Sport and Exercise Science

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Course overview
(MSc) Master of Science
Sport and Exercise Science
University of Essex
University of Essex
Sport, Rehabilitation and Exercise Sciences (School of)
Colchester Campus
Events, Hospitality, Leisure, Sport and Tourism
MSC C60212

Professional accreditation


Admission criteria

A degree with an overall 2.2 in a subject relevant to Sport, Exercise, Psychology or Human Biology.

Your degree should contain modules in sport, psychology or human biology - such as biology, physiology, anatomy or genetics.

IELTS (International English Language Testing System) code

If English is not your first language, we require IELTS 6.5 overall with a minimum component score of 5.5

If you do not meet our IELTS requirements then you may be able to complete a pre-sessional English pathway that enables you to start your course without retaking IELTS.

Additional Notes

The University uses academic selection criteria to determine an applicant’s ability to successfully complete a course at the University of Essex. Where appropriate, we may ask for specific information relating to previous modules studied or work experience.

Course qualifiers


Rules of assessment

Rules of assessment are the rules, principles and frameworks which the University uses to calculate your course progression and final results.

Additional notes


External examiners

Dr Owen Thomas

Reader: Sport Psychology

Cardiff Metropolitan University

External Examiners provide an independent overview of our courses, offering their expertise and help towards our continual improvement of course content, teaching, learning, and assessment. External Examiners are normally academics from other higher education institutions, but may be from the industry, business or the profession as appropriate for the course. They comment on how well courses align with national standards, and on how well the teaching, learning and assessment methods allow students to develop and demonstrate the relevant knowledge and skills needed to achieve their awards. External Examiners who are responsible for awards are key members of Boards of Examiners. These boards make decisions about student progression within their course and about whether students can receive their final award.

eNROL, the module enrolment system, is now open until Monday 27 January 2020 8:59AM, for students wishing to make changes to their module options.


Core You must take this module.
You must pass this module. No failure can be permitted.
Core with Options You can choose which module to study.
You must pass this module. No failure can be permitted.
Compulsory You must take this module.
There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the degree if you fail.
Compulsory with Options You can choose which module to study.
There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the degree if you fail.
Optional You can choose which module to study.
There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the degree if you fail.

Year 1 - 2019/20

Exit Award Status
Component Number Module Code Module Title Status Credits PG Diploma PG Certificate
01 SE740-7-FY Research Project Core 60 Core
02 SE738-7-FY Further Research Methods in Sport, Exercise and Health Compulsory 30 Compulsory Compulsory
03 SE739-7-FY Literature Review Compulsory 30 Compulsory Compulsory
04 Option(s) from list Optional 30 Optional Optional
05 Option(s) from list Optional 30 Optional Optional

Exit awards

A module is given one of the following statuses: 'core' – meaning it must be taken and passed; 'compulsory' – meaning it must be taken; or 'optional' – meaning that students can choose the module from a designated list. The rules of assessment may allow for limited condonement of fails in 'compulsory' or 'optional' modules, but 'core' modules cannot be failed. The status of the module may be different in any exit awards which are available for the course. Exam Boards will consider students' eligibility for an exit award if they fail the main award or do not complete their studies.

Programme aims

The MSc Sport and Exercise Science (SES) is a one year full time (two year part-time) programme of study which has the aims of:
• Enabling students from a range of academic backgrounds to gain an in-depth and critical understanding of current issues in SES.
• Developing student's competence in the key laboratory and field skills required for careers in SES.
• Developing a critical awareness of the need for both a multi-disciplinary and an interdisciplinary scientific approach to the study and practice of SES.
• Developing an ability to acquire and integrate advanced knowledge from a variety of disciplines and apply it to a critical understanding of issues in SES.
• Developing analytical skills that are relevant to a critical understanding of issues in SES.
• Developing a range of transferable skills such as communication, numeracy, IT use, problem solving, self-evaluation and self-improvement, and autonomous learning, in the context of SES.
• Enabling students to plan and conduct a research programme in the development and/or application of SES.
• Developing an advanced knowledge of exercise science to underpin the professional skills appropriate for a career in SES.
• Providing optionallity to enable students to shape their degree towards their chosen career path.
• Gaining work based experience to enhance professional development.

