Entry Points (2022)

Course Overview

This programme is designed to provide students with an in-depth knowledge and understanding of the key trends and changes in family life and child and youth development, complimented by in-depth sociological and political studies. There are two underpinning beliefs built into the programme, one being that children and young people need to be valued, listened to and enabled to reach their full potential and the other that at some stage, all families, no matter who they are need help and support to function.

Given this, the programme places specific emphasis on developing the knowledge and practical skills required to work in the youth work, family support and community development sectors. The policy and practice focus of the programme is enhanced by the study of sociology, which builds knowledge about society and how it shapes individuals and social relationships, and political science, which ensures a solid understanding of key aspects of political life and fundamental ideas such as freedom, democracy and equality.

The core strengths of this programme include: a nine-month work placement in year three; small group teaching delivered in the Institute for Lifecourse and Society, the University’s flagship Institute for applied social science research that informs policy and practice (www.nuigalway.ie/ilas); and teaching that is led by professionals working in practice, and staff from the School of Political Science and Sociology and the internationally recognised UNESCO Child and Family Research Centre (www.nuigalway.ie/childandfamilyresearch).

Applications and Selections

Who Teaches this Course

Requirements and Assessment

Key Facts

Entry Requirements

Minimum Grade H5 in two subjects and passes in four other subjects at O6/H7 Grades in the Leaving Certificate, including Irish, English, another language, and three other subjects recognised for entry purposes.

Additional Requirements


4 years

Next start date

September 2023

A Level Grades (2022)


Average intake


QQI/FET FETAC Entry Routes

21 (More Info)

Closing Date
NFQ level

Mode of study

ECTS weighting




Course code

Course Outline

This course is delivered through a series of modules centred around child, youth and family studies. These modules introduce students to the disciplines of political science, sociology, public and social policy, economics, psychology, the creative arts, information technology and law. Many of the modules have a strong focus on personal and professional skills development, equipping students with both research skills and the range of skills necessary to work in the sector.

Year 1
  • Introduction to Child, Youth and Family Studies
  • Introduction to Politics and Sociology
  • Practising Sociology and Politics
  • Personal and Professional Development
  • Applied Public Policy
  • Applications Programming
  • Youth Development
  • Development Psychology
  • Concepts and Practices of Politics and Sociology
  • Applied Economics
  • Internet and Web Development
Year 2
  • Youth Work Principles and Practice
  • Understanding Family and Society
  • Economics of Public and Social Policy
  • Promoting Mental Health and Well-Being in Families
  • Child, Youth and Family Service Provision in Ireland
  • Communities in Focus
  • Professional Skills
  • Social Issues and Policy Responses
  • Research Methods
Year 3
  • Work Placement
Year 4
  • Connecting Research, Policy and Practice in Children’s Services
  • Connecting Research, Policy and Practice
  • Child Protection and Welfare
  • Comparative Public Policy
  • Project Planning and Evaluation
  • Family Law
  • Issues in Contemporary Families
  • Youth and Society
  • Advocacy, Diversity and Equality
  • Option Modules

Equivalent modules may be substituted from time to time for any of the above under exceptional circumstances and when approved by the College of Arts, Social Sciences, and Celtic Studies

Curriculum Information

Curriculum information relates to the current academic year (in most cases).
Course and module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Glossary of Terms

You must earn a defined number of credits (aka ECTS) to complete each year of your course. You do this by taking all of its required modules as well as the correct number of optional modules to obtain that year's total number of credits.
An examinable portion of a subject or course, for which you attend lectures and/or tutorials and carry out assignments. E.g. Algebra and Calculus could be modules within the subject Mathematics. Each module has a unique module code eg. MA140.
Some courses allow you to choose subjects, where related modules are grouped together. Subjects have their own required number of credits, so you must take all that subject's required modules and may also need to obtain the remainder of the subject's total credits by choosing from its available optional modules.
A module you may choose to study.
A module that you must study if you choose this course (or subject).
Required Core Subject
A subject you must study because it's integral to that course.
Most courses have 2 semesters (aka terms) per year, so a three-year course will have six semesters in total. For clarity, this page will refer to the first semester of year 2 as 'Semester 3'.

