Sport and Exercise Sciences at Durham University - UCAS

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Course summary

Are you fascinated by the relationship between exercise, performance and health? Would you like to embark on a BSc that is aligned with industry developments and the latest research? Here at Durham, our expertise across the Department prepares you to tackle traditional and emergent sport and exercise problems from a variety of academic disciplines and perspectives. With a curriculum developed and delivered by an academic team actively involved in research, you’ll build a firm foundation of knowledge in traditional sport, exercise and health sciences (taking in physiology; psychology; physical activity, nutrition and health). The course also offers the flexibility to select modules from e.g. the Sociology of Sport, Sport, Health and the Environment, and Sports Development, so you develop a broader, more holistic knowledge base across the wider field of sport and exercise. In addition, our focus on employability provides opportunities for you to develop your skill set and take sport and exercise placement modules, as well as open modules from across the University. You can also apply to add an industry placement year or a study year abroad to your degree, increasing the course from three years to four. The final-year dissertation is an opportunity to engage in deeper investigation of a sport or exercise topic that particularly interests you. Our approach to learning, teaching and assessment links academic knowledge with real-world examples and practices in sport, exercise and physical activity. This is brought further to life in the Human Performance Laboratory which is equipped with the latest in performance technology. Studying Sport and Exercise Sciences you will develop intellectual capacities and personal qualities, while acquiring a broad range of practical, professional and employability skills that can be applied to a range of careers in the sport and leisure sector and beyond. Our students graduate with the skill set to take on a challenging role in a growing industry.


Year 1 Core modules: Critical Skills for Sport and Exercise Sciences develops the essential skills required for degree-level study in the sport and exercise sciences, as well as the workplace. You will develop skills in personal effectiveness, verbal and written communication, critical thinking and problem-solving, information and research, numeracy and digital literacy. Introduction to Sport and Exercise Psychology familiarises you with major theories, intervention strategies and methods of data collection used in the field of sport and exercise psychology. Introduction to Anatomy and Exercise Physiology familiarises you with the basic anatomical and physiological functions of the human body in the context of exercise. The module includes an examination of the cellular, nervous, musculoskeletal, endocrine, cardiovascular, respiratory, digestive, and thermoregulatory systems. Year 2 Core modules: Contemporary Research in Sport and Exercise Sciences develops conceptual knowledge and understanding of the qualitative, quantitative and mixed research methods used in sport and exercise sciences. This includes an understanding of ethics, designing a research study, collecting and analysing data and developing abilities in statistical analysis. Advanced Sport and Exercise Physiology increases your understanding of the current methods used to enhance athletic performance in an applied setting. Using a mix of taught and laboratory sessions you will investigate areas such as hydration; the validity and reliability of laboratory and field-based testing; lactate threshold testing; maximal and sub-maximal exercise and power and strength adaptations through training. Advanced Sport and Exercise Psychology examines the psychological theories behind participation in sport and exercise. You will develop a critical awareness of the strengths and limitations of psychological research and theory, and apply this knowledge and understanding in a real-world context. The module covers stress and resilience; mental health and well-being; and evidence-based interventions in sport and exercise. By the end of the module, you will develop the skills required for effective one-to-one psychological consultations. Year 3 (Year 4 if undertaking a placement or year abroad) The Dissertation is a detailed and critical examination of a relevant area of sport and exercise sciences. It develops your ability to plan and manage your own learning and provides you with an opportunity to research a specific topic in greater depth and present your findings and conclusions. The 6,000–8,000-word dissertation, supported by a 750-word critical reflection, is worth one-third of your final-year marks. Applied Exercise Physiology in Sport and Health applies your previous learning to critically examine the role of exercise and physical activity in a variety of populations, from elite sport performance to clinical populations. You will cover the principles of exercise prescription; the role of exercise and physical activity in the management of health and performance; advanced assessment and support of clinical and athletic performance; and the underpinning physiology of health and performance. Applied Sport and Exercise Psychology applies your acquired sport and exercise psychology knowledge to complex sport performance and physical activity/health contexts. You will develop a critical understanding of the application of psychological sciences within complex and dynamic, and often politicised, consultancy contexts, such as high-performance sport and other health and exercise settings. Attention is also given to issues of ethical and professional conduct in the practice of sport and exercise psychology.

Assessment method

Your degree will be assessed through a combination of coursework and practicals, which may include psychological profiling of sport performers, presentations, and reports on physiological testing undertaken in our Human Performance Laboratory. Methods of assessment vary between modules and have been designed to assess your knowledge and understanding of course material, test critical thinking skills, enhance written and oral communication skills, and assess your ability to relate your learning to real-world issues within sport and exercise settings. The final-year dissertation project enables you to undertake in-depth exploration of a specific topic that you are passionate about, the dissertation makes up one-third of your final-year marks.

How to apply

This course has limited vacancies, and is no longer accepting applications from some students. See the list below for where you normally live, to check if you’re eligible to apply.






Northern Ireland

Republic of Ireland

Application codes

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Durham City
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Points of entry

The following entry points are available for this course:

  • Year 1

Entry requirements

Qualification requirements

Our contextual offer for this programme is A level BBB or ABC (or equivalent). To find out if you’re eligible, please visit:

Please click the following link to find out more about qualification requirements for this course

English language requirements

Durham University welcomes applications from all students irrespective of background. We encourage the recruitment of academically well-qualified and highly motivated students, who are non-native speakers of English, whose full potential can be realised with a limited amount of English Language training either prior to entry or through pre-sessional and/or in-sessional courses. It is the normal expectation that candidates for admission should be able to demonstrate satisfactory English proficiency before the start of a programme of study, whether via the submission of an appropriate English language qualification or by attendance on an appropriate pre-sessional course. Acceptable evidence and levels required can be viewed by following the link provided.

English language requirements

Student Outcomes

Operated by the Office for Students
Employment after 15 months (Most common jobs)
Go onto work and study

The number of student respondents and response rates can be important in interpreting the data – it is important to note your experience may be different from theirs. This data will be based on the subject area rather than the specific course. Read more about this data on the Discover Uni website.

Fees and funding

Tuition fees

Republic of Ireland £9250 Year 1
Channel Islands £9250 Year 1
EU £26500 Year 1
England £9250 Year 1
Northern Ireland £9250 Year 1
Scotland £9250 Year 1
Wales £9250 Year 1
International £26500 Year 1

Additional fee information

There may also be additional course costs for things like books (if you want to purchase them), field trips etc.
Sport and Exercise Sciences at Durham University - UCAS