Sport and Exercise Science BSc

   
   
  

Fact file - 2018 entry

Qualification
Sport and Exercise Science | BSc Hons
UCAS code
C600
Duration
3 years full-time
A level offer
AAA (AAB offers would be considered in exceptional cases) 
Required subjects
At least two from biology, chemistry, mathematics and physics; biology preferred. A pass is required in science practical tests, if assessed separately. Five GCSEs 7-4 including English language and maths.
IB score
34-36; 5/6 in biology and another science subject at Higher Level 
Course location
Medical School and University Park Campus 
Course places
22 
School/department
 

Overview

Learn how to apply scientific principles of physiology, anatomy, biomechanics and psychology to sport and exercise science.
Read full overview

Highlights of sport and exercise science at Nottingham

  • Study in new laboratories based in our £40m David Ross Sports Village
  • Learn in a medical school environment, with access to a dissection suite and functional sports medicine facilities
  • Join a university which is a founding partner in the IOC accredited National Centre for Sport and Exercise Medicine
  • Experience multidisciplinary teaching from internationally recognised academics, in the Faculties of Medicine and Health Sciences and Engineering
  • Choose a course with an emphasis on science and health, providing you with skills that opens up a range of career options
  • Expand your studies through optional advanced study modules and completing a final-year research project in a topic of your choice
 

Ideal for those with an interest in sport and the biomedical sciences, this course will provide you with thorough scientific knowledge into why and how the body functions during and after sport and exercise.  

Yearly overviews

Year one

During the first year, you will join other first-year life sciences students to study the fundamentals in:

  • human physiology – how the human body functions from the cellular level to the whole organism
  • biochemistry – the study of chemical processes which occur within living organisms
  • cell biology – the study of cells, the basic functional units in human body
  • advanced mathematics – the mathematical basis for a range of fundamental concepts in the biomechanics of human movement

In addition, you will begin learning specialist core skills related to sport and exercise science. Through theoretical and practical classes, you will explore:

  • biomechanics –  how and why the body moves and interacts with its environment in the way that it does
  • exercise physiology – how the body responds acutely to exercise and adapts to physical training
  • psychology – an understanding of human behaviour in sport and exercise settings

Key laboratory skills will be introduced, putting the theory into practice. You will also complete a compulsory first aid qualification.

Year two

As you progress into year two, you will continue to study the three main branches of sport and exercise science (physiology, biomechanics and psychology) but in more depth. 

Other relevant disciplines may include:

  • nutrition – the science behind how food influences exercise performance and health adaptation
  • human anatomy – the study of bones, joints, muscles, organs and tissues in the human body, what their structure and job is and how they interconnect
  • sports medicine – the prevention and treatment of sport and exercise related injuries and medical conditions    

Year three

In the final year you will continue to specialise through core modules in the major disciplines of sport and exercise science. 

You will also undertake a final-year research project. This project is an exciting opportunity to consolidate your learning while working in an area you find interesting. You will work alongside a research group within the University, with supervision from a research-active academic. 

Advanced optional modules will also be available for you to choose from. This is a great opportunity to study a subject you already have a prior interest in or try something totally new.

 

Teaching and assessment 

Teaching methods

You will learn through a variety of methods depending on the module. This may include:

  • lectures
  • seminars
  • laboratory classes
  • field-based practical classes
  • small-groups
  • workshops
  • tutorials
  • placements

Assessment methods

Assessment varies on the module being studied but typically is a combination of:

  • exams
  • essays
  • dissertations
  • laboratory reports
  • presentations 

Placements

All students will be required to complete a Personal Development Portfolio during their studies in Nottingham. This mandatory portfolio will include undertaking work placements within the University and UK, completing national coaching qualifications and a first aid course to obtain the relevant certificates.

 

Location and facilities

Depending on the module being studied you may be based in the Faculty of Engineering on University Park or the Medical School, which is embedded in the Queen’s Medical Centre. There is a footbridge linking the Medical School to University Park Campus for easy access.

