Sport Rehabilitation and Exercise Science BSc


Fact file - 2017 entry

UCAS code:351A
Qualification:BSc Hons
Type and duration:3 year UG
Qualification name:Sport Rehabilitation and Exercise Science
UCAS code
UCAS code
Sport Rehabilitation and Exercise Science  | BSc Hons
3 years full-time UG
A level offer
Required subjects
including a biological science or PE. General studies not accepted. Applicants are required to pass the practical element of assessment in biology, chemistry and/or physics if assessed separately. Plus a minimum of six GCSEs at A/B grade, taken in one sitting, to include maths, English language and biology/double science
IB score
32 (6 in biology at Higher Level)
Course location
Predominantly Clinical Sciences Building, City Hospital Campus, approximately four miles from University Park Campus, and other campuses for some teaching
Course places


As a BASRaT accredited course, at Nottingham you’ll learn the academic concepts and practical skills required for professional practice in a supportive and friendly environment.
Read full overview

Sport rehabilitators are practitioners trained in sport and exercise medicine, who work alongside and complement other sports and healthcare professionals. This course aims to educate the future Sport Rehabilitator and Exercise Scientist, with the knowledge, skills and flexibility to work independently in a range of sporting, health, rehabilitation and exercise environments. Graduates will be able to design and implement exercise and rehabilitation programmes to enhance health, wellbeing and performance at recreational, occupational and elite level. For this, students must be able to exercise sound judgement in a variety of rehabilitation and sport performance situations, and be able to evaluate and adapt their approach to meet the needs of the individual client.

We believe that your education should be flexible to match your interests and aspirations. In year three we offer two option modules in each semester enabling you to dictate your course of study based on your interests. You will also undertake an exciting community-based module that you can develop in an approved area related to sport, exercise, health or wellbeing. This may be within a charity, school, occupational setting or other community project.

Two major themes run throughout the course; one covers the basic tenets of research culminating in a research project, the other includes aspects relating to personal and professional development such as skills for effective management of learning, communication, health and wellbeing policy, sport policy, client records/ethics, personality, behaviour and life-long learning.

Years two and three contain supervised clinical placements split into blocks in a variety of sport, exercise, rehabilitation and health settings. 

Towards the end of the third year of the programme students are given the opportunity to undertake a three week elective placement. Students arrange their own negotiated placement and have the potential to go anywhere in the world provided the country is deemed safe and they are supervised by an appropriate sport/health professional whose qualifications are recognised by a relevant Statutory Body, or Competent Authority.

Find out more about how you will learn and be assessed, including an example first-year timetable on our teaching website

Please note that standard University of Nottingham tuition fees are payable for this course.


Entry requirements

Whilst the majority of applicants offer traditional qualifications we are happy to consider non-traditional qualifications on an individual basis. These must be taken in relevant subjects and passed at an equivalent standard.

For individual advice, please make an enquiry.

Minimum requirements for the most common applicant profiles are shown below.

Minimum requirements


  • Minimum of six subjects at A or B grades to include maths, English language and either biology or integrated/combined sciences

Plus one of the following:

  • AS and A2 levels
  • or BTEC National or Higher National Diploma
  • or Advanced Vocational Certificate in Education

A levels:

  • ABB in three A2 levels, one of which must be in biology or physical education, or acceptable biological science, ie. human biology. Applicants are required to pass the practical element of assessment in biology, chemistry and/or physics if assessed separately. General studies is not accepted.

Alternative qualifications

BTEC National Diploma:

  • 18 units, sport and exercise science pathway only*  
  • Distinction > merit profile (DDM) 

*other BTEC’s are accepted if accompanied by A level Biology or P.E. If an alternative Extended Diploma BTEC Sport pathway is followed this may be accepted if specific optional units are taken. Please contact us for further clarification.

