Interested in sport coaching as a form of education? Keen to study a sport degree that will put you on the pathway to a teaching career? Realise your ambitions on this challenging and vibrant new course.
Choose a four-year course which includes a foundation year for an invaluable introduction to your studies
Fulfil your potential: the foundation year route is for you if you are pursuing a change of career or exploring a new subject area
Gain an impressive combination of skills relating to sport coaching, teaching and education
Be inspired by our strong network of contacts including professional coaches, elite athletes and educational leaders
Build the ideal platform to progress to teacher training opportunities such as a PGCE
Deliver sports sessions to groups of different ages and abilities to develop your practical skills
Work with sports clubs, schools and community organisations for vital experience in real-world settings
Benefit from exceptional facilities including our new multi-purpose Sports Centre and state-of-the-art laboratories
Learn from staff who are highly experienced in both the sport and educational arenas
Bringing together the art and science of both sport and education, this inspiring degree will build your academic and practical skills in equal measure. It is now available as a four-year course with a foundation year to give you a strong basis for your future studies and career.
Foundation Year - helping you to achieve more
Including a foundation year as part of your four-year study programme will give you a head start in your academic and professional life. The foundation year offers the chance to strengthen your skills, knowledge and confidence – with extensive support from our expert staff – before you advance to stage one of your honours degree. It could also be beneficial if you are planning a career change and want to get to grips with aspects of subjects which are new to you.
Our degrees with a foundation year are continuous, meaning that you won’t need to apply again once you have successfully completed the first year.
Broaden your perspectives
If you have an interest in sport coaching as a form of education, this innovative and interdisciplinary course is a perfect option for you. It leads to a qualification which will help you stand out in the graduate job market.
While more traditional sport coaching degrees concentrate on the physical training of athletes, our BA (Hons) broadens your perspectives and gives you a deeper understanding of the relationships between the disciplines of sport and education.
Exploring the importance of the sport coach as an educator, you’ll cover the principles of learning and how they can be applied in different educational settings for teaching and coaching practice alike.
Drawing on areas such as educational psychology and human development, you’ll also develop your awareness of contemporary theory which will prove invaluable should you decide to progress to teacher training.
Translate theory into practice
Our close links with both the sports industry and the education sector will open doors for you. Employers have had significant input into the design of this course, so you can be sure that what you are learning will meet their needs and expectations.
It also means you can start to build your professional networks and enjoy opportunities such as work experience, industry-backed research and coaching practice, including delivering sport sessions to groups of different ages and abilities.
By working in real-world settings – such as with sports clubs, schools, colleges, community organisations and local authorities – you will gain a better appreciation of the educational aspects of sport as well as the different career options available.
Make the most of our impressive facilities
You can take full advantage of the facilities at our iconic new £10.8 million Sports Centre, which boasts a main hall, fitness gym, studios, squash and badminton courts, an internal climbing wall, sprint track, changing rooms, treatment rooms and a café.
Our substantial investment in sport has also seen the introduction of bespoke equipment and state-of-the-art laboratories to keep our sports students at the forefront of new developments in testing and measuring the parameters of health and fitness. You will advance your skills in our high-specification sport and exercise and biomechanics laboratory. You will also become adept in using a range of computer software packages for statistical and movement analysis.
Skills to take you far
We take every opportunity to enrich your learning experience, fostering important transferable skills and intellectual abilities beyond the core content of your degree.
Alongside the course, you will benefit from our Steps to Success programme which promotes your personal and academic development and helps you make more informed decisions about your future career plans.
You’ll develop skills in academic research too, conducting an independent investigation into a theme of your choice – with the chance to showcase your findings to lecturers and fellow students at a University conference. This experience is particularly helpful if you would like to study at postgraduate level.
To add variety and interest to your CV, we support you to pursue additional professional qualifications, including coaching badges and other awards given by the National Governing Bodies for specific sports.
Expertise to inspire you
You’ll be motivated and engaged by expert tutors who know all about combining education and sport: they do so every day in their work. Supportive, encouraging and approachable, they can call upon a wealth of professional as well as academic experience.
