Guest Lecturer Hildagarde Naughton TD (back right) with the class at the Campaigning & Media Skills Module of the Higher Certificate in Business, Enterprise & Community Development.- Galway April 2018

Higher Certificate in Business Enterprise & Community Development


  • This is stage 1 of the 3 stage BA (Hons) in Business, Social Enterprise, Leadership and Management. This course is a part-time distance learning programme, designed to provide learners with the opportunity to achieve a Level 6 award via flexible delivery methodologies and incorporating Work and Community based learning.
    This is Year Three of a four year BA (Hons) in Business, in Social Enterprise, Leadership & Management. It is a part-time Distance Learning Programme Accredited by Athlone Institute of Technology. 

  • Learners will have the opportunity to explore and develop their interest in the fields of business, enterprise and community development and to enhance their competencies towards becoming effective administrators in these areas. A particular objective of EQUAL Ireland is the development of our participants so that they become accomplished self-directed, independent learners. 

    Entry Requirement

  • Any mature applicant demonstrating the essential basic literacy and numeracy skills deemed necessary to succeed on the programme will be eligible for admission

  • The EQUAL Ireland (LYIT Accredited)  Essential Skills Certificate (Workplace, Community & Education) 



Who is it For

Completion of this programme will be of particular interest to you if you are:

  • Graduates of EQUAL Ireland’s Essential Skills Certificate programmeA Graduate of Equal Ireland’s Higher Certificate in Business, Enterprise & Community Development
  • Leaners who would like to attain a BA (Hons) in Business, Social Enterprise, Leadership and Management
  • Business Manager/Owner
  • Community Activists or Workplace Representatives
  •  Entrepreneurs or Innovators who want to establish a successful private or social enterprise
  • Volunteers in Community Groups or Organisations whose prospects for employment within these organisations would be enhanced through acquiring this qualification. 



Assessment Information

This programme is assessed through  continuous applied projects, both group and individual. 
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 What opportunities might it lead to?

What kind of a job will I get with this qualification?” is one of the most frequent and persistent questions asked at EQUAL Ireland Information Sessions.

The first thing to be said in response to this question has to be that this qualification imparts generic business, leadership and management skills to the learner. It is for example neither a Law, Nursing or Engineering Degree, so the type of work, which can be successfully competed for is of a broader nature and includes a wider range of job types. Our programmes are aimed at developing your skills and knowledge so that you can compete effectively for the available jobs, whether they be in leadership and management roles in business, social enterprise or the community or voluntary sectors.

The need for good business and entrepreneurial practices to serve as the basis of business and community development initiatives is critical. Indeed most community development initiatives have or will have a social/community enterprise dimension. These programmes prepare graduates for career opportunities in planning, supervision and business development, administration, management and leadership within business, and in the social/community enterprise sector.

Graduating  from this programme will for example enable a graduate to engage in any of the following career options. 






All international and local research shows higher levels of education increase your employability as well as your salary so the higher your standard of education, the more chance you have of getting a job and of being paid well in it. That’s a very strong argument in favour of continuing your educational journey. Business (and increas-ingly Social Enterprise) Education, health and welfare programmes show very high levels of employment.


Progression from this programme is to a BA in Business, Enterprise & Community Development and subsequently to  a BA ( Hons) in Social Enteprrise Leadership and Management.


Course Structure

 Year One Modules

Learning & Development for Higher Education  (10 Credits)
Community Development (15 Credits)
Communications (15 Credits)  
Information & Communication Technology (10 Credits)
Entrepreneurship, Innovation & Market Orientation (15 Credits)

Year Two Modules 

Ireland & EU Governance (15 Credits)
Campaigning & Media Skills (10 Credits)
Office & Financial Management (10 Credits)
Organisation Management (10 Credits)
Psychology in the Workplace Elective  (10 Credits)
Applied Sociology Elective (10 Credits )

Programme Delivery & Supports

The programme will be delivered through Workshops held locally or centrally, or through a mixture of both. Engagement is on average two days per month over a 12 month period. An increasing proportion of delivery will be online using our eLearning platform. 

Key Learning Supports:

  • The EQUAl Ireland Moodle eLearning Platform
  • Access to tutor and other support stafff between workshops
  • Module Manuals
  • Summary Video Presentations
  • Organised Study Groups
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