Learning outcomes and learning, teaching and assessment methods

On successful completion of the programme a graduate should demonstrate knowledge and skills as follows:

A: Knowledge and understanding

A1: A broad overview of the application of science to exercise, health and sport

A2: An advanced understanding of how to integrate knowledge of sports and exercise science from the molecular to the whole body level

A3: Knowledge of the interaction between sport and exercise and the human body across the life cycle and in special populations

A4: An understanding of appropriate practical and scientific methods and approaches, including observation and experimentation, and techniques used in their analysis

A5: A critical approach to contemporary issues in sports and exercise science

Learning methods

Seminars/ lectures are the principal method of delivery of A1-A5 and contribute to the delivery of A6. The seminars/lectures direct students to research papers /reports where they can perform self directed learning.
The research project teaches and develops A6 and also a range of A1-A6 depending on the project topics.

Assessment methods

Coursework and practicals associated with modules develop A1-A6.The research project teaches and develops A6 and also a range of A1-A6 depending on the project topics.
Written coursework (A1, A2, A3, A5, A6)
Practical assessment (A4)
Oral presentation (A1, A3, A5, A6)
Work based learning (A1,A2, A3 A5 ,A6)
Unseen written exams (A2, A3, A5)
The project report (A1-A6)

B: Intellectual and cognitive skills

B1: Systematically retrieve, select and integrate appropriate information

B2: Synthesise and evaluate evidence, arguments and ideas from both primary and secondary sources in a self-directed manner

B3: Analyse and interpret quantitative information in graphs, figures, tables and equations and apply and analyse appropriate statistical tests

B4: Integrate and link appropriate information across course components, including material met in different disciplines

B5: Plan and conduct a substantial research project and present it in a coherent manner

Learning methods

B1 & B2 are trained and developed in exam essay writing, in coursework essays, the literature review, reflective portfolio and the research project.
B3 is principally taught and developed in the research methods course as are some aspects of B5. Further development occurs in the project, the literature review and through analysis and interpretation of results in other modules.
B4 is developed via work based learning and in the research topics, the literature review and to some extent in the Research Methods module.
B5 is developed via the individual research project.

Assessment methods

B1, B2, B3 and B4 are assessed by coursework and exam.

B2 and B3 are assessed by coursework and compulsory exam and research project reports.

B4 is assessed by the literature review.

B1-B4 are also assessed in the individual research project.

B5 is assessed via presentation of the research plan, literature review draft presentation, and the written project report.

B1, B2 and B4 are assessed by portfolio building and a reflective statement.

C: Practical skills

C1: Able to design appropriate investigations, bearing in mind technical, logistical, safety and ethical limitations

C2: Competent in the safe and effective use of appropriate lab based equipment

C3: Able to explain the principles and limitations of a range of more advanced practical techniques

C4: Competent in the key laboratory and field skills

C5: Able to use appropriate software packages for data collection, presentation, statistical analysis, etc.

Learning methods

Independent project work also teaches and develops C1-C5.
As part of C1-C4, safety is addressed through practical documentation and developed by students preparing risk assessments for research projects.
C5 is addressed through statistics training in the research methods course and research projects.

Assessment methods

C1 – C5 are assessed by course work and in the individual research project. C2 and C3 are formally assessed in the Research Project.

D: Key skills

D1: Able to (i) write clear concise, structured reports which may include graphical material. (ii) Deliver clear, structured, well timed oral presentations.

D2: Competent in unsupervised use of current networked PC operating systems for normal file management. Proficient in current common word-processing, spreadsheet, web browsing and email packages. Able to locate and use appropriate on-line catalogues and databases.

D3: Apply appropriate quantitative and qualitative methods to collect and analyse data.

D4: Able to explore, analyse and find effective solutions for problems involving reasonably complex information.

D5: Work effectively as part of a team to collect data and/or to produce reports and presentations

D6: Study independently, set realistic targets, plan work and time to meet targets within deadlines. Reflect on assessed work, feedback, and progress; Plan, record and document personal development

Learning methods

Assessment methods


The University makes every effort to ensure that this information on its programme specification is accurate and up-to-date. Exceptionally it can be necessary to make changes, for example to courses, facilities or fees. Examples of such reasons might include a change of law or regulatory requirements, industrial action, lack of demand, departure of key personnel, change in government policy, or withdrawal/reduction of funding. Changes to courses may for example consist of variations to the content and method of delivery of programmes, courses and other services, to discontinue programmes, courses and other services and to merge or combine programmes or courses. The University will endeavour to keep such changes to a minimum, and will also keep students informed appropriately by updating our programme specifications.

The full Procedures, Rules and Regulations of the University governing how it operates are set out in the Charter, Statutes and Ordinances and in the University Regulations, Policy and Procedures.

Should you have any questions about programme specifications, please contact Course Records, Quality and Academic Development; email: