Sport and Exercise Science

BSc (Hons)

UCAS code: C601

Start dates: September 2024 / September 2025

Full time: 3 years

Part time: part-time study is possible

Location: Headington

Department(s): Department of Sport, Health Sciences and Social Work

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Fascinated by how the body responds to physical activity? Keen to work with sports professionals to help them reach their best? And want to impact societal health issues?

Our Sport and Exercise degree, endorsed by the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES), will help you to explore these topics and analyse the impact of exercise science.

You’ll cover a range of core subjects including biomechanics, physiology and psychology as well as optional modules such as nutrition, strength and conditioning, and performance analysis. Our specialist labs will give you plenty of scope to test results. Plus, members of our teaching team have a strong track record in helping elite sports teams.

In recent years, the government has recognised the benefits of the population being involved in physical activity and has invested heavily in sport. More people than ever go to the gym or get involved in some form of exercise. And sports professionals expect a whole raft of people to fine tune their performance. All this means you’ll be in great demand when you graduate.

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Why Oxford Brookes University?

  • Extra accreditations

    Stand out with an internationally-recognised vocational qualification from the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity (CIMSPA).

  • A field trip to Morocco

    Spend a week in the Moroccan High Atlas Mountains, testing the effects of mountain trekking on your body. This gives you real data to analyse on your return.

  • Links with local clubs

    Benefit from our strong network which gives plenty of scope for interesting work placements so you can impress employers with your practical experience.

  • Top-of-the-range facilities

    Make use of our specialist labs to look at physiological responses or biomechanics and motion analysis. Plus, try out our hi-tech strength and conditioning suites.

  • Our Inside Track programme

    Be inspired by a range of industry experts at our popular mentoring events. And learn what a career in sport science is like in the real world.

  • Free language courses

    Free language courses are available to full-time undergraduate and postgraduate students on many of our courses, and can be taken as a credit on some courses.

  • Study abroad

    You may be able to go on a European or international study exchange while you are at Brookes. Most exchanges take place in the second year. Although we will help as much as we can with your plans, ultimately you are responsible for organising and funding this study abroad.

  • Accreditation(s)

    Endorsed by BASES (the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences); meets the requirements in topic breadth and quality to fulfil the professional requirements of BASES

    • The British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences
    • CIMSPA Endorsed

Course details

Course structure

In year 1, you’ll gain a thorough grounding in human anatomy and physiology, psychology, biomechanics, nutrition and professional skills.  

Our Professional Skills for Sport and Coaching Sciences module will highlight the different aspects of the role and show you the range of career opportunities available. You’ll analyse where your existing strengths lie and develop the competencies of a successful sports practitioner to enhance your employability.

In year 2 and 3 you can pick from a range of advanced modules. You can choose to focus on sport or health and exercise science or a combination of the 2. You could look at our forward-thinking module Emerging Technology and Exercise and Health, sport focussed Applied Practice in Sport and Exercise Science module or health focussed Clinical Populations and Rehabilitation module.

There are optional work experience placements which will help you develop your skills, gain confidence and network with professional contacts. You also get the opportunity to choose a research-based project on a topic that interests you.

Student working on laptop

Learning and teaching

This degree includes:

  • theoretical study across a range of disciplines
  • the development of practical or field skills.

In particular you will use IT to find, analyse and present information. We believe this is an essential part of any modern science course.

To deliver content and learning outcomes we use:

  • lectures
  • seminars
  • tutorials
  • laboratory classes. 

We believe that useful scientists should also be practical. We are committed to laboratory work, surveys and fieldwork as appropriate.

We have a good range of well-equipped and modern laboratories. In this environment, under the careful supervision of academic staff, you will be taught safe and effective ways to carry out laboratory investigations.


We use a wide variety of assessment methods to reflect the knowledge or skills being evaluated.

The majority of modules are assessed by a combination of coursework and examination. 

Some modules are assessed by coursework only - very few are assessed entirely by examination. 

Field Trips

We have developed a challenging optional fieldwork module, available to students on a number of related degree courses (the cost of the field-trip is not included in course tuition fees). The module investigates changes in energy balance and physical fitness following a week of trekking in the French Alps.

The route follows the Tour du Mont Blanc. It takes you through 160km of amazing alpine wilderness, circumnavigating the Mont Blanc Massif and passing through France, Italy and Switzerland.

This module gives students the opportunity to investigate the physical and psychological responses to sustained exercise in a mountainous environment.

Among the many benefits of field courses are the opportunities for students to further develop their transferable skills. Students and staff conduct each day’s activities together under, at times, challenging environmental conditions. Spending long periods of time together as a group requires students to employ a range of skills including teamwork, communication and problem solving. These are competencies invaluable in the workplace.

Study modules

Please take note of the following modules marked as below:

  • # can be studied in semester 1 or semester 2
  • * modules required for CIMSPA personal training award
  • ** alternate compulsory (choose at least 1).

Year 1

Compulsory modules

  • Introduction to Nutrition

    There are few things more fundamental to life than food and water. 

    In this module you’ll develop a basic understanding of the Science of Nutrition. You will study the concepts of human energy supply and energy expenditure, learning about the different nutrients. You’ll build your skills through training in how to assess dietary intake and nutritional adequacy, as well as body size and body composition. Helping to further your expertise in the field of nutrition.

    Module leader Dr Vasiliki Iatridi says: “Studying Nutrition was one of the best decisions I've ever made: in the Introduction to Nutrition module it's my turn to convey that enthusiasm to our future Nutritionists and Health Care Professionals and provide them with the fundamentals to value the principles of Nutrition Science during their studies and later careers.”

  • Human Movement and Skill in Sport

    You will be involved in theoretical and practical sessions where you’ll examine and understand human movement through motor control and skill acquisition. You’ll explore the applied principles of human movement in a practical context. While you’ll consider the impact of motor control theories in either a coaching or a clinical setting. 

    You will explore three approaches to motor control and skill acquisition, and you’ll develop the ability to critically contrast these theories. At the end of the module with your knowledge of theorectical comparisons, you’ll consider the applied implications.

  • Professional Skills for Sport and Coaching Sciences

    Learn about the social competencies required for a professional role in sport and coaching sciences. You’ll also find out about your range of career opportunities that will be open to you.

    You will reflect on your current skills and knowledge, and you’ll also have opportunities to develop the competencies needed to become a successful sport professional. You’ll be able to identify future professional development opportunities while developing an evidence based approach to enhancing your employability. 

  • Physiology for Human Movement

    On this module you’ll study the structures of bodies and the way structures and bodies function. You’ll gain a detailed theoretical knowledge of anatomy and physiology in relation to the human body. Building your skills so you’ll be able to apply theoretical principles to practical situations and investigate how the body responds to exercise.

  • Introduction to the Psychology of Sport and Exercise

    This module introduces you to fundamental psychological concepts, theories and research for you to consider ways in which they can be applied to sport. You’ll study key areas to give you a broad understanding of issues relating to:

    • motivation
    • goal setting
    • self regulation
    • attribution
    • personality 
    • and behaviour in competitive sport contexts. 

    You’ll develop a contemporary theoretical overview, so you better understand the basis of future application, and enhance the practice of sport. Also you will take part in practicals to investigate and evaluate these applications in related settings to further build your understanding and apply what you’ve learnt on the module.

  • Fitness and Assessment

    You’ll develop your basic knowledge and understanding of the principles of physical fitness and health. You’ll also learn to accurately assess certain fitness parameters in both sporting and health settings. 

    Then using your knowledge and understanding by identifying the main fitness parameters required to optimally perform in certain sports. You’ll also be able to compile an appropriate battery of fitness tests to assess the chosen fitness parameters. By the end of the module you’ll be equipped with the skills to plan and design exercise sessions based on the client's fitness goals.

