Skip to main content

Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin

Trinity Menu Trinity Search

You are here Courses > Postgraduate > MSc./P.Grad.Dip Managing Risk and System Change (online)

Online Postgraduate Certificate / Diploma and M.Sc. in Managing Risk and System Change

These online courses are relevant to safety critical industries across the globe and focuses on people already in work, who have responsibility for managing: risk; change; safety; quality; planning; system design.

  • Course Director:
    • Prof. Siobhán Corrigan
  • Contact Details:
  • International Student Course Queries:
    • Erin Paullin (Global Officer, School of Psychology)
    • Telephone: +353-1-896-1015
    • Email:
  • Course Duration
    • Postgraduate Certificate (1 year part time) / Postgraduate Diploma (1/2 years part time) / M.Sc. (2/3 years part-time)
  • Closing date for Applications:
    • 31st July 2022
  • Next Intake:
    • September 2022
  • ECTS Credits:
    • M.Sc. (90) / P.Grad. Dip (60) / P.Grad. Cert (30)


Applications are Now Open for entry in September 2022.

Overview of the Courses

The Postgraduate Certificate, Diploma and M.Sc. courses are relevant to safety critical industries across the globe and focuses on people already in work, who have responsibility for managing: risk; change; safety; quality; planning; system design. It brings the next generation of safety, risk and change management to you, in your work, embedded in your everyday practice with a systemic, proactive and performance focus.

The overall objective of these online courses is to provide a rigorous but practical focus on risk, change and system design in operations, manufacturing and services, with an innovative integrated approach to the role of people in such systems. It provides a core framework that has been tested in collaborative industrial research and practice for managing and developing people, the design and integration of new technologies, the management of risk and the implementation of change. World-class international teams who have collaborated through industrial research has been mobilised to provide the highest calibre research led teaching, supervision and professional expertise.

Students will also become part of a global community of practice, a community of professional learners, across a range of safety critical sectors, where they will benefit not only from the academic and industrial experts delivering the course but also from the extended network of fellow students.

Read what some of our current and past students have said about the course in the testimonials section below.

Course Brochures

Download our Course Brochure

Course Delivery

These courses provides students with a stimulating online learning experience by creating a structured yet flexible learning approach. The place of study is flexible as online delivery allows students to engage in learning activities at home or in the workplace and there is no requirement to attend the Trinity campus in Dublin. Students will have access to weekly materials using a virtual learning environment and the opportunity to engage with other students and lecturers using a variety of online discussion boards.

There are seven core modules, from which the Postgraduate Certificate, Diploma and M.Sc. are made up.

Postgraduate Certificate (1 year part time)

The Postgraduate Certificate consists of four of the seven modules and runs over one academic year. The modules will be shared with those students undertaking the Postgraduate Diploma.

Students who successfully complete all modules in the Postgraduate Certificate may take an additional year of study and complete a further three modules for the award of Postgraduate Diploma.

Semester 1 - Michaelmas Term Semester 2 - Hilary Term Semester 2 - Trinity Term
The Role of People & Processes in Organisations Managing Performance and Risk Leading Change
    Strategic Human Resource Development

Postgraduate Diploma (1/2 years part time)

The Postgraduate Diploma which also makes up year one of the Masters consists of seven modules.

Semester 1 - Michaelmas Term Semester 2 - Hilary Term Semester 2 - Trinity Term
The Role of People & Processes in Organisations Managing Performance Leading Change
Stability & Change Socio-Technical System Design Strategic Human Resource Development
Statistics & Action Research Methods* Statistics & Action Research Methods* Statistics & Action Research Methods*

*This module runs across both semesters in year 1 of the course.

Each course runs over one academic year from from September until May. The academic year is split across two semesters and three terms, Michaelmas, Hilary and Trinity term. Lectures typically take place on Tuesday (some scheduled Thursdays) evenings from 17.30 to 19.30 (GMT).

Note: While we do encourage students to join the scheduled sessions, in the event you are unable to attend a particular session, you will be able to catch up at a time that suits you, as all sessions are available afterwards as a recording.

Masters (2/3 years part time)

Students who have successfully completed the Postgraduate Diploma, which forms the first year of the Masters, may study for an additional year to pursue the award of Masters..

This additional year is dedicated to the research dissertation, which will qualify students for the Masters award. The dissertation will provide students with an opportunity to pursue a research topic based on key strategic operational issues within their organisations in order to create a research-practitioner capability in managing risk and system change.

Download a Sample Masters Timetable

**Individual timetables for the Postgraduate Certificate and Diploma will be available in due course.

Course Progression Routes

The below chart lays out the progression routes open to students.

Who is the Course For?

Current students are working in a diverse range of industries which include; Finance, Healthcare, IT, Defence Forces, Emergency Services, Aviation, Casino and Gambling, Law Enforcement, Process and Software Development and Pharmaceuticals. The course will be an excellent qualification to supplement the further education and career development of personnel who have responsibility for managing: risk, change; operations; quality; safety; human resources; planning; and system design.  Generic knowledge and skills in managing risk and change enhances key organisational competence and increases resilience of industrial and service systems.

