The Lord Mayor’s Certificate in Oral History
Published on 17th August 2023
The Lord Mayor’s Certificate in Oral History is offered by Dublin City Council as part of its commitment to life-long learning. The course will equip participants with skills in the preparation and conduct of oral history projects, including best practice in the collection and archiving of oral history interviews. It examines the wealth of recorded oral narrative sources in Ireland in both oral history and folklore. As of 2023 this course will be offered free of charge. Commencing in October 2023, classes will be held on Monday evenings at Dublin City Library and Archive, 139-144 Pearse Street, Dublin 2, and will include two visits to archive services. You can apply online for the course from Monday 28 August 2023. The closing date for applications is 5.00pm on Friday 8 September 2023.
Download the brochure (PDF, 3.9 MB)
The course gives participants formal and practical training in how to prepare oral history projects, conduct and transcribe interviews and present oral history research. Participants will develop writing and presentation skills and learn how to locate their research within broader historical and cultural contexts.
The course consists of 70 hours part-time from October 2023 to April 2024. This comprises 50 hours of class-based tuition, and 20 hours of field trips, practice and reflection sessions outside the classroom. Each class will be 2.5 hours long, including a short break for light refreshments.
The Certificate in Oral History will be taught in the conference room at Dublin City Library and Archive (DCLA), 139-144 Pearse Street, Dublin 2. DCLA consists of the Dublin & Irish Local Studies Library, along with the Dublin City Archives, which together contain historic collections of civic and national importance, providing unique and unrivalled public access to all aspects of Dublin’s multi-faceted history.
A. Introduction to Oral History
This module will introduce participants to the key concepts and methodologies in oral history, including online interviewing. It will equip students with essential skills in interviewing techniques and encourage engagement with ethical research issues.
B. Oral Heritage and Memory: Private and Public
This module examines the contribution of oral history to public history and commemoration. Participants will be introduced to Irish folklore and a range of public oral history projects from around the world.
C. Irish History: Sources and Methods
This module will assist students in the placement of their own research projects in an historical and cultural context. It will introduce documentary and other sources for the study of Irish history.
D. Seminar Module
A self-directed research module providing assistance in the design and development of students own oral history research.
Course Assessment Procedures
Participants will be required to attend a minimum of 80% of classes. In addition, each participant will be required to:
-Prepare and present an oral history research proposal
-Complete a short written secondary source report
-Complete their own oral history research project containing one (minimum) to three (maximum) oral history interviews.
Note: Ethical conduct is treated rigorously throughout the Certificate programme and forms an essential part of course assessment.
Conventions in place for the course include Dublin City Council’s Customer Charter and Code of Conduct for Members of the Public. Copies of both documents are available on request. E: [email protected]
The Course Tutor for the Certificate in Oral History at Dublin City Library and Archive will be Dr Mary Muldowney, who is one of Dublin City Council’s Historians in Residence, responsible for the Dublin Central area. Mary’s Ph.D., in which she used oral history interviews as a primary source, was awarded by Trinity College Dublin, where she also taught for some time. As a founder of the Oral History Network of Ireland and the Alternative Visions Oral History Group she has taught the value of oral history techniques to third level students, local history groups and others setting up commemorative projects. She has published widely, frequently using oral history interviews in her research and writing.
Participants are required to have an interest in oral history together with an indication of capacity and availability to commit to attending a minimum of 80% of classes. There is an upper limit of 16 participants. Places on the course will be allocated to applicants on a first-come, first-served basis, subject to receipt of a completed application form.
How to Apply
Prospective students must submit a completed online application form which can be found at: https://bit.ly/44KZVFv
You can only submit your online application between 28 August – 8 September 2023.
If you require any assistance with the online application form please email [email protected]
Please note, in order to ensure as many people as possible can take part in the Lord Mayor Certificate courses, it is not possible to offer an individual a place on both courses. Only apply for your course of preference.
Presentation of Certificates
A ceremony for presentation of Lord Mayor’s Certificates in Oral History 2023-2024, will be held in Winter 2024.
Lord Mayor’s Prize
Students taking the Certificate in Oral History at DCLA 2023-2024 will be eligible for the Lord Mayor’s Prize, which is awarded for the best oral history research project submitted by that class. The Lord Mayor’s Prize will be presented during the ceremonial presentation of certificates in Winter 2024.
Class dates for 2023/2024
Classes will take place on Monday evenings from October 2023 to April 2024 starting at 5.30 pm and concluding at 8.00 pm
Group of women, Jacobs Biscuit Factory Archive, DCLA/JAC/06/019