Irish Leaving Certificate:

  • Five papers at Higher Level, taken at one sitting
  • Minimum of AABBB
  • to include maths, English and biology

Scottish Highers:

  • AB to include biology/PE
  • plus ABBBB at Highers

International Baccalaureate:

  • 32 points, with 6 in biology 
  • Minimum of three subjects at Higher level, including biology 

European Baccalaureate:

  • 75% Diploma score, including biology at a high grade     

Other qualifications

For advice regarding qualifications not covered, please contact the Division directly.

Qualifications for applicants considering a career change or return to academic study  

Applicants who have had a break from education or are looking at a change in career are welcomed. Academic requirements are as follows: 

Previous degree: 

  • 2:1 in a relevant subject within the last three years (if in a non-relevant subject, or outside the three-year limit, contact us for advice). 

Other previous academic suitability: 

  • Applicants who have not studied for three or more years but who would otherwise have been considered academically suitable must show evidence of recent study, usually one A2 level . These should be biology or physical education, unless previously achieved in which case we recommend sociology or psychology. 

No previous academic suitability: 

Applicants who have no relevant academic qualifications, or failed to achieve the required grades are expected to have a GCSE grade B in maths and English language or equivalent, plus one of the following: 

  • A levels: two academic A2 levels (to include biology or physical education) at B grades.
  • Access courses (QAA approved only): science or health based; with a minimum of 24 credits in biology. Total of 60 credits are required with 45 passed at level 3. A minimum of 30 level 3 credits must be at distinction. For further information please contact the division.
  • Open University qualifications: 30 points at Level 2, accrued within one year at Pass Grade 2. SK277 Human Biology is usually the accepted module. For further information please contact the division.

International applicants 

We offer a limited number of international places each year. Please contact us for further information. 

Home/EU applicants 

The standard University course fees are payable for this course. For further information on course fees, please see the University fees website.

The University also offers a range of bursaries and scholarships, including Sports Scholarships to assist in financing your course and/or your sport.

English language

Sport rehabilitation students need to be fluent in the English language in order to both understand and complete the course and to communicate effectively with clients and members of the multidisciplinary team. For students whose first language is not English we require an IELTS score of 7.5 with no less than 7 in any element. Please note that a pass at GCSE English language with a B or above will normally be regarded as meeting this requirement. 

Students who require extra support to meet the English language requirements for their academic course can attend a presessional course at the Centre for English Language Education (CELE) to prepare for their future studies.

Students who pass at the required level can progress directly to their academic programme without needing to retake IELTS.

Please visit the CELE webpages for more information.

Flexible admissions policy

In recognition of our applicants’ varied experience and educational pathways, The University of Nottingham employs a flexible admissions policy. We consider applicants’ circumstances and broader achievements as part of the assessment process, but do not vary the offer from the grades advertised as a result of these. Please see the University’s admissions policies and procedures for more information.


Completing a UCAS form

All applications must be made through UCAS

We do not normally consider late applications, after the mid-January deadline. 

An excellent UCAS form includes: 

  • a strong academic profile with either traditional or non-traditional qualifications on offer 
  • a highly supportive reference (normally an academic reference) 
  • a personal statement which tells us all about the applicant. 

The personal statement is paramount in deciding who will be chosen to go forward for interview. We look for the applicant who knows what the profession involves in terms of actual work and the traits and characteristics necessary in a sport rehabilitator, and could go on to complete the course and become a credit to the profession. View more about the selection process.

Work experience

Sport rehabilitation is a vocational degree and applicants need to be enthusiastic about the profession and sure in their own minds that they really want to be a sport rehabilitator. We require you to undertake as much sport-related work experience as possible primarily within a sport rehabilitation setting before applying. Experience in other areas, such as special schools, private practice, occupational health and leisure settings will strengthen your application. 

Health and Criminal Records screening 

All applicants are subject to satisfactory health screening by Occupational Health, and Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks before they can commence the course. 

Deferred applications

We welcome applications from students wishing to take a gap year and encourage them to use the year creatively.



Year one contains the core modules and is taught alongside the BSc Physiotherapy students, encouraging inter-professional learning. 

