TU Dublin – UCD Joint Professional Diploma in Transversal Skills (30 ECTS)

Purpose of this Pilot Programme

UCD Innovation Academy and TU Dublin have created this innovative pilot programme as a direct response to the Covid 19 Pandemic for people on the Covid-19 Wage Subsidy or Covid-19 PUP.

This postgraduate (NFQ Level 9), 16-week online course is fully funded for the first 30 eligible candidates through University fee bursaries. Applicants for fully funded places must be in receipt of the Covid-19 Wage Subsidy or Covid-19 PUP scheme.

The rapid and disruptive changes that are shaping our world are having a significant impact on whole sectors of our economy. Even before the Covid-19 crisis, The World Economic Forum had pointed to the fact that by 2022, the core skills required to perform most roles would change by 42%. It has called for a re-skilling revolution. The current crisis has only intensified this call to action. Individuals and organisations need to adapt and re-skill to succeed in these uncertain times. Central to this is the development of your transversal skills.

“Today’s worker can expect to have 5 careers and 20 different jobs… 68% of professionals feel that their skills will be obsolete in 5 years… Adaptability will be the most desirable skill in ten years…future proofing skills is critical”

– Julie Spillane (Accenture), Future Jobs Summit

This course is co-designed and informed by collaborators from across industries and sectors who form a proactive enterprise panel. This panel is designed to ensure that the course maintains agility and meets the needs of employers from a diversity of sectors. The members are below.

What are Transversal Skills?

Transversal skills are also known as ‘soft skills,’ ‘transferable skills’ or ‘power skills.’ These include innovation, creativity, entrepreneurial agility, analytical skills, business acumen, teamwork and communication skills. They translate across professions and are not confined to a specific industry, job or company, and can be put to use throughout a lifetime of jobs in an overarching career. With these skills, you are better-positioned to make a career change, gain a promotion or to help your organisation identify innovative ways to survive and thrive. Transversal skills are in high demand from employers across sectors and industries.

What is a Professional Diploma?

What is a Professional Certificate / Diploma? By participating in this course you will gain a Professional Certificate or Professional Diploma which is a level 9 qualification on the National Qualifications Framework accredited by University College Dublin. Participation in this course will mean that you are registered as a UCD Student for the duration of the course.

As a registered UCD Student you will:

1. Receive a Student ID Card enabling you to avail of a range of discounts on public transport and in specific shops and retail outlets. 

2. Have access to the University Library 

3. Have access to UCD online resources 

4. UCD Student Advisors 

5. UCD Health and Counselling 

6. UCD Careers Network 

7. UCD Writing Support Centre 

When you successfully complete the course, you will be awarded your qualification parchment from the National University of Ireland at an Innovation Academy ceremony. 
If you have any questions about this qualification, please do not hesitate to contact us. 

Who is this course for?

The course is fully funded for eligible applicants who are on the Covid-19 Wage Subsidy or Covid-19 PUP schemes through University fee-bursaries. Applicants may be individuals or in small groups from a particular Start-up or SME that is facing challenges arising out of the current pandemic.

(Note: Enrolment on this course means a commitment to active participation and engagement, which necessitates attendance at all scheduled classes. Please note that auditing this course is not possible.)

What makes this course different?

This professional diploma is jointly awarded by the two largest Universities in Ireland, Technological University of Dublin and University College Dublin giving participants a truly unique qualification that will set them apart. 

This course takes a practical, ‘hands-on’ approach to learning facilitated through highly interactive ‘live online’ workshops combined with individual and team challenges and projects.

The programme incorporates Strengths Profile, the world-class strengths assessment developed by Cappfinity.  Cappfinity are the world leader in strengths-based assessment and development, providing award-winning solutions for organisations across the globe.

Career Benefits of this Course

According to the National Skills Strategy 2025, core transversal skills are becoming ever more important to an individual’s successful and sustainable employment. They also enable people to move between jobs and careers, to participate in lifelong education and training. The importance of transversal skills is well recognised by employers across sectors and employer representative bodies such as Ibec and ISME have highlighted the need for these skills.

Transversal skills identified by enterprise, include creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship, critical & analytical thinking, team work, communication, and business acumen. These are skills that employers need and need now. By harnessing these skills you will increase your flexibility and the speed at which you can adapt and / or accelerate your career trajectory. Given how much our world has changed in such a short period of time, this flexibility is fundamental.

