Bachelor of Arts in Applied Social Care

  • Overview
  • Course Content
  • Structure
  • Career Opportunities
  • Fees
  • Next Steps

This programme is not approved by CORU. With this objective in mind, DBS is currently working on a revised programme to be submitted for future approval by both QQI and CORU. DBS intends that graduates of this programme will ultimately be able to receive CORU registration.


Whether your interest is in progressing towards a career in the field of social care or in working with those in a care setting, with mental or physical disability, the homeless, or those dealing with substance abuse issues, the BA in Applied Social Care is the degree for you.

The Bachelor of Arts in Applied Social Care provides teaching of theoretical concepts applied to social care practice, along with intensive training  by experienced professionals in the practical skills required to work in the caring professions (e.g. in first aid, manual handling, hygiene/Infection control, child protection training and therapeutic crisis intervention). It was developed in response to the needs of the social care sector in the context of the professionalization of social care work and includes both theoretical and practice components. The hallmark of the programme is to provide the intellectual rigour of the disciplines and to emphasise the practical aspects of working in a social care environment.

From social skills and social policy, learners will be challenged to think in a rigorous and scientific way about social processes, institutions, policies. From the first to the final year of the programme there is a consistent emphasis on theory and practical skills that puts the client at the centre of all practice. All learners will complete supervised practice placements in years 2 and 3.

Aims & Objectives

The aims of the BA in Applied Social Care are:

  • To provide a programme which combines academic depth with appropriately rigorous skills training in the area of social care practice.

  • To facilitate learner knowledge of professional social care practice and the management roles in the social care profession. 

  • Provide graduates with the underpinning academic knowledge to enhance their educational and employment opportunities and provide social care management skills that will be of lasting value to them.

Please note that all learners will be required to submit to vetting by An Garda Siochana. A criminal conviction in Ireland or abroad may impact on securing of a placement and on the ability to secure employment in the social care profession. Vetting will need to be undertaken for each placement setting.

Garda Vetting


The National Vetting Bureau (Children and Vulnerable Persons) Acts 2012-2016 make it mandatory for people working unsupervised with children or vulnerable adults to be vetted by the Garda Siochana National Vetting Bureau.  Under the Acts, anyone whose work or activity involves unsupervised access to children or vulnerable adults must be vetted.  Workers include staff, volunteers and those on student placements working for a relevant organisation where they have access to children and/or vulnerable adults. 

DBS offers a number of educational programmes that require students to undertake placements with external agencies, which will bring them into contact with the public and in which they will assume positions of trust.  It is for this reason that students on these type of programmes are required to undergo vetting prior to commencing placements (or visits).

New entrants on to these programmes will receive the relevant form and information in their orientation packs and will need to complete the process before their final registration on the course can be completed.   At the time of application, students will be required to declare as to any previous convictions.   Students can start on the course before their Garda clearance is completed but may be withdrawn if the vetting does not produce a satisfactory finding.

Where a vetting process identifies a previous conviction the case will be referred to an internal College Vetting Committee.   This committee will consider all relevant information in relation to a disclosure from the vetting process and make a determination on the case on behalf of the College.

If a student has started on the course and is withdrawn because of a conviction that was not declared at the time of application, any fees paid will not be refunded.

DBS will charge a fee of €25 to each student for the administration and costs of obtaining Garda clearance. This fee is payable at the commencement of the programme and is non refundable.

Course Content

The BA in Applied Social Care programme has the following content:

Year 1

Professional Practice 1: Intro to Practical Care Skills

Learning to Learn

Social Care in Practice

Social Policy and Law for Social Care 1

Psychology through the Lifespan 1

Mental Health Promotion and Awareness

Sociology for Social Care 1

Year 2

Psychology through the Lifespan 2

Social Policy and Law for Social Care 2

Disability Studies

Health Promotion and Awareness

Professional Practice 2: Therapeutic Approaches in the Caring Professions

Placement 1

Year 3

Abnormal Psychology

Social Psychology

Social Policy and Law for Social Care 3

Understanding Addiction

Professional Practice 3: Team-Working and Facilitation Skills

Sociology for Social Care 2

Placement 2

Students who successfully complete the BA in Applied Social Care have the option of progressing on to year 4 of the BA (Hons) in Applied Social Care.

