Course Overview

The Diploma in Social Gerontology covers a broad range of economic, social and political theories relating to ageing and examines public policy for older people across a number of fields. It is designed to equip students with the professional and analytical skills necessary to understand age and ageing in an economic, social and policy context and to enhance and develop their careers in age-related fields.


Who is this course intended for?

This course is open to all those with an interest in the study of ageing including; health and social care professionals; those who work with older people in governmental, non-governmental or voluntary organisations; members of active retirement groups or other older people’s groups; older volunteers; those who wish to study issues related to older people for their own interest and enjoyment.

Applications and Selections

Please contact the coordinator for further information.

Who Teaches this Course

Requirements and Assessment

Students attend class for six hours every second Saturday during semesters 1 and 2 of each academic year. All modules are assessed individually. For four of the modules there is an end of semester written examination and a continuous assessment assignment; for the remaining two, there is continuous assessment and a research project.

Key Facts

Entry Requirements

There are no specific entry requirements for the Diploma in Social Gerontology. Candidates who are 21 years or over on or before January 1st of year of entry may gain entry to the programme on the basis of mature years. Candidates under 21 years should meet the minimum matriculation requirements as outlined in the Frequently Asked Questions section.

Additional Requirements


2 years, part-time

Next start date

Please contact the coordinator

A Level Grades ()

Average intake


Closing Date

Please contact the coordinator

Next start date

Please contact the coordinator

NFQ level


Mode of study


ECTS weighting




PAC code

Course Outline

The Diploma is a two-year, stand-alone, part-time programme for mature students. It covers a broad range of economic, social and political theories relating to ageing and examines public policy for older people across a number of fields.


In Year 1 of the programme, there are three modules:

  • Introduction to Social Gerontology
  • Economics of Ageing
  • Social Perspectives on Ageing

In Year 2 of the programme, there are three modules:

  • Rural Gerontology
  • Public Policy for Dependant Older People
  • Research Skills and Research Paper


Learning takes place by means of a blend of formal teaching, guest speakers, a field trip, discussion and students sharing their own knowledge and experience.

Why Choose This Course?

Career Opportunities

Who’s Suited to This Course

Learning Outcomes


Work Placement

Study Abroad

Related Student Organisations

Course Fees

Fees: EU

€970 per year

Fees: Tuition

Fees: Student levy

Fees: Non EU

€1,470 per year

A number of scholarships will be available for applicants who have become unemployed (since January 2008), and wish to update their skills and knowledge. Scholarships will constitute a 50% contribution to programme fees. A separate application process will be required.

Find out More

Áine Ní Léime (Course Coordinator)
Irish Centre for Social Gerontology
Cairnes Building
NUI Galway
T 353 91 495458
F 353 91 512516


Christine Delargy (Development Officer) / Sandra Hallinan (Administrative Assistant)
Irish Centre for Social Gerontology
Cairnes Building
NUI Galway
T 353 91 495461 / 494308
F 353 91 512516

Current students

Karen King

Dip in Social Gerontology

"... I've always worked since the age of 15 years which didn't allow for time to finish out a degree. But as I got older it became a goal to go back to university and finish out what I had started. The Social Gerontology course through the Adult Education Programme gave me the opportunity to get back into an environment that I hadn't been in, in a while, as well as giving me an opportunity to learn a course in my area of interest. I love the Social Gerontology course because I've met other students from different areas of employment who have the same interest in ageing that I do. I would highly recommend this course and its dynamic staff to anyone who is interested in issues facing us as we age quote..."

Past student

Anne Nolan

Dip. in Social Gerontology 2010 - 2012

"The Diploma course has been so interesting, the topics covered are diverse and taught by lecturers who are all experts in their fields and who are extremely approachable and supportive. The class is made up of people from their 20's to their 70's, from many different cultures, which gives a fantastic opportunity to hear about different life experiences that broadens the whole learning experience. I would highly recommend to anyone interested not only from an academic viewpoint but also for anyone with a general interest in ageing in society and the many issues related to older people."