Studyportals Study cover for Social Policy and Practice (Online)

Social Policy and Practice (Online)

Master Online
12 months
12047 EUR/year
6313 EUR/year
Tuition fee
Apply date
Start date


The Postgraduate Diploma in Social Policy & Practice (online) can be used as a conversion course giving a foundation in social policy for graduates who do not hold a social science degree. It will be of interest to people considering specialised Master programmes, such as Social Work and Social Research, and those who currently work or wish to work in a social policy field in and out of the EU.

Visit the official programme website for more information


In the Social Policy and Practice program from Trinity College Dublin , students will consider the role of social policy in addressing some of the ‘wicked problems’ that contemporary societies face.  Wicked problems are complex interdependent problems such as crime and poverty, which are often resistant to the policy solutions put in place by governments. Students will be exposed to the arguments for developing policy interventions in areas such as social security, health and housing, and the challenges of implementing and changing policy in these areas at a national and global level.

The programme has particular appeal to graduates who wish to pursue a Masters programme in social work, social studies and social policy but who do not have an undergraduate qualification in these fields. This online Postgraduate Diploma can act as a conversion course for such graduates and enhance their application for specialised programme such as a Master in Social Work. The programme will also appeal to applicants from outside Ireland, in particular North America, who wish to study in Ireland’s leading university with expertise in Irish, EU and global social policy.

Career opportunities

The programme attracts individuals from the public, private and community and voluntary sectors who want a sound grasp of the principles that underpin social policy and social service provision. This includes those:

  • delivering and managing social service provision e.g. housing, health, child and family and disability services
  • designing, developing or funding social policy
  • advocating for social policy change
  • who require an understanding of social problems and social policy responses to fulfill their organisation’s corporate social responsibility commitments
  • seeking career change – e.g. the programmes acts as a conversion course for those without a social science degree who want to be a social worker and must apply for a Master in Social Work
  • seeking career development -  e.g. promotion in social services delivery or management
  • interested in further study – graduates have progressed to the one year online M.Sc. in Social Policy and Practice, the Masters in Applied Social Research, Master in Social Work within Trinity and to other programmes in Ireland, UK and abroad.

Programme Structure

Courses included:

  • Principles of Social Policy
  • Contemporary Social Policy Debates and Analysis 
  • Leading Service Human Organisations 
  • Crime and Punishment in Irish Society
  • The Family and Society 
  • Human Rights in Practice

Key information


  • Full-time
    • 12 months
  • Part-time
    • 12 months
    • Flexible

Start dates & application deadlines


IELTS or TOEFL needed




  • Semi-structured
  • Regular optional meetings
  • Proactive tutoring and support
  • Individual work/assignments (with online group discussions)

Academic requirements

GPA admission requirements GPA Your GPA, or Grade Point Average, is a number that indicates how well or how high you scored in your courses on average. Usually a GPA scales between 1.0 and 4.0, however different countries and universities can have different grading systems.
Lower Second Class (required)
GMAT admission requirements GMAT The Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) is a test intended to assess certain analytical, writing, quantitative, verbal, and reading skills in written English for use in admission to a graduate management program, such as an MBA. GMAT contains 4 sections - Analytical Writing Assessment, Integrated Reasoning, Quantitative and Verbal. The score has a range from 200 - 800.

English requirements

IELTS admission requirements IELTS The International English Language Test System (IELTS) tests your English-language proficiency on a scale of 1 – 9. The score refers to the combined average score of 4 subjects (writing, listening, speaking, and reading).
6.5 (required)
TOEFL admission requirements TOEFL® IBT The TOEFL iBT® is given online through the internet at desiganated testing site. The test measures your English-language abilities in an academic setting. The score refers to the total score of 4 subjects (writing, listening, speaking, and reading), each subject has a range of 0 - 30.
88 (required)
PTE Academic admission requirements PTE Academic PTE Academic (Pearson Test of English Academic) is a language test that enables students to demonstrate their writing, listening, speaking, and reading skills when applying to study in English. The score refers to a total score which ranges between 10 and 90.
63 (required)

Other requirements

General requirements

  • Complete official transcript displaying minimum required (2.2) overall grade in Honours Bachelor’s Degree (if there is one)
  • 2 references (at least one should be academic from a third level institution where the applicant has studied and one should be professional from an organisation where the applicant has had relevant work experience) – these should be on official headed paper or the TCD reference template provided and must be dated within the last year.
  • A CV detailing their work experience and education (specifically location and duration) is required, this is for fee purposes.
  • A pro-forma giving us permission to look into the applicant’s previous academic qualifications.
  • Photograph identification.

Tuition Fee

  • International

    12047 EUR/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 12047 EUR per year and a duration of 12 months.
  • EU/EEA

    6313 EUR/year
    Tuition Fee
    Based on the original amount of 6313 EUR per year and a duration of 12 months.

PgDip fees

  • EU/EEA: €6,313 
  • Non-EU/EEA: €12,047


Non-EU applicants who apply by the 15th of April will be considered for the school's International Taught Postgraduate Scholarship. 

Studyportals Tip: Students can search online for independent or external scholarships that can help fund their studies. Check the scholarships to see whether you are eligible to apply. Many scholarships are either merit-based or needs-based.

Getting a Student Visa

This is an online programme. You can attend from the comfort of your chair! So you don't need a student visa!

Our partners

Social Policy and Practice (Online)
Trinity College Dublin