The MA Degree / Post-Graduate Diploma in International Development is designed to prepare participants for work in development in a community, local government, youth/adult education, or NGO setting. The programme offers learners an opportunity to explore contemporary theories of social change and development and to analyse development policies and practices. It builds skills, especially in relation to research, leadership and working with groups and in the planning, management and evaluation of development projects.
Our MA programme is aimed at advanced level participants who hold a primary degree or equivalent qualifications and who have experience of working in a development context. Particularly welcome are leaders, facilitators and managers of community development projects, government and development agency staff, people involved in pastoral ministry, researchers, development educators, volunteers and activists. It should also appeal to academics in the countries of the Global South engaged in teaching and research in development. Some places are also retained for recent graduates who wish to study further before embarking on a career in development work.
Learners can specialise within the programme by choosing from a number of elective areas that are most suited to their area of interest. These ‘specialist pathways’ include ‘Globalisation and Change’; ‘People Centred Development’ and ‘Development and Management’. Participants successfully completing the programme will be awarded an internationally recognised MA in International Development, validated by Maynooth University. Note that this course is also available through the Flexible Distance Learning and Part-Time options.
- To offer a high quality academic training in International Development, examining contemporary theories in the social sciences and development policies and practices.
- To equip participants with a theoretical understanding of debates relating to development, including contrasting arguments and understandings of development processes, and to enhance their abilities to apply such knowledge to policy analysis and practical problem solving.
- To enhance the skills of participants, especially in relation to leadership, motivation and working with groups and in the planning, management and evaluation of development projects.
- To enhance participants’ understanding of social research on contemporary issues in the development field and to facilitate learners to critically analyse these issues in the light of their own primary research and development experience.
This programme is also offered through part time and flexible and distance learning options. Learners can take single modules and build credit for a full award. See here for further information.
This programme is aimed at advanced level participants who hold a primary degree or equivalent qualifications and who have experience of working in a development context. Particularly welcome are leaders, facilitators and managers of community development projects, government and development agency staff, people involved in pastoral ministry, researchers, development educators, volunteers and activists. It should also appeal to academics in the countries of the Global South engaged in teaching and research in development. Some places are also retained for recent graduates who wish to study further before embarking on a career in development work.
Applicants to the PG Dip or MA programme must hold a University Degree, preferably in a development related discipline. Those with a professional background in some form of development work are particularly welcome to apply. In exceptional cases, applicants without a degree may be considered on the strength of their professional work experience and qualifications. Read more about our Recognition of Prior Learning here.
All applicants to the PG Dip / MA in International Development must have a high level of English language ability in reading, writing and study skills, equivalent to a score of 6.5, or higher, in the IELTS test, or a score of at least 580 in the paper-based TOEFL test (PBT), 237 in the computerised TOEFL test (CBT), or 90 in the Internet test (IBT), is required. Applicants for whom English is not their first language will be asked to provide evidence of language ability as tested by the British Council or another registered body.
Full-time learners study the MA full-time over 14 months (or 9 months for a Post-Graduate Diploma). All mandatory modules must be taken, and any 5 elective modules.
|Introduction to Political Economy|
|Gender and Development|
|Managing Development Organisations|
|Introduction to Development Theory and Practice|
|Adult Learning for Development|
|Dissertation (MA only)|
Learners choose from any of the electives listed below to the value of 25 credits.
Please note that some modules may not be available or may have to be re-scheduled to allow for minimum numbers of participants [minimum = 12 participants required for Kimmage DSC classroom modules and minimum of 10 participants required for FDL Online modules].
Assessment is by a combination of continuous assessment, project work, examinations and final essays. Participants who continue towards an MA award are expected to submit a final dissertation (20,000 words) within the time allocated.
Schedule and Validation
Participants for this programme are accepted on to a common post-graduate programme. Participants who meet the required pass standard, having completed all programme work modules, will be permitted to continue towards an MA award (equivalent to 90 credits under the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS)).
Participants who choose to complete their programme having completed all modules, or those who do not meet the minimum standard, will be registered for the award of Post-Graduate Diploma in International Development (60 ECTS credits).
If you chose to undertake just one, or a few, modules, you will receive Single Module/Short Course certificate(s), which will record: the Level of the Award, the module/course(s) completed, results, and ECTS credits.
Both the PG Diploma and the MA in International Development are Level 9 awards under the Irish National Framework of Qualifications and are validated by Maynooth University.
Graduates include personnel in senior management positions in NGOs, Faith-Based Organisations and in local government in Ethiopia, Lesotho Malawi, Tanzania, Timor-Leste, Uganda, Vietnam, and Zambia, UN staff and volunteers in Sierra Leone, Nepal, Afghanistan and Mozambique, community development facilitators in Peru, Liberia, Myanmar and Ireland, as well as human rights and peace activists in Pakistan, Tanzania and Sri Lanka.