Thanks to our flourishing partnerships across the sector, you will also be able to attend inspirational guest lectures and network with professional coaches, elite athletes and education specialists.
This module will introduce students to a variety of key psychological studies and topics. Through these studies and topics, students will develop their knowledge and understanding of the scope of psychological research and the methods employed by those researching different aspects of human nature within an education and childhood context.
This module aims to develop an understanding of why and how research is conducted within science disciplines. Students will develop a working knowledge of both quantitative and qualitative data handling skills through the use of Excel and other appropriate software. Introductions to formulating and operationalising research questions and hypotheses will be included along with an exploration of the rationale behind applying different research methods for different purposes and the ethical considerations linked to these.
This module aims to develop the study skills essential for study at university and facilitate the transition into Higher Education. The module will help student understand university systems and processes, the study skills they require to succeed and the role they have in their own learning.
This module provides an introduction to the fundamental ‘art’ of sport and exercise disciplines. Students will gain an understanding of the broad range of qualitative based subject disciplines attributed to sport and exercise and begin to develop an appreciation of the skills required to work within the diverse sport and exercise field.
This module focusses on the ‘art’ of sport and exercise to ensure a grounding knowledge for all. Students will learn of the different roles a sport and exercise professional may take on and the skills attributed to each in order to be successful.
This module will provide students with a theoretical understanding of physiology and anatomy of the relevant body systems.
Fundamental anatomical and physiological concepts will be explored for a range of body systems in relation to what these systems consist of and how they function. The concepts of health and disease will be introduced as the range of body systems are explored.
The module will incorporate both theoretical and practical learning to enable students to apply their knowledge of the human body.
This module will provide students with a theoretical understanding of physiology and anatomy of the relevant body systems. Fundamental anatomical and physiological concepts will be explored for a range of body systems in relation to what these systems consist of and how they function.
The concepts of health and disease will be introduced as the range of body systems are explored. The module will incorporate both theoretical and practical learning to enable students to apply their knowledge of the human body.
This module provides you with an introduction to the study of sociology. It is intended to encourage an understanding of core sociological theories, and to foster an awareness of sociological issues and phenomena. It is designed to develop your appreciation of how we evaluate the social world.
This module will focus on the application of skill acquisition theories in the coaching practice. Students will develop an understanding of how principles such as feedback, attentional focus and the environment can inform session design and delivery; with the view to enhancing both athlete learning and performance.
Student’s practical skill development will centre upon their ability to enhance performance through the application of skill acquisition principles. Students will be taught via a variety of lectures and seminars as well practical coaching sessions. The module will also provide students with the opportunity to engage with PDP activities related to the role of the coach within the sporting industry.
Psychology and Education: Understanding Teaching and Learning
This module is concerned with the contribution psychology has made to the education sector. Psychological theoretical frameworks and psychological research are used, to examine our current understanding of and influences on teaching and learning.
The aim of this module is to explore the relationship between different psychological traditions and explanations of how learning occurs. Psychological theories including behaviourism, constructivism and socio-cultural approaches are examined to investigate the impact of such ideas on education.
This level 4 core module gives you insights into how and why the current school curriculum provision in the statutory years has developed over the last three decades. There is a focus on current curriculum debates and some exploration of future curriculum content as well as strategies for delivery in schools.
Through lectures and seminar group work you will be introduced to a range of concepts such as curriculum, National Curriculum, accountability, inclusion and choice as well as curriculum structure and key stages.
We encourage you to reflect on your own experiences to help you understand the literature from a range of sources. Tutorials provide opportunities for small group/one-to-one feedback and, later in the module, support student assignment planning.
Academic and Applied Skills for Sport and Exercise
This module is taught in two parts: Academic skills and research skills. The academic skills component provides students with grounding in the key skills needed to be successful at undergraduate study; including, literature searching, literature review, academic writing, referencing, and presentation skills. The research skills component gives students an introduction to qualitative and quantitative research methods, including descriptive statistics.
Students will learn how to collect and interpret data using a range of approaches including questionnaires, interviews and experimental methods. The emphasis on the module is to develop student’s confidence in engaging with academic literature including the associated terminology.