Both locations provide rooms for lectures, seminars and laboratory classes. In the Medical School, we also have an anatomy suite and functional sports medicine facilities so there is everything you will need to study a range of subjects. 

In addition, we are building new exercise physiology, psychology and human movement laboratories in the David Ross Sports Village which is also on University Park Campus. 

Find out more about the new David Ross Sports Village. 

 

Student support

All students have a personal tutor. Personal tutors are members of academic staff in the school and they will:
  • monitor your academic progress and check on your wellbeing
  • provide exam marks and help you reflect on feedback
  • act as a first point of contact for any guidance on academic or personal matters

At Nottingham we still offer small group tutorials of around six students. This ensures you have enough time to build a relationship with your tutor and benefit from their support. Your fellow tutees also provide peer support. 

Additionally, the school has a dedicated Welfare Officer and a Student Liaison Officer who are available to help you adapt to university life and provide advice on more complex issues.   

Peer mentoring

Starting university can be daunting so to help you settle into life at Nottingham the school runs a peer mentoring scheme. You will be matched with a senior student who can introduce you to the social activities available and also support you while you adapt to university-level study. 

 

Sport at Nottingham

Alongside our reputation for academic excellence, the University of Nottingham also has a strong tradition of sporting success across a wide number of sports. The University has finished in the BUCS top 10 for the last 15 years.

See our sport website for further details about the sporting facilities available off campus.

Visit the David Ross Sports Village website to see what we can offer you on campus, including details on the sports scholarship scheme. 

 

Mature applicants

We encourage applications from mature applicants. You should apply in the normal way through UCAS. There is various support available to you including peer mentoring and the Mature Students’ Network which organises social events throughout the year. Find out more on our mature students website.
 

International applicants

We welcome applications from international applicants. The University provides dedicated advice and support throughout your application and preparation for coming to the UK.

Please see the entry requirements tab for English language requirements.

If you are unable to attend an open day, we can meet you in your country at one of our overseas events or arrange an individual visit to the University

 

 

 

Entry requirements

A levels: AAA (AAB offers may be considered in exceptional cases) including at least two from biology, chemistry, mathematics and physics; biology preferred. A pass is required in science practical tests, if assessed separately. 

GCSEs: Five GCSEs 7-4 including English language and maths.

Understand how we show GCSE grades

 

IB: 34-36; 5/6 in biology and another science subject at Higher Level

English language requirements

IELTS 6.5 (no less than 6.0 in any element).

If you require additional support to take your language skills to the required level, you can attend a presessional course at the Centre for English Language Education (CELE), which is accredited by the British Council for the teaching of English. Successful students can progress onto their chosen degree course without taking IELTS again.

Science Foundation Certificate

International students only

International students (non-EU) who do not have the required qualifications or grades to go directly onto an undergraduate degree course, may be interested in the Science Foundation Certificate delivered through The University of Nottingham International College. You are guaranteed a place on selected undergraduate courses if all progression requirements are met. 

Science with Foundation Year

Home, EU and international students

If you have achieved high grades in your A levels (or equivalent qualifications) but do not meet the current subject entry requirements for direct entry to your chosen undergraduate course, you may be interested in our one year science foundation programme. Applicants must also demonstrate good grades in previous relevant science subjects to apply. You are guaranteed a place on selected undergraduate courses if all progression requirements are met.  

To progress to BSc Sport and Exercise Science, you will need to follow the biological sciences pathway with a 60% pass in both Foundation Biological Sciences and Foundation Year Chemistry. 

Flexible admissions policy 

In recognition of our applicants’ varied experience and educational pathways, The University of Nottingham employs a flexible admissions policy. We may make some applicants an offer lower than advertised, depending on their personal and educational circumstances. Please see the University’s admissions policies and procedures for more information.

 

 
 

Modules

Typical year one modules


Human Physiology
In this module you will gain an introduction to the major physiological systems (e.g. cardiovascular, nervous and musculo-skeletal) mainly from the perspective of the human, including some aspects of drug action. This module includes lectures and laboratory classes.
 
