Course Overview

The Diploma in Employee Assistance and Social Support is a two-year, blended learning training course for staff working or intending to work in Employee Assistance Programmes (EAPs). The course provides knowledge and basic training in the skills necessary to fulfil the role of an EAP practitioner. The Course is broadly based in recognition of the very different functions and responsibilities allocated to the EAP support role in different types of enterprise and organisations.

On successful completion of the course, participants will be able to:

  • Describe and explain the origins of Employee Assistance and differing national approaches to EAP policies, legislation and practice in the European Union.
  • Demonstrate in their work an ability to use a wide range of interpersonal skills appropriate to the needs of their clients.
  • Demonstrate the ability to respond with appropriate skills to a wide range of frequently occurring workplace problems.
  • Describe and advise on different ways of providing EAP services in a workplace.

The Certificate (Year 1) course focuses on the basic knowledge and skills for the practice of employee assistance. In the Diploma year (Year 2), the focus is on workplace problems that are encountered particularly frequently. Processes and procedures for managing and coping with these problems are explained and the interpersonal skills needed at the various stages of these procedures identified and practised.

Applications and Selections

Apply Online

Early application is advised as offers will be made on a rolling basis.

A limited number of applications may be accepted after the official application closing date, subject to the availability of places.

Who Teaches this Course

Requirements and Assessment

Students may take year 1 of this course as a stand-alone course for which a Certificate in Employee Assistance and Social Support will be awarded. At the end of year 2, a Diploma in Employee Assistance and Social Support will be awarded.  

On completion of year 2 students who wish to can progress into year 3 of the Degree in Training and Education course.

Participants are required to attend two, 2-day and four, 1-day workshops each year guided by tutors from NUI Galway. Workshop locations are selected to be geographically accessible to the majority of students. Attendance at workshops is a key course requirement. A full set of self-instructional learning material is provided at the start of each module. 

Assessment is by means of a written assignment for each module plus an end of year project.

Key Facts

Entry Requirements

Applicants should have appropriate experience in some area of Human Resources or Employee Assistance and should be in a position to undertake course assignments and projects relating to practical aspects of employee assistance. Entry requirements for part-time students can be found in our FAQs section (i.e. age, english language requirements etc.). 

Additional Requirements

Duration

1 year, part-time (Cert)
years, part-time (Diploma)

Next start date

September

A Level Grades ()

Average intake

25

Closing Date

Next start date

September

NFQ level

Certificate/Diploma - Level 7

Mode of study

 Blended Learning

ECTS weighting

90 ECTS (45 ECTS per each academic year)

Award

Certificate/Diploma in Employee Assistance and Supported Employment

CAO

PAC code

Course Outline

Students  attend 1-day and 2-day workshops throughout the academic year. This usually amounts to 8 days per year.

Modules - YEAR 1
ECTS   Workshops
Employee Assistance: Origins, Principles and Organisation 5 1 day
Individual Help in the Employee Assistance Process 10 2 days
Work-based Project 10 1 day
Negotiations and Negotiation Skills 5 1 day
The Legal and Policy Framework of EAP 10 2 days
Problem Management and Creativity 5 1 day
     
Modules - YEAR 2    
Introduction to Research in the Social Sciences 5 1 day
Responding to Substance Misuse in the Workplace 10 2 days
Work-based Project 10 1 days
Employee Assistance - Bullying and Harassment 5 1 day
Depression and Common Mental Disorders 10 2 days
Psychological Trauma 5 1 day

Note: Modules of equivalent status may be offered on each year of the course.

Modules for 2016-17

Curriculum information relates to the current academic year (in most cases).
Course and module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Glossary of Terms

Credits
You must earn a defined number of credits (aka ECTS) to complete each year of your course. You do this by taking all of its required modules as well as the correct number of optional modules to obtain that year's total number of credits.
Optional
A module you may choose to study.
Required
A module that you must study if you choose this course (or subject).
Semester
Most courses have 2 semesters (aka terms) per year.

