Citizenship, Identity and Belonging


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Course Overview

The Certificate in Citizenship, Identity and Belonging aims to provide learners with an introduction to citizenship, which has become one of the most political ideas of our time. This course explores the process of politics and active citizenship, and creative involvement in political life whether at a community, national or global level.  The course will also critically engage with the politics of citizenship, including the issues of membership, inclusion, and exclusion with reference to theoretical perspectives on nationalism, identity, and cultural conflict.

The course is broken into 4 sections:

  • The Macro Level
  • Citizenship and the Dimensions of Nationalism, Globalisation and Identity
  • Applying Concepts to Case Studies
  • From Knowledge to Action.

Credits: 10 ECTS

Course Practicalities

Course will be delivered on Thursday evenings from 6.30pm – 9.30pm online online for 12 weeks.  Scheduled day may be subject to change.

Next course runs from 10th September – 3rd December 2024.

Closing Date for applications

8th August 2024

Course Content

The course will cover the following key areas:

The Macro Level:

  • Relationship between institutional power, policy, and active citizenship
  • Defining Active Citizenship
  • Defining Civil Society
  • The State-community relationship
  • Does civic engagement pose a challenge or opportunity for representative democracy, is there a need to reshape traditional power structures?
  • The Sociological Imagination – Connecting the Individual and Society
  • Structure, Agency, and Social Change

Citizenship and the Dimensions of Nationalism, Globalisation and Identity:

  • The Social Construction of National Identity
  • The Social Construction of the West:
  • Membership: Globalisation and Cosmopolitanism:

 Applying Concepts to Case Studies:

  • Using a sociological lens, critically analyse how this translates at the micro-level of the individual, with reference to a chosen case study at the local, national, or international level.

The Micro-Level – From Knowledge to Action:

  • Identifying Initiatives
  • Identifying Interest Groups: NGOs, Civil Society Organisations and Community Groups
  • Identifying Initiatives: Types of Actions: Lobbying, Campaigns, Protests
  • Management and Leadership: Team Building, Public Speaking, Collaboration, Networking
  • Representation, Inclusivity, and Accessibility in Campaigns, Minority Representation, Civic Engagement, Youth Participation, Inclusive and Accessible Campaign Design
  • Designing the Research: Using Quantitative and Qualitative Methods in the Citizenship Project
  • Report Writing: Communicating the Research Findings
Course Lecturer

Gerard Elwood teaches Leaving Certificate Politics and Society at Maynooth Post Primary School, Kildare. He studied Politics and Sociology in both his primary degree and secondary teaching qualifications. He is also a Politics & Society Subject Associate with the Professional Development Service for Teachers (PDST), and a subject examiner with the State Examinations Commission.

Entry Requirements

Applicants must be at least 18 years old at course commencement.

Contact Details for Further Information


Please note our refund policy as follows

100% refund if student cancels before course registration

100% refund if course is cancelled due to insufficient numbers


If student cancels after registration/first week of course – full refund minus €50 administration fee

If student cancels after second week of course – no refund