Diploma in Child and Developmental Psychology


Course: Child and Developmental Psychology 

Start date:  April 2018

Duration: 10 weeks, 1 evening per week from 6.30 to 9.30pm

Course fee: €945 (or €995 if paying the course fee in instalments)
Non-EU students: €1,295

A fee of £76 will be payable to The Institute of Commercial Management on successful completion of this course.

Multi-Course Discount: Students who register for two or more classroom-based courses  with the School of Psychology can do so at a fee of €895 per course.

Awarding body:  The Institute of Commercial Management (ICM)

Apply Online


Child and Developmental Psychology is the study of the factors involved with change and development throughout life.     The Diploma in Child and Developmental Psychology aims to introduce students to  key theories and research, in this area. Students will explore key theories and research in Cognitive, social, emotional, and personality development, as well as their relationship to cultural and physical factors. Research and theory in this branch of psychology reflects questions concerning the extent to which growth and change can be attributed to physical and genetic factors (nature) or environmental factors such as family, culture, society,(nurture).  Related to nature and nurture are questions in relation to the extent to which personality remains stable over time or changes over the life-span.  In addition, growth areas in research and debate concern the extent to which theory and research is able to generalize across different cultures.

The course is open to anyone with an interest in the psychology of growth, development and change.  We also strongly encourage this course for those for those working in a variety of roles who come in contact with individuals and families, and  where a greater understanding of how people grow and develop would be a useful addition to their knowledge base, such as teachers,  counsellors and psychotherapists, medical doctors, nurses, social workers, nursery school and  Montessori teachers, and those involved in Pastoral care.

Upon graduation, students will have a greater understanding of their chosen area and may wish to progress to further studies in this area, or simply enjoy a greater insight into the questions regarding how people grow and change.   The course is therefore suitable for both those who have a professional interest in psychology as well as members of the general population with an interest in this exciting and rapidly developing field of study.

This course is offered from our Dublin City Centre location (South Great George’s Street, Dublin 2), from our campus in Dundrum, Dublin 16 and online.


  • Introduction:
    Definitions and overview, What is expected, Information on assignments/assessment. Topics to be covered, aims & purposes.

    Putting Psychology in its place: Brief overview of the history/movements in psychology as it relates to developmental issues (birth of psychology and introspection, shift to what is observable and behaviourism, advent of inner processes in the form of cognition and the unconscious, shift to the social).  Includes: Grand and Emergent theories: definition of a theory and its relationship to an hypothesis and research, pre-paradigmatic and paradigmatic stages.

    Discussion: individual-social, stability versus change, epistemological implications.

    Cognitive Development: definition and overview of lecture: : (a) Jean Piaget’s work

    (b) Lev Vygotsky; Information processing accounts of cognitive development; Implications, strengths and limitations

    Social and emotional development: attachment, play and social interaction, emotional development, temperament and personality.  Critiques.

    Life Span and Moral development (Kohlberg, Gilligan, Erikson, Havighurst, Bronfenbrenner etc.,)

    Biological aspects: Childhood to adolescent.  Neurological and physical development;

    Implications for cognitive/social emotional development; New developments (mirror cells, attunement, etc.,); Environmental mediators which can inhibit or impact on individual development

    Social, cultural and Critical aspects: What the turn to the social means; Why it is important

    Theories and development  in  the shift to the social. Examples of differences in expectations between allocentric and idiographic societies. Research into immigrant well-being in multi-cultural societies.  Implications.

     Linking up: How to evaluate and round-up.


  • davidcareyDavid J. Carey is a psychologist with over 25 years’ experience in both clinical and educational settings and is Director, School of Psychology, City Colleges Dublin and resident child psychologist on the Sean Moncrieff Show on Newstalk. He is also Dean at the College of Progressive Education.

    Trained in America he has been associated with Don Dinkmeyer, PhD, author of over 30 books and the founder of the Systematic Training for Effective Parenting (STEP) which is used throughout the world. David has also studied with Albert Ellis, PhD, one of the pioneers of cognitive-behaviour therapy. During his course of study David was enrolled in the Institute for Rational-Emotive Therapy in New York.

    For many years David worked in both out-patient and in-patient mental health services and founded a forensic practice with a consultant psychiatrist where they engaged in forensic assessments, hypnosis and psychotherapy. Here in Ireland David has been associated with the Froebel College of Education where he created several post-graduate training programmes for special education teachers, including a Master’s Degree in Special Needs.

    In his practice David provides assessments and psychotherapy. For the past nine years he has been involved in assessing children to determine the suitability of their special education programmes. This work has seen him provide expert witness testimony in numerous High Court cases.

    He has a particular interest in the impact of trauma, distress and chaos on the child’s brain and combines this work with its relevance to early childhood education and the curriculum in Infant Classrooms.



  • A ‘Pass’ grade on the written assignment (Project) will be required for the award. A ‘Fail’ grade will result in a Certificate of Attendance for the course but without the Diploma being awarded. Students must attend at least 8 of the 10 course evenings to graduate with either the Diploma or Certificate of Attendance unless a serious and verifiable reason for further absence is provided. Likewise, the Project must be handed in on the due date unless a sound reason for lateness is provided. In such instances, an extension may be awarded at the discretion of the lecturer.

  • Apply Online

    To download an application form click here

    For more information please contact us on: 1850 25 27 40, 01 4160034 or email info@citycolleges.ie

For More Information

Please contact us on: 1850 25 27 40, 01 4160034 or email info@citycolleges.ie


Please wait...
Send a message

Sorry! We aren't around right now. Leave a message and we'll get back to you, asap.

Your name
* Email
* Describe your issue
Login Chat

Questions? We're here. Send us a message!

Your name
* Email
We're online!

Help us help you better! Feel free to leave us any additional feedback.

How do you rate our support?