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Diploma in Public Relations with Online PR and Event Management modules (Evening Course - 2 EVENINGS A WEEK, 12 WEEKS)

start date: 17 September 2024

Delivered interactively by Ireland’s leading public relations professionals, Fitzwilliam Institute's Diploma in Public Relations course takes places in Dublin City Centre, twice a week for 12 weeks, and features:

  • Over 3 months of intensive high-level corporate training with interactive modules covering all aspects of public relations: The Meaning And Development Of Public Relations, Ethical And Legal Issues, Strategic Process, Media Specialisations, Internal Public Relations, Crisis Management, Political Lobbying, Outreach, Tools and Techniques, Sponsorship and Community Relations, etc. In addition, in-depth Online PR and Event Management modules are included in this course.
  • Practical skills training delivery from leading industry professionals. All of Fitzwilliam Institute’s public relations trainers are top industry professionals with many years of successful public relations experience across a broad range of industries. Fitzwilliam Institute’s cutting edge program in public relations contains the core and vital public relations industry key skillset and, on completion, all of our students are industry-ready. This course also features a number of guest speakers from the public relations industry.
  • Real life public relations briefs. Fitzwilliam Institute’s world-class diploma in public relations offers practical and specific public relations skills that can be applied in real world situations - "The Apprentice" style. You will gain exposure to invaluable public relations toolkits and prepare a real life public relations brief, enabling you to develop your public relations portfolio. The course project is aimed at providing you with the confidence and ability to take on and create public relations campaigns for any organisation. A combination of case studies, interactive group sessions, presentations, and questions and answers allows you to gain transferrable skills and invaluable experience, in real-life situations, which will prepare you for a successful future in the industry.
  • Pitch and presentation skills. Fitzwilliam Institute’s Diploma in Public Relations course guides you through all of the stages of creating and planning a public relations campaign, finally producing a public relations pitch which can be used as a template for future public relations proposals. A special feature of Fitzwilliam Institute’s PR course is the time devoted to developing your pitching and presentation skills.
  • Public relations jobs, networking and volunteer opportunities. With over a decade of industry experience, Fitzwilliam Institute is extremely well placed within the public relations industry. PR employers are always looking for Fitzwilliam Institute students and alumni. Fitzwilliam Institute’s website features a comprehensive jobs and volunteer opportunities section.


start date: 17 September 2024

The Meaning and Development of Public Relations

Definitions of Public Relations; PR's relationship with other functions/professions - Advertising, Marketing, etc.; History and development of Public Relations in Ireland and Globally; Professionalism and industry bodies

Public Relations Sectors / Media Specialisations

Corporate, Consumer, Business to Business; Voluntary Sector; Financial Public Relations, including Communicating financial performance; Public Relations during mergers, takeovers, share offerings; Shareholder communications; Public Relations' role in the Annual Report Accounts; Technology; Healthcare; Tourism; Environment; Agriculture; Sport.

The Professional Environment

Consultancy structures; Client relationships; Pitching for business; Managing client accounts; In-house departments; Relationships within the organization; Preparing an in-house strategy; Relationship PR consultants; Managing staff; Entrepreneurship - Identifying gaps in the market and developing services to fill those gaps; launching a new product/service;

Public Relations as a Management Function

Public Relations' role in the organisation: Internal communication; Communicating performance; Counselling the organization; Strategy; The role of the Public Relations practitioner, both in-house and in consultancies; Business strategy and operation;

Strategic Process

Situation Analysis; Research; Objectives; Publics; Implementation; Budgets; Timetables; Evaluation; Planning and managing a PR campaign;

Ethical and legal issues

The Principle ethical codes which underpin the practice of Public Relations; Legal issues in Public Relations: Contract Law, copyright, patents, trademarks, libel, slander, freedom of information, data protection, photography copyright and licensing; Employer/employee relationships, contract of services, professional negligence;

Crisis Management

Definitions and typologies of crises; Crisis management plan and crisis management team; Communicating in a crisis; The aftermath of a crisis; Reputation management.

Tools and Techniques

Basic tools and techniques available to PR professionals; Event management: exhibitions, conferences, product launches, etc.; Controlled media: newsletters, brochures, video, websites, EPK, disc, film etc.; Uncontrolled media: Publicity in terms of print, photography, broadcast, and internet; Role of the Press Officer;

CSR, Sponsorship and Non-Profit PR

Definitions and historical development of the sponsorship market; Why organisations engage in sponsorship; Using sponsorship to target particular publics; What can be sponsored? The fit between the sponsor and the sponsored; The sponsorship proposal; How sponsorship fits into wider Public Relations campaigns; Evaluating sponsorships; Why organisations engage in community relations; The Range of CR activities. The increasing importance of corporate social responsibility, globally and in Ireland; The ethics of CSR; CSR as an integral element of overall business strategy;


Managing relationships with activist groups; Coalition building and third-party endorsements; Working with trade associations, unions, and charities.

