BSc (Hons) Sports Coaching

Undergraduate, Full-Time

Study to become a professional sports coach and help athletes achieve their full potential by applying sports science principles to athletic performance.

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  • Duration:

    4 years

  • Award:

    BSc (Hons)

  • Location:

    Sighthill campus

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Course introduction

If you have a passion for sport and exercise whether as an athlete, coach or even as a spectator, and are keen to pursue a career in a sports-related area such as coaching, then this course will provide you with the skills and knowledge to succeed.

All athletes rely on good coaching to achieve their full potential. This course will help you to become a modern professional coach with an understanding of how sports science principles apply to athletic performance and helps athletes reach their goals.

sport and exerise

The BSc (Hons) Sport and Exercise suite of courses are multidisciplinary with the aim to provide you with the knowledge and skills to study and analyse the various aspects of sporting performance, ensuring you’ll have a firm theoretical and vocational grounding in the subjects that underpin the sports and exercise industry.

To achieve this, this course has a strong emphasis on the practical application of theoretical knowledge. You'll gain the independent study habits, academic and employability skills and deliver volunteer opportunities that will develop your knowledge and skills as a sport and exercise scientist.

To get a complete understanding of what contributes to performance means you'll develop expertise in the core disciplines of exercise physiology, sport psychology, sports coaching, exercise intervention and biomechanics.

You'll also develop specialist knowledge of how to apply your scientific knowledge of athletic performance to help athletes.

You'll carry out a range of procedures and use equipment involved in exercise physiology, biomechanics, sports psychology, injury rehabilitation and coaching.

Our teaching team have a wealth of experience in sport and exercise science. Our approach is student-centred and supportive, with an emphasis on practical experience and the development of skills.

We have excellent laboratory facilities in which you'll use a range of equipment. These include human performance, biomechanics, conditioning, and multimedia laboratories, plus an environmental chamber.

Some international exchange opportunities may exist. We have good links with German Sport University Cologne and some students have spent one or two semesters in universities in the US.

The applied nature of this course encourages the development of skills that make you more employable such as communication, IT, problem solving, research and team working skills.

This is a full-time course studied over four years. You’ll learn by a variety of teaching methods including lectures, tutorials, laboratory sessions and through independent study.

What you study

Year 1

  • Anatomy & Physiology in Sport & Exercise Science
  • Application of Science to Sport & Exercise
  • Exercise Training
  • Foundations of Sport & Exercise Science
  • Healthy Lives
  • Skill Acquisition

Year 2

  • The Research Process in Sport & Exercise Science
  • Introduction to Biomechanics
  • Sport & Health Nutrition
  • Exercise Physiology
  • Introduction to Sport and Exercise Psychology
  • Principles of Coaching

Year 3

  • Assessment and Conditioning
  • Intermediate Sport Psychology
  • Scientific Communication: Dissertation and Statistics
  • Intermediate Biomechanics
  • Practical Coaching

Year 4

  • Scientific Research Project
  • Scientific Analysis of Human Movement
  • Analysis of Sports Performance
  • Performance Development and Expertise

Study modules mentioned above are indicative only. Some changes may occur between now and the time that you study.

Full information on this is available in our disclaimer.

Around 40 per cent of our graduates move on to postgraduate study in subjects such as Exercise Physiology, Sport Psychology, Health Promotion, Sports Nutrition, Physiotherapy, Sports Performance and Enhancement and PE teacher training.

This course will help you develop a number of skills that will prepare you for positions both in sport and exercise science and in the wider jobs market, for example:

  • leisure industry
  • GP referral schemes
  • schools activity coordinators
  • sports coaching
  • sports development
  • sports therapy
  • health promotion
  • further education lecturing
  • strength and conditioning coaching

Minimum Year 1

SQA Higher

Typical Entry Requirement 

BBBB including Biology or Chemistry or Physics or Psychology. Please note SQA Higher PE will be accepted in lieu of a Science if studied alongside SQA Higher Maths (Minimum Grade C required).

National 5 B in Maths (excluding Lifeskills), National 5 C in English & one of Biology, Chemistry or Physics.

