Cork College of FET Morrison's Island Campus


Cork College of FET Morrison's Island Campus


Cork College of FET Morrison's Island Campus


Special Needs Support
(Intellectual Disability Practice)

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To be truly inclusive we need to consider the society we live in and strive for community based inclusion for all members. The study of empowerment of the individual in the context of community inclusion allows students on this course to increase awareness, understanding and learn the challenges and opportunities of working with individuals with specific needs. If you have an aptitude for and interest in working in the area of disability and support then this is the course for you.


  • Leaving Certificate, LCA or QQI Level 4.
  • Mature students are exempt from Leaving Certificate requirement.
  • CERFL proficiency at B2 for access to Level 5 courses for those whose first language is not English.
  • All applicants will undergo a processing stage during which further information will be gathered in relation to their application. An offer of a place on this course is contingent on the applicant meeting the entry requirements set out here and satisfactory completion of the processing stage.


September to May.


€300 including QQI examination fees (Medical card holders exempt from €50). See fees & payment for details.

Fees status currently being updated for 2024/2025.


  • QQI Level 5 Certificate in Intellectual Disability Practice (5M1761).
  • QQI Component Maths (5N1833) – available as an option in the evening for learners requiring Maths for progression.


Community Inclusion - 5N1740

The learner will be equipped with the knowledge, skill and competence required to support and build the capacity of individuals with an intellectual disability to develop socially valued roles and relationships within their local communities.

Empowering the Individual - 5N1749

The learner will be equipped with the knowledge, skill and competence to empower persons with intellectual disabilities in their daily lives and to facilitate them in making decisions about their own personal goals and support needs.

Facilitating Learning - 5N1753

The learner will be equipped with the knowledge, skill and competence to explore the ways in which people learn and to facilitate people with an intellectual disability to learn and develop new knowledge and skills.

Intellectual Disability Studies - 5N1652

Equip the learner with the knowledge, skill and competence in the causes, range and effects of intellectual disabilities to develop an awareness of the importance of a social model of support and the role of various professionals in responding to the needs of persons with an intellectual disability.

Personal Effectiveness - 5N1390

Reflect on your own personal role in a workplace including the skills needed for your job, personal strengths and weaknesses and the people issues and work practices which influence how you do your work.

Work Experience - 5N1356

Planning, preparation and reflection on work placement. Job finding strategies, CV and personal statement preparation, interview skills. Practise employability skills with a view to future planning.

Challenging Behaviour - 5N1706

The learner will be equipped with the knowledge, skills and competence in supporting individuals with intellectual disability who present with challenging behaviour.

Understanding Special Needs - 5N1709

Develop an ideal of good practice when relating to individuals with special needs. Outline the range of special needs, conditions and impairments, cause, diagnosis, prognosis and epistemology. Describe the different learning and therapy programmes provided by professionals in the area of special needs. Discuss current policy in relation to special needs.

Assistive Technology - 6N2211

The learner will be equipped with the knowledge, skill and competence to conduct an Assistive Technology Assessment. 


  • People Moving and Handling Training and certification (requirement for work experience) – This workshop teaches safe and effective techniques used in the safe moving and handling of people in a variety of settings. This training is mandatory for person’s involved in manual handling and people moving and handling tasks. It is required by legislation under The Safety Health and Welfare at Work (General Application) Regulation 2007 Part two chapter four. The training involves the theory module which is completed online ( and the practical module which is classroom based. The certificate obtained is valid for three years. 

  • HSE Safeguarding Adults at risk of abuse Certificate Its primary focus is to inform learners on the guiding practice and procedures to keep vulnerable adults safe in the community and residential settings.  The content includes leaners being informed of their safeguarding responsibilities, the different types of abuse and neglect and how to recognise them and how to report concerns in line with HSE guidelines. All learners receive a certificate on completion at the end of the course.

