NCUK Pre-Masters (Graduate Diploma)

Graduate Diploma Course


September 18, 2017


9 months


Successfully completed a recognised bachelor degree or three year diploma Have a minimum English level of 5.0 IELTS or equivalent (click here if English is below 5.0 IELTS)








Stephen Easley-Walsh
Maths, Physics, ICT and EAP Teacher, CELT
Mark Reynolds
Management, Business & EAP Teacher
Colm Nolan
Biology, Life Sciences Lecturer, EAP Teacher, CELT
Donal Keeling
Economics, Western Culture & EAP Teacher
Dr Susan Foran
Dr. Susan Foran
Tutorial Coordinator, Research Methods and International Relations Lecturer
Jianchun Zhao (Bill) - China Graduate Diploma, University of Salford IFY Science (Medicine), RCSI, Dublin
Stephen Bruce
English for Academic Purposes Coordinator



The NCUK Pre-Masters (Graduate Diploma) is a modular course consisting of a core element and a subject theme. The core element includes modules in English for Academic Purposes (EAP), Learning Skills including Information & Communication Technologies (ICT) and Research Methodology including project planning. Students following the longer duration programmes also undertake an individual research project and complete a substantial dissertation.

‘Management’ is currently offered as the subject theme at DIFC. This is, however, used as a vehicle for practising the academic study skills and is relevant for students wishing to study a wide variety of subjects at postgraduate level.

Click here to see our placements over 5 years

DIFC Brochure 2014-56

‘When I came to Ireland I found the Irish people very friendly which helped me to settle in. I studied the Pre-Masters (Graduate Diploma) Programme at DIFC and found it very helpful. In particular we had to prepare a 5000 word dissertation. I am now studying a Masters in Logistics and Supply Chain at the University of Salford in the UK’
Jianchun Zhao (Bill) – China
Pre-Masters (Graduate Diploma)
University of Salford

NCUK Course Entry Requirements

You must have completed a degree course (for placement in Ireland or the UK) or three year diploma (for placemen tin the UK only) with English level equivalent to 5.0 IELTS for Route A (September intake) and English level equivalent to 5.5 IELTS for Route B (January intake).

Start date

September and January each year.

What subjects will I study?

Course Structure for Pre-Masters (Graduate Diploma) Programme

Example of NCUK Pre-Masters (Graduate Diploma) for route A (9 month course starting Sept)

Term Module Directed Study
Time (hrs)
(10 wks)
English for Academic Purposes [Unit 1] (10 hrs p/wk) 100
Orientation to Western Study + ICT (2 hrs p/wk) 20
Subject Module (1) (6 hrs p/wk) 60
(12 weeks)
English for Academic Purposes [Unit 2] (10 hrs p/wk) 120
Research Methods, Data Analysis and Project Planning [7 hrs p/wk] 84
Subject Module [Unit 2] (3 hrs p/wk) 36
(12 weeks)
English for Academic Purposes [Unit 3] (10 hrs p/wk) 120
Research Project (7 hrs p/wk) 84
Subject Module [Unit 3] (3 hrs p/wk) 36
Total 680

Where can you go after completing the Pre-Masters (Graduate Diploma) Programme at DIFC?

The NCUK Pre-Masters (Graduate Diploma), which was previously called the Pre-Masters Programme (PMP), is a foundation course preparing you for university entrance at postgraduate level.

Our partner universities in Ireland and the UK recognise that the programme provides “added value” to Masters course applicants. NCUK guarantees students who successfully complete the Pre-Masters (Graduate Diploma) a place on a postgraduate degree course in chosen wide range of subject areas.

Search the Masters programmes provided in our partner universities in our Entry Directory to discover your University progression options with our NCUK Pre-Masters Programme.

Successful completion guarantees a place in the following Universities in Ireland:

  • Maynooth University
  • University of Cork
  • University of Limerick
  • Queen’s University, Belfast
  • National University of Ireland, Galway

Successful completion also guarantees a place in the following Colleges in Ireland:

  • National College of Ireland
  • Waterford Institute of Technology
  • Athlone Institute of Technology
  • Dundalk Institute of Technology
  • Galway Institute of Technology
  • Shannon Hotel Management College

Successful completion guarantees a place in the following Universities in the UK:

  • Bradford University
  • Huddersfield University
  • Leeds University
  • Leeds Metropolitan University
  • Liverpool University
  • Liverpool John Moores University
  • Manchester University
  • Manchester Metropolitan University
  • The University of Salford
  • Sheffield University
  • Sheffield Hallam University

Students who have completed the NCUK foundation programme have also been accepted to the following prestigious UK Universities & Colleges:

  • University of Cambridge
  • University of Durham
  • University of Edinburgh
  • Kings College London
  • University College London
  • University of London
  • London School of Economics and Political Science
  • University of Sussex
  • University of Warwick
  • University of York
  • Queen Mary University of London
  • Kingston University
  • University of Bristol
  • Aston University
  • University of Kent




4,000 University Courses

Our entry directory shows the university courses available and tells you what you need to do to get the course you want.