Undergraduate programmes in the subject are designed to give students a thorough grounding in the principal forms and genres of Folklore, with due reference to their historical background and international context. The programmes are aimed at students with an interest in popular tradition, vernacular culture and Irish studies, who wish to develop a career or further studies in these areas.
The programmes are also focused on international students, given the essentially universal nature of the subject, and on mature students, whose life experience often provides an ideal background on which to base their studies in Irish Folklore. The programmes’ educational values are centred on the promotion of a spirit of enquiry regarding the nature, persistence and dynamics of tradition in everyday life. They encourage students to develop a reflective approach to their studies, while also emphasising the centrality of field-work and archival sources to their research and learning. Teaching is carried out in lectures, in small-group tutorials, and in seminar-style participatory classes.
Archival and primary sources are widely used in all modules, and students are also encouraged to make use of digital archive resources in their research and learning. Assessments take the form of written examinations, individual research projects, journal-keeping, in-semester essays, and oral presentations. They also include assignments which give students the opportunity to formulate their own research questions and to pursue given topics using archival data-sets.