Genes, Molecules and Cells
This module combines lectures and laboratory classes and introduces you to the structure and function of significant molecules in cells, and the important metabolic processes which occur inside them. You will study, amongst other topics, protein and enzyme structure and function, the biosynthesis of cell components, and the role of cell membranes in barrier and transport processes. You'll examine how information in DNA is used to determine the structure of gene products. Topics include DNA structure, transcription and translation and mutation and recombinant DNA technology.
 
Advanced Mathematics for Sport and Exercise Science
This module provides a mathematical foundation for understanding and characterising movement of both the body and sports equipment such as balls.  It will cover forces and moments around joints, acceleration and inertia, and linear and rotational motion.  The module provides a stepping-stone from GCSE Mathematics to the kinematic analysis of motion introduced in the second year.
 
Core Skills in Sport and Exercise Science

This module will provide the opportunity to study the fundamental principles in:

  • Exercise Physiology - including basic cardio-respiratory and muscle responses to exercise, nutritional requirements of exercise, and the basic anatomy of the heart and lungs)
  • Psychology – including fundamentals of individual and population group processes in sport and exercise
  • Functional Anatomy - focussing on the integration of the anatomy of bones, joints, muscle, ligaments and tendons with the biomechanics of human movement.

This module also focusses on developing core skills required by sport and exercise scientists in scientific writing, experimental design, data handling and analysis, and scientific presentations. 

 
 

Typical year two modules

Functional Anatomy of the Musculoskeletal System and Applied Sports Medicine 
This module will focus on specific muscles and muscle groups in the upper and lower limbs and relate this to function. The related osteology and important structures such as ligaments and tendons will be studied. There will also be the opportunity to study imaging modalities such as ultrasound. This knowledge will be integrated with fundamental aspects of prevention and treatment of sport- and exercise-related musculoskeletal injury and relevant medical conditions.  
 
Sports and Exercise Biomechanics 
Motion of the body is extremely complex in sporting activities. This module develops skills in measuring the motion and performance of the body using cutting-edge motion analysis equipment.  Examples will be used to illustrate the applications of these techniques in assessing and understanding motion, characterising style and technique and monitoring injury.
 
Applied Sports Psychology 
This module will cover psychological approaches to maximising training adaptations and enhancing performance in humans. It will also focus on psychological and behavioural risk factors and treatment interventions for optimal rehabilitation from injuries.
 
Cardiovascular and Respiratory Physiology  
This module will explain how the heart and lungs operate within an integrated system to sustain blood pressure, and maintain essential blood supply to peripheral organs. The reaction of peripheral organs to this constantly changing blood supply, and the effects on cardiovascular function will be outlined. These concepts will then enable students to understand the effects of acute exercise on this system, and the effects of training. This knowledge will be integrated with the fundamental aspects of the anatomy of the human cardiovascular and respiratory system.
 
Environmental Physiology
This module expands on previous modules in muscle, cardiovascular and respiratory physiology to understand how the human body reacts, and potentially adapts to, environmental stress. A series of examples including extreme cold, heat, altitude, water immersion, and microgravity will be explored.
 
Muscle Physiology, Nutrition and Metabolism in Exercise 
This module is designed to enable you to develop a strong understanding of how the human body responds acutely to exercise and adapts to chronic physical training, with particular emphasis on skeletal muscle. It will also focus on the interaction between nutrition and energy metabolism and the impact of nutrition on exercise performance. This knowledge will be integrated with the fundamental aspects of the anatomy of the human gastrointestinal system.
 
 

Typical year three modules

Research Methods and Statistics 
This module will equip students with a variety of research methods relevant to their upcoming research project. The importance of correct study design will be emphasised, as well as the ethical considerations when conducting human experiments. Data and statistical analysis techniques appropriate to sport and exercise research will be explained, as well as their importance when deciding on study design.
 
Applied Exercise and Health Psychology 
This module will focus on psychological and behavioural approaches to promoting physical activity at individual and population group level.
 