Assessment Methods

Course work is broken down into the following components for some of which are used in each module:

  • Assignment

  • Practical work, including skills demonstrations

  • Production of care plans

  • Report writing  and record keeping  exercises

  • Research tasks

  • Presentation( individual and group )

  • Reflection

  • In class tests and MCQs

  • Poster presentation

  • Analysis of case studies 

This is a three year full-time programme.

Career Opportunities

The BA in Applied Social Care will equip learners with the skills for work in a variety of social care contexts. Both government and private sector have shown high levels of demand for graduates trained in applied social care. Graduates may take up employment by the state or private sector and in community-based organisations. Social care workers may work with:

  • Children and adolescents in residential care

  • People with learning or physical disabilities

  • People who are homeless

  • People with alcohol/drug dependency

  • Families in the community

  • Older people

  • Recent immigrants to Ireland; and others

With the addition of the BA (Hons) in Applied Social Care Level 8 graduates may work in management positions in these areas.


The fees for the full-time BA in Applied Social Care are €5,995 per annum for EU students.

Click here to view international fees. 

Click here to view EU fees.

You can also contact our admissions team who will also be able to advise on the payment options available to you.

Fees quoted cover the annual cost of tuition, registration and examinations and are EU fees only.Non-EU students please refer to the International section of the website.Please note also that tax relief is available on fees for Irish income tax payers at the standard rate of 20% on all fees exceeding €3,000 and up to €7,000.

All QQI accredited programmes of education and training of 3 months or longer duration offered by Dublin Business School (DBS) are covered by arrangements under section 65 (4) (b) of the Qualifications and Quality Assurance (Education and Training) Act 2012 whereby in the event that DBS ceases to provide the programme, for any reason, after learners have started on that programme, Kaplan Inc., as guarantor, will refund the moneys most recently paid by or for the learner.   More details are included in the terms and conditions of learner admission to DBS and on programme handbooks provided at induction.

Before making an application please ensure you are aware of all our entry requirements.

School Leaver Applicants

Application for first year full-time programmes in the college is through the CAO System. The CAO system applies only to applications for first year admissions to undergraduate full-time day programmes described in the prospectus, which have a CAO Course code  Application forms and the CAO Handbook are both supplied by the Central Applications Office (CAO), Tower House, Eglinton Street, Galway or from your Career Guidance Counsellor.

Mature Applicants

If you are over 23 years of age on the 1st of January on the year of admission and do not meet the minimum entry requirements, you may apply as a Mature Student. Mature students should apply directly to the Admissions Office at Dublin Business School. Mature students are assessed on the basis of age, work experience, general education standard, motivation and commitment to the programme for which they are applying. Please forward documentation such as any relevant transcripts, a CV or any other related documentation to the Admissions Office. Proof of age such as a copy of driver’s licence or passport must also be submitted.

Transfer Students

Students holding a relevant Certificate, Diploma or other relevant third level qualification may qualify for entry to the second or third year of degree programme. Transfer applications to the second or third year full-time programmes are to be made directly to the college. Students should send copies of their examination transcripts and other relevant documentation along with their application form (available from the School / College) to the Admissions Office at Dublin Business School. 

EU Citizens

A European (EU) Application is one made by a person: 

(a) who is permanently a resident in one of the member states of the European Union and/or

(b) who will have received full-time second level education, for three of the five years immediately before the date of proposed admission, in member states.

Non-EU Applicants

Non - EU applicants should contact directly the International Admissions Office at Dublin Business School.

Application fee to CAO

Early applicants to CAO can benefit from a reduced fee of €30 for early online applications. There is a standard application fee of €45 made payable to CAO on submitting your CAO application form or online application to before the normal closing date. Late applicants will be charged €90 for paper applications and €60 for online applications.


  • 7
  • Full-time Degrees/ Certificates
  • Full-Time

Course overview


Awarding Body: 
Quality & Qualifications Ireland (QQI)

Awarding Body: Quality & Qualifications Ireland (QQI)
Award: Ordinary Bachelor Degree
NFQ Level: Level 7
Title of Award: BA in Applied Social Care
Award Type: Major
Duration: 3 Years
CAO Code: DB528
Next Intake: September 2022

Contact Us

We are now accepting applications for programmes taking place in 2022. Contact our admissions team for more information

Phone: 01 417 7500
Opening times:
Monday to Friday
8:45am to 5:15pm