Bachelor of Science (Honours) in Occupational Safety and Health

  • NFQ Level 8
  • Points Required 307*
  • Course Code AU967 (was SG442)
  • Award Honours Degree Abinitio
  • Duration 4

Course Summary

This programme gives students the knowledge and skills to protect workers from injuries and fatalities, prevent illness caused by work, promote health and wellbeing, and advise employers on health and safety law.  Students will also learn how to prepare, implement and monitor safety management systems in the workplace. 


This 4-year programme engages students in a dynamic and innovative way from first year through to fourth year. Students learn how to effectively work with people by working within groups and teams to solve real workplace safety and health issues. The course gives a blend of theoretical and practical learning from lectures, laboratory based monitoring, site visits, case studies, enquiry based learning and work placement.

The course will provide you with the knowledge and skills to put in place environmental, health and safety management systems in the workplace. This combined with the fact that our graduates will also be qualified to act as trainers makes them highly sought after by employers.

This is the longest running Occupational Safety and Health honours degree course in the country and our graduates are employed across all sectors, from manufacturing to construction, retail to public bodies. On completion of this four year course you will be qualified to act as a health and safety or environmental, health and safety manager in any workplace.


Students study the biological and chemical sciences which underpin Occupational Safety and Health and develop a range of communication and IT skills.


Students study important safety and environmental topics, including Safety Law, Manual Handling Instruction Training, Construction Technology, Occupational Safety and Health, Biological Health Hazards and Environmental Water Quality.


In the third year, there is a focus on applying the knowledge and skills students have developed on the programme in Years one and two. Modules include Construction Safety and Contractor Management, Management of Hazardous Materials, Occupational Hygiene, Occupational Health and Health Promotion, Safety and Health Legislation and Environmental Topics.


Students complete a five-month work placement in safety and health. Modules include Project Management, Ergonomics, Behavioural Based Safety Programmes, Management of Workplace Health and Wellbeing, Environmental Health and Safety Management System Project. Students work on a collaborative project with an industry partner to develop an environmental, health and safety management system and training programme. This practical experience leaves our graduates confident to take up a health and safety position in any work place.


This course is accredited by the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH), the only Chartered body for health and safety practitioners and the world’s largest health and safety professional membership organisation. This qualifies students to take up a career as a Health and Safety Advisor/Manager in any type of industry anywhere in the world.

Entry Requirements

Entry requirements for CAO courses at ATU Sligo are available for download below:

A science subject at Leaving Certificate is not a requirement for this course.

Career Opportunities

On completion of the BSc. Occupational Safety and Health you will be a qualified Occupational Safety & Health Advisor/Officer.

Graduates go on to work in a broad range of industries from construction, pharmaceutical, medical device, agricultural, manufacturing, consultancy, food industry, healthcare, local authorities.  Graduates from the course are highly sought after as they have excellent work-based practical skills which employers desire. The typical starting salary for graduates is 28 - 32k per annum.



Further Study

Level 8 graduates may progress to the two-year online Masters in Environmental Health and Safety at ATU Sligo or MSc or PhD awards. 


“Over the past number of years, Glanbia has be delighted to host Health & Safety placement students from ATU Sligo. The quality of students has been excellent, with students showing a high level of technical knowledge, enthusiasm and strong interest in Health & Safety. Two of our core values here at Glanbia are ‘Find a Better Way’ and ‘Performance Matters’. Our placement students have demonstrated these values through their ability to question our methods and systems, and their willingness to learn new skills”.


"One of the main things I noticed when studying Occupational Safety & Health at Sligo, is that each module begins at a basic level. Through a great mix of theory lectures and practical labs, my knowledge grew gradually over the semesters. Group work is a huge focus in the course, especially Enquiry Based Learning (EBL), which has greatly boosted my confidence in presenting in front of crowds, communicating professionally and working efficiently as part of a team. When I chose this course a few years back, I could never have imagined the huge range of opportunities that it would open for me."

Michael Murray (2020 Graduate)

Did you know?

We also over a Level 7 Bachelor of Science in Occupational Safety and Health

A five-month work placement takes place at the end of third year from May until October. Students find work in pharmaceutical, local authorities, manufacturing, construction, state agencies or retail. Placements are paid also.

Over the past number of years there has been a 100% employment rate for our B.Sc (Hons) in Occupational Safety & Health graduates. 

Students are manual handling trainers and visual display unit assessors when they graduate.

As Occupational Safety & Health in the workplace covers areas such as chemical safety, occupational health, exposure to noise, dust, gases, this course is essentially applied science rather than the science as you would know it from secondary level. 


Course Format

Semester 1

Introductory Biology05
Mathematics for Science 105
Information Technology 105
Occupational Safety and Health Enquiry Based Learning 110
Chemistry And Chemical Hazards 105

Semester 2

Occupational Safety and Health Enquiry Based Learning 210
Mathematics for Science 205
Biological Science05

Semester 3

Hazard and risk control05
Electricity, Machinery and Fire Safety05
Occupational Safety And Health Enquiry Based Learning 305
Environmental Water Quality05
Occupational Hygiene Physical Agents05
Safety Legislation 105

Semester 4

Construction Technology05
Manual Handling Instructor Training05
Data and Statistics in Health05
Workstation assessor training05
Occupational Safety and Health Enquiry Based Learning 405
Biological Health Hazards in the Workplace05

Semester 5

Safety and Health Legislation 205
Occupational Health and Health Promotion05
Occupational Hygiene Theory & Practical (Chemical & Biological Agents)05
Environmental Topics in the Workplace05
Occupational Safety and Health Enquiry Based Learning 505
Management of Hazardous Materials and Processes05

Semester 6

Construction Safety and Contractor Management05
Occupational Hygiene - Control of Hazardous Substances05
OSH Enquiry Based Learning 6 - Safety Statement and Risk Assessment05
Applied Statistics and Data Management05
Environmental Management for the Safety Practitioner05
Hazard and risk management05

Semester 7

EHS Management Systems and Auditing 05
Behavioural Based Safety Programs05
Project Management for OSH professionals05
Regulatory Affairs05
Occupational Safety and Health Enquiry Based Learning 7 & Workplace Studies05

Semester 8

Training and Development 10
Management of Workplace Health & Wellbeing05
OSH Enquiry Based Learning 8 -EHS Management Systems Project15