Personal Development Planning (PDP) will be embedded into the program with a series of “step-to-success” workshops which will support students in their professional development . Students will be required to engage with the PDP programme by collating hours in a Sport and Exercise based placement in addition to participation in associated activities in an area related to sport.
Most of the delivery will be based on seminar sessions wherein students will be given structured tasks which will be completed individually or in groups. Delivery and assessment will provide students with the opportunity to engage and explore their own area of interest with respect to the associated academic literature.
Knowledge of how the different parts of the body function during physical activity is necessary to understand how humans can take part in sport and exercise.
This module examines the basic physiology of the relevant body systems. What these systems consist of, how they function and how they respond to an acute bout of physical activity will be considered. In addition to building core knowledge of sport and exercise physiology, students will acquire a set of core skills in the laboratory. This module underpins the subsequent study of sport, exercise and health, and is therefore important preparation for modules at Levels 5 and 6.
The aim of this module is to introduce and review principles of coaching and leadership. A large component of this module is devoted to work based learning, delivered in the form of practical sessions. Students will therefore be required to demonstrate knowledge and understandings related to underpinning principles and apply them to the coaching context.
This module explores debates surrounding National Curricula in England and other education systems. It examines the political, historical, cultural and economic influences on curriculum frameworks through exploring debates about required content, purposes, structure, ownership and impact. It also examines how such themes are represented in the media taking account of the structure of the education system in England and accountability.
There will be a range of teaching and learning methods employed throughout the module including: lectures, seminar activities, individual and group work, tutorials and independent study.
This module will explore the psychology of individual differences and will consider two concerns in this area, namely intelligence and personality.
The module will focus on a critical exploration of accounts relating to intelligence and personality and how questions about this controversial concept resonate within the education sector. It explores the relevance of these accounts to an understanding of teaching, learning and assessment for both teachers and learners.
There will be a range of teaching and learning methods employed throughout the module including: lectures, seminar activities, case studies, individual and group work, tutorials and independent study.
This module builds upon the knowledge and skills developed in the level 4 Research and Academic Skills module. The module is designed to prepare students for their dissertation at level 6. Students will conduct a systematic literature review in a topic area related to their degree, in order to develop a coherent research question.
Particular emphasis will be given to developing a robust rationale for the research question proposed based on a critical review of existing literature. Furthermore, students will propose a research methodology based on the rationale developed.
The overall focus of the module is on the process of “doing research”, and this will reflect in the delivery methods used. As such, students will be encouraged to explore the suitability different methodologies with respect to the research question asked. There will be the opportunity within sessions for students to critically review literature, and peer review research proposals. In addition to developing a research rationale and design for a proposed research project, students will undertake a range of in-class assessed qualitative and quantitative data analysis tasks using SPSS, including inferential statistics.
The Steps-to-Success programme will be implemented in this module, in conjunction with the employability and careers office, The focus will be placed on graduate schemes, teacher training, networking, job applications and masters programmes. Students will be required to engage with the Professional Development Planning (PDP) for Sport and Exercise programme by collating hours in a Sport and Exercise based placement in addition to participation in associated activities in an area related to sport.
Module learning outcomes
On successful completion of the module, students will be able to:
Develop a coherent research question based on a review of the associated academic literature
Provide a robust rationale for the research question proposed based on academic literature
Develop a suitable research methodology for the proposed research question
Analyse and interpret quantitative and qualitative data gathered from a range of research methods used in sport and exercise
Demonstrate evidence of Professional Development through engagement with PDP and Sport and Exercise placement
The module will focus on the following topic areas:
Research proposal writing
Literature (critical) review
Research question rational
Research methodology (quantitative and qualitative)
This module will provide students’ with a sound understanding of sport coaching principles in the context of learning. It will examine core components of coaching and learning and establish links between theory and practice. The focus of the module will be on those aspects that facilitate change within individuals.
The module is designed to give students an understanding of the concepts and practice of training and fitness. It will develop their awareness of training principles, the need for analysis of fitness requirements for specific sports, and the evaluation of sports performance. As part of the PDP provision, students will have the option to work with individual athletes in a “real-world” context.