Year 1 (45 Credits)

Required EAS108: Problem Management & Creativity


Semester 2 | Credits: 5

In this module you learn about two models of problem solving or problem management. You learn about creativity and its relevance to solving and managing problems.
(Language of instruction: English)

Learning Outcomes
  1. Demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of problem management strategies and their value in helping individuals achieve their goals.
  2. Demonstrate a working knowledge and understanding of problem identification, relationship building, the stages of problem management and how problems interact with different aspects of an individual’s life.
  3. Analyse different approaches to creativity and explain the relevance of these approaches to problem management.
  4. Exercise autonomy and judgement in helping individuals identify their problems, find creative solutions, set goals, set out an action plan in relation to goals and establish a review process for determining achievement.
  5. Take responsibility for managing complex and unpredictable situations in relation to supporting individuals in creatively solving their problems.
  6. Act effectively to support individuals who are experiencing complex and unpredictable work-related well-being issues.
  7. Comprehend fully the up-to-date and complete range of sources and types of social supports available.
  8. Express a personal view of the importance of social support to clients and to practitioners as related to workplace well-being
Assessments
  • Department-based Assessment (100%)
Teachers
The above information outlines module EAS108: "Problem Management & Creativity" and is valid from 2017 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Required EAS109: Negotiations and Negotiation Skills


Semester 2 | Credits: 5

In this module you learn about negotiation as a way of resolving conflict. You learn of two models of negotiation and their use in EA practice.
(Language of instruction: English)

Learning Outcomes
  1. Demonstrate a grounded understanding of negotiation skills and their importance in solving conflict.
  2. Demonstrate a working knowledge and understanding of how social conflicts constrain relationships, and how negotiation skills can be implemented to resolve these conflicts.
  3. Analyse different approaches to negotiation and explain the relevance of these approaches to conflict resolution.
  4. Apply the learned skills of conducting all necessary preparatory research on the individuals/groups involved in any conflict in order to be in a strong position to assist all involved in finding an amicable resolution.
  5. Exercise autonomy in implementing the seven-stage process of negotiation, in sometimes complex and unpredictable situations in relation to supporting individuals / groups in negotiating a conflict resolution.
  6. Implementing the Face-Front concepts. Act effectively as support to individuals who might experience difficulties with the structures and practices of conversation and negotiation.
  7. Reflectively appraise the knowledge and skills that contribute to successful negotiation, using this knowledge and these skills to strengthen own learning engagement, experiences and activities.
  8. Express a personal view of the importance of negotiations and negotiation skills to clients and to practitioners as related to workplace well-being.
Assessments
  • Department-based Assessment (100%)
Teachers
The above information outlines module EAS109: "Negotiations and Negotiation Skills" and is valid from 2017 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Required EAS100: Employee Assistance: Origins, Principles and Organisation


Semester 2 | Credits: 5

The historical overview presents the full range of ideas about the health and wellbeing of people at work. You will study a range of approaches to the design, delivery, and evaluation of Employee Assistance programmes.
(Language of instruction: English)

Learning Outcomes
  1. Demonstrate a broad and up to date understanding of the importance of Employee Assistance programmes (EAPs) in managing staff welfare in the workplace.
  2. Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of models and types of EAP, policies that support EAPS and how EAPs are organised and tailored to meet the needs of organisations.
  3. Analyse the relationship of EAPs to general issues of health and safety, health promotion in the workplace, occupational health, occupational psychology and human resource management.
  4. Select and apply concepts and principles related to EAP to implement the key steps in setting up an EAP taking account of the dynamics of the organisation and its service.
  5. Define and discuss the issues facing organisations in deciding to establish an EAP taking account of the organisation need, the range of services provided and the EAP evaluation process.
  6. Evaluate the need for increased professionalism of EAP service providers, the range of competences the service provider should demonstrate and the requirement for qualifications.
  7. Take the initiative in identifying own learning needs as they relate to a comprehensive understanding of EAP.
  8. Explain the critical importance of research and evidence in the EAP field of work, the policies that support EAP, organisational needs and overall perspective of well-being at work.
Assessments
  • Department-based Assessment (100%)
Teachers
The above information outlines module EAS100: "Employee Assistance: Origins, Principles and Organisation" and is valid from 2017 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Required EAS101: Individual Help in the Employee Assistance Process


Semester 1 and Semester 2 | Credits: 10

This module explores certain skills and knowledge which are used to help individuals who are experiencing difficulties. The aim of the module is to help you to develop as an effective helper.
(Language of instruction: English)

