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The Graduate Diploma in History is targeted at students who wish to progress to further study, or who wish to develop key transferable skills vital to many and diverse careers. It is designed for students coming to history from a non-cognate subject, those who did not live up to their potential in their BA, as well as those returning to education after a long period of absence. We value and promote a strong work ethic, intellectual curiosity, and the importance of independent learning. These values are instilled within a robust but supportive environment, with a particular focus on encouraging an awareness of broad historiographical trends and the development of the skills required to assess and analyse different forms of primary evidence. The learning environment stresses the importance of resesarch, critical and analytical thinking, and of making informed challenges to prevailing ideas, interpretations and approaches. Small group seminars are vital to the programme's design; it is here, in a very structured and active learning environment where students hone their ability to present, defend and question historical knowledge. The learning trajectory is supported through the use of weekly research journals, presentations, essays and book reviews. The taught elements of the programme are intended to build and develop the skill set and confidence of learners to equip them to undertake the research project. A feature of the Graduate Diploma Programme is that students who perform strongly in the first semester can apply to be transferred to the MA. The MA is completed within the same academic year.

There are two core modules. Renaissance Europe develops your awareness of historiography, while Making History deals with the processes involved in handling and analysing primary sources. Students take one undergraduate module in semester 1 (subject to availability). In addition to the taught courses, you will work on a Graduate Research Project over the course of semesters 1 and 2 (normally a dissertation of 8,000 words).

Programme Outcomes

Ability to survey in a critical and analytical fashion the historiography of given subjects

The ability to survey a body of scholarship written over time, to offer an informed critical and analytical commentary, and to identify fertile areas for further research.

Awareness of a number of major historiographical trends since the nineteenth century.

The confidence to work with and handle a range of primary sources, especially those relevant to the chosen research subject of the learner.

Development of a strong work ethic and awareness of the effort required to succeed at graduate level.

Drive to work independently but to thrive on and respond to the feedback of peers and the teaching staff within a structured environment.

The ability to take an embryonic idea for a research project and develop it into a successful 8,000-word piece of scholarship. A range of skills will be required, including: planning, historiographical awareness, analytical ability to handle primary sources, & ability to communicate findings.

Entry requirements

A good undergraduate degree (at least a 2:2). Applicants whose first language is not English should demonstrate English language proficiency of IELTS 7.0 (no band less than 6.5 in each element), or equivalent.


Z160: 1 year full-time, Z161: 2 years part-time.

Careers or further progression

Careers & Employability
Some graduates of the Graduate Diploma go on to develop their academic careers, applying for places on MA programmes or teacher training programmes. However, many more see the Graduate Diploma as a valuable addition to their undergraduate qualification – a fourth year in which to deepen critical analytical abilities which are valued so highly by employers.

Further enquiries

Contact Name: Sandy Wilkinson
Contact Number:+353 (0)1 716 8371

Subjects taught

The structure of the Diploma is as follows:

Semester 1
4th level core course, Renaissance Europe 10 Credits
3rd Level Option (subject to availability), 10 credits

Semester 2
4th Level Core Course, Making History Documents 10 Credits

In addition to the taught courses, students will also work on a Graduate Research Project over the course of semester 1 and 2. This Project will be worth 30 credits. The Research Project will normally be a dissertation of 8,000 words including footnotes but excluding bibliography and appendices.

Application date

Full Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. No

Part Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. No

The Graduate Diploma programme is aimed primarily at students who have an undergraduate qualification in a non-cognate discipline or students who are returning to education after a long period of absence.

The following entry routes are available:

Grad Dip History FT (Z160)

Duration 1 Years
Attendance Full Time
Deadline Rolling * Apply Now

Grad Dip History PT (Z161)

Duration 2 Years
Attendance Part Time
Deadline Rolling *

* Courses will remain open until such time as all places have been filled, therefore early application is advised

Enrolment and start dates

Next Intake:2018/2019 September

Remember to mention gradireland when contacting institutions!