Course Overview

NOTE: This course is not on offer for entry 2023.

The Postgraduate Certificate in Health Promotion offers students a unique opportunity to further their knowledge of cardiovascular health and diabetes prevention. The programme has been jointly developed by Croí, the west of Ireland Cardiology Foundation, the Irish Heart Foundation and Diabetes Ireland. It aims to enhance health professionals understanding of determinants of health, prevention, lifestyle factors and  associated patterns of inequality. It is particularly suited to health professionals working in nursing, public health, pharmacy, physiotherapy, medicine, and the health and weight loss industry. 

Designed for healthcare professionals, the programme equips students with an in-depth understanding of how to critically assess the evidence base, understand national and international approaches to the promotion of cardiovascular health and the prevention of diabetes, and appreciate the role of advocacy in influencing health and environmental (public) policies.

Course participants will gain skills and competencies for effective implementation of Health Promotion interventions and project management. 

The programme comprises three modules. The first two modules include participation in workshops and self-paced instructional materials with assignments for independent study, while the third module focuses on project work.

1.  Concepts and Principles of Health Promotion

This module includes:

  • Definitions of health and Health Promotion
  • Health Promotion programme development
  • Current issues and discourse in Health Promotion policy and practice
  • Communication training and facilitation skills. 

2.  Specialism module

This module includes:

  • The determinants of cardiovascular health and type 2 diabetes
  • Lifestyle factors and health promotion interventions
  • Advocacy and policy in the promotion of cardiovascular health and the prevention of type 2 diabetes
  • Promoting cardiovascular health through behaviour change
  • Skills and competencies for effective practice. 

3.  Project development

This module includes

  • Students’ designing a Health Promotion Intervention in the area of cardiovascular health and the prevention of type 2 diabetes, working with a specific population group.

Scholarships available
Find out about our Postgraduate Scholarships here.

Applications and Selections

Applications are made online via the University of Galway Postgraduate Applications System

Who Teaches this Course

Prof. Saoirse Nic Gabhainn
B.A., M.A., Ph.D.
Professor of Health Promotion
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Dr Margaret Hodgins
BA (Mod), MA, PhD
Senior Lecturer
Áras Moyola
National University of Ireland Galway
University Road
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Dr. Mary Lavelle
B.A., M.A., Ph.D
Lecturer Above The Bar
Health Promotion
School of Medicine
NUI Galway
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Requirements and Assessment

Key Facts

Entry Requirements

  1. A primary degree. 
  2. Each applicant is assessed individually on relevant professional experience, level of motivation and suitability as per personal statement submitted via online application.

Additional Requirements

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL)


1 year, part-time

Next start date

This course is not on offer for entry 2023.

A Level Grades ()

Average intake


QQI/FET FETAC Entry Routes

Closing Date

(This course is not on offer for entry 2023.)

NFQ level

Mode of study

ECTS weighting




Course code


Course Outline

Course duration
The Postgraduate Certificate in Cardiovascular Health and Type 2 Diabetes Prevention is a part-time course of one academic year duration. The programme runs from September to the following May.

Continued Professional Development
This is a Level 9 programme comprising of 30 European Credit Transfer System (ECTS) points in total. Each module carries 10 ECTS points. Successful graduates who wish to apply to the MA/Postgraduate Diploma in Health Promotion programme, offered by University of Galway, can carry forward up to 20 ECTS. 

Course delivery
This is a blended learning programme, with a combination of teaching techniques employed to support learning. This includes participatory workshops, project work, self-paced learning using instructional materials, as well as other resources such as articles, websites and research reports. Academics in the Discipline of Health Promotion, together with contributions from practitioners in the specialist field of study, deliver the lectures and workshops. This course takes place at the University of Galway campus.

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Why Choose This Course?

Career Opportunities

Many of the students who have successfully completed this course in previous years are already in employment and wanted to up skill or broaden their understanding of the wider determinants of health. They come from a diverse range of backgrounds such as pharmacy, nursing—both general and specialised, general practice, dietetics, health marketing and the health and wellbeing sector. Their reasons for pursuing this course are varied. Some students want to enhance the role they were already in by acquiring greater knowledge of the causes and prevention strategies used in the promotion of cardiovascular health and diabetes prevention, while others want a career change and to get more involved in community and national projects in Health Promotion. The communication and facilitation skills taught on the course have been highlighted by previous students as being a particularly important element of the course, as well as the skills learned in planning, designing, implementing and evaluating a Health Promotion programme.

Some of our past students work in national organisations such as the Irish Heart Foundation and Diabetes Ireland.

Who’s Suited to This Course

Learning Outcomes

Transferable Skills Employers Value

Work Placement

Study Abroad

Related Student Organisations

Course Fees

Fees: EU

€2,028 p.a. 2021/22

Fees: Tuition

€1,958 p.a. 2021/22

Fees: Student levy

€70 p.a. 2021/22

Fees: Non EU


Ruth Garahy |   Pharmacist

Before I started this certificate, I had lots of experience in primary care, (pharmacist for 11 years) but this course provided me with a fascinating overview of all the socioeconomic issues that affect our healthcare outcomes. I gained an understanding of what health promotion actually is: the intersection of medicine, policy, law, economics and sociology, and how these all affect the management and prevention of chronic illnesses such as diabetes. As the year progressed, the course became more practical and we heard from a diverse range of speakers from Croí etc. which cemented my belief that this course will benefit my practice and my patients for years to come. I would recommend this course to anyone who has an interest in the future of healthcare and how to best manage the current epidemic of diabetes.

John Treanor |   Health and Wellbeing, Dublin Simon Community

Having worked previously in a private capacity in nutrition and health I could see there was a growing problem with non-communicable diseases in Irish society. This is when I became interested in the concept of Health Promotion in a broader sense. Through taking part in this course I have learned a massive amount about public policy and identifying barriers to health, designing interventions to suit specific population groups and the importance of monitoring and quantifying your effects and outcomes. I have progressed in my career and am now working on large interventions in health and wellbeing for homeless populations in Dublin’s Simon Community. Overall this course has strengthened my working prospects, skill-set in the area and confidence.

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