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Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Sociology

Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Sociology
Honours Bachelor Deegree

CAO points history:
Course code:
4 Years

† Indicates that students admitted to the programme are required to undergo a Garda Vetting process.
Course leader:
Dr. Elaine Kinsella
Email: Tel:
+353 61 233618
Tel: 00 353 61 202015

About You

If you are the type of person who is interested in investigating the reasons behind why people behave the way they do, and in using your knowledge to address important social issues, then this course will be interesting for you.

Why Study Psychology and Sociology at UL?

This course allows you to examine a fascinating variety of human behaviours and social interactions, and opens up a wide variety of career opportunities. This combination of disciplines offers you the opportunity to develop and deepen your knowledge and understanding of how and why humans think and behave the way they do, and how they shape and are shaped by the society they live in.

The programme will help you to understand and explore the complexities of the mind and society. In the final year you will have the opportunity to undertake a research project on a chosen subject in Psychology. By the end of this course you will have the knowledge and research skills essential for a career in Psychology. The BA is accredited by the Psychological Society of Ireland, and will allow you to progress in a career in Psychology.

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What you will study

What You Will Study

This four year honours degree in Psychology & Sociology provides you with a broad introduction to both disciplines in the first year, followed by coverage of the core areas of Psychology required for accreditation including: social, developmental, personality, biological and cognitive psychology as well as research methods and statistics. In your final year of study you will specialise in advanced areas of both Psychology and Sociology, in topics including multiculturalism, the media and applied psychology, while undertaking your own independent research project in an area of Psychology. You will also have an opportunity to undertake study abroad as well as work in an area relevant to psychology or sociology during the course of your studies.

Off-campus programme

In semester 4 and 5 you will participate in an off campus programme. The off- campus programme typically consists of a period of paid employment in a sector related to the field of study, voluntary work and a period of university study in either Europe or North America as part of a Socrates or other exchange programme.

  Semester 1   Semester 2 Summer
PS4021 Psychology: Theory and Method 1 PS4032 Psychology and Social Issues  
PS4031 Psychology and Everyday Life PS4042 Psychology: Theory and Method 2  
PS4041 Practical Psychology 1 PS4052 Practical Psychology 2  
SO4001 Introduction to Sociology SO4002 Gender: Sociological Perspectives  
SO4063 Introduction to Social Research Methods SO4032 Introduction to Sociology 2  
  Semester 3   Semester 4 Summer
PS4011 Social Psychology 2 CO4220 Cooperative Education 1  
PS4022 Psychology of the Personality      
PS4035 Biological Basis of Human Behaviour      
PS4043 Emprical Psychology 1      
SO4073 Classic Sociological Theory      
  Semester 5   Semester 6 Summer
OE4310 Off Campus/External Academic Placement 3 PS4012 Human Development and the life span 1  
    PS4033 Research Methods  
    PS4034 Emprical Psychology 2  
    PS4037 Cognition 1  
    SO4036 Contemporary Sociological Theory  
  Semester 7   Semester 8 Summer
PS4045 Advanced Research Methods PS4408 Final Year Project 2 (Psychology and Sociology)  
PS4407 Final Year Project 1 (Psychology and Sociology) SO4088 Sociology of Globalisation  
SO4037 Qualitative Methods for Sociological Research   Elective - Choose Min 1 Max 1  
  Elective - Choose Min 1 Max 1 SO4008 Sociology of Media Audiences  
PS4027 Applied Psychology SO4078 Inequaliry and social exclusion  
PS4087 Political Psychology SO4108 Sociological Approaches to Gender and multiculturalism  
PS4107 Abnormal and Clinical Psychology SO4118 Sociology of Gender and Popular Culture  
  Elective - Choose Min 1 Max 1 SO4178 The Sociology of the Body  
SO4057 Sociology of Health and Illness SO4208 Sociology of Love and Its Dark Side  
SO4047 Sociology of the welfare state   Elective - Choose Min 1 Max 1  
SO4067 Sociology of Work PS4047 Social Psychology 2  
    PS4108 Approaches to Social Identity  

Frequently Asked Questions

In general, there are 50 places in total for the BSc and 30 places for the BA. Of these, for each course around 6 places will be dedicated to mature entry and access students. 

Accreditation is the official recognition of the degree by the professional psychological body in Ireland - the Psychological Society of Ireland - PSI.  Your degree must be accredited to allow you to pursue a career as a professional Psychologist.  Both the BSc and the BA are fully accredited by the PSI.   

Psychology has many subdisciplines, including developmental, biological, cognitive, personality and social psychology.  You will take modules in all of these areas and, in addition, from the start of the course you will undertake research methods training in the form of laboratory classes, statistics and group work. By the end of your course you will be able to undertake a piece of independent research in a topic of your choosing under the supervision of a member of staff. Programme structures for the B.Sc. and the B.A. are below.