Learning Outcomes
  1. Discuss specific concepts, values and frameworks of helping as they relate to the role of an effective professional in helping an individual to deal with well-being and work-related issues and problems.
  2. Explain the essential elements of a helping framework, different helping styles, genuineness, attending, active listening, goals, main types of interventions, problem management, stages of action planning and their relationships and implications.
  3. Synthesise information accurately to effectively formulate appropriate help related concepts, tools and interventions to achieve successful experiences for an individual seeking support.
  4. Select and apply appropriate analytical tools and interventions when identifying and exploring individual difficulties in relation to well-being concerns and issues.
  5. Take responsibility for selecting appropriate helping interventions and strategies for a diverse range of individuals, their concerns and their work-related contexts.
  6. Exercise autonomy in the employment and practical application of a range of effective helping styles and interventions based on the individual needs of a worker and the related context.
  7. Reflectively appraise the knowledge and skills that contribute to successful professional development, using this knowledge and skills to strengthen own learning engagement, experiences and activities.
  8. Express a professional commitment to the value of effective helping in the context of well-being at work.
Assessments
  • Department-based Assessment (100%)
Teachers
The above information outlines module EAS101: "Individual Help in the Employee Assistance Process" and is valid from 2017 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Required EAS102: The Legal and Policy Framework of EAP


Semester 1 and Semester 2 | Credits: 10

The practice of Employee Assistance is governed by laws which the practitioner must take into account as he or she delivers a service. This module provides a firm grounding in the law as it applies both to the workplace in general, to delivery of their particular service, and to the quality of their personal practice.
(Language of instruction: English)

Learning Outcomes
  1. Demonstrate a working knowledge of the way the Irish legal system is organised and administered in order to guide professional practice when assisting clients across the typical range of EAP issues.
  2. Analyse the main laws affecting Irish workplaces, large and small and the legally constituted bodies with responsibility for implementing those laws with a view to compliance in practice.
  3. Evaluate the main issues covered by legislation (Health & Safety; Equality & Diversity; Harassment; Bullying Mental Health), bearing in mind that such legislation has implications for practice in the workplace.
  4. Adopt legislation compliance guidelines for best practice covering all aspects of service delivery, from professional conduct, to using knowledge to inform the individual, to evaluation of service and to providing guidelines for an individual or service-wide complaints procedure.
  5. Express a detailed knowledge about how the law affects the professional conduct of employee assistance practice in the delivery of a service within unpredictable, ill-defined and complex contexts.
  6. Take responsibility for ensuring legal compliance when supporting individual work-related well-being issues, when advocating and referring cases, when responding appropriately to court and other requests around disclosure of client information, seeking guidance when necessary.
  7. Take the initiative to remain up to date with relevant legislation with regards to employee assistance practice.
  8. Express an internalised view of the value of remaining in compliance with legislation when dealing with work-related well-being issues.
Assessments
  • Department-based Assessment (100%)
Teachers
The above information outlines module EAS102: "The Legal and Policy Framework of EAP" and is valid from 2017 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Required EAS103: Work Based Project Year 1


Semester 1 and Semester 2 | Credits: 10

This project will give you the opportunity to complete a piece of research on a topic of interest to you that is relevant to both the course and to your own work. It shall also offer you the chance to maintain and document a personal reflective learning journal throughout your project journey.
(Language of instruction: English)

Learning Outcomes
  1. Demonstrate a comprehensive knowledge and understanding of the value, purposes and key concepts relating to literature reviews.
  2. Deliver a comprehensive explanation of the literature review process, including the rationale behind each of the steps involved in conducting and writing-up a literature review.
  3. Select and apply a range of research skills in searching for, identifying and reviewing appropriate and relevant literature in the context of a well-formulated research question.
  4. Critically analyse, evaluate, interpret and synthesise the literature to provide support for balanced, evidence-based arguments and justifiable conclusions.
  5. Apply the knowledge learning gains in writing a well-structured and well-presented literature review report that includes all the required elements of such a report.
  6. Exercise autonomy and judgement in the application of literature-based research knowledge and skills in a variety of professional contexts.
  7. Manage, take responsibility for and communicate effectively evidence-based decisions.
  8. Reflectively identify and appraise your achievement of knowledge and skills through undertaking the literature review project, highlighting further learning needs and proposals to meet those needs identified.
Assessments
  • Department-based Assessment (100%)
Teachers
The above information outlines module EAS103: "Work Based Project Year 1" and is valid from 2017 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Year 2 (45 Credits)

Required TE1600: Introduction to Research


Required EAS104: Depression and Common Mental Disorders in EAP


Semester 2 | Credits: 10

This module examines the issue of Common Mental Disorders (CMD), found at a community level. The writings used here, those of David Goldberg and Peter Huxley, suggest that common mental disorders as experienced in the community are largely states of depression, anxiety and combinations of the two.
(Language of instruction: English)

