NCI terminology

College has many changes from school, and one of these changes is the type of language that is used. This page helps you to become familiar with some of the phrases and terms we use here in NCI.

Core Modules

These are compulsory modules that you must complete.


Each module carries a number of credits. You need to obtain a certain number of credit to progress into your next year or to pass you course.


A deferral occurs when a student applies to the registrar to put exams or a semester out until the next sitting.


The subject area of your course e.g. business/marketing/computing/psychology etc.


Some courses allow students to choose some of their modules to make up the necessary credits. These modules are called electives.

Full-time Student

This means that you will usually attend classes during the day, from Monday to Friday. Some courses are offered on a part-time basis, where students study in the evening.


A student who has received an academic degree or diploma.


Involving two or more cultures.


Involving two or more disciplines that would usually be considered distinct from each other e.g. marketing and engineering or business and languages.


Competition between different universities or colleges.


A subject or a number of subjects that make up a single topic of study.

Module Title

The full title of the module.

Module Code

The code number allocated to a specific module. The module code will generally be used as a short way of identifying the module.

Part-Time Student

This means that students usually attend classes in the evenings and at weekends.


When a person submits work as their own when it is someone else’s material or ideas.


A student who continues studies after graduation on to a Postgraduate Diploma or Masters.

Programme Co-Ordinator

Programme co-ordinators administer the daily management of all courses in the college. They can help you with queries around timetables, module choices, and personal circumstance forms.

They are part of a committed team of professional staff supporting an academic programme called Academic Operations and are located in Room 3.03, Research Building in National College of Ireland.

You will have a dedicated Programme coordinator who will introduce themselves at the start of the Semester by email and a welcome address.

Academic Operations can be contacted by submitting a request through the NCI Support Hub. This will ensure that your query is dealt with promptly and efficiently.

Programme Director

The academic lead on a particular programme. 


This is how a person gives credit when they have used someone else’s writing or idea in their work. In NCI we use the Harvard Referencing system.

The library have many guides to help with learning how to reference correctly.


This is the name given to a half-year term of classes. There are three semesters in the academic year: September-December, January-May and May-August.


The concentration of your efforts on a particular field of study e.g. marketing or HR management; software engineering or information systems.

Student Portal

This is where you will find any information you need about your course as well as the services and supports available in the college.


A university student who is studying for their degree.