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Undergraduate Study

BSc Exercise and Sport Sciences - 2025 entry

Please note: The below is for 2025 entries. Click here for 2024 entries.
UCAS code C602
Duration 3 years
Entry year 2025
Campus St Luke's Campus
Discipline Sport and Health Sciences
Contact

Web: Enquire online
Phone: +44 (0)1392 723192

Typical offer

View full entry requirements

A-Level: AAB-ABB
IB: 34/665-32/655
BTEC: DDD-DDM

Contextual offers

A-Level: BBB - BBC
IB: 30/555 - 28/554
BTEC: DDM - DMM

Overview

  • Gain a comprehensive understanding of the scientific principles underlying sport and exercise performance and health
  • Understand the variables involved in enhancing performance: in exercise, sport, and other high-performance sectors such as medicine and the military
  • Take the opportunity to study abroad or undertake a professional placement in your third year, on our four-year programme
  • Develop employability skills through modules in leadership and business, physical education, and career development
  • Develop skills and experience as a scientist and researcher

View 2024 Entry

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Open days and visiting us

How to apply

Contact

Web: Enquire online

Phone: +44 (0)1392 72 72 72

Top 30 in the world for Sports-related subjects

QS World University Subject Rankings 2024

Top 5 in the UK for Sports Science

4th (joint) in The Times and Sunday Times Good University Guide 2024

Dedicated laboratories for sport and exercise physiology, sports biomechanics and health and performance psychology

89% of our graduates in employment or further study within 15 months of graduating

Sport and Health Sciences students: based on full-time, first degree, UK domiciled graduates, HESA Graduate Outcomes survey 2020/21

I selected Exeter as my top choice after attending an Offer-Holder Visit Day. It’s hard to articulate why, but I just remember walking around St Luke’s and just knowing it was the place I wanted to study, even in the awful February cold and rain! I just got this feeling. Maybe some of you reading this will know what I mean!

What I love most about being a student at the University of Exeter, specifically at St Luke’s, is the fact that the campus really feels like it’s yours. Everyone on this campus is proud to study here and we really get the best deal; a small and friendly campus dedicated to just a few subjects that aren’t oversubscribed in terms of student population, as well as being able to walk to the Streatham Campus if we want to use the facilities there too.

One of the main reasons I chose Exeter was the city itself. It’s such a great place to be a student, everything you need is within walking distance from both campuses and the city offers a diverse range of experiences, from historical buildings to restaurants and bars. The city centre and cathedral area are well-maintained and beautiful in all weathers. There are also some great places to visit further away down by the Quay or along the river offering nice restaurants and leisure activities. There’s also the Exmouth-Paignton train line which runs through Exeter and means you can escape to the seaside when the weather is nice at very little cost, which as a student is always good!

The sport and health sciences department is great. The lecturers are welcoming and always want to talk to you and get to know you better. The facilities are top-class and the university really cares about our opinions. You can really throw yourself into university life here as you make some amazing friends on the course.

During my time in Exeter, I was also lucky enough to have the chance to study abroad in Colorado, USA*. This was genuinely the best decision of my life. If you get the opportunity to spend part of your degree abroad, be brave and seize it! You will be so glad you did.

*Study Abroad destinations are subject to change.

Read more from Ben

Ben

BSc Exercise and Sport Sciences with Study Abroad

Entry requirements (typical offer)

Qualification Typical offer Required subjects
A-Level AAB-ABB B in a science subject*
IB 34/665-32/655 HL5 in a science subject*
BTEC DDD - DDM Applicants studying one of the following BTEC Extended Diplomas will be considered without a GCE A-level science subject: Applied Science, Sport and Exercise Science, Sport (Performance and Excellence), Sport and Sport (Development and Coaching).
GCSE C or 4 English Language and Mathematics
Access to HE 30 L3 credits at Distinction Grade and 15 L3 credits at Merit Grade - 24 L3 credits at Distinction Grade and 21 L3 credits at Merit Grade To include 12 L3 Credits at Merit Grade in an acceptable Science subject.*
T-Level T-Levels not accepted N/A
Contextual Offer

A-Level: BBB - BBC
IB: 30/555 - 28/554
BTEC: DDM - DMM

Specific subject requirements must still be achieved where stated above. Find out more about contextual offers.