Learning Outcomes
  1. Portray an understanding of the factors that precipitate common mental disorders, those that make people vulnerable to them and those that protect people from them.
  2. Demonstrate a knowledge of the various forms of expression that depressive illness and other common mental disorders can assume in society and in different parts of the mental health services.
  3. Describe and explain in general, helpful counselling approaches.
  4. Describe and explain in general, helpful counselling approaches.
  5. Outline some major drugs available and their possible side effects.
  6. Exercise autonomy and judgment in applying the knowledge and skills in supporting all concerned, acknowledging at all times the limitations of your own competence.
  7. Describe and explain the differing characteristics of depression at various levels of severity including manic depression.
  8. Understand and explain some of the main principles and practices of cognitive therapy.
Assessments
  • Department-based Assessment (100%)
Teachers
The above information outlines module EAS104: "Depression and Common Mental Disorders in EAP" and is valid from 2017 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Required EAS105: Employee Assistance: Psychological Trauma


Semester 2 | Credits: 5

This module explores the dimensions of stress and how it affects the individuals health and well-being, from the common everyday experience of stress to the more extreme post-traumatic stress reactions following serious trauma.
(Language of instruction: English)

Learning Outcomes
  1. Describe and explain the psychology of stress and post-traumatic stress disorder.
  2. List the typical signs of stress, from a behavioural cognitive and emotional perspective.
  3. Understand the effects of repeated trauma on an individual and know how to evaluate stress responses.
  4. Describe a series of interventions that can be employed to help reduce and manage stress more effectively.
  5. Outline the differing reactions to trauma experienced as outside one’s control and trauma experienced as a consequence of human error.
  6. Exercise autonomy and judgment in applying the knowledge and skills in supporting all concerned, and when deciding to refer a person that you suspect may be suffering from PTSD, acknowledging at all times the limitations of your own competence.
  7. Describe and explain the differing characteristics of depression at various levels of severity including manic depression Give examples of different types of trauma and their likely stress disorder.
  8. Understand and explain some of the main principles and practices of cognitive therapy Describe the stages in a model of cognitive behaviour therapy intervention for posttraumatic stress disorder.
Assessments
  • Department-based Assessment (100%)
Teachers
The above information outlines module EAS105: "Employee Assistance: Psychological Trauma" and is valid from 2017 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Required EAS106: Employee Assistance: Bullying and Harassment


Semester 1 and Semester 2 | Credits: 5

This module provides a clear differentiation between Bullying and Harassment. It offers a firm grounding in the law as it applies to both behaviours in a workplace context. Measures that might prevent claims of Bullying and Harassment, along with procedures to be followed if such events transpire are outlined within.
(Language of instruction: English)

Learning Outcomes
  1. Provide a comprehensive explanation of what is meant by bullying and harassment and demonstrate a working knowledge of the current legislation in this area and its requirements in relation to employers and employees.
  2. Explain the causes of bullying and harassment and identify tactics used by bullies and the effects those tactics have on the victim.
  3. Evaluate and outline the costs of bullying and harassment at an individual and organisational level.
  4. Identify the behavioural implications of bullying and harassment and portray a familiarity with the formal and informal investigative processes, including mediation.
  5. Exercise autonomy and judgment in applying the knowledge and skills in supporting all concerned, acknowledging at all times the limitations of your own competence.
  6. Take responsibility for ensuring the fulfilment of actual factual records, the provision of supervision and the need to seek guidance when necessary.
  7. Take the initiative to remain up to date with relevant legislation with regards to employee assistance practice.
  8. Express an internalised view of the value of remaining in compliance with legislation when dealing with work-related well-being issues.
Assessments
  • Department-based Assessment (100%)
Teachers
The above information outlines module EAS106: "Employee Assistance: Bullying and Harassment" and is valid from 2017 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Required EAS107: Work Based Project Year 2


Semester 1 and Semester 2 | Credits: 10

This project will give you the opportunity to complete a piece of research on a topic of interest to you that is related to the general area of employee assistance and social support. It shall also offer you the chance to maintain and document a personal reflective learning journal throughout your project journey.
(Language of instruction: English)