I typically work evenings and weekends, so I need to be able to log on to Blackboard when it suits me. This course affords me the required flexibility to attain this qualification.
Online Managing Risk and Systems Change Student


A range of continuous assessment methods are used for the seven core modules, including case reports (4,000 words), mini projects (4,000 words), reflective essays (2,000-3,000 words), along with online blogs and dossiers. Students are not required to attend campus for any formal examinations.

Student Handbooks

Each year registered students are given a copy of an official student course handbook. The handbook will provide information relating to the course regulations, services provided, key dates and assessments. The student handbooks for year one and year two students are subject to review each year in line with college policy.

Admissions Requirements

The admissions for the Postgraduate Certificate, Diploma and M.Sc. in Managing Risk and System Change are all the same and listed below.

  • Applicants will normally be required to hold an Honours degree (II.1)** or equivalent and have at least 3 to 4 years appropriate professional experience.
  • Applicants will also have to be in (or have access) to an employment setting that facilitates the applicant to be able to satisfy the applied research aspect of the course.
  • **Note: In exceptional circumstances, the course director shall make appropriate recommendations to the Dean of Graduate Studies for candidates who do not fully meet the above criteria but make a reasonable case for admissions otherwise i.e. based on their work experience. An applicant may be asked to provide written samples in support of academic writing ability or be set a piece of academic writing to complete.
  • Students whose first language is not English will need a recognised English language qualification in line with the requirements as laid down in Postgraduate Calendar Part 3 Section 1.5 Language of Instruction.
  • Applicants may also be asked to take part in a short interview (in person or via phone/skype) as part of the assessment process.
  • References: students are requested to submit the names of two referees on their application form. In the first instance our preference is for one academic and one professional reference. We do however have discretion to accept either two academic or two professional references. Note: the referees listed on the application are automatically emailed a secure link to complete and upload the reference. Any difficulties in relation to references should be brought to the attention of the course administrator.

How to Apply

Applications for September 2021 are NOW OPEN. Applications are reviewed on an ongoing basis. We encourage early application as offers will be made to suitably qualified applicants as they are assessed. Please note that all documents must be supplied and conditions of offer met by July 31st or any offer made will expire.

To apply for course please click on the appropriate link below.

Applications are completed electronically. Required Documentation:

  • Online Application Form (€55)
  • 2 Reference Letters (see admissions requirements section for details)
  • Curriculum Vitae
  • Copies of transcripts (results breakdown) where applicable.
  • Deadline for applications: 31st July 2022 (**please note that applications are reviewed on a rolling basis and the course may be filled prior to the closing date**)

Conditional Offer Note:

  • Where an applicant has been given a conditional offer they will be given a deadline by which to have met the conditions before the offer expires.

Course Tuition Fees (2022/2023)*

A list of current course fees is available in the Fees and Payments section of the Academic Registry website.

Postgraduate Certificate

EU students: €3,528 for the academic year 2022/23
Non-EU students: €5,119 for the academic year 2022/23

Postgraduate Diploma

EU students: €7,706 for the academic year 2023/23
Non-EU students: €9,932 for the academic year 2022/23


EU students: €7,944 for the academic year 2022/23
Non-EU students: €10,239 for the academic year 2022/23

Student Levies

Student levies & charges will be listed on your tuition invoice.
Application Fee: €55 (to be paid online)

Postgraduate Certificate Graduates:

Students who have already successfully completed the Postgraduate Certificate can return to complete a further three modules and upgrade their qualificaiton to a Postgraduate Diploma. Please contact the course administrator for details on the application procedure and the tuition fees.

*All fees are subject to review each year.

Please consult information about eligibility for admission as an EU/Non-EU student and note that EU applicants must satisfy specific requirements to be deemed eligible for EU fee status.

Scholarship Opportunities

Call for Applications:

Government of Ireland International Education Scholarships Programme are awarded to high calibre students from non-EEA countries to study in Ireland for a period of one year. The relevant terms and conditions attached to the Scholarships include:

  • The HEA will award a scholarship fund to the student (through the HEI that the student is attending) amounting to €10,000 for one study year. This fund is directed at supporting student costs and living expenses. The scholarship may be for:
    • the final year of an undergraduate programme;
    • one year of a taught masters degree programme or;
    • one year of a research programme (i.e. one year of a 2-year research masters or a 3-4 year PhD programme).
  • Trinity would provide a full tuition fee waiverto successful students for the specified scholarship year (i.e. tuition fee and registration charge are waived).
  • It is expected that a total of 60 scholarships will be funded by the Government of Ireland International Education Scholarships Programme for the academic year 2022/2023 across all participating Irish Higher Education Institutions.
  • Successful Scholars are to commence studies in September/October 2022. Late enrolments will only be considered in relation to PhD awardees.

You will find further details including the closing date and a list of FAQ's on the scholarship website.

Student Testimonials

We asked some of our current and past students what they thought of our Online Masters in Managing Risk and System Change.

Colette Kelly – Graduate April 2018
“I expected an amazing standard of education and I was not disappointed.  The factor, however, that motivated me to attain a level of conceptual change, that translated the acquisition of information into a new way of thinking and a new perspective on how I perceive the world, was the ethos of encouragement, genuine interest and belonging I experienced through every contact with the lecturers and the support team.

