Entry Points (2021)

Course Overview

The Bachelor of Science (Hons) Intellectual Disability Nursing, is a four year degree pre-registration course focusing on the theory and practice of Intellectual Disability Nursing to support people throughout the life span.

On completion of the course graduates will be eligible to register as an Intellectual Disability Nurse with the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland (NMBI)/An Bord Altranais having obtained a university accredited honours degree.  The course is offered in conjunction with Health Service Executive organisations and groups in the Western region. 

The aim of the course is to prepare practitioners as analytical, reflective and independent thinkers who will practice as competent, accountable, registered nurses who support inclusive and fulfilling lives for people with an intellectual disability.

What is Intellectual Disability Nursing?
Intellectual disability nursing is based on the principles of human rights, equality, person-centredness and empowerment. These principles underpin the achievement of autonomy, active participation, inclusivity for the person and the delivery of quality life, health and social care. Registered Nurses Intellectual Disability (RNID) collaborate with the person with intellectual disability, their family, advocates and members of the multi-professional and multi-agency teams to enable the person with to live within their community. RNIDs develop the requisite values, attitudes, knowledge, skills, and behaviours to facilitate and empower people with intellectual disability to exercise their human rights, make informed decisions and engage in their communities.

Change to Accreditation for September 2022

Subject to incorporation, St. Angela’s College will become one of nine campuses across the new Atlantic Technological University which was designated on 1st April 2022.  This means that St. Angela’s students starting this September will be awarded a qualification from the Atlantic TU.  More details HERE

* Not all on this points score were offered places

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 level in the Leaving Certificate, including Irish, English, Mathematics, a Laboratory Science subject* and any two other subjects recognised for entry purposes.
*Laboratory Science subjects include: Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Physics/Chemistry or Agricultural Science.

Applying as a Mature Applicant:

If you are over 23 by the January of the year of application, you are eligible to apply as a mature student. 
Please note that Mature Nursing applicants are ranked based on their score in an assessment test which is required by the Nursing and Midwifery Board of Ireland (NMBI). For further information please visit www.nmbi.ie

Additional Student Costs

A detailed list of required items will be included to all successful candidates in their CAO; however, it is at each students’ discretion as to how they obtain these items. A detailed list of these items can be found HERE 

Additional Requirements

Students must satisfy Garda/police vetting and medical clearance requirements.

Four Years

Next start date

September 2022

A Level Grades (2021)

See www.nuigalway.ie/alevels

Average intake


QQI/FET FETAC Entry Routes

Closing Date

Please see Important CAO Dates.

NFQ level

Level 8

Mode of study

ECTS weighting


Bachelor of Science (Hons) Intellectual Disability Nursing



Course code

Course Outline

This course is four calendar years in duration.  The practice of nursing is at the heart of the course.  Each year of study of the course is divided into two semesters; (September-December & January-May) and within each semester students will study on average four modules.  Modules are both theory and practice based.  Two thirds of the theory component of the course is devoted to nursing subjects, one sixth to science subjects and one sixth to the social sciences.  In order to meet a variety of learning styles, various methods of teaching are used such as lectures, seminars, group work, role play, workshops and practical skills training.  The learning is assessed through essays; exams; posters; group presentations and by observing students completing nursing skills.

Year 1
  • Applied Biological Sciences 1
  • Applied Social Sciences 1
  • Professional Foundations of Nursing
  • Nursing Practice Skills 1
  • Foundations of Communication
  • Health & Health Promotion 1
  • Concepts and Paradigms of Disability
  • Human Rights & Equality
  • Person-Centredness
  • Intellectual Disability Nursing Studies 1
  • Person Centred and Empowering Support 1
  • Practice Assessment
Year 2
  • Applied Biological Sciences 2
  • Applied Social Sciences 2
  • Nursing Practice Skills 2
  • Health & Health Promotion 
  • Introduction to Research 
  • Principles of Pharmacology 
  • Intellectual Disability Nursing Studies 2
  • Intellectual Disability, Life and Social Skills 1
  • Person Centred and Empowering Support 2
  • Practice Assessment
Year 3
  • Applied Biological Sciences 3
  • Applied Social Sciences 3
  • Nursing Practice Skills 3
  • Health & Health Promotion 3
  • Nursing Leadership 1
  • Older Person Care 5
  • Intellectual Disability Nursing Studies 3
  • Intellectual Disability, Life and Social Skills 2
  • Person Centred and Empowering Support 3
  • Practice Assessment
Year 4
  • Research for Nursing Practice
  • Nursing Leadership 2
  • Intellectual Disability Nursing Studies 4
  • Nursing Practice Skills 4
  • Person Centred and Empowering Support 4
  • Practice Assessment


Further Education

Many graduates choose to undertake further study in order to enhance their nursing practice and career opportunities. We offer a number of Postgraduate options which include:

  • MHSc (Nursing/Professional Studies)
  • MHSc (International Healthcare Management)
  • PDip in Health Sciences (Nursing/Professional Studies)
  • MHSc/PDip/PCert in Disability Studies
  • PDip/PCert in Applied Health and Wellness Coaching
  • Professional Development Standalone Modules

Further details of these Postgraduate opportunities can be seen HERE

Nationwide there are a host of programmes that nursing graduates can pursue after attaining an initial degree.

Why Choose This Course?

Career Opportunities

This course provides students with an academic and professional qualification that allows graduates to travel anywhere in the world and make a difference to the lives of people with intellectual disability. Graduates can decide to work with individuals and groups with intellectual disabilities in the community or to work with families and other professionals. Intellectual disability nurses also gain employment in schools, respite services and supported employment agencies. Graduate nurses often decide after they have gained some initial experience as an RNID to specialise and work with persons who have particular challenges such as complex needs, autism spectrum disorders, behaviour or mental health challenges. Many RNIDs also chose to enter careers in research, teaching, or management.

Who’s Suited to This Course

Learning Outcomes


Work Placement

In each semester students will undertake at least one practice module whereby time will be spent in intellectual disability services, schools learning how to support persons with an intellectual disability in their lives. Students spend over half of the course working in various areas where persons with an intellectual disability live, are educated, work and socialise. In the final year students are working with persons with an intellectual disability in all of the settings outlined above from January to September.

Study Abroad

St. Angela's College can offer Erasmus+ opportunities to BNSc students. Please contact your Year Leader and the International Office for further information.

Related Student Organisations

Course Fees

Fees: EU

€7,181 p.a. (Total Amount)

Fees: Tuition

€4,106 p.a.

Fees: Student Contribution

€3,000 p.a.

Fees: Student levy

€75 p.a.

Fees: Non EU

€12,318 p.a.


Secure online fee payments can be made HERE

Tuition: may be paid by the Irish Government if you qualify for the Free Fees Initiative

Student Contribution: may be aided by the Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI) grant. 
For more, visit www.susi.ie


Find out More

Admissions Office

Kevin McGlynn
Admissions Officer (Acting)
E: admissions@stangelas.ie


                           What Our Students Say


Darielle Brady |   BNSc Intellectual Disability Nursing

This BNSc provided me with the opportunity to expand on the theoretical knowledge gained from lecturers, many of whom had worked in the field of intellectual disability nursing, and apply it to all practical placements experienced over the four years.