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Course Structure & Content

NOTE: The MSc. in Disability Studies will NOT run in 2021-2022

Core Modules (40 ECTS):

  • Introduction to Disability Studies (10 ECTS)
  • Disability, Policy, Law and Ethics (10 ECTS)
  • Research Methods (Qualitative and Quantitative) (10 ECTS)
  • Disability Placements/Disability Applied Projects (10 ECTS) (see below)

Elective Modules (20 ECTS):

  • Contemporary Issues (10 ECTS)
  • Disability and Development (5 ECTS)
  • The Politics of De-Institutionalism (5 ECTS)
  • Perspectives on Deafness (10 ECTS)

Disability Placements / Disability Applied Projects (10 ECTS)

Disability Placements/Disability Applied Projects is a core module that aims to provide students with a unique opportunity to apply their knowledge and gain first-hand experience in the areas of:

  • Advocacy
  • Policy
  • Programme planning and evaluation
  • Research

Two options are available for students:

Option 1 Disability Placements for students with availability to take a 6 week full-time placement between May and July (Year 1).
Option 2 Disability Applied Projects for students with no availability to take a 6 week full-time placement between May and July (Year 1).

A range of public, private and voluntary sector disability organisations leading the change in disability policy and research offer placements to students in this M.Sc. in Disability Studies.

Some of the organisations where students have been placed or have been offered placements are: National Disability Authority, Disability Federation of Ireland, Trinity Centre for People with Intellectual Disabilities, IDS-TILDA, National Parents and Siblings Alliance, Disability Office (Trinity College Dublin), Equality Office (Trinity College Dublin), UN Office of the Special Rapporteur on Disability.

The module also provides students with practical skills on programme planning and evaluation, person-centred planning, and advocacy.

Dissertation (30 ECTS)

The dissertation is a requirement of the M.Sc. in Disability Studies award. It is the final piece of work and the culmination of a course of study for students. The dissertation offers an opportunity to further investigate a topic area within the field of Disability Studies and to develop and manage research skills in an area of interest to the student.
The aim of the dissertation is to develop students' research and writing abilities via a substantial piece of independent work (15,000-20,000 words). Students in the M.Sc. in Disability Studies:

  • Have supervision by researchers at the different academic centres at Trinity College Dublin
  • Have the opportunity to conduct their research in a wide range of disability areas

For a list of dissertation areas and topics explored by our students click here


Two options are available for students: a two-year part-time programme, advisable for students enrolled in the programme while working, and a one-year full-time programme more suitable for international and other students. A Postgraduate Diploma qualification (exit only) is also available for students who complete all the modules except the dissertation.


Full-time and Part-Time Students will attend at least one full day (9am - 6pm) of lectures per week from September to April (Year 1).

Please note that some elective modules are delivered on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays.

Core and Elective Modules

Disability Placements/Disability Applied Projects


Full - Time

Year 1 (September - April)

Year 1 (May - July)

Year 1 (January - August)

Part - Time

Year 1 (September - April)

Year 1 (May - July)

Year 2 (September - April)

For more information, see:

2017 Hilary Term Timetable

Disability Research Seminar Series 2017 -Amended Dates & Venues