Both degree programmes are four years long. Each term, students take five modules with associated tutorials, labs and coursework.  The subject matter is interesting and varied and although the course is demanding, students find it engaging and rewarding. 

During the degree students have the opportunity to spend six months in a 'co-op' work placement related to psychology. Previous placements have been in healthcare, research and overseas teaching in numerous countries across the globe.  The 'exchange' programme is a further six months spent in another university abroad.  While many students spend this in Europe, others travel to other parts of the world including the US and Canada.  During this placement students are encouraged to take classes in psychology, though their choice of subjects is much wider than this.  

Psychology is a broad subject, involving elements of biology and physiology, mathematics and statistics as well as sociology and philosophy.  However (other than the basic entry requirements for the course) we do not expect students to have taken particular subjects at Leaving Certificate level.  All the course material will be taught from first principles and covered exhaustively within the course.

Look at the careers open to psychologists and ask your guidance counsellor for further information.  Careers in psychology are varied, from Clinical and Counselling Psychology to Health Psychology, Educational Psychology and careers in psychological research.  Even if you do not want to pursue a career in psychology, bear in mind that a degree in psychology is very marketable and will provide you with transferable skills which employers will be keen to recruit.  The Psychological Society of Ireland offer Psychology Career Guidance.

Lectures on some modules will be open to other degree pathways.  However, methods classes and practical laboratory classes will be for psychology students only.

Mature applicants (over 23 years of age at application) apply directly through the CAO. Applications for the mature places on this course are judged on the basis of applicants' readiness to undertake a psychology degree. Previous life and work experience are considered, as is personal suitability for the course. Having some understanding of the subject and a clear career goal would also be an advantage. More information about mature and Access student applications can be found at the Admissions Office webpage. In general, six places on each course are reserved for mature and access students.

Mature student applicants relevant work experience:

Mature applicants are asked to write a short essay demonstrating 'readiness to study for a psychology degree.' Previous life or work experience will likely be relevant. In terms of previous work experience, very few applicants will have worked in a directly relevant area (as they usually need a psychology degree for this first). We look for the applicant to make a case for the relevance of their experience to the study of psychology. We wouldn't discourage anyone from applying if they haven't any directly relevant work experience, but we do encourage them to think about how they might present this in their application.

Entry requirements

CAO points history 530
Minimum grades

Applicants are required to hold at the time of enrolment the established Leaving Certificate (or an approved equivalent) with a minimum of six subjects which must include: Two H5 (Higher level) grades and Four O6 (Ordinary level) grades or four H7 (Higher Level) grades. Subjects must include Mathematics, Irish or another language, and English.

Note: Grade F6 in Foundation Mathematics also satisfies the minimum entry requirements. Foundation Maths is not reckonable for scoring purposes

Subject requirements
Additional considerations

Mature Students

Applications are especially welcome from mature students, that is those over the age of 23 on 1 January of the year of entry. Mature applicants must apply through the Central Applications Office (CAO) by 1 February.

Application information for mature student applicants (PDF)

QQI Entry

Certain QQI Awards are acceptable in fulfilling admission requirements for this programme. Go to the UL Admissions QQI page for a full list of modules.

Non-EU Entry Requirements

How to apply

Where are you applying from? How to Apply
Ireland Irish students must apply to UL via the CAO. More information can be found here. 
The UK  Students who have completed their A-Levels can apply to UL via the CAO. More information can be found on the Academic Registry website. 
The EU EU students can apply to UL via the CAO. More information can be found on the Academic Registry website.
Non-EU country If you are applying outside of the EU, you can apply for this degree here.

Fees & funding

Student course fees are broken into three components - Student contribution, Student Centre Levy and Tuition Fees.

A number of illustrative examples of fees for this course based on the current fee levels have been set out in the tables below.

An explanation of the components, how to determine status and the criteria involved is provided below the examples as is a list of possible scholarships and funding available.

EU Students with Free fees status in receipt of a SUSI grant

HEA paysTuition Fees€2,558
SUSI paysStudent contribution€3,000
Student paysStudent Centre Levy€92

EU Students with Free fees status not in receipt of a grant

HEA paysTuition Fees€2,558
Student paysStudent contribution€3,000
Student paysStudent Centre Levy€92

Students with EU fee status not in receipt of a grant

Student paysTuition Fees€2,558
Student paysStudent contribution€3,000
Student paysStudent Centre Levy€92

Non-EU Students

Student paysTuition Fees€12,178
Student paysStudent Centre Levy€92

Student course fees are comprised of three components:

Student Contribution

Annual charge set by the government for all full-time third level students. All students are liable unless they have been approved for a grant by Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI). Please refer to to determine your eligibility for a grant and for instructions on how to apply. The curent student contribution is set at €3000.

