MSc Sport, Health and Exercise Science

Would you like to further your career in sport, health and exercise science? Would you like to offer sports science support to professional teams? Or does working in the field of physical activity and exercise in your community drive your ambition? The MSc Sport, Health and Exercise Science course represents the academic and research interests of exercise and health scientists at the University.

During your postgraduate studies, you will conduct supervised and independent research work at our Sports Park and at our state-of-the-art environmental, exercise physiology and body composition laboratories on Glyntaff campus. The University of South Wales is 15th overall in the UK for world leading research in sports and exercise science – there is a strong research culture and our students are encouraged to engage with this from the beginning of their studies.

2021/22 update: Blended learning approach for USW courses.

[Update excludes online-only courses].

The wellbeing and health and safety of our students and staff is paramount to us. We are committed to delivering all of our courses and services as safely as possible. Due to the pandemic, the methods and activities adopted for the coming year may differ from those previously published and may be subject to further change through the course of your study if such change is necessary due to public health concerns, health and safety guidance or in response to Government Guidelines. USW is committed to providing you with a fantastic student experience and a wealth of support, and you can hear how students have benefitted from this approach here: Learn more about blended learning.

Study Mode
2021
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
Full-time 1 Year September Glyntaff A
Part-time 2 Years September Glyntaff A
Study Mode
2022
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
Full-time 1 Year September Glyntaff A
Part-time 2 Years September Glyntaff A
  • Exercise Physiology
    This module aims to enhance your understanding of the relationship between exercise, physiological systems and human biochemistry, with a specific focus on what limits exercise performance. It will also allow you to develop an advanced understanding of a selection of technical skills in exercise physiology and competence in these skills.

  • Research Project
    This module aims to enable students to demonstrate the skills necessary to produce a scholarly, in-depth, empirical research study, resource, or report.

  • Research Methods
    This module will develop your ability to design and statistically analyse experimental, quasi-experimental and non-experimental quantitative studies. It will allow you to appreciate the strengths and limitations of the different quantitative research designs used in sport, health and exercise science and synthesize knowledge and competencies gained during taught modules, to produce a scholarly, in-depth critical review and proposal for a research study.

  • Professional Work Based Development 
    This module provides an opportunity for students to observe and participate in work-based professional environments, including identifying a work problem for you to overcome, which will enhance your professional and vocational learning and inform your own everyday practice. As part of your studies you will critically reflect on your learning throughout the work placement. You will, together with the module team, identify an organisation or organisations that are relevant to your field of study and that will be able to provide 140 hours of work experience.

Plus three of the following optional modules:

  • Strength and Conditioning (Sport Science Pathway)
    This module aims to develop your knowledge and critical understanding of concepts and theories regarding strength and conditioning. You will also have developed the ability to implement effective strength and conditioning programmes into a range of performance environments. The above have been closely linked to the professional standards required for accreditation by both the NSCA and the UKSCA.

  • Movement Analysis (Sport Science Pathway)
    This module aims to develop your awareness of the analysis of sports performance, with particular emphasis on technique analysis and notation analysis. The use of systematic observation techniques in the analysis of sports performance will also be considered.


  • Nutrition for Health and Performance (Sport Science or Exercise and Health Pathway)
    This module aims to provide students with the scientific basis of nutrition for performance. This has been designed to develop advanced skills essential for understanding the nutritional requirements of the human body in order to maximise exercise performance and promote health and wellbeing.

  • Physical Activity and Health (Exercise and Health Pathway)
    This module aims to enhance your understanding of the relationship between physical activity and the prevention, treatment and management of chronic diseases. It has also been developed to consider the design and implementation of physical activity public health policy.

  • Epidemiology and Biostatistics for Public Health (Exercise and Health Pathway)
    This module aims to introduce students to both fundamental and advanced concepts in epidemiology and the application of these concepts within the study of public health.

 

 

Teaching

The MSc Sport, Health and Exercise Science is taught via small group workshops, seminars, lectures, video analysis, practical laboratory investigations and practicals; some of which will be student-led. All teaching material is supported by the latest research information and national and local policy drivers. Interactive, e-learning platforms are used to support your learning throughout the course, as well as the excellent library facilities.

Your studies will be underpinned by the latest research undertaken by the University’s Sport, Health and Exercise Science Research Group which collaborates locally, nationally and internationally with partners from industry and academia to provide world-leading knowledge and impact. For you, this means you will be taught by academics who are at the forefront of their specialist field.

Assessment

A wide variety of applied, academic and vocational assessment is used on this modern and innovative MSc Sport, Health and Exercise Science. You will be assessed by oral and poster presentations, laboratory write-ups and case studies, critical essays and in some modules, examinations. The assessments are continually updated to reflect contemporary policy and practice to provide graduates with the most up-to-date professional knowledge and experiences.

Placements

During the MSc Sport, Health and Exercise Science course, you’ll have the opportunity to complete a professional work placement module, using the experience to further develop your vocational skills in a specific sport or exercise area. We will work with you to secure the most relevant placement for your future career aspirations. 

Facilities

We have purpose-built laboratories full of specialist equipment. This includes an underwater weighing system and whole-body MRI to measure whole and regional body fat and muscle. We also have a hypobaric chamber that tests subjects in different conditions, often at the extremes of endurance. There are five teaching laboratories, where you’ll study under the guidance of our academic staff and conduct your own experimental work. You’ll also have access to the biomechanics lab to measure the internal and external forces involved in performing sporting actions.