  • AMRIC Hand Hygiene (HSELand) – Effective hand Hygiene is the single most effective thing that you can do to protect the people you care for and yourself from healthcare acquired infections. HCAI’s. But knowing is not enough – it’s important to apply what you have learnt and believe that it can be done. By the end of this course, you should know: Why hand hygiene is important:
    – When to practice hand hygiene.
    – How to perform hand hygiene in line with the WHO 5 Moments.
    – How to take care of your hands.

  • AMRIC Infection Prevention and Control (HSELand) – Practical programme which includes specific measures for prevention of infection in all healthcare facilities, how to identify hazards and carry out a well-informed risk assessment. How to control the sources and prevent onward transmission of infection.

  • CPI Safety Intervention training( formerly known as MAPA)Incorporates trauma-informed and person-centred approaches. The programme is the perfect solution for professionals working in health, social care and education who need to prevent and/or intervene in crisis situations. With a focus on prevention, it also teaches staff de-escalation skills as well as non-restrictive and restrictive interventions.

  • Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS)It is an approach that develops expressive communication skills using pictures and can be successfully used with adults and children. Is a system that was developed to help those that had little or no verbal communication ability to communicate with others. It begins by teaching a student to exchange a picture of a desired item with a teacher, who immediately honours the request. There are a number of phases to PECS and while students advance, they learn to sequence words and create sentences. This workshop will give the student an overview of PECS and will include a skills demonstration of the first level when using PECS.

  • Mindfulness (online) – This Mindfulness workshop will introduce the learner to the practice of Mindfulness as a personal resource. The topics include a better understanding of what mindfulness is, understanding how mindfulness can help us to manage stress and anxiety and learning practical tools to incorporate mindfulness into everyday life. A Certificate of Completion is issued on completion.
  • Introduction to GDPR This course gives learners an overview of GDPR. The workshop examines what GDPR stands for and gives an understanding of the current data protection rules and obligations. The learners also receive information on the types of data, the terminology associated with GDPR, the penalties with breaches, storage of data and general do’s and don’ts regarding data. A Certificate of Completion is issued on completion. 
  • First Aid (online) This First Aid Workshop will introduce the learner to the principles of First Aid. The workshop includes identifying the role of the First Aider. Learners will understand how to respond to various injuries and illnesses including choking, fainting, burns, heart attacks, strokes, panic attacks, sprains and strains. A Certificate of Completion from Morrison’s Island Campus is issued on successful completion. The purpose of this workshop is to give the learner a basic understanding of how to deal with First Aid Emergencies. It is not intended as a substitute for a full First Aid Response Course.


What hours are involved?

The course is full time and runs Monday to Thursday potentially from 9-5pm and on Fridays from 9-2pm. 

How is the course assessed?

The course is assessed through a combination of coursework (projects, assignments, learner records and portfolios) which is done throughout the year and written exams held at the at the end of the year.

What age group will I be qualified for with this course?

This course is suitable for individuals wishing to work with those over the age of 6 years to adult. You will not be qualified to work in a creche environment or with children under 6 years of age (the ELC courses are for this age group). It is more focussed at co-action, the rainbow club, being a PA, an SNA etc. Students are required to get to their own placement and undertake 150 hours of Work experience in a suitable environment.


Students will undertake a minimum of 150 hours Work Experience Placement in a suitable vocational setting, which they will source themselves. Learners must be Garda Vetted before going on Placement.


Special arrangements in place with MTU Cork (CCPS), MTU Kerry and SETU(Waterford & Carlow) for preferential entry for students of Morrisons Island locations. Go to our progressions database for exact requirements on progressions for this course.

Some of our popular progression opportunities include:


  • CK102 Social Science
  • CK114 Social Science – Youth & Community Work (must be over 21 and have experience).

SETU (Waterford)

  • SE900 Health Sciences
  • SE927 Applied Social Care.

TUS (Limerick)

  • US920 Social Care work.

MTU Cork

  • MT575 Community Development, MT571 Early Childhood, MT573 Social Care.


Care environments and communities, intellectual disability environments, private settings.

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