My lecturers facilitated an expansive learning experience; my supervisors lifted spirits and curtailed effusive prose throughout a tumultuous period of thesis preparation and writing, the support team reassured with an enthusiasm that was infectious at crisis points.

My M.Sc. in Risk Management and System Change course was delivered online, with regular onsite events occurring across two years.  The creativity with which the course team designed and delivered the course ensured that a diverse group of students, located world-wide, bonded in a manner that is a testament to the holistic quality of a Trinity education. 
I made life-long friends.  From the initial enquiry through to graduation and beyond, the level of support and care offered continues to inspire and surprise me.” 

Gavin Curran - Graduate April 2018
“The Masters in Managing Risk and Systems Change provides an excellent opportunity to learn from both a theoretical and practical stance, about the key ingredients for successful system change and risk mitigation. A particular highlight of this course involves the interaction with students from a variety of backgrounds, each with different industry experiences and knowledge.

The lecturers facilitate an open and highly respectful atmosphere and encourage all students to work together and share their knowledge. The content covered is insightful and its delivery is highly professional and accessible. The flexibility of attending and completing this course online makes it a realistic achievement for those willing to take up the challenge.”

Niall Ferns – Graduate April 2018
“I am certain that the delivery of third level on-line courses will prove to be a major step forward in the education of students. In particular, the delivery of the MSc in System Design and Risk has been very beneficial for me. I typically work evenings and weekends so I need to be able to log on to Blackboard when it suits me. This course affords me the required flexibility to attain this qualification.

The on-line sessions are an important feature of the course. The notes are well presented, informative and easily understood and provides for excellent interaction between the students. At all times the supervisors and tutors are available whether to clarify any issues or to offer guidance on the course.

The weekly work and module assignments are challenging so it is important to manage your time to ensure that you are up to date. Overall, I have found the course stimulating and the interaction with the fellow students has been a major factor in the success of the course. I would highly recommend this on-line course to prospective students”

Sean O ‘Hara – Current Year 2 Student
“ TCD's Online M.Sc in Managing Risk & System Change has been a fantastic mechanism for acquiring knowledge.

For those of us who work full time and could not therefore contemplate attending a conventional degree course on either a full or part time basis, this innovative approach has resulted in a highly flexible and adaptable course, carefully structured for all students of all ages (56yrs in my case),

I have enjoyed the huge academic challenge and the interaction with practitioners from a wide range of industries has been most enlightening. Having spent over 35 years in the aviation industry, this course is evidence that it's really never too late to learn! 
Suffice to say that the 'comfort zone' will never be the same again”

David Browne – Graduated April 2018
“I completed the MSc in Managing Risk and System Change through the School of Psychology in 2017. The excellent course vastly expanded my academic horizons and took me along exciting new pathways of learning that were unknown to me prior to commencing the course. The knowledge I gained through both online lectures and directed research has equipped me to think and work in my operational environment using the very latest concepts and innovative approaches to risk management and system change in a high risk operational setting.

The course was delivered by world-class subject matter experts, the academic resources available in the university were second to none (and continue to be as alumni) and the administrative support was excellent. As the course was delivered using an online platform, I could join the virtual classroom from anywhere in the world and interact at times that suited me, which afforded me huge flexibility in engaging with all course content. I would highly recommend the course to anyone thinking about progressing their academic knowledge in safety, risk and change, and to anyone seeking to better equip themselves in the workplace in the management of these critical areas.” 

Finola Cashman - Current Year 1 Student
“I am a non-traditional student. I work full-time with the H.S.E., and have been out of academia for over 15 years. I applied to the M.Sc. in Managing Risk and Systems Change because it was so relevant to what I do. It has been a wonderful opportunity and a great learning experience for me. My understanding and views on managing risk and systems change in socio-technical systems, such as healthcare, have been considerably broadened by what I have learned.

This programme is both exciting and genuinely hard work. The course modules are packed with information and are fast-paced. The assignments encapsulate real-life problems and require real-life response times. The quality and volume of course material provided are excellent. The TCD library is in one word, impressive, and truly accessible to a novice researcher like me with the invaluable assistance provided by the librarians.

As this course is delivered on-line it provided me with the flexibility needed to manage my career, be available to my family, and incorporate a challenging course of study. On-line learning, while making this course possible for me to study and work full time, it can also be isolating but the lecturers and tutors are exceptionally responsive and support me by making themselves available during times that fit my busy schedule. This course is definitely worth the time and effort.”

Information Evenings 2022

View the slides from our last open evening which took place June 1st

Typical Open Evening Structure

  • Course Structure
  • Student Learning Software Demonstration (Backboard)
  • Is This Course For You
  • Timetable
  • Assessments
  • Entry Requirements
  • Tuition Costs
  • Hear from current students about their experience.

Further Information

For further information on the course please contact:

Mr. Rory Carrick
Course Administrator

Professor. Siobhán Corrigan
Course Director

Professor Nick Mc Donald
Academic Programme Development