifications obtained outside Ireland and you wish to verify if you meet the minimum academic and English language requirements for this programme please click here to view the grades comparison table by country and for details of recognised English language tests.


1 year Part-time

Careers or further progression

On completion of the postgraduate diploma, students can progress to an MSc in Nursing.

Further enquiries

Contact details for this course

Dr. Rhona O'Connell

00 353 21 4901466

Sheila Hedderman

00 353 21 4901560

Subjects taught

Theory modules

NU6005 Research Methods (10 credits)*

NU6053 Ethics for Specialist Practice (5 credits)*

NU6070 Practice Enhancement for Nursing and Midwifery (10 credits)*

NU6150 Nursing Management of Neonates (10 credits)

NU6159 High Dependency in Neonatal Nursing (15 credits)

Clinical Practice/Practicum modules

NU6130 Clinical Practice in Specialist Nursing 1 (5 credits)

NU6131 Clinical Practice in Specialist Nursing 2 (5 credits)

*These modules are offered using Blended Learning which are delivered mainly online with attendance at workshops to support student learning. Each module will have its own study guide and content available online.


In order to progress to PART 2 students must pass modules to the value of 60 credits in PART 1.

MH6014 Advanced Research Methods for Healthcare Professionals (10 credits)

NU6073 Dissertation in Nursing (20 credits)

Assessment method

Assessment includes assignments, presentations, end of year exams, on-line activities and competency assessment of clinical practice.

Application date

Applications for academic year 2020/2021 are open.

EU Applicants: UCC operates a rounds closing date system for the majority of postgraduate taught courses, which means offers are made four times a year on a rolling basis. Some courses have one specific closing date, please check your course prospectus page for this information.

The UCC rounds closing dates for postgraduate taught courses are below. Applicants are advised to apply as soon as possible.

Deadline for receipt of full applications:

For all completed applications received by January 10th 2020

Offers will be made by January 24th 2020

For all completed applications received by March 2nd 2020

Offers will be made by March 16th 2020

For all completed applications received by May 1st 2020

Offers will be made by May 15th 2020

For all completed applications received by July 1st 2020

Offer will be made by July 15th 2020

Late applications may be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis for any courses that have remaining capacity.

Non-EU Closing Date: 15 June

Non-EU Applicants: Information for Non-EU applicants may be found on the International Office Website

Enrolment and start dates

Start Date August 2019

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