This module will focus on developing the student’s understanding of concepts and issues related to models of athlete development with particular attention paid to the notions of ‘long-term athlete development’ and ‘physical literacy’.
Students will gain insight into the social, psychological and physical development of young children and adolescents and how sport development interventions are tailored towards the individual participant in both a participation environment. In addition to the theory covered, students will gain experience in applying the related theory into practical sport development sessions throughout the semester that are designed to meet the needs of young children and adolescents to promote lifelong participation. Focus will be given to the delivery of physical education and sport in youth sport settings in a participation in environment.
This module provides a framework for the development of “lifelong learning” skills appropriate to all areas of professional practice; including objective setting, planning, negotiating, implementing, demonstrating and reflecting. The emphasis in this module is on the analysis and evaluation of the work completed within the organisation. This module also gives students an opportunity to relate their academic knowledge to the work environment.
Students need to be aware of the commercial realities and external factors that influence the success of an organisation. This module provides opportunities for students to acquire an understanding of contemporary issues that may impact on industrial and professional practices relevant to a career within their chosen discipline.
During this period of work experience, students can gain a deeper appreciation of the responsibilities arising from both corporate and individual responses to such issues, thus enabling them to relate to the wider world when exploring a personal direction for potential career development.
This module explores the concept of social exclusion, with a particular focus on the role of education in mediating such exclusion.
The module draws on theoretical explanations of social exclusion to enable the development of an understanding of the underlying social processes that contribute to social exclusion.
Particularly, the module asks how education policies and practices can create interventions and strategies which perpetuate and exacerbate social exclusion either purposefully or indirectly, or whether such strategies can act to reduce and alleviate social exclusion. Drawing on contemporary themes, topics for consideration are identified.
Understanding and Managing the Behaviour of Learners
This module provides an opportunity for students with a general interest in managing behaviour, to examine theoretical and professional perspectives on managing the behaviours of learners.
The module will examine political policy in relation to the behaviour of learners in schools and the possible implications for teaching staff and students. Different theories regarding behaviour management strategies will also be evaluated.
From this, the module engages the student in a critical appraisal of potential behaviour management strategies, their operation and likely consequences.
The module requires the student to be open to new ideas and perspectives on a ‘take-for-granted’ set of assumptions about managing the behaviours of others.
There will be a range of teaching and learning methods employed throughout the module including: lectures, seminar activities, individual and group work, tutorials, and independent study.
The independent studies module provides students with the opportunity to reflect and build upon their subject knowledge and expertise by conducting an in-depth investigation; requiring a systematic and significant application of both acquired research skills and understanding.
The investigation may adopt a variety of frameworks, typically dependent upon a combination of both the discipline and topic in question. The rationale being to avoid limiting the students to the traditional empirical research format; instead empowering them to select an investigatory design that is best suited to the conduct, completion and presentation of the study in focus e.g. an industry report or an individually focused / institutionally targeted case study etc.
Irrespective of the study framework, all work requires students to apply critical scrutiny and analysis to a diversity of appropriate theories, concepts and procedures. Such work will inevitably relate to a field of study deemed appropriate by a specialist in the area. The module offers the opportunity to develop an in-depth critical understanding alongside the refinement of both their subject and research skills.
Students will develop their understanding of kinesiology and its importance in the context of coaching practice and skilled movement. Students will be provided the opportunity to appreciate and evaluate the elemental and pervasive role that human movement plays in athletic function, development and performance enhancement.
The module aims to develop the student’s ability to consider human movement principles, exploring the essence and purpose of movement through both qualitative and quantitative methods of analysis. Furthermore students will be exposed to a critical and experiential consideration of the techniques and practices coaches have at their disposal; in addition to the multi-disciplinary approaches and influences that can enhance and manipulate movement characteristics of athletes.
This module builds and implements knowledge and skills acquired in Coaching and Skill Acquisition, Principles and Practice of Training and Sport Performance Analysis.
This module will provide students with an opportunity to develop themselves as practitioners progressing their coaching, teaching and communication skills. In particular students will focus upon their ability to apply pedagogical theory to the planning and delivery of practical coaching sessions with disabled performers; whilst also furthering their commitment to and engagement in the process of reflective practice.
