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Human Resource Management (HDip)


Programme Description

The Higher Diploma in HRM provides a structured educational opportunity for early career human resource professionals or to assist those seeking to enter into the HR Profession.  It provides comprehensive coverage of the main role span of the HR professional in today’s organisation and is accredited by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD).

Students gain a broad understanding of the factors to be considered when implementing and evaluating inclusive learning and development, employee legislation, employee relations and reward activities within varying organisational contexts.

Enhances the student’s ability to secure and embed current and critical perspectives through research-led academic content and practically applied programme.

Develops an in-depth understanding of the core functions in the area of HRM and provides insights on the latest developments in HRM.

Achieves a balance between applied business skills and academic scholarship.

Structured self-assessment and interaction with experienced guest speakers and industry peers.

Opportunity to investigate a workplace problem of interest and relevance to the student with the support of an academic mentor.

Students take the following modules:  

  • MG5841 Engaging in Professional Human Resource Practice (5 credits)
  • MG5842 Managing the HR function (10 credits)
  • MG5843 Contemporary Developments in Employment Relations (10 credits)
  • MG5844 Employment Law (5 credits)
  • MG5806 Contemporary Reward Management  (5 credits)
  • MG5807 Business Issues and the Context of Human Resource Management (10 credits)
  • MG5817 Contemporary Developments in Human Resource Development (5 credits)
  • MG5838 Investigating a Business Issue from a HR Perspective (10 credits)

Why Choose This Course

On successful completion of this programme, students should be able to:

  • Demonstrate a sound understanding of the knowledge, skills and behaviours required by HR professionals, whether in a generalist or specialist role
  • Identify and review the business and external contextual factors affecting organisations and to assess the impact of these factors on the HR function.
  • Engage in research and enquiry in order to identify appropriate data sources to support an investigation into an area of HR practice demonstrating analytical and problem-solving skills.
  • Critically discuss the spectrum of HR activity and the role of the HR function in organisations today
  • Explain the major areas of employment legislation and the employment law system, focusing in particular on ways in which day-to-day HR activities are subject to regulation.
  • Demonstrate a broad understanding of the factors to be considered when implementing and evaluating inclusive learning and development (L&D) activities within varying organisational contexts.
  • Contribute to the development of coaching and mentoring activities within organisations.

Skills and Careers Information

12-month programme providing comprehensive coverage of the main role span of the HR professional in today’s organisations.

On commencement of the programme, students receive student membership of the internationally recognised CIPD.  Upon completion, graduates can apply for professional membership of the CIPD.

Mix of research led academics and senior HR professionals teach on the programme.

Strong focus on personal and career development, and the application of theory to the practice of HRM

Graduates of this programme have gone onto work in HR roles nationally and internationally across domestic and multinational companies, as well as in the public sector.

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Practicalities & Assessment

Programme runs from September through to submission of a final management research report in August.

Modules are timetabled on Monday and Wednesday evenings from 6.30 pm to 9.30 pm along with a small number of Saturdays. Online tutorials and activities are also encompassed in the programme.


Full module information is detailed in the section below.


A hybrid approach to assessment is used in this programme.

Majority of assessment is by continuous assessment with a small number of formal examinations.

Assessments methods include online discussion forums, presentations, research proposal, essays, case studies, management research report, learning reflections, continuous professional development plan and exams.

During the programme, students will work individually and in groups.

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Year 1

  • Engaging in Professional Human Resource Practice

    Year 1

    Engaging in Professional Human Resource Practice (AD5841)

    Designed to enable the learner to develop a sound understanding of the HR profession as a professional career path, this module focuses on the knowledge, skills and behaviours required by HR professionals in today's work environment. A distinction is made

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  • Managing the HR Function

    Year 1

    Managing the HR Function (AD5842)

    The purpose of this module is to guide the student in appreciating the longstanding evolution of the HR functional remit and its current day span. The module focuses on evaluating HR's contribution and influence on organisational performance. An emphasis

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  • Contemporary Developments in Employee Relations

    Year 1

    Contemporary Developments in Employee Relations (AD5843)

    The purpose of this module is to enable the student to gain an understanding of the key developments in the theory and practice of employment relations in Ireland. The module aims to build the student's knowledge and experience to make informed and effect

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  • Contemporary Reward Management

    Year 1

    Contemporary Reward Management (MG5806)

    This module guides the student in exploring the diverse aspects of contemporary reward management from a business goal perspective leading to an appreciation of the environment within which the reward specialist plans, evaluates and implements reward stra

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  • Business Issues and the Context of Human Resource Management

    Year 1

    Business Issues and the Context of Human Resource Management (MG5807)

    The focus of this module is on understanding the foundation of organisational structure, environment and its related systems. Students will explore key developments in the business and external contexts within which HR operate through a process of identif

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  • Contemporary Developments in Human Resource Development

    Year 1

    Contemporary Developments in Human Resource Development (MG5817)

    This module is designed to provide students with a conceptual appreciation and practical understanding of Human Resource Development (HRD) in organisations. There is a strong focus on integrating HRD activities with the range of HR policies and systems en

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Entry Requirements

Applicants must have:

  • At least an NFQ Level 7 qualification in any discipline AND
  • At least 2 years professional work experience

Consideration may be given to applicants who do not fully meet the above criteria but who have significant professional experience in a related field such as human resource management, training and development, employment relations, coaching, supervisory and management roles AND at least an NFQ Level 6 qualification. In these circumstances, an interview may form part of the application decision.

View the grades comparison table

Non-EU Candidates

Non-EU candidates are expected to have educational qualifications of a standard equivalent to Irish university primary degree level. In addition, where such candidates are non-native speakers of the English language they must satisfy the university of their competency in the English language. To verify if you meet the minimum academic requirements for this programme please visit our qualification comparison pages.

For more detailed entry requirement information please refer to the International website .

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Application Process

1. Choose Course

Firstly choose your course. Applicants can apply for up to three courses under one application. Details of taught courses are available on our online prospectus.

2. Apply Online

Once you have chosen your course you can apply online at the Postgraduate Applications Centre (PAC). Applicants will need to apply before the course closing date. There is a €50 application fee.

3. Gather Supporting Documents

Scanned copies of the following documents will need to be uploaded to PAC in support of your application. Applicants may need to produce the original documents if you are accepted onto a course and register at UCC.

  • Original qualification documents listed on your application including transcripts of results from institutions other than UCC
  • Any supplementary forms requested for your course.

Please log into PAC for more details.

4. Application processing timeline

Our online application system PAC opens for applications in early November of each year.

Questions on how to apply?

EU students contact

International students contact

Additional Requirements (All Applicants)

Please note you will be required to answer specific additional/supplementary questions as part of the online applications process for this programme. A copy of these additional/supplementary questions are available to view here: CKI02 Supplementary Questions

Non-EU Applications

Applicants who are interested in applying for the programme can also apply online at PAC.

For full details of the non-EU application procedure please visit our how to apply pages for international students.

**All Applicants please note: modules listed in the course outline above are indicative of the current set of modules for this course, but these are subject to change from year to year. Please check the college calendar for the full academic content of any given course for the current year. 

In UCC, we use the term programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools and departments. 

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