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Applied Sport and Exercise Science BSc (Hons)

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Image: Applied Sport and Exercise Science COURSE INFORMATION (2014 ENTRY)

3 years full-time

Health and Life Sciences
Northumberland Building, Newcastle City Campus

In the 2013 National Students’ Survey (NSS) 90% of Applied Sport and Exercise students said they are able to contact staff when they need to.

There is an ever increasing focus on the role of sport, exercise and physical activity in modern living. There are new opportunities for suitably qualified graduates to make key contributions to both elite sport performance and national public health. The Applied Sport and Exercise Science degree enables students to pursue both performance sport and public health careers.

Recent changes in the sport and exercise professions have created a need for degree programmes that provide students with 'hands-on' sport science and public health support skills. The degree in Applied Sport and Exercise Science has been designed to meet these requirements by creating a curriculum that is not only grounded in sound academic theory, but also applies these principles in real world contexts.

In performance sport, sport scientists work to provide athletes with the ‘winning’ edge. Sport science is comprised of three sub-disciplines - physiology, biomechanics and psychology and a range of allied disciplines such as nutrition, strength and conditioning and performance analysis. Performers can receive support in any, or all, of these disciplines depending upon their individual needs and students are afforded the opportunity to study each of these disciplines during the course of the programme. The increasing number of performers using sport science support has led to an expansion in careers in this area for graduates with a strong academic background in sport science along with the requisite practical skills.

During their first year, students learn the basic theoretical knowledge and laboratory skills essential to the key disciplines. As students progress to the second year, they will learn how to assess the strengths and weaknesses of performers from a multi-disciplinary sport science perspective. In the final year the focus is on intervention and students learn to design sport science support programmes for performance enhancement.

It is not only elite sport that is under the spotlight. The UK is suffering from an increasing prevalence of lifestyle related health problems which include obesity, coronary heart disease and diabetes. Health Authorities are now turning to exercise and lifestyle management experts to tackle these health-related problems. This has led to key employment opportunities for graduates with expertise in exercise and health.

With this in mind the Applied Sport and Exercise Science degree provides the opportunity for students to study a series of health-based modules that develop clinical assessment and intervention design skills. These skills are used to enable students to undertake a lifestyle assessment of a client and make recommendations for health improvements. Targeting both elite sport and public health, the emphasis of the programme is the application of the theoretical knowledge to real world sport and health situations. In most modules students are able to select the sport(s) and exercise contexts in which they are working so that they can personally benefit from their enhanced understanding of the factors affecting performance and health.


While you will learn through lectures, seminars and interactive workshops, you will also benefit from time spent in practical classes in our cutting edge sport and exercise science laboratories based in Sport Central. Time spent in laboratory classes will enable you to gain competencies in terms of using specialist equipment, carrying out testing protocols and interpreting scientific data.

You can undertake a work placement, enterprise or student-tutoring (school-based) module during the final year of study and you will be encouraged to take responsibility for your own development, planning and managing your learning. Learning and Teaching delivery methods are diverse and reflect the applied nature of the programme.


You'll be assessed in a range of ways which will develop vocationally relevant key skills and competencies within the field of sport and exercise science. The range of assessment methods includes practical skills assessments and laboratory reports, online news sites and social media, infographic presentations, real-world case studies, poster and oral presentations, examinations and in-class tests, job applications and a final-year research dissertation.


BASES, the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences has endorsed Northumbria’s Applied Sport and Exercise Science degree, confirming that it is a highly suitable training programme for those wishing to enter the sport and exercise science profession. BASES is the UK's professional body for all of those with an interest in the science of sport and exercise. This endorsement is recognised by employers who know that students graduating from the programme will be appropriately prepared to enter into relevant employment or to undertake further specialist study. 


Graduates are highly valued by employers and can enter a wide range of careers in the health industry, in performance sport (e.g. as strength and conditioning coaches, performance analysts, physiologists) in teaching, lecturing and research. Many graduates continue their personal development by undertaking postgraduate study including PGCE, MSc or PhD.

You’ll be provided with many opportunities to develop your employability skills. The University Careers and Employability Service provide taught sessions and individual support specifically tailored to students interested in employment in the sport and exercise science field. In addition you can benefit from employer presentations, internship and placement opportunities, and get involved in the delivery of activities such as the Newcastle Science festival as part of the student volunteer initiative.


Team Northumbria Scholarships are designed to support the needs of performance athletes during their time at Northumbria. The support available is sport specific and tailored to the individual. It is aimed at providing practical solutions and services to students who have the talent and commitment to fulfil their potential within their chosen sport and their academic ventures.

Support services include:

  • High performance coaching
  • Strength and conditioning
  • Physiological testing and monitoring
  • Personal development (e.g. contribution to academic costs and representation costs)
  • Sports physiotherapy and sports massage
  • Sports medicine
  • Specialised nutritional assessments and follow ups
  • Access to accredited sports psychologists
  • Privileged access to university sports facilities
  • Professional and athlete life skills e.g. career transition
  • Academic and sport mentor support

For further details visit and search for Scholarship


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Northumbria University has taken reasonable care to ensure that the information published is accurate at the time of publication. However, the University gives no warranty or representation as to the quality, accuracy or completeness of the information.