  • Anatomy for Sport and Exercise

    This is your introduction to human anatomy. You’ll focus on the musculoskeletal system, and also examine human movement. Then you’ll analyse the full range of movement, looking at the muscle groups that are required for movement.

    On this module you’ll develop your knowledge and learning of specific muscle groups and also gain a deep understanding of the human musculoskeletal system. Which you’ll be able to apply to sport and exercise.

  • Introduction to Biomechanics

    This is your introduction to the mathematical and physical concepts underlying biomechanical factors affecting sport and exercise performance. You’ll examine methods of movement analysis and the ways of using biomechanical techniques in areas of performance and injury prevention.

    By the end of the module you’ll build your knowledge and key understandings of human body movement in relation to sporting performance. You will also progress your skills of using sports equipment to enhance performance and to aid injury rehabilitation techniques.

Year 2

Compulsory modules

  • Applied Sport and Exercise Physiology

    In this module, you’ll develop your understanding of exercise physiology by applying various principles and knowledge of exercise physiology to field and laboratory settings.

    You’ll gain experience in conducting accurate assessments of physical fitness and physiological response, both as a subject and as a practitioner, utilising equipment and skills implemented in a range of contemporary occupational settings.

    You’ll complete twenty-two hours of lectures and eighteen hours of practicals (laboratory and field based). Alongside this, you’ll be encouraged to engage with broad aspects of data collection and interpretation to support your coursework assessment, while developing relevant practical skills in the field. You’ll be introduced to modern technological advances and will learn standard assessment techniques in exercise and sport physiology. 

  • Research Methods

  • Sport and Exercise Biomechanics

    This module will allow you to explore the physics of sport. Essentially, you’ll be building on your knowledge covered in Introduction to Biomechanics, and forming key foundational identification skills in the analysis of human movement.

    Your study will enable you to make informed decisions about appropriate techniques of biomechanical principles and recreational activity, which shall support your understanding in the context of sport performance and injury prevention.

    The module will provide you with access to cutting-edge material such as analysis techniques and equipment, data collection, and will boost your critical thinking skills and problem-solving abilities with the chance to investigate and interpret real-world results.

  • Applied Sport and Exercise Psychology

    In this module, you’ll build on some core concepts and theories. You’ll consider and explore some of the more complex psychological issues and challenges that applied sport and exercise psychologists often face when working with athletes, such as, burnout, injury, career transitions, stress, mental illness).

    You’ll also turn your focus to key stakeholders and teams, such as motivational climates, group dynamics, coach-athlete relationship. You’ll cover these topics in lectures, and will be assessed through assignments and practical sessions. Your study will be supplemented with additional online study material, for example, through weekly reading, podcasts, and online quizzes.

  • Physical Activity and Health

    Learn the prevention and treatment concepts behind promoting and enhancing the nation’s health, from how physical inactivity impacts human health to formulating behavioural changes strategies. You’ll have the opportunity to investigate evidence from scientific literature pertaining to the role that physical inactivity plays in the resulting conditions and illnesses of obesity, insulin resistance syndrome, cancer and development of cardiovascular disease. 

Optional modules

Principles of Training for Sport and Exercise*

In this module, you’ll increase your employability by learning how to understand, write and deliver individualised group training programmes. You’ll study the theory and get hands-on with practical work, looking at physical conditioning for all levels of performers.

You’ll gain knowledge of generic training principles which will support your development into real-world sport and training initiatives, and you’ll get the opportunity to apply your new skills to your specific sport/and or specific target group.

Sport and Exercise Nutrition

In a world where healthier regimes and good nutrition is encouraged, this module will put you in the position to get hands-on with this theme.

You’ll undertake a detailed examination of nutrition in relation to sport and exercise, paying particular attention to the role of nutrition in influencing sport and exercise performance, health, training adaptions and recovery from exercise. In addition, you’ll have the opportunity to apply and extend your learning to examine the effects of nutrition in response to exercise through practical data collection and applied scenarios. Throughout the module you’ll use what you learn to inform your dissertation and independent study topics. 