“Soft skills, transversal skills (e.g. communication skills, organisational skills, self-motivation)
….. are critical for work in all sectors, and opportunities to develop and enhance these skills are vital.”

– Future Jobs Ireland Report 2019

Key Features

By participating in this innovative, 16 week, online course you will:

What will I learn?

All participants will take the two core modules listed here and a further four modules depending on the selected course pathway.

Core Modules:

Induction and Orientation

Module 1: Creative Thinking and Innovation

Module 2: Digital Entrepreneurship

Pathway Modules:

Pathway 1: Re-skill to chart a new career direction  

Module 3: Design Thinking for Innovation 

Module 4: Digital Marketing

Module 5: Entrepreneurial Career Plan

Module 6: Global Citizenship

Pathway 2: Up-skill to help your organisation identify innovative ways to survive and thrive 

Module 3: Entrepreneurial Thinking & Action  

Module 4: Digital Marketing

Module 5: Professional Practice

Module 6: Leadership Communication

How will I learn? 

>>‘Live online’ experiential, interactive workshops and discussions facilitated by TU Dublin and UCD Innovation Academy academic staff and entrepreneurial specialists

>>Action learning through individual and team based challenges

>> Team-based projects, including innovation projects for external ‘client’ organisations 

>> Engage in individual strength profiling exercises designed and facilitated by our core enterprise partner Cappfinity

>> Participate in small tutorial sessions with course faculty and entrepreneurial specialists as well as peer-to-peer tutorial sessions

Who leads this course?

This course is developed and led by a multidisciplinary team of Educator Practitioners with extensive real-world experience as academics, business and social entrepreneurs, tech thinkers, creative professionals and design thinking practitioners. We take an action-oriented approach to learning, with a combination of individual, group and class tasks and activities, including discussions, presentations and reflection. All of our teaching is grounded in academic rigour, but our focus is on ‘learning by doing’ in a real-world context.

How will I be assessed? 

Participants will be assessed on a combination of presentations, team projects and individual reflections. Reflective practices including self-evaluation will be required along with seeking and providing peer feedback. Feedback will be provided such that students can improve on subsequent assessments (i.e. feedforward feedback). Each of the individual modules (and the course overall) is designed to be progressive in nature, to allow students to carry forward insights and lessons learned. A pass/fail grade will be used for each of the modules and Professional Diploma overall.

Course Schedule

Classes run from 9.30 to 4.30 each day and as the programme involves continuous assessment, participants must attend all class sessions. Mornings will be live online sessions and the afternoons will be a mixture of self-directed learning, reflective learning and group or individual work. As the programme involves continuous assessment, participants must attend all class sessions.

What are the Eligibility Criteria?

All applicants must hold a minimum of an honours degree (Level 8) in any discipline – OR – 5+ years relevant employment history, in the absence of a degree.

To qualify for a full-fee bursary, applicants will be required to demonstrate that they are in receipt of the Covid-19 Wage Subsidy or Covid-19 PUP.

Applicants who are not in receipt of the Covid-19 Wage Subsidy or Covid-19 PUP may still apply for a place on the course but they will be required to pay the course fee of €3,000 (EU Citizens) or €6,000 (Non-EU Citizens).

In addition to this, an up-to-date CV and Transcripts are required as part of the application process. An Academic Transcript is a document(s) provided by the academic institution where you undertook your studies. This is an official document which states all of the subjects you have undertaken during your studies and what grade you have achieved in each of those subjects, including your overall final grade if you have completed your qualification. Official or original academic transcripts are documents printed on the official headed paper of the institution where you studied and should be stamped by that institution.

If English is not your first language an English language qualification is required for admission to all of our courses. The exception to this rule is if you have completed your primary degree or an entire third level qualification through English, in an English speaking country. Click HERE for full English Language Requirements for UCD and HERE for those from TU Dublin. 

Documentation Required to Apply

To apply for a place on this course please email innovation.academy@ucd.ie with the following documents:

Please note that the course starting on the 2nd of September is now closed for applications but we will be in touch with you once applications for the next iteration of the course are open. 


For more information contact Mary Saunders or David Nevin at innovation.academy@ucd.ie.

David NevinTU Dublin – UCD Joint Professional Diploma in Transversal Skills