Other accepted qualifications

View other accepted qualifications

English language requirements

International students need to show they have the required level of English language to study this course. The required test scores for this course fall under Profile B2. Please visit our English language requirements page to view the required test scores and equivalencies from your country.

NB General Studies is not included in any offer.

Grades advertised on each programme webpage are the typical level at which our offers are made and provide information on any specific subjects an applicant will need to have studied in order to be considered for a place on the programme. However, if we receive a large number of applications for the programme we may not be able to make an offer to all those who are predicted to achieve/have achieved grades which are in line with our typical offer. For more information on how applications are assessed and when decisions are released, please see: After you apply

*Accepted science subjects: 

Biology/Human Biology; Chemistry; Computing; Design and Technology; Economics; Electronics; Environmental Science; Environmental Studies; Geography; Geology; Life and Health Sciences (Double Award only), Marine Science; Maths/Pure Maths/Further Maths; Physical Education; Physics; Psychology; Science (applied); Sport Science; Statistics.

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Course content

Our BSc Exercise and Sport Sciences programme enjoys an international reputation for excellence. The programme is designed to provide you with a balanced understanding of both sport and exercise sciences across a range of sub-disciplines. During the degree you will develop your knowledge of physiology, biomechanics, and psychology, and gain a comprehensive understanding of the scientific principles underlying sport and exercise performance and participation. You will also acquire scientific research and enquiry skills that are important for careers in both sport and exercise science, and other science-focused industries.

The degree structure allows you to specialise in a particular area or to follow a broader-based programme. Optional modules reflect the application of scientific knowledge in a variety of populations, such as athletes, children, and the general public.

Study abroad or professional placement year

We have links with major universities in Australia, Hong Kong, New Zealand, the Netherlands, Portugal, the USA, Canada and Spain. The Study Abroad option allows you to study at an overseas university in your third year, earning credits towards your final degree while also gaining vital experience and employability skills.

On the Professional Placement option, you spend your third year on a self-organised work placement with an organisation relevant to your degree, which we support you to secure.

The modules we outline here provide examples of what you can expect to learn on this degree course based on recent academic teaching. The precise modules available to you in future years may vary depending on staff availability and research interests, new topics of study, timetabling and student demand.

Focus on developing your foundational knowledge and skills within Exercise and Sport Sciences, including: anatomical knowledge; exercise and sport within a physiological context; exercise and sport related kinesiology and biomechanics; kinanthropometry; nutrition; and underlying theories of sport and exercise psychology.

120 credits of compulsory modules

Compulsory modules

CodeModule Credits
ESS1006 Human Anatomy and Kinanthropometry 15
ESS1007 Human Physiology 15
ESS1204 Foundations of Biomechanics 15
ESS1502 Sports Training Physiology 15
ESS1605 Foundations of Exercise and Sport Psychology 15
ESS1606 Nutrition and Metabolism 15
ESS1701 Introduction to Statistics 15
ESS1703 Bioenergetics 15

Continue to develop your knowledge of topics including: the body’s physiological response to exercise; angular kinematics and angular kinetics; statistical data analysis techniques required for a dissertation; and key psychological themes related to sport performance and skill acquisition.

75 credits of compulsory modules, 45 credits of optional modules

Compulsory modules

CodeModule Credits
ESS2001 Exercise Physiology 15
ESS2004 Biomechanics and Kinesiology 15
ESS2303 Research Methods and Analytical Procedures 30
ESS2808 Sport Psychology 2: Skill Acquisition 15

Optional modules

CodeModule Credits
SHS S2 BSc-MSci ESS opt 2021-2
ESS2017 Measurement of Physical Activity, Exercise and Sport 15
ESS2222 Motor Control 15
ESS2508 Strength and Conditioning Physiology 15
ESS2509 Sports Nutrition and Metabolism 15
ESS2704 Learning and Teaching in Physical Education 15
ESS2900 Employability and Career Development 15
BEM2037 Leadership: Challenges and Practice 15

Study abroad

The Study Abroad option allows you to study at an overseas university in your third year, earning credits towards your final degree while also gaining vital experience and employability skills.

For your year abroad you will agree a suite of modules in your host institution with the College Study Abroad Coordinator. Details of individual modules that may be taken whilst abroad can be found by accessing the partner institution’s factfile at http://www.exeter.ac.uk/international/abroad/where/ and navigating to the “Course Requirements” section of that factfile where a link to the modules on offer in the partner institution is displayed.