Sports Development

Use both your theoretical and practical knowledge in this module, which will focus on improving the way sports organisations function through development of key sports methodologies designed to increase efficiency and effectiveness.

You’ll get to grips with the best ways on how to promote interest, participation, and performance in sport. You’ll be given the opportunity to create your very own tailored sports development plan for a chosen organisation, and applying your skills to a real-world practical situation. Throughout the module, you can expect to receive twelve weekly lectures (2 hour) supported by individual and/or group tutorials. You’ll also be given the freedom to explore individual independent study.

By the end of this module you’ll be equipped with both theoretical and practical fundamental concepts, which can be applied to the evaluation and management of real-world sports developmental situations.

Performance Analysis

Make informed decisions in the sports world with this analytical sports module. You’ll learn techniques and strategies to hone your understanding on the improvement and analysis of sport performance.

With the guidance of expert sports tutors, you’ll progressively train in identifying key analytical trends, and build knowledge of tactical analysis, effective management, utilisation and presentation of data, with the aim to enhance sports performance. In addition, you’ll be introduced to the behavioural analysis concepts behind training and coaching athletes of tomorrow.

If you’ve ever considered a career within talent development or performance coaching environments, this module will have you well prepared. You’ll gain a wide range of highly sought-after skills that are relevant and essential in the sporting world today.

Laboratory Techniques in Sport and Exercise

In this module you’ll learn reliable qualitative and quantitative laboratory techniques, enabling you to accurately run safe and professional exercise testing sessions. From these, you’ll be able to measure real sporting performance, and enhance your understanding about the interpretation of exercise data within the health, sports and performance context.
You’ll devise sport and exercise constructs, which will enable you to develop your critical analysis skills, ability to problem solve and use numerical data effectively to draw meaningful conclusions. Throughout the module, you shall have access to engaging sports literature, relevant to the field. 

Motivating Health Behaviour

What are the main factors that motivate you to eat healthily and adopt healthy lifestyles? In this module, you’ll be discovering how the reasons behind consuming certain foods are important in relation to the improvement of lives globally, and in post-industrialised nations. To be healthy and active, our diet must comprise of certain foods to meet our energy and nutritional requirements and our lifestyle habits must include activities that promote health. In some circumstances, unhealthy food and lifestyle choices become of concern in relation to adverse health consequences. 

This module will allow you to examine the approaches to motivate behavioural health change in relation to improved human health, by addressing nutrition, exercise and other relevant factors. 

Work Experience 1

In this module, you’ll be amidst the action and working with expert staff and patrons already assigned to the field of Sport and Exercise, under a supervised work-based learning experience, designed to complement your professional and technical skills. You’ll build on your professional knowledge, practical leadership skills and vocational competencies, embarking on a journey of self-discovery in terms of applying your theory to Sport and Exercise concepts. Participating in this placement will enhance your employability and will also open up avenues to investigate and identify your future career direction options and professional development opportunities. 

Independent Study 1#

In this module, you’ll study how the psychology behind sports concepts can enhance sports performance. You’ll delve into how to present evidence-based interventions and apply this knowledge in real-world settings. Strategic-thinking abilities, problem-solving skills, data management, and confidence in communicating your ideas will all be developed under the guidance of your tutor on this module. You’ll be offered this module as part of your programme of study under exceptional circumstances, and at the discretion of your module tutor.

Year 3

Compulsory modules

  • Final Project/ Dissertation**

    In this module, you’ll be given the opportunity to create your own project/dissertation on a specific area of knowledge in relation to fields of sport and exercise science, sport, coaching and physical activity and health promotion. You’ll work one-to-one with a supervisor, developing and enhancing your research while utilising academic literature critically and analytically to support your findings. You’ll get to choose your topic and will be encouraged to get involved with both practical hands-on collection of data and desk-based study. You’ll explore a range of issues which will widen your knowledge and increase your awareness of future career paths.