Exercise Physiology, Nutrition and Metabolism in Health and Disease

This module will enable students to develop a strong understanding of metabolism in the promotion and maintenance of human health, including aspects of muscle, heart, liver and adipose tissue metabolism. It will also cover the role of diet in the development, prevention and treatment of disease.

 
Clinical Biomechanics 
This module expands on your understanding of skeletal tissue mechanics and physiology to identify the mechanisms of common sports injuries explaining injury thresholds and how these are determined.  The concept of injury criteria will be introduced and used to illustrate how sports equipment and rule changes can be optimised to minimise the risk of injury.
 
Project and Dissertation 
This is a year-long level three module. You will undertake detailed research on a chosen topic in anatomy, biomechanics, exercise physiology, or psychology with close supervision from an academic member of staff. Each project will involve collection of experimental data, their analysis and interpretation in the context of previous published work, and the completion of a written dissertation.
 

Optional modules (four from the list below are required) 

Biology of Ageing
The success of modern medicine has resulted in significant increases in the average human lifespan. This module will focus on the mechanistic basis of human ageing and progression to chronic age-related disease and will consider the role and potential for exercise and pharmacological interventions in offsetting age related decline.
 
Performance Enhancing Drugs in Sport 
This module will cover contemporary issues related to use of performance-enhancing drugs in sports, and the monitoring and ethical issues that surround this practice.
 
Cardiovascular Control in Health and Disease
This module will explain how the cardiovascular and respiratory systems are affected by common diseases, such as atherosclerosis, COPD and heart failure, and how exercise is central to the quality of life of these patients. The module will examine the mechanisms underlying prevention of such diseases via increased physical activity, as well as the effect of exercise in managing disease.
 
Psychological and Behavioural Barriers to Exercise
This module focuses on understanding barriers to and facilitators of participation in physical activity, and developing effective interventions to address those factors.
 
Rehabilitation from Sports Injuries
In this module, you will study about current strategies used to prevent, evaluate and treat acute and chronic sport-related injuries, and return to normal function.  
 
Physical Activity and Health
This module considers the emerging associations between sedentariness and physical inactivity and the development of chronic, non-communicable diseases. It will also consider the impact of increased physical activity on human health. 
 
Head Trauma in Sports and Rehabilitation from Brain Injury 
In this module you will be introduced to different types of head injuries associated with sports participation and their clinical management. You will also learn about current rehabilitation strategies following head trauma (including stroke). 
 
 

Extracurricular activities

Professional Development Portfolio (mandatory for all students)
All students will be required to complete a Personal Development Portfolio (PDP) during their three year study in Nottingham. This mandatory portfolio will include successful completion of a first aid course in year one, undertaking short-term work placements within the University and UK, and obtaining national sport coaching qualifications of their choice.
 
 

 

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.

 
 

Careers

A degree in sports and exercise science prepares you for a career in a number of professions and sectors. Typically, graduates will find employment in:
  • professional sports bodies and organisations
  • sports and leisure centres
  • sports and health industry
  • pharmaceutical industry
  • education sector
  • public health sector
  • UK institutes of sport
  • food and drink industry
  • exercise testing laboratories

Due to our enhanced scientific content, you will also be in a good position to undertake further study such as an MSc or PhD in human health and disease and a number of allied topics. Graduate entry medicine (GEM) is an additional option. 

Career support and advice

Studying for a degree at The University of Nottingham will provide you with the type of 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.

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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

Our International Baccalaureate Diploma Excellence Scholarship is available for select students paying overseas fees who achieve 40 points or above in the International Baccalaureate Diploma. We also offer a range of High Achiever Prizes for students from selected countries, schools and colleges to help with the cost of tuition fees. Find out more about scholarships, fees and finance for international students.

Sport scholarship scheme

Our range of sports scholarships are aimed at providing an unrivalled level of support to the brightest and best talents in the sporting world.

As well as a reputation for academic excellence, we have a history of sporting success and are passionate about supporting promising athletes during their time at Nottingham. Please check the sport website for further details, including eligibility criteria. 

 
 

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Disclaimer
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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