Adjusted Offer Entry Requirement 

BBCC including Biology or Chemistry or Physics or Psychology at grade B. Please note SQA Higher PE will be accepted in lieu of a Science if studied alongside SQA Higher Maths (Minimum Grade C required).

National 5 B in Maths (excluding Lifeskills), National 5 C in English & one of Biology, Chemistry or Physics.

You may be given an adjusted offer of entry if you meet specific widening participation criteria as outlined in our contextual admissions policy. Click here for further information about our entry requirements and admissions policies. 

A Level

BCC including Biology or Chemistry or Physics or Psychology or PE.

GCSE Grade B/5/6 in Maths, GCSE Grade C in English & a Science subject or Double Award Science at Grades CC/4 also required.

Irish Leaving Certificate

Pre-2017 Grading System
B1, B1, B3, B3 at Higher Level including Biology or Chemistry or Physics or Psychology.
B3 at Ordinary Level in Maths, C2 in English & a Science subject.

New Grading System 
Grades H2, H2, H3, H3 at Higher Level to include Biology or Human Biology or Chemistry or Physics.
Grade O3 at Ordinary Level in Maths and Grade O4 at Ordinary Level in English and a Science subject.


BTEC (QCF) Extended Diploma Level 3

Minimum grades DMM (Distinction, Merit, Merit) in a related subject.

GCSE Grade B/5/6 in Maths, GCSE Grade C/4 in English & a Science subject or Double Award Science at Grades CC/4 also required.

International Baccalaureate Diploma

Award of Diploma with 28 points overall with three HL subjects at grades 6, 5, 4 including a Science^ at minimum grade 5.

5 points in SL Maths (excluding Maths Studies), 4 points in SL English & one of Biology, Chemistry or Physics. 


European Baccalaureate

Pass at 70% or above with grade 7 in three subjects including including Biology or Chemistry or Physics or Psychology.

Grade 6 in Maths, English and & one of Biology, Chemistry or Physics. 

 ^Biology, Chemistry, Physics or Psychology 

Minimum Year 2 


Pass in a related subject* with A in the graded unit.

*Sports Coaching with Development of Sport, Fitness, Health and Exercise, Sports & Exercise Science, Applied Sports Science, Applied Biological Science

Minimum Year 3


Pass in a related subject** with Grades AA at SCQF Level 8 in the graded units. Students with HND Sports Coaching & Development of Sport must pass the following units: Psychology of Sports Coaching and Psychology of Sports Performance. Students with an HND in Fitness, Health and Exercise must pass the following units: Mechanics for Health and Fitness Professionals and Psychology of Sports Coaching units.

**Sports Coaching with Development of Sport, Fitness, Health and Exercise, Sport & Exercise Science.

Non-Academic Requirements

Admission to the Programme is dependent upon a satisfactory Disclosure Check. Please note that you will be unable to matriculate on to the programme without a satisfactory Check. 

English Language Requirements

If your first language isn't English, you'll normally need to undertake an approved English language test and our minimum English language requirements will apply.

This may not apply if you have completed all your school qualifications in English. Check our country pages to find out if this applies to you.

Our entry requirements indicate the minimum qualifications with which we normally accept students. Competition for places varies from year to year and you aren't guaranteed a place if you meet the minimum qualifications.

International students

If your qualifications aren't listed above, visit our country pages to get entry requirements for your country.

Please note that non-EU international students are unable to enrol onto the following courses:

BN Nursing/MN Nursing (Adult, Child, Mental Health or Learning Disability)

BM Midwifery/MM Midwifery

Admissions policies

We're committed to being as accessible as possible to anyone who wants to achieve higher education.

Our admissions policies will help you understand our admissions procedures and how decisions are made.

Tuition fees
Students from 2018/19 2019/20
Scotland/EU £1,820 £1,820
England Wales and Northern Ireland £9,250 tba
Overseas £12,350 tba

Frequently Asked Questions about Fees
Information of Bursaries and Scholarships

Elite Athlete Bursary

Are you representing your sport at international level? This includes full, student and Under 19 representation. If so, you may be eligible for an annually reviewed bursary of £1000 per year for four years.

BSc Sports Coaching