Rather than coach their peers, students will work in groups to plan, deliver and evaluate a number of coaching sessions with participants who exhibit a range of learning, sensory and physical disabilities. The planning, delivery and content of the coaching sessions will be informed by a variety of physical, psychological and sociological theories, concepts and evidence. As part of the PDP provision, students will have the opportunity to engage in the practical delivery of coaching sessions to disability learners.
This course is delivered using a variety of traditional and contemporary teaching and learning methods. These include lectures, tutorials, and practicals, as well as innovative approaches using information technology. A student-centred approach is adopted throughout and considerable emphasis is put on experiential learning, as well as the practical application of underpinning principles.
A variety of assessment methods are used during the course, which include essays, written and practical exams, reports, portfolios, and presentations. In addition to final module assessments, students will receive feedback on their performance throughout the course enabling learning and progression.
Personal academic tutoring
Your personal academic tutor will work with you to help you get the most out of your time at university. Having someone to talk to about your academic progress, your university experience and your professional aspirations is hugely valuable. We want you to feel challenged in your studies, stretched but confident to achieve your academic and professional goals.
GCSE Maths and English are preferred, however if you don't have these qualifications you will be able to undertake Maths and English at L2 as part of your course of study.
6.0 (with 5.5 in each skills area)
Interview / Audition
Alternative entry qualifications:
BTEC - MPP
Pass Access to HE Diploma 60 credits: 45 at Level 3 and 15 at Level 2.
We usually consider an A-level in General Studies as a supplementary qualification. A good application/performance will be taken into account if you do not meet the criteria/offer conditions.
An Enhanced Disclosure & Barring Service certificate cleared by the University is required for this course. We will contact you with information on how to complete this once you have applied. More information.
Our entry requirements for this course should be read together with the University's general entry requirements, which details subjects we accept, alternative qualifications and what we're looking for at Derby.
Fees and funding
£9,250 per year*
£14,045 per year
* The fees stated above are for the 2019/20 academic year; fees for 2020/21 have not yet been confirmed by the UK government. We will update this information as soon as it is available.
Full-time students applying to start in September should apply for this course through UCAS or you can apply directly to the University for an undergraduate course if you’re not applying to any other UK university in the same year.
Full-time students applying to start in September should apply for this course through UCAS or you can apply directly to the University for an undergraduate course if you’re not applying to any other UK university in the same year.
One of the major benefits of this degree is that it paves the way to such a wide variety of careers. Your qualification will set you apart as a versatile and resourceful graduate with a strong set of transferable skills.
You could choose to chart your future career in sport coaching, in education or in a combination of both. There are also interesting roles in broader areas such as physical activity co-ordination, sport and health development, fitness and recreation management, and health promotion.
In addition, this degree serves as a springboard to postgraduate education in Sport. You could, for instance, consider masters level courses such as our innovative MRes Sport and Exercise programme.
Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.
Additional costs and optional extras
We’re committed to providing you with an outstanding learning experience. Our expert teaching, excellent facilities and great employability prepare you for your future career. As part of our commitment to you we aim to keep any additional study costs to a minimum. However, there are occasions where students may incur some additional costs.
Included in your fees
To welcome you to our team, you’ll receive a University of Derby, Sport and Exercise Science t-shirt
If a DBS check is needed for the purposes of a module or programme related work placement, this is included in your fee if done via the University
We will contribute to or pay the full cost of additional qualifications which are arranged by us. For other additional qualifications you’re interested in, we may contribute to or fund these but this is at the Sport department’s discretion
Mandatory costs not included in your fees
If not already owned, appropriate clothing for practical sessions such as tracksuit bottoms and trainers - approximate cost is £50-£100
Two bound copies of your Independent Study (dissertation) - approximate cost is £12
Travel to placements - cost varies depending on your placement venue of choice
Optional costs not included in your fees
You may wish to purchase optional textbooks or e-books to support your studies - costs for these are dependent on your choice
To support your studies, you may want to invest in additional qualifications such as pitch-side first aid and safeguarding - costs will vary depending on your choice
Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.