Typical Year One Modules


Developing Evidence-Based Practice (research)

This module will introduce you to the principles underpinning evidence-based practice in order to develop your ability to use evidence to inform clinical decision making. You’ll be taken through the process of evidence based practice in logical sequence and over the course of the module will develop a search strategy around a clinical question, carry out a search of the literature, critique the literature and consider the application to clinical practice. Teaching includes lectures, tutorials, library sessions, directed activities and a mini conference.

Musculoskeletal Disorders and Diseases 

You will develop your understanding of the mechanism of injury, pathology, healing and management of fractures, soft tissue injuries and rheumatological conditions in order to provide effective physiotherapeutic management. For this module you will direct teacher contact, directed study, and independent learning.

Neuromusculoskeletal Studies 1 and 2

You will develop a solid foundation of knowledge that relates to human structure, function and movement as well as basic musculoskeletal assessment and treatment skills, and awareness of core therapeutic concepts. In semester 1 the focus is on the cervical spine and upper limb, therefore the aim is for this knowledge to be specifically developed in respect of the cervical spine, shoulder, elbow, wrist and hand. In semester 2, the foucs is on the lumbar spine and lower limb. You’ll have lead lectures and six one-hour practical sessions per week.

Pathophysiology 1 

The module aims to prepare you with the underpinning knowledge of basic tissue structures, and in particular of nerve and muscle tissue, in order to be able to discuss the physiology of muscle contraction, the control of movement and the mechanisms of sensation (including pain). You will have a two hour lecture, one hour tutorial and a three two-hour laboratory session per week.

Personal and Professional Development 1

This module introduces you to the development of key skills used for effective study and management of your own learning. This aims to develop self-management and facilitate your ability to integrate knowledge gained in different subject areas to assist future learning. Learning style, reflection and development of strategies to facilitate independent learning are introduced and the physiological effects of illness or injury on an individual and the family will be discussed, including quality of life. Over the course of the module, you’ll have 55 hours of directed teacher contact and independent directed learning.


Typical Year Two Modules

Emergency Sports First Aid
This module covers management of the individual in an emergency situation and care of the injured athlete. The completion of this module leads to a recognised Sports First Aid qualification. 
Injury Management and Rehabilitation 
This module continues the development of manual skills, massage and exercise prescription in the management and rehabilitation of the individual. These skills will often be used regularly in your career so it is important that you have adequate training and practice.
Nutrition and Exercise Physiology
This module includes learning about the energy systems for exercise and the enhancement of health and performance through manipulation of dietary intake. Methods for measuring body composition, energy expenditure and performance markers, will also be examined and introduced.
Personal and Professional Development 2
Continuing from the skills introduced in year one, this module will cover management skills, teamwork, leadership, stress management and counselling. The aim of this module is to equip you with transferable and practical skills that you will need in your future career. 
Prehabilitation and Screening
In this module you will cover the topics of assessment of injury risk and pre-participation screening for sport, including biomechanical analysis of human movement. The application of strategies to reduce risk of injury (prehabilitation) is also introduced in this module.
Research Methods and Planning
In the contemporary healthcare setting it is important to possess skills for planning and researching. This module introduces statistics and signals the start of your own project with the submission of a research proposal to assist this key development in your learning process. 

Typical Year Three Modules

Community Project
This is a year-long project of your own choice promoting sport, exercise and health in a community setting. This may be a charity, school or other community project. The application and development of a broad range of skills will be encouraged which may include information technology, communication, and coaching to encourage a healthier lifestyle or improved sport performance in individuals. 
Personal and Professional Development 3
This module focuses on preparing you for your first job. The development of transferable skills for the sport, leisure and health environments are included. The construction of curriculum vitae, personal statements, application forms and interview skills are covered in detail during this module. Goal planning for a career in sport and exercise is included to prepare you for your future.
Dissertation Project
Every student will undertake a project in year three. This may be a laboratory-based investigation, an educational development or a literature review. A choice of topics will be available and a staff supervisor will be allocated to you to guide you through the process. The project allows you to demonstrate your ability to undertake and complete a substantial piece of work. This requires good time management and organisational skills to be used. Students who submit work of a sufficient quality will be encouraged post-graduation to present it at conference or be published. 