  • Applied Practice in Sport and Exercise Science**

    In this module, you’ll gain a thorough understanding of the scientific principles behind sport and exercise. You’ll explore a range of topics including physiology, psychology, and biomechanics. You’ll also have the opportunity to turn theory into sports practice by determining how concepts could be applied to sport, health and occupational settings. You’ll be encouraged to utilise your analytical skills in collecting and interpreting data to inform decisions and communicate information effectively. By the end of this module, you will be confident in applying your skills successfully as qualified practitioners or researchers within most sports-related fields. 

Optional modules

Strength and Conditioning for Sport and Health*

You’ll develop both practical and theoretical knowledge of the strength and conditioning spectrum, including evidence-based practice, rehabilitation and working with special populations. You’ll enhance your abilities to work collaboratively with peers and plan interventions that provide solutions to real sporting problems. On completion of this module, you’ll be well prepared to achieve accreditation with recognised awarding bodies associated with strength and conditioning. 

Advanced Practice in Sport and Exercise Psychology

This module will provide you with an advanced understanding of sport and exercise psychology theory. You’ll take an in-depth look at professional concepts and draw real-life connections between sports psychology theory and practice. Through independent fieldwork and analysis of the latest applied research, you’ll have the opportunity to investigate issues relating to athlete (and coach) sports performance, devising ways to enhance the quality of competitive sports experience and optimising sport-learning through intervention. You’ll be looking at a range of topics including emotional regulation, group processes, cognitive function in competitive settings and behavioural change. You’ll be encouraged to apply key theoretical concepts to real-life practical situations involving sports participants. On completion of this module, you can expect to have an excellent grasp of sports performance enhancing interventions. 

Clinical Populations and Rehabilitations

Interested in creating interventions that enhance recovery, health, and mobility after injury across a range of populations? Then this module is for you. You’ll get to grips with both theoretical knowledge and practical skills in the area of exercise and training of clinical populations with long-term health conditions. On completion of this module, you shall be accredited with a Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity (CIMSPA) award, indicating your successful completion of the module.

Emerging Technology in Exercise and Health

You’ll get to grips with the biomechanics of the human body in this module, and will develop your theoretical knowledge, technical, practical and transferrable skills in the area of exercise. Most importantly, you’ll be encouraged to identify the strengths and weaknesses of emerging, industry specific technology, and its application to exercise and health. You will learn how to critically analyse technology data and apply the findings within your field of expertise to real-word problems.

Sport and Exercise Nutrition

You’ll be pairing sports and exercise with nutrition and investigating how the role of nutrition influences sports and exercise performance, training adaptions and recovery from exercise. You’ll also get the opportunity to work with others over many weeks on a group project to explore the effects of nutrition on responses to exercise. By the end of this module, you’ll have picked up the necessary skills to transfer your abilities into real-world scenarios as a sports and exercise nutritionist. 

Sports Injuries

In this module, you’ll widen your knowledge about supporting the recovery of athletes through injury. You’ll investigate the epidemiology, diagnosis and mechanisms behind the most common sports injuries, including join-specific injuries. You’ll learn how to identify risk-factors, implement evidence-based treatment plans, and develop and understanding of rehabilitation principles, processes and techniques. You’ll have the opportunity to gain practical experience in assessing, treating, and supporting individuals with their return to sports from a wide variety of scenarios. By the end of this module, you will have refined your expertise in supporting individuals’ recovery from injury and you will also have gained the confidence to tackle some of the challenging and evolving areas of sport.

Independent Study 2#

You’ll get involved in individual or group work on an appropriate topic, agreed with your module leader and with approval of the field committee. Once your learning contract has been formally approved, your module will be registered on the student’s programme of study. Your study may be work-based, enabling you to gain recognition and academic credit for learning gained through your professional practice, or from an in-depth study of your own high-level sporting performance. 