The Political Environment, Lobbying, and Regulations

Interest groups and lobbying; How to influence public policy; Planning and managing lobbying campaigns; The role of coalitions; Public affairs: Integrating lobbying and media campaigns; Involving the public in lobbying campaigns.

Case Studies

Analysis of a range of Public Relations case studies and campaigns;

Presentation Skills

Preparation; Content; Structure; Delivery; Visual Aids; Management of location and audiences;

Public Relations Writing

Press Release Writing: Date; Headline; Structure; Wording; Contact Details; Note to Editor; Structuring a press release - The inverted pyramid model; The appropriate use of language for press releases; As part of the teaching of this section, students will also cover issues such as, being able to provide reasoning for the press release content, distribution lists, additional information to be added for a press pack, a description of a photographic idea and caption. Writing styles for different media and publics; Analysing a number of press releases, and the media coverage generated.
Writing Interview Briefs: Preparing clients for interviews; Interviewing styles and techniques; Audiences; Preparing questions and answers; Use of newsworthy quotes;
Writing for Statements and Speeches: Statements – tone; wording; structure; clarifications; Speeches – preparation; audience; speech notes; structuring of speech; use of language.
Business Material for Public Relations: Writing proposals, business plans, presentations, reports.
Writing for Publication: Writing feature articles – structure; headlines; awareness of readership; use of language; Writing news articles; Awareness of the journalist's agenda; Writing for the Internet.
Grammar: The Basic rules of grammar.


The elements of the mass media in Ireland - TV, national and local radio, national and local newspapers, trade publications, specialist and consumer magazines, the Internet; The functions of different people in the media; The Relationship between Public Relations and the media: What the mass media needs from Public Relations; What Public Relations needs from the mass media; The factors involved in building effective relationships with the media; Dealing with the mass media: Pitching stories, interviews, press conferences, photography, media relations in a crisis; Publicity versus press relations.

Media Relations

How to segment audiences; Serving the client / Organising and serving the media; The “Readership Profile”; Media lists; How to watch media with publics; The role of press releases in Public Relations; Creating angles in press releases; Identifying the news angle in a story; The role of photography; The ethics of media relations; Evaluating media relations; Media monitoring;

Media & Relevant Public Bodies

BCI, NUJ, NNI, ASAI, Press Council, Office of Consumer Affairs, Consumers' Association of Ireland.

Online PR / Writing for the Web

Online PR building blocks: Online communications platforms, online communication channels, online communication mediums, interactivity and application of communication channels, policy, optimisation, monitoring and evaluation of online communications channels, online communications channels planning and implementation;
Social Media and PR strategy: Local versus global communication, landscaping platforms, channels and context, Online PR organisational analysis and segmentation, developing Online PR strategies, Online PR tactics and SEO considerations, Online PR planning, managing Online PR risk and opportunities;

Writing for the Web;

The Social Media Landscape: Blogs, microblogs, chatrooms, delicious, email, Flickr, Twitter, instant messaging, message boards, mobile internet, new media releases, online conferencing, online surveys, Pay per Click, podcasts, RSS, search engines, SEO, social networking service sites, video sharing, virtual worlds, VoIP, Wiki and widgets.
The Internet as a Media: Commercial implications of the internet; Social interaction with the Internet; Web 2.0 and its implications; Internet convergence; The network effect;  Internet information exchange; Internet audience: size and exposure; Internet culture and communication; Transparency and the Internet;
Online Influences on present PR practices: Internet influence on news, internet journalists, economics of online news production, internet critics and other influences, the PR practitioner as an online publisher, ethical internet PR, truthfulness and duty of care, online ethics, debate, guidelines and best practice; Monitoring and evaluation of social media discourse, trends and value; Policy influences, corporate speak; Implications of social media for corporate social responsibility.

Internal PR

The rationale for effective internal PR; Linking internal PR to business goals; Importance of management commitment; Employee roles and business goals; Links with HR; Consequences of mistakes; How informal communication channels work; Listening and feedback; Mechanisms for effective internal communications;

Digital Marketing

Website Content and Web Usability; Website and WordPress; SEO and Content Marketing; Email Marketing;

Marketing and Advertising

Definitions; Historical development; Market research and information; Products; Branding; Marketing communications; Marketing segmentation; Marketing management and organization; The role of Public Relations in marketing management; The advertising industry and professional bodies; Codes of practice; Advertising agencies; Selecting an agency and working with it; Advertising campaign planning and management; Advertising media; Types of advertisements - magazines, newspapers, posters, billboards, ambient advertising; The relationship between advertising and Public Relations.