Student Centre Levy

All students are liable to pay the Student Centre Levy of €90. Please note the Student Centre Levy is not covered by the SUSI Grant.

Tuition Fees

These are based on Residency, Citizenship, Course requirements.

Review the three groups of criteria to determine your fee status as follows

  1. Residency
    • You must have been living in an EU/EEA member state or Switzerland for at least 3 of the 5 years before starting your course
  2. Citizenship
    • You must be a citizen of an EU/EEA member state or Switzerland or have official refugee status
  3. Course Requirements (all must be met)
    • You must be a first time full-time undergraduate (Exceptions are provided for students who hold a Level 6 or Level 7 qualification and are progressing to a Level 8 course in the same general area of study).
    • You must be undertaking a full-time undergraduate course of at least 2 year’s duration
    • You cannot be undertaking a repeat year of study at the same level unless evidence of exceptional circumstances eg serious illness is provided (in which case this condition may be waived)

Depending on how you meet these criteria your status will be one of the following -

More information about fees can be found on the Finance website


These scholarships are available for this course

Title Award Scholarships available
The Noel Ryan Scholarship
€2,000 per year for 4 years
1 per year

Your future career

Employability skills from this degree

  • Handling of data and statistics
  • Solving problems
  • Working in teams
  • Analytical research
  • Written and verbal communication, including report writing and presentations
  • IT skills

The year after graduating with this degree

The University of Limerick Graduate Outcomes Survey (GOS) is a detailed review of the employment outcomes of UL graduates conducted annually by the University and supported by the Higher Education Authority (HEA). The survey forms part of a nationwide review of the employment outcomes of Irish University Graduates. The table below illustrates a five-year trend for UL graduate employment levels and location the year after graduation.

Employed in Ireland Employed abroad Further study Not available Seeking employment No. of responses Total no. of graduates Year
35% 15% 40% 5% 5% 20 22 2014
33% 14% 48% 5% 0% 21 22 2015
22% 6% 61% 0% 11% 18 27 2016
27% 6% 67% 0% 0% 15 24 2017
35% 0% 65% 0% 0% 17 22 2018

Further Study Option

Job titles for graduates with this degree

Graduates progressing directly into employment take up a wide variety of roles. The following provides a sample of initial roles listed on the Graduate Outcomes Survey by graduates approximately one year after graduation:

  • ABA Tutor
  • Accounts Representative
  • Assistant Facilitator
  • Assistant Psychologist
  • Business Analyst
  • Customer Care Agent
  • Employment Facilitator
  • Family Activities Worker
  • Head Office Receptionist
  • Trainee Manager
  • Learning Support
  • Recruitment Consultant
  • Rehabilitation Assistant
  • Research Assistant
  • Research Psychologist
  • Researcher
  • Speech and Language Therapy Assistant
  • Teacher (International School)
  • Youth Worker

Student Profile

Caoilfhionn Timmons
A Day in the Life Of… an Assistant Psychologist

I currently work as an Assistant Psychologist in a forensic hospital with the National Health Service (NHS) in the UK. No two days are ever the same! My role involves assessment and intervention for people with severe mental health problems who, as a result of their mental health difficulties, have come into contact with the law. I used many different assessment tools to help get a picture of what the person’s strengths, difficulties, and current needs are. Then comes the intervention bit, where I do both group and one-to-one work using a variety of approaches.

Because this degree is accredited by the Psychological Society of Ireland, I can go on to train as a Clinical Psychologist - I have just gained a place on a doctoral course starting this autumn in London. The doctoral places are fees paid and fully salaried (as it’s a job as well as a course), so while it takes a while to get enough experience to get on the doctorate, it’s well worth the wait in my opinion - especially when the career is so interesting!

Caoilfhionn’s tip:

Before you choose a course, talk to people who previously studied it but are now finished and carving a career out of the degree; inquire about realistic career opportunities and salary, what the day-to-day duties are, and how you go about qualifying, as some degrees require further study in order for you to be qualified.

Student Profile

Sarah O'Grady
I chose this course because it would give me a broader foundation in the research and theory that surrounds social issues. I love the Psychology modules which offer a broad choice; from the study of the brain to the dynamics of group relations.

I like that the classes are quite small. It is easy to ask a lecturer for further explanation. I formed strong bonds with the other people on my course. We always knew we could ask members of the classes for help.

Without doubt, UL has the best campus in Ireland. I used the Sports Arena frequently as membership is cheap for UL students. I like the coffee shops and restaurants. We rarely go straight home after classes because the buzzing atmosphere tempts us to stay around and chat.

I benefited greatly from Co-Op. I got a position as a research assistant in the Psychology Department. It was a tough job, and required a lot of time and effort but it was a great experience.