Learning Outcomes
  1. Demonstrate a comprehensive and specialised knowledge of the value, purposes and key concepts relating to literature reviews.
  2. Provide a comprehensive explanation of the literature review process, including the rationale behind each of the steps involved in conducting and writing-up a literature review.
  3. Select and apply a range of research skills in searching for, identifying and reviewing appropriate and relevant literature in the context of a well-formulated research question.
  4. Critically analyse, evaluate, interpret and synthesise the literature to provide support for balanced, evidence-based arguments and justifiable conclusions.
  5. Apply the knowledge learning gains in writing a well-structured and well-presented literature review report that includes all the required elements of such a report.
  6. Exercise autonomy and judgement in the application of literature-based research knowledge and skills in a variety of professional contexts.
  7. Manage, take responsibility for and communicate effectively evidence-based decisions.
  8. Reflectively identify and appraise your achievement of knowledge and skills through undertaking the literature review project, highlighting further learning needs and proposals to meet those needs identified.
Assessments
  • Department-based Assessment (100%)
Teachers
The above information outlines module EAS107: "Work Based Project Year 2" and is valid from 2017 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Required EAS111: Responding to Substance Misuse in the Workplace


Semester 1 and Semester 2 | Credits: 10

This module prepares you to design, negotiate, and implement responses and interventions within the workplace to reduce the potential for harm caused by substance misuse.
(Language of instruction: English)

Learning Outcomes
  1. Demonstrate a comprehensive knowledge of the international, national and local arrangements to prevent and reduce harm arising from various forms of substance misuse.
  2. Explain comprehensively the basic pattern behind all forms of substance misuse and the continuum of potential harm.
  3. Assist an employer through the stages of planning and implementation of a policy on substance misuse.
  4. Assess accurately the extent and depth of a person’s relationship to any particular psychoactive substance.
  5. Exercise autonomy and judgment in applying the knowledge and skills in supporting all concerned, acknowledging at all times the limitations of your own competence.
  6. Act effectively in training staff members involved in the implementation of the policy and in the recognition and response phases of the programme to the proper level of competence to carry out their role effectively.
  7. Take the initiative to remain up to date with relevant legislation with regards to employee assistance best-practice.
  8. Express an internalised view of the value of remaining in compliance with legislation when dealing with work-related well-being issues.
Assessments
  • Department-based Assessment (100%)
Teachers
The above information outlines module EAS111: "Responding to Substance Misuse in the Workplace" and is valid from 2017 onwards.
Note: Module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Why Choose This Course?

Career Opportunities

Many public sector organisations have established EAP programmes and a number of private sector companies deliver confidential services to the business sector across Ireland.

Who’s Suited to This Course

Learning Outcomes

 

Work Placement

Study Abroad

Related Student Organisations

Course Fees

Fees: EU

€2,900 p.a.

Fees: Tuition

Fees: Student levy

Fees: Non EU

€3,400 p.a.

 
A fees scholarship of up to 30% may be available for students who wish to upskill for the purposes of re-employment.  Students must be registered as unemployed and in receipt of one of the following: 

  • Job-seekers Benefit
  • Job-seekers Allowance
  • One-parent family allowance
  • Disability allowance
  • Community Employment Scheme
  • Carer’s Allowance
  • Signing for social insurance contribution credits

Please download the 2018_19 Fees Scholarship Form for more information.

Find out More

Pauline Dillon

Adult Training and Education Studies
Centre for Adult Learning and Professional Development
NUI Galway, Nuns' Island, Galway
Tel: 091 494059/4055
Email: pauline.dillon@nuigalway.ie / trainingeducation@nuigalway.ie


What Our Students Say

Kevin

Kevin McDonald |   Past Student

Excellent course and well presented, great support from NUIG at all times. It was a pleasure to return to Adult Education.
Niall

Niall O'Connor |   Past Student

I think NUI Galway have got the balance just right with the Employee Assistance and Social Support Diploma course. There is a great mix between academic and practical learning. The lecturers are excellent, drawing from a life time of practical experience. The journals are of a high quality allowing students to prepare for each 2-day workshop. The workshops are very relaxed which allows the students to draw on their experience of dealing with real EAP for the benefit of all in the class.
Dennis

Dennis Farrell |   Past Student

I am thrilled with what I have achieved on this course as it stands to me in my present employment as Personnel Support Service Non Commissioned Officer, in the Irish Defence Forces. This appointment entails dealing with serving and retired soldiers and their family’s with social and domestic problems, and much more. I am actually thinking on the lines of a degree. If someone had told me that two years ago I wouldn’t have believed it.