Work Experience 2

This optional module will provide you with valuable work experience, and will not require you to take time out of your studies. You shall be able to continue your studies in other modules concurrently in the semester and there will be no additional fees to these opportunities beyond normal tuition fees. The module themes will be organised and facilitated by the department, however, you may be able to organise your own experience with approval by the work experience module lead.

Work placements

Optional modules

Work experience modules

This is a placement which you will organise to align with your employment interests, although we can provide a range of possible alternative options. On site, the Clinical Exercise and Rehabilitation Unit (CLEAR) and Human Performance Unit (HPU), based at Oxford Brookes' Centre for Sport, are excellent environments for practical experience of laboratory exercise tests. Local hospitals, sports clubs and sports centres also provide similar environments for hands-on field-based exercise tests. Recent work placement projects include: the development of exercise training programmes for CLEAR unit clients with significant movement disorders; performance analysis of Olympic-level athletes in the HPU.

Please note: As our courses are reviewed regularly as part of our quality assurance framework, the modules you can choose from may vary from those shown here. The structure of the course may also mean some modules are not available to you.

Download course structure chart


As well as building up specific subject knowledge, you’ll develop general skills over the programme such as communication, teamwork and leadership – all highly rated by today’s employers.

With the increased focus on the importance of an active lifestyle for everyone, you’ll find there are many job opportunities in sport and health. And with the greater use of technology, there’s an even wider range of roles you can step into as an exercise scientist.

You might choose to follow in the footsteps of some of our graduates in roles such as:

  • professional sports coach
  • personal trainer
  • performance analyst
  • strength and conditioning practitioner at sports clubs/gyms
  • rehabilitation specialist
  • health promotion
  • sports development officer/community support
  • sports scientists in sports clubs
  • clinical exercise physiology in cardiac rehabilitation (NHS)
  • graduate entry into the forces.

Other graduates decide to specialise in a particular area of their studies and go on to do a research-based master’s related to their degree.

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Entry requirements

Wherever possible we make our conditional offers using the UCAS Tariff. The combination of A-level grades listed here would be just one way of achieving the UCAS Tariff points for this course.

Standard offer

UCAS Tariff Points: 104

A Level: BCC

IB Points: 29


Contextual offer

UCAS Tariff Points: 88

A Level: CCD

IB Points: 27


International qualifications and equivalences

Tuition fees

Please see the fees note
Home (UK) full time

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module

International full time

Home (UK) full time

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module

International full time

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

Tuition fees

2024 / 25
Home (UK) full time

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module

International full time

2025 / 26
Home (UK) full time

Home (UK) part time
£1,155 per single module

International full time

Questions about fees?

Contact Student Finance on:

+44 (0)1865 534400

Please note, tuition fees for Home students may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students in line with an inflationary amount determined by government. Oxford Brookes University intends to maintain its fees for new and returning Home students at the maximum permitted level.

Tuition fees for International students may increase in subsequent years both for new and continuing students. 

The following factors will be taken into account by the University when it is setting the annual fees: inflationary measures such as the retail price indices, projected increases in University costs, changes in the level of funding received from Government sources, admissions statistics and access considerations including the availability of student support. 

How and when to pay

Tuition fee instalments for the semester are due by the Monday of week 1 of each semester. Students are not liable for full fees for that semester if they leave before week 4. If the leaving date is after week 4, full fees for the semester are payable.

  • For information on payment methods please see our Make a Payment page.
  • For information about refunds please visit our Refund policy page

Financial support and scholarships

For general sources of financial support, see our Fees and funding pages.

Additional costs

Please be aware that some courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees. Specific additional costs for this course are detailed below.

You will be expected to participate in practical activities, which will require appropriate general sportswear.

Information from Discover Uni

Full-time study

Part-time study

Programme changes:
On rare occasions we may need to make changes to our course programmes after they have been published on the website. For more information, please visit our changes to programmes page.