Event Management

Event management planning; Coordinating events; Marketing events; Event risk management; Corporate event management; Organising conferences; Exhibition Management; Sporting event management.

Course Project

Each student must submit a substantial project based on a real-life PR Brief on a subject allocated to them by the Institute.

start date: 17 September 2024

The PR and Event Management Course was a great decision for me.  My main job is not in PR or Event Management but this is something I had an interest in and has helped me within my own job where I am involved in sports and Social Events and outside work hugely by the skill sets which I picked up while working on my PR Campaign I’ve applied to other areas of my life outside.  PR people are experts in communication and through the course you learn from your teachers about presentation skills and gain a broader knowledge in areas such as politics and real life examples of PR in action.  I recommended this course to my friend who is attending the evening classes this year and enjoying it also. - Aoife Murphy, Irish Life

Aoife Murphy

The course was very impressive, even for the more mature students, especially the PR in Practice and Stakeholder management sections. It certainly enhances the scope of your career positioning and overall communications understanding.

I would recommend it for people in all aspects of Communications and Public Relations as a beneficial part of professional development. - Suzanne Angley, Luas Cross City

Suzanne Angley

I took the night classes for my Diploma in Public Relations with the Fitzwilliam Institute. I was working in marketing communications and PR in a tech company when I started the course, having recently made the move from magazine journalism. I was a journalism graduate but despite working in the ‘PR industry’, I didn’t have any formal industry-recognised qualifications. The night classes allowed me to keep working (I moved to agency PR when I was half-way through the course when the dotcom bubble burst in 2001 and I lost my job along with many others in the tech sector at the time) while studying two nights a week. Classes were held in city-centre locations which suited me as I could just walk from my office every Monday and Wednesday evening. I still remember the various lecturers with fondness, really enjoyed the two years and made some good friends on the course. I put a fair bit of effort into the lectures, course work and projects as well as the end of year exams: ‘you get out what you put in’; and got my PRII Diploma at the end of it. Six years after finishing the course and after working in sports PR and journalism, I volunteered to work with the UN in Nairobi, Kenya, which has been my home ever since. I’ve worked in Somalia, Ethiopia, Jordan and now currently in Baghdad, Iraq. I recently applied for an online Masters in Media & PR with a UK university and my PR diploma, obtained through the Fitzwilliam Institute, was recognised and helped me get a place on the course. - Andreas Needham, Communications Officer at UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency

Andreas Needham
start date: 17 September 2024

On successful completion of this course you will receive a Professional Diploma qualification that is certified and awarded by the ICM (Institute of Commercial Management).

The Institute of Commercial Management was founded in 1979 and is one of the leading Professional Examination and Certification Bodies in the world today. Fitzwilliam Institute have developed and provided practical skills training courses in liaison with the Institute of Commercial Management qualifications and certifications framework for over 25 years. The Institute of Commercial Management certifications and continual professional development training awards are recognised by leading industries, bodies and professions.

start date: 17 September 2024
next start date: 17th September 2024 (Tuesday)

Duration: 2 evenings a week, 12 weeks (Tuesday & Thursday)

Time: 6:30 pm – 9 pm

Venue: Dublin Chamber of Commerce. 7 Clare Street, Dublin 2, D02 F902.

Course Fees: €1,495.00

To secure your place on the course a deposit of €296.00 is required. The remainder €1,199.00 is due 30 days prior to the commencement of the course. Please note, the full course fees are inclusive of all course materials and certification costs.

Enrolment intake is strictly limited on this course. Early application is advised. Places are allocated on a first come first served basis.

We want to make education easy and enjoyable for you. At Fitzwilliam Institute, we offer a range of finance options to suit your needs.

You can buy now and pay later with humm - humm provides a simple application process, simple terms and conditions, up to 36 monthly payments. With low-interest rates.

Fitzwilliam Institute closes on Bank Holidays and for a number of days at Christmas and New Year. Fitzwilliam Institute reserves the right to postpone, cancel or alter courses without notice or to change any of the details in this brochure. Fees are not refundable unless the course is cancelled by the Fitzwilliam Institute. Distance Learning courses are provided by Fitzwilliam Institute - BGLS Ltd.

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start date: 17 September 2024

Year on year, we have the pleasure of training students from top Ireland and international companies. See where our most recent students come from and find out what they have to say.

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