There are a number of optional modules available to allow you to specialise in specific areas that interest you. You are required to take two per semester.

Typical optional modules include:
  • Advanced Soft Tissue Techniques
  • Business Management
  • Disability in Sport
  • Exercise and Sport in Specific Populations
  • Health and Wellbeing
  • Psychology in Sport

A selection of optional modules from our physiotherapy programme are also available to choose from.



The modules we offer are inspired by the research interests of our staff and as a result may change for reasons of, for example, research developments or legislation changes. The above list is a sample of typical modules we offer, not a definitive list.


International Opportunities

All students have the opportunity to spend three weeks on a clinical elective placement in an international setting if they so wish. This is arranged and funded by the student. 


Graduate Sport Rehabilitators (GSR's) have a sound knowledge of the fundamentals of Sport Rehabilitation and Exercise Science; experience of relating theory to practice and utilising skills in a practical setting on placements. The Community Module will also demonstrate a commitment and responsibility to promoting health and wellbeing in society. You will have developed skills in research, and spent considerable time on personal development.

GSR's are employed in a range of sport, health and occupational settings. The Ministry of Defence employs GSR’s and many work in private practice, with professional teams, clubs and the leisure industry. There are also opportunities in research and/or teaching.

Professional recognition

The course is accredited by the British Association of Sport Rehabilitators and Trainers (BASRaT).

BASRaT + PSA logo


Average starting salary and career progression

Availability for employment and salary data for this course is not attainable due to a small sample size.*

*Known destinations of full-time home first degree undergraduates 2014/15. Salaries are calculated based on those in full-time paid employment within the UK.

Careers support and advice

Studying for a degree at The University of Nottingham will provide you with the skills and experiences that will prove invaluable in any career, whichever direction you decide to take. Throughout your time with us, our Careers and Employability Service can work with you to improve your employability skills even further; assisting with job or course applications, searching for appropriate work experience placements and hosting events to bring you closer to a wide range of prospective employers.

Have a look at our careers page for an overview of all the employability support and opportunities that we provide to current students.

The University of Nottingham is the best university in the UK for graduate employment, according to the 2017 The Times and The Sunday Times Good University Guide.



Fees and funding

Scholarships and bursaries

The University of Nottingham offers a wide range of bursaries and scholarships. These funds can provide you with an additional source of non-repayable financial help. For up to date information regarding tuition fees, visit our fees and finance pages.

Home students*

Over one third of our UK students receive our means-tested core bursary, worth up to £2,000 a year. Full details can be found on our financial support pages.

* A 'home' student is one who meets certain UK residence criteria. These are the same criteria as apply to eligibility for home funding from Student Finance.

International/EU students

The University of Nottingham provides information and advice on financing your degree and managing your finances as an international student. The International Office offers a range of High Achiever Prizes for students from selected schools and colleges to help with the cost of tuition fees.


Related courses


Key Information Sets (KIS)

Key Information Sets (KIS)

KIS is an initiative that the government has introduced to allow you to compare different courses and universities.

Elective placement
There is assessment associated with this programme that is not attached to a credit-bearing module. During final year, students complete a compulsory part of the clinical education programme. This gives time for development and consolidation of professional skills, in order to help the transition from student to graduate sport rehabilitator.

This non credit bearing module is marked on a pass/fail basis.

Successful completion of the First Aid qualification at the start of year 2 is required prior to attending placements.

This course includes one or more pieces of formative assessment.

How to use the data


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This online prospectus has been drafted in advance of the academic year to which it applies. Every effort has been made to ensure that the information is accurate at the time of publishing, but changes (for example to course content) are likely to occur given the interval between publishing and commencement of the course. It is therefore very important to check this website for any updates before you apply for the course where there has been an interval between you reading this website and applying.

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