Information about PhD programmes in Health Promotion at NUI Galway

If you are considering pursuing a PhD thesis in the area of Health Promotion the following information might be of help.

Finding a supervisor for a PhD

In order to attract a supervisor for a PhD it is necessary to develop an outline of the research that you propose. If you wish to do this you can send us your proposal (see contacts below) and it will be distributed to staff in our Discipline to see if it is of interest to them and if they have capacity to take another PhD student. Links to information on developing an outline for a proposal and links to scholarships available within the University are provided below.

PhD Proposal

The following links provide information about the sections that would be expected to be contained in the PhD Proposal and a number of useful books on this topic. The proposal does not need to be a final one but should give a clear outline of the research you wish to conduct. It could be worked on with a potential supervisor if it is considered sufficiently thought out to progress it and if a member of staff, with expertise in that area, currently has the capacity to support another student.

Admission to a research degree

Admission to a research degree is at the discretion of the potential Supervisor and the Head of School, and is based on the research proposal from the applicant following discussion with the member of staff whose academic area of interest is most appropriate. Application is competitive and the number of places offered will be based on staff resources. 

To be eligible to enter on a programme of study and research for the degree of PhD in Health Promotion, it is expected that applicants would have i) An MA level qualification in either Health Promotion or in a relevant discipline, or provide such other evidence as would satisfy the Head of Discipline AND ii) provide evidence of an IELTS qualification minimum level 7 overall, and in all components. 

Students must apply for a PhD place via the University application system (eg PAC or equivalent), and should include their full proposal in that application along with other required documentation, including a named supervisor (with whom they will have had preliminary meetings and/or discussions).

The application will be considered by members of the PhD programme board  within the Discipline. The student will be invited to an interview (video link will be facilitated for overseas applicants if requested) to which they will present and discuss their proposal.

PhD programme

The Structured PhD Programme allows students to take specific modules in order to gather transferable skills that should assist your research and employment potential. Our Discipline does not offer a full-time taught PhD Programme. Typically, students either register for the research degree on a full-time basis (PAC code: GYP05) and thus work exclusively on their research for a period of at least three years, but more usually four years; or register part-time (PAC code: GYP39) and work while completing the research, which would take at least 4-6 years.

Guidelines for postgraduate research degrees University guidelines: College of Medicine Nursing and Health Sciences guidelines:

Applying for the PhD programme

Application to the PhD programme needs to be made through the Postgraduate Applications Centre. There is no specific deadline for applying for a PhD through PAC: but if you require a scholarship there are deadlines for each round of calls for these (please check the links below as they vary by scholarship). It is best to check out the scholarship guidelines before applying for a PhD via PAC, as some scholarships require that you NOT be currently registered for a PhD.


Information on some Research Scholarships available from NUI, Galway can be found at:

College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies, Galway Doctoral Scholarship Scheme  (note: This scholarship scheme does not cover PhDs in the Discipline of Health Promotion) 
College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences scholarships
The Hardiman Scholarship 

There is also a Government of Ireland Postgraduate Scholarship Scheme offered through the Irish Research Council. It is useful to look through the previous year’s application process to be familiar with the requirements when the next call is opened.


Up to date information on fees is available from the Fees Office

Graduate Studies

Further information is available from the Graduate Studies Office.

English Language Requirements 

Applicants are required to provide evidence of an IELTS qualification minimum level 7 overall, and in all components. 


Dr. Aoife Howard - School of Health Sciences Postgraduate Research Committee. Email: 

Denise Glavin - Discipline of Health Promotion Administrative Assistant. Email: