Course Overview

Diabetes is a global health emergency with over 600 million people expected to have the condition by 2030, representing 10% of the world’s population. Therefore the World Health Organisation (WHO) has classed diabetes as an epidemic requiring urgent action for both prevention and management. This has been echoed in Ireland’s Health Service Executive national policy and clinical strategy for diabetes. It is a chronic metabolic condition that can cause significant cardiovascular morbidity and mortality if not managed correctly. Central to this management is controlling key physiological indices such as blood sugar, blood pressure and blood lipid levels, as well as promoting health behaviours such as regular exercise, healthy eating and not smoking. Unfortunately achieving these biological targets and lifestyle goals is extremely challenging. Therefore given its growing prevalence and resulting impact on health care resources, there is an urgent need to provide specialist training in diabetes.  This interdisciplinary programme aims to meet this need. 

Learning outcomes

  1. Have a systematic understanding of diabetes informed by the latest scholarship
  2. Have a critical awareness of the current problems / new insights in diabetes.
  3. Demonstrate a range of standard and specialised research tools for diabetes
  4. Develop new skills to a high level including novel and emerging techniques in diabetes
  5. Be able to act in a variety of professional contexts on the topic of diabetes
  6. Be able to take significant responsibility for leading diabetes research
  7. Be able to self-evaluate and take responsibility for continuing academic / professional development in diabetes
  8. Be able to scrutinise and reflect on diabetes social norms and relationships and act to change them

Scholarships Available
Find out about our Postgraduate Scholarships here.

Applications and Selections

Applications are made online via the NUI Galway Postgraduate Applications System

All prospective candidates will be interviewed by telephone or Skype. Selection will be made by the program director in consultation with the head of school, on the basis of the applicant’s written application. To be considered for admission to the programme, applicants must meet the admission criteria outlined above. Applicants will be evaluated on the:

  • Applicant’s academic record
  • Applicant’s level of motivation and suitability based on his/her Personal Statement (submitted as part of the application)
Nursing Diabetes Master’s

Please note, if you are interested in pursuing the Nursing Diabetes Master’s, click here.


Who Teaches this Course

In addition to the faculty of the College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences (CMNHS), the Programme Board for the Masters of Science in Diabetes play an active role in teaching on this course including:

Programme Director:                      
Professor  Derek O’Keeffe Consultant Endocrinologist UHG HSE, Professor College of Medicine,  Nursing & Health Sciences, NUI Galway

Programme Board
Ms Helen Burke, ANP Diabetes, University Hospital Galway, HSE
Dr Marua Dowling, Senior Lecturer, School of Nursing and Midwifery, NUI Galway
Professor Sean Dinneen, HSE Clinical Lead Diabetes, Consultant Endocrinologist UHG
Dr Eva Flynn, General Practitioner, Lecturer, School of Medicine, NUI Galway

Requirements and Assessment

The programme is delivered using a blended learning format, combining on-line learning and face-to-face workshops. The course assessments therefore reflect this approach by using a combination of continuous assessment through examining the students’ online e-tivities, traditional essays, formal module exams and assigned project activities.

Key Facts

Entry Requirements

Successful applicants will possess at least a Second Class Honours, Grade 1 degree in an appropriate clinical or life science degree program. For those who do not hold a primary degree at the required level, a special case will be made if they have demonstrated aptitude for the course material through at least three years of high quality work experience in a relevant field of diabetes health. 

Candidates coming to Ireland from abroad or who do not have a degree from Ireland or the UK will be asked to provide evidence of an acceptable result in one of the recognised English language proficiency tests, e.g., IELTS total score of 6.5.

All prospective candidates will be interviewed by telephone or Skype.

Additional Requirements


1 year, full-time

Next start date

September 2021

A Level Grades ()

Average intake


QQI/FET FETAC Entry Routes

Closing Date

 Please view the offer rounds website.

NFQ level

Mode of study

ECTS weighting




Course code


Course Outline

This programme aims to prepare graduates to effectively contribute to diabetes management through comprehensive academic and research training. 

The course is delivered through blended learning (online content and face to face workshops), with an attendance requirement of approximately 10 days per 4 month semester (please note some workshops may be scheduled at weekends). 

Year 1 Semester 1 & 2 are theoretical based and represents 60 ECTS credits which is equivalent to a Postgraduate Diploma Diabetes at completion (which students can exit with, if they wish, at the end of Semester 2). Semester 3 is research thesis based which builds on the knowledge and skills learned in Semester 1&2 and represents 30 ECTS credits, thus providing a total of 90 ECTS which is the requirement for the awarding of a Masters of Science Diabetes. 

Year 1

Semester 1
GPN10           Diabetes                                                                      10 ECTS
HP8101          Foundations of Health Promotion                               10 ECTS
MD1562         Research Methods for Evidence Based Practice       10 ECTS

Semester 2
MD 578           Lifestyle Risk Factor Modification                                30 ECTS

(Optional exit opportunity with PDipSc Diabetes or continue on for MSc Diabetes.)

Semester 3
MD 577            Research Project                                                       30 ECTS

Why Choose This Course?

Career Opportunities

Specialist training in diabetes at postgraduate level will demonstrate an academic commitment to diabetes care and research, and therefore will allow the graduate to be competitive in pursing future healthcare opportunities.

Who’s Suited to This Course

Learning Outcomes


Work Placement

Study Abroad

Related Student Organisations

Course Fees

Fees: EU

€7,316 p.a. 2021/22

Fees: Tuition

€7,176 p.a. 2021/22

Fees: Student levy

€140 p.a. 2021/22

Fees: Non EU

€15,366 p.a. 2021/22

Find out More

Programme Director
Professor Derek O’Keeffe
Consultant Endocrinologist UHG HSE 
Professor College of Medicine,  Nursing & Health Sciences, NUI Galway
Clinical Science Institute, NUI Galway
T: + 353 91 494 213

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Other programmes also offered within this suite of courses in Preventive Medicine and Cardiovascular Health include:

MSc Preventive Cardiology

MSc Obesity 

MSc (Cardiovascular and Pulmonary Rehabilitation)

PgCert (Cardiac Rehabilitation)

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  • Postgraduate Taught Prospectus 2021

    Postgraduate Taught Prospectus 2021 PDF (11.3MB)