Year 4 (60 Credits)

Optional SP3197: Thinking Politically: The Power of Ideas - 5 Credits - Semester 7
Optional SP404: Development And Change - 5 Credits - Semester 7
Optional SP3208: Contemporary American Politics - 5 Credits - Semester 7
Optional SP3199: Care, Power, Information - 5 Credits - Semester 7
Required SP4125: Research, Policy and Practice 1 - 10 Credits - Semester 7
Required SP2112: Safeguarding Children, Young People and Vulnerable Adults (Approved) - 5 Credits - Semester 7
Required SP240: Family Law - 5 Credits - Semester 7
Required SP3195: Equality, Diversity and Collective Action - 5 Credits - Semester 7
Optional SP705.I: Revisiting Violence - 5 Credits - Semester 7
Optional SP3101: 'Community' - Significance and Change - 5 Credits - Semester 8
Optional SP3129: Sexualities, Genders and Diversities - 5 Credits - Semester 8
Optional SP618: Welfare Words: Key Words in Social Work & Social Welfare - 5 Credits - Semester 8
Optional SP3193: Introduction to Social Work - 5 Credits - Semester 8
Optional SP701: Children & Young People in Families Today - 5 Credits - Semester 8
Optional SP705.II: Revisiting Violence - 5 Credits - Semester 8
Optional SP3101: 'Community' - Significance and Change - 5 Credits - Semester 8
Optional WS821.II: Thinking Differently: European Women's Studies - 5 Credits - Semester 8
Required SP4126: Research, Policy and Practice 2 - 10 Credits - Semester 8
Required SPL312: Issues in Contemporary Families - 5 Credits - Semester 8
Required SP3137: Youth and Society - 5 Credits - Semester 8
Optional SP692: Minor dissertation - 5 Credits - Semester 8
Optional SP3150: Teaching Methods for the Politics and Society Classroom - 5 Credits - Semester 8
Optional SP3134: Human Rights Advocacy: Concepts, Law and Practice - 5 Credits - Semester 8

Further Education

For students who wish to pursue further education and training, graduates with this degree will be eligible to apply for a range of postgraduate courses on offer at NUI Galway and other third level institutions. Post graduate courses that students will be eligible to apply for in NUI Galway include:

  • MA in Social Work
  • MA in Family Support Studies
  • MA in Gender, Globalisation and Rights
  • MA in Public Advocacy and Activism
  • LLM In International Human Rights

Postgraduate courses that graduates of this degree will be eligible to apply for in other third level institutions include:

  • Masters in Community and Youth Work (NUI Maynooth)
  • Masters in Youth Work, Community Arts and Sports Studies (UCC)
  • MA in Child, Family and Community Studies (DIT)
  • LLM in Child and Family Law (UCC)
  • MA in Child, Youth and Community

The BA also provides excellent foundational preparation for the BA in Applied Policing, the programme delivered to Garda trainees by the Garda College in Templemore.

Why Choose This Course?

Career Opportunities

This degree programme will offer a variety of career opportunities. Upon graduation, students will have the necessary knowledge and skill-set to apply directly for positions in the community, non-profit and statutory sector. With an emphasis throughout the programmes on practice and public policy, as reflected in the modules delivered, students are well-placed to seek employment in the following areas:

  • Youth work
  • Family Support
  • Community Development
  • Public Administration
  • Research

The BA Child, Youth and Family Placement programme in 2018-2019 is supported by the following organisations


Who’s Suited to This Course

Learning Outcomes

Transferable Skills Employers Value

Work Placement

Study Abroad

Related Student Organisations

Course Fees

Fees: EU

€5,738 p.a. 2023/24

Fees: Tuition

€2,598 p.a. 2023/24

Fees: Student Contribution

€3,000 p.a. 2023/24

Fees: Student levy

€140 p.a. 2023/24

Fees: Non EU

€17,360 p.a. 2023/24

EU Fees are comprised of Tuition + Student Contribution Charge + Student Levy** €140.  **Payable by all students and is not covered by SUSI.  Further detail here.

Find out More

Dr. Deirdre Hardiman
Programme Director
T: +353 91 495203
E: deirdre.hardiman@universityofgalway.ie

Dr. Helen Casey
Programme Director
E: helen.casey@universityofgalway.ie



  • Undergraduate Prospectus 2023

    Undergraduate Prospectus 2023 PDF (8.4MB)

  • Quick Guide to Courses 2023

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  • A Level Quick Guide 2023

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  • CAO Brochure

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  • Postgraduate Prospectus 2023

    Postgraduate Prospectus 2023 PDF (20.6MB)

  • QQI / FETAC Pathways Guide

    QQI / FETAC Pathways Guide PDF (45MB)