At USW Sport Park, just a few miles from the Glyntaff Campus, we have a brand-new specially designed sporting performance facility that focuses on rugby and football coaching. It includes a specialist centre for strength and conditioning with 12 lifting platforms, providing a high performance environment for aspiring athletes. Our full-size indoor 3G pitch is built to the Fifa Pro standard and World Rugby 22 standard. It will guarantee training all year round for our rugby, football and coaching students. We are the only university in England and Wales to offer this facility. You'll also find a notational analysis suite and over 30 acres of playing fields, including five floodlit pitches. We have a sand-dressed 'astroturf' pitch, as well as a full-size FIFA approved 3G pitch. In addition to these all-weather pitches, there are six grass football pitches, three grass rugby pitches, and a large changing pavilion. Our facilities are regularly used by international professional teams, such as the Wales national football team and Cardiff City Football Club, as well as the touring New Zealand, South Africa and Australia rugby squads. This confirms the high quality of our pitches and the versatility of our equipment.

Lecturers

Dr Christopher Marley, course leader, is member of the Neurovascular Research Laboratory led by Professor Damian Bailey. His research broadly focuses on factors that influence oxygen delivery to the brain and in turn cognitive function. He is particularly interested in better understanding the physiological mechanisms that explain the neuroprotective benefits of exercise, as well as the long-term neurological consequences of head injury within sport. He was recently awarded a University of South Wales Strategic Research and Impact Fund grant to progress his research. Dr Marley is a professional member of The Physiological Society and regularly showcases his latest work from the laboratory at their annual conference.

George Rose: As an exercise scientist, George Rose's research explores the link between preoperative cardiorespiratory fitness and postoperative survival in patients undergoing major surgery. In collaboration with University Hospital of Wales, Cardiff, Department of Anaesthetics, his research has helped optimise the identification of patients at high risk of postoperative complications and mortality, which supports patient care provision decision processes. 

Dr Morgan Williams is a NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Coach. He is a member of the Queensland University of Technology Hamstring Injury Group and actively externally involved in development and trialling of the Nordbord Hamstring and ForceFrame Strength Testing Devices. His research has been used to provide an evidence-based framework to inform diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of HSI (as well as other common lower extremity muscle injuries in sport) and has transformed HSI prevention and rehabilitation in multiple sports worldwide.

Melanie Tuckwell is a lecturer, coach, teacher and mentor. She is a highly experienced and qualified coach and coach educator and has also played International Netball at all levels. She has coached Wales and several U21 teams to World Championships across the world. In August 2015 she was the Technical Advisor for the Welsh Netball team at the Netball World Cup in Australia, where Wales finished their highest placing 7th since 1991. She has been the Assistant Coach to the Celtic Dragons Netball Superleague team and Assistant Coach to the Welsh National netball team. Mel has an interest in Coaching and in particular Coach Burnout and Coach Mentoring.

 

 

Usually an Honours degree at class 2:2 or above in a relevant science subject such as Sports Science, Biomedical Science or Physiology, although experience can sometimes be taken into account.

Equivalent international qualifications are acceptable. Those without such qualifications will be considered on an individual basis and a wide range of prior professional experience may be taken into account.

The course welcomes international applicants and requires an English level of IELTS 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in each component or equivalent.

Full-time fees are per year. Part-time fees are per 20 credits. Once enrolled, the fee will remain at the same rate throughout the duration of your study on this course.

August 2021 - July 2022 Fees


  • Full-time UK:  £9000

  • Full-time International:  £14500 

  • Part-time UK:  £1000 per 20 credits

August 2022 - July 2023 Fees


  • Full-time UK: TBC

  • Full-time International: TBC

  • Part-time UK: TBC

Additional Costs

Students have access to a wide range of resources including textbooks, publications, and computers in the University’s library and via online resources. In most cases they are more than sufficient to complete a course of study. Where there are additional costs, either obligatory or optional, these are detailed below. Of course students may choose to purchase their own additional personal resources/tools over and above those listed to support their studies at their own expense. All stationery and printing costs are at a student’s own expense.

Funding

 

Funding to help pay for/cover tuition fees and living costs

Whilst you’re studying you’ll have two main costs – tuition fees and living costs. You can get a range of funding to help with these costs.

There are a number of ways to fund your postgraduate study. This can be through student finance, bursaries or help from grants, trusts and charities (see Alternative Funding), or a combination of all three.

Click here to find out more about funding your postgraduate tuition fees and living costs.

 

USW Alumni Postgraduate Discount 

The University of South Wales is offering a 20% reduction in tuition fees for all University of South Wales graduates studying a postgraduate course from September 2021 (this includes students starting their course in January/ February 2022). T's and C's apply.

Click here for more information about the USW Alumni Postgraduate Discount

 

Apply directly to the University for this course.

Admissions statement 

A higher level degree such as an MSc, MPhil or PhD is becoming increasingly essential if you want to pursue a professional and/or academic career in sport and exercise science or physical activity/nutrition related to public health. Future employment opportunities include areas such as academia, professional sports clubs, the public/private health sector, sport national governing bodies, fitness industry, as well as supporting those of you already in employment such as teachers, community sport and health officers, as well as physical activity and fitness leaders.

Graduates may also progress on to a sport PhD or sport research degree.

Our Careers and Employability Service

As a USW student, you will have access to advice from the Careers and Employability Service throughout your studies and after you graduate.