PCA Frequently Asked Questions

How can I apply for a Professional Credit Award module(s)?

Apply through the Online Application System.

When should I apply?

 The Online Application System opens in April and the deadline for modules starting in September is end of June. The deadline for modules starting in Janury is end of October. 

What documentation is required with the application?

1. Copy of your passport photo page, driving licence or birth certificate (if you have never been a student of NUI Galway).

2. Copy of original transcript of previous studies taken (if you have never been a student of NUI Galway).

3. A letter of support from your Director of Nursing or Midwifery or Senior Manager.

What is the cost of undertaking a Professional Credit Award module?

There is a non-refundable application fee of €30 per application payable by credit of debit card when applying. The fee for each Professional Credit Award module is €850 (EU students), except for the module "Best Practice in Cervical Smear Taking" which is €550 (EU students). Fees are reviewed each academic year.

Is there funding available?

Funding may be available from your employer, please contact them regarding it. If you need a receipt for your application fee, please print your application preview page. Students who accept a place and are funded, should forward their funding confirmation to fees@nuigalway.ie. Please include your student id number as a reference.

Where do I get further information about the modules?

Select the module title listed on the Professional Credit Award page and you can view a summary of the module.

I qualified many years ago and do not meet the academic entry criteria. Can I still apply?

Yes. If you do not meet the minimum academic entry requirements, you can still apply but you must demonstrate sufficient academic ability to undertake the module. 

I have a question about the entry requirements for a module I wish to apply for, what do I do?

If you have any questions about the entry requirements for a module or any further queries, please email or phone the Programme Director, Lorraine Mee  at lorraine.mee@nuigalway.ie or 091 492830. 

Do I have to be working in the specialist area to apply for Professional Credit Award module?

In general no, but you do need to have access to a clinical practice that allows you to fulfil the module learning outcomes. For example, if you want to do the module ‘Care of the Child and Family with Palliative/Complex Needs’ then you would need to be working in a clinical practice area where you would be caring for these patients and families. There are some modules from specialists’ programmes which would require you to be working in the required specialist clinical area. However, each application is considered individually by the Module Leader and the Programme Director.

How long does a Professional Credit Award module take to complete?

Professional Credit Award modules are completed in one semester of the academic calendar. Semester 1 is from September to mid December and Semester 2 from January to the end of April/May.

How many days will I have to attend college?

We have a one day Orientation prior to the start of the semester, and then you will normally attend college for two days per module.  The preliminary schedule of workshops can be found here. Please note that there might be changes on these dates, so consult the Blackboard when you are registered to the module.

The modules are taken through blended learning. What does that mean?

Blended learning is a term used to describe our learning approach, which is a combination of online learning through a system known as Blackboard, as well as face-to-face learning through workshops on campus.

I’m not great at using technology, how will I manage using Blackboard?

We support students by offering an introduction on how to use Blackboard on the Orientation Day. A number of our students who were initially nervous using Blackboard, find the system easy to use once they are provided with a demonstration.  

I qualified many years ago and haven’t studied in a long time. I am very confident in my clinical abilities but am afraid I will struggle with the academic work. Who will help me on the module?

The Module Leader and Programme Director are available to help you with any academic issues.

Can I continue studying after I complete my Professional Credit Award module?

Yes. You can complete as many Professional Credit Awards as you want over time. You can enrol in one of our Masters/Postgraduate Diplomas in Health Science programmes and request an exemption for your Professional Credit Award module. It is possible to receive an exemption for up to three modules.