MSc Spatial Demography

Graduate Taught (level 9 nfq, credits 90)

The MSc Spatial Demography is the first postgraduate degree of its kind in Ireland. This interdisciplinary programme provides unique perspectives on the population processes that shape modern society. Bridging the technical and theoretical, this course equips students with skills to analyse the population trends that shape current and future population trajectories – fertility, mortality, ageing, health and migration. Combining key skills-orientated modules in data programming and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) with population analytics and challenges, students are provided a comprehensive foundation in a range of transferable and highly valued labour markets skills.  These skills are uniquely relevant in multiple professional domains that understand the need for expert knowledge in key demographic issues when addressing future economic and social development challenges.

This programme is jointly delivered by the UCD School of Sociology and the UCD School of Geography.

Careers & Employability

The MSc Spatial Demography is designed to equip graduates with the skills and knowledge necessary to access employment in health research, demography, data and spatial-data analytics, data-driven public policy, and demographic data collection. Demography and population studies prepare graduates for careers in a wide variety of areas such as local and international organisations, civil society, government department / ministries, local government, NGOs, research organisations, health care companies, academia, private consultancy and many other areas.

Curricular information is subject to change

Full Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. Yes

Part Time option suitable for:

Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. Yes

The study of the population processes that shape our society requires a unique skill set. Demography is a pathway to understand core dynamics that define contemporary debates about mortality, ageing, health, migration and fertility.

The MSc in Spatial Demography, which is a one year full time or two years part time programme, is unique in Ireland. By definition the curriculum is interdisciplinary, bridging sociology, social policy, health and geography to comprehensively offer insight into the concepts, research and data analysis that demographically define us.

This programme stands apart in Ireland and internationally, defining a new generation of population scientists. Bridging the technical and theoretical, you will learn to analyse population trends that currently and increasingly shape prospects for population growth, healthcare needs and all the facets of immigrant incorporation into Ireland, the EU and globally.

You will graduate with the technical skills, substantive foundation and unique expertise to enter the private or public sector in capacities ranging from demographic analysis to data-driven research in public policy. In addition, demography offers a bridge to further academic work in cognate disciplines such as economics, sociology, social policy and public health.

The key learning outcomes of the programme are:

  • Comprehensive knowledge and critical understanding of the population trends that shape current and future national and global population trajectories.
  • High-level competency in applying technical skills required to undertake demographic research and analysis. 

Knowledge and understanding – at the end of the programme, through engagement with demographic analysis in an inter-disciplinary context, you will have acquired an advanced knowledge and understanding of population dynamics nationally, regionally and globally and the implications of demographic change for public policy nationally and internationally.  

Applying knowledge and understanding – you will have advanced technical and analytical skills as well as critical thinking and questioning that will allow you to apply demographic theory from an inter-disciplinary perspective and apply a range of methods to the study of population change.

Making judgments – you will have the ability to determine the appropriateness of different theoretical and/or analytical approaches to a variety of problems and to select appropriate concepts, theories and empirical techniques to investigate demographic issues.

Communication and working skills – you will have gained a set of highly developed skills including presentation skills, research skills and critical writing skills enabling you to communicate with audiences at a range of levels from academics and your peers to non-specialists.

Learning skills – you will have gained core skills enabling you to assess, review and extend theories of demographic and population change and to analyse and investigate demographic issues using appropriate tools and approaches. Through your dissertation you will establish skills in project management, execution and research design.

MSc Spatial Demography (W482) Full Time
EU          fee per year - € 9310
nonEU    fee per year - € 21520

MSc Spatial Demography (W483) Part Time
EU          fee per year - € 6110
nonEU    fee per year - € 10760

***Fees are subject to change

To qualify for a place on the MSc Spatial Demography students must hold a primary degree with at least Second Class Honours Grade 1 (2H1) or equivalent in a relevant discipline.

University English language requirements apply for students whose first language is not English

The following entry routes are available:

MSc Spatial Demography FT (W482)
1 Years
Full Time
MSc Spatial Demography PT (W483)
2 Years
Part Time