Arts, Culture and History: Pre-University Arts

Level 5 QQI Award


One Year


This course is an excellent foundation course for the Bachelor of Arts degree in University College Dublin, National University of Ireland Maynooth, and other Universities. This course enables the learner to develop an in-depth knowledge of archaeology, local history, folklore and ethnology. Learners will also gain knowledge of the cultural richness of modern Europe, while developing media skills in the areas of; research, journalism, organisation and communications.

Entry Requirements

One of the following:

  • Leaving Certificate Established/ LCVP
  • Leaving Certificate Applied
  • Relevant Level 4 QQI Award
  • Mature applicants are welcome

Course Modules

  • Archaeology
  • Folklore and Ethnology
  • Local History
  • European Studies
  • Political Studies
  • Writing Skills for Journalism
  • Traditional Black and White Photography
  • Communications
  • Word Processing
  • Work Experience
Module Information

Module Information

Arts, Culture and History: Pre-University Arts
Level 5 QQI Award: Culture and Heritage Studies (5M2154)

Course Content (Module Names and Codes)


Local History Research (5N1296)

Undertake the researching and writing of local history. Learn about the sourcing of research material for the purpose of writing local history articles about individuals, events, buildings, places etc. Both primary and secondary sources will be explored through archives, libraries and the digital media. Objectivity, referencing and presentation are also covered. Field trips will be arranged subject to timetable and weather.

Assessments: Assignment (30%), Project (50%), Diary (20%).


Writing Skills for Journalism (5N2435)

Use your Social Networking skills to source news and to develop ideas for feature and opinion pieces while working on structuring, style and the importance of writing for your audience. Vital elements of media law, including defamation and privacy are also included. Time will be spent writing, studying theory and engaging in discussion on current news events.

Assessments: Assignment (30%), Collection of Work (70%).


European Studies (5N1444)

Learn and understand the historical origins and evolution of the European Union. In addition to the political and economic elements of modern Europe, the explore the physical geography, demographics, transport and communications systems, education and health, lifestyles, human rights and the cultural diversity (architecture, performing arts, language, literature etc.) of the member states. Field trips to relevant institutions are undertaken as part of this subject.

Assessments: Project (70%), Assignment (30%).



Communications is a survival toolkit that underpins almost everything we do. If you get the basic skills right at this stage, you can build on them as you progress to further study or employment. As a hands-on, practical subject you will be afforded the opportunity to learn and practice the conventions of oral and written communication. You will undertake tasks that will prepare you for third level or workplace projects. The earlier you learn to say it and write it in a way that makes people take notice, the better the chances are of you succeeding.

Assessments: Collection of Work (50%), Skills Demonstration (50%).


Word Processing (5N1358)

Use a word processing application to learn or improve your skills while laying out a range of business/college/home documents. It includes, Document Set-Up, Formatting Text, Proof Reading, Mail Merge, Tables, File Management, Graphics and Presentation Skills.

Assessments: Assignment (20%), Exam (80%).


Archaeology (5N0762)

Explore Irish archaeology from the Mesolithic period through to medieval times. Learn about the growing use of scientific disciplines involved in archaeological research, such as forensic science, environmental science, relevant medical and dental disciplines, geophysical and electromagnetic surveys, experimental and reconstruction archaeology, anthropological studies, excavation techniques etc. Field trips are undertaken as part of this subject.

Assessments: Assignment (20%), Project (50%), Exam (30%).


Folklore and Ethnology (5N1274)

Study the built and material heritage of Ireland. Explore the Oral traditions such as legends, folk beliefs and customs, in addition to the music and dance repertoire unique to Ireland’s cultural heritage. Traditional crafts and daily life of the18th - 19th century is also covered. Folklore and ethnological evidence is revealed through class-room activities, research trips and practical work as part of the research.

Assessments: Project (50%), Theory Exam (30%), Practical Exam (20%).


Traditional Black and White Photography (5N0757)

Learn and explore the art of photography using a film based medium. Projects shot in the studio and the outside environment will be undertaken. A portfolio of images will be developed, printed and presented on completion of the course. The use of a 35mm film camera will be required to use during the course.

Assessments: Project (50%), Portfolio (25%), Learner Record (25%).


Political Studies (5N1837)

Learn and understand the background and workings of the political systems in Ireland and the European Union, including the key cultural, political, social and economic issues. Gain an awareness of the centrality of politics in everyday life.

Assessments: Two Assignments (60%),  Written Exam (40%).


Work Experience (5N1356)

Prepare for a work placement under supervision for a limited time. This module comprises of a skills audit, achievement audit, rights and responsibilities, vocational area study, an evaluation of work placement and future career options. A Work Placement of 10 working days must be arranged.

Assessments: Collection of Work (60%), Skills Demonstration (40%).


  • Level 5 QQI Award Culture and Heritage Studies (5M2154)

Special Features

Throughout the year, students will participate in a broad range of interesting projects, field trips, cultural visits and guided tours; National History Museum, Newgrange/Melifont, Dublinia and Christchurch, UCD Folklore Archive, European Parliament, Glasnevin Museum and Cemetery Tour, Ferricarrig Heritage Park, Castlebar Museum of Country Life, etc.

Additional Information

Students have an option to participate in an intensive three to five days Arts, Culture and History field trip, which takes place in March/April to the heritage sites of the north-west or east coast of Ireland. An additional charge will apply.

Progression Opportunities

Graduates are eligible to apply through the CAO and/or the Higher Education Links Scheme to a range of higher certificate and degree programmes, at both Universities and Institutes of Technology.   

Progression Examples

BA in Contemporary Culture and Society (DC238)

BA in Humanities (DC009)

Dublin City University

BA in English, Media and Cultural Studies (DL821)

Dún Laoghaire Institute of Art Design and Technology

BA in Culture and Heritage Studies (CW067 and CW098)

Institute of Technology Carlow

BA in European Studies (TA021)

Institute of Technology Tallaght

Bachelor of Arts (MH101)

BA in European Studies (MH108)

BA in Politics (MH112)

National University of Ireland Maynooth

Bachelor of Arts (CK101)

University College Cork

Bachelor of Arts (DN500)

University College Dublin

Career Paths

Graduates may seek employment in private and public heritage centres, museums, libraries and archives, community information services and other areas of the information society.  Career opportunities also exist for arts officers, curators, conservationists and arts education officers.

Thank You

we will be in touch shortly

Aisling Byrne

2016 Graduate. Currently studying for her degree in English and Cultural Studies in IADT.
"I came back as a mature student as I wanted to change career. Journalism was my favourite subject last year and I have now gone on to do a degree in…

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Aisling Byrne

2016 Graduate. Currently studying for her degree in English and Cultural Studies in IADT.
"I came back as a mature student as I wanted to change career. Journalism was my favourite subject last year and I have now gone on to do a degree in English and Cultural Studies in IADT. The course was invaluable and proved to me I was able to return to full time education after such a long break. The class got on great, we really bonded. Overall it is thumbs up from me!"

Department Head

Carmel Gillen

Carmel Gillen

Thank You

we will be in touch shortly