Compulsory modules

CodeModule Credits
ESS3100 One Year Study Abroad 120

Professional Placement

On a Professional Placement year you will learn to apply the knowledge learnt during your first and second years, improve personal and transferable skills, make new contacts and enhance your employability.

120 credits of compulsory modules

Compulsory modules

CodeModule Credits
ESS3108 Professional Placement 120

This year you will put theory into practice. Optional topics include: children and exercise; biomechanics of human movement; sports psychology; clinical exercise prescription; and physical activity and public health. The research dissertation, under the supervision of an academic tutor, will increase your ability for independent study and critical analysis.

30-45 credits of compulsory modules, 75-90 credits of optional modules (subject to an overall total of 120 credits)

a You must choose either ESS3302, ESS3304, ESS3003.

Compulsory modules

CodeModule Credits
ESS3302 Dissertation [See note a above]45
ESS3304 Dissertation (Physiology) [See note a above]45
ESS3003 Independent Research Review [See note a above]30

Optional modules

CodeModule Credits
SHS SF BSc-S3 MSci ESS opt 2021-2
BUS2001 Business Awareness: Theory and Practice 15
EDU3013 Learning for Teaching: School Experience 15
EDU3014 Learning for Teaching: School Experience 30
ESS2900 Employability and Career Development 15
ESS3509 Advanced Strength and Conditioning Physiology 15
ESS3703 Paediatric Exercise Physiology 15
ESS3705 Sport, Physical Activity and Health 15
ESS3706 Integrated Physiology and Adaptation to Physical (in)activity 15
ESS3707 Physiological Determinants of Exercise Performance 15
ESS3804 Clinical Exercise Prescription 30
ESS3805 Biomechanical Analysis of Human Movement 30
ESS3808 Sport Psychology 30
ESS3508 Nutrition for High Performance 15

My favourite aspect of the course was the wide variety of disciplines within sport sciences. Initially my main interest was human anatomy, however I’ve since developed an interest in biomechanics, and in particular how biomechanical factors play a role in injury.

Matt

BSc Exercise and Sport Sciences

Course variants

Why study abroad?

Students who have studied abroad demonstrate initiative, independence, motivation and, depending on where they stay, may also have gained a working knowledge of another language – all qualities employers are looking for.

Where can I study abroad?

We have links with major universities in Australia, Hong Kong, Japan, Canada, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and Switzerland. You can find a complete list of International Exchange partner universities on the Study Abroad website.

What will I study whilst I am abroad?

The Study Abroad option allows you to study at an overseas university in your third year, earning credits towards your final degree while also gaining vital experience and employability skills.

Does it count towards my degree?

Yes: all assessments during the year abroad are undertaken at the host university and count towards your final degree.

Upon return to the University of Exeter, you will then complete the final year of your degree in a fourth year.

How does it affect my tuition fee?

If you spend a full academic year studying abroad you will pay a reduced fee for that year. You can find out more information in the fees section.

How do I apply?

There is no need to apply direct to this programme: apply via UCAS for BSc Exercise and Sport Sciences, and you can transfer onto the four-year programme with Study Abroad once you are at Exeter. 

Further information

For further information on where you can go and all the issues surrounding study abroad, see the Study Abroad website.

This course offers the opportunity to take a professional placement year (through a competitive entry process). You will spend your third year on a self-organised work placement with an organisation relevant to your degree, which we support you to secure.

Why choose a professional placement year?

In your professional placement year you will learn to apply the knowledge learnt during your first and second years, improve personal and transferable skills, make new contacts and enhance your employability. Work placements allow you to gain experience of a professional workplace prior to graduating and develop your career focus, and are extremely valued by employers.

What support is available during my placement?

You will be supported through your professional placement by a programme director who will provide high-quality advice to ensure you get the most from your placement.

Does it count towards my degree?

The professional placement year counts towards your degree through the completion of your placement and associated coursework. It contributes to your final degree classification, and the words ‘with Professional Placement’ will appear in your degree title. 

During your first, second and final years of study, you will follow the same programme of study as the BSc Exercise and Sport Sciences (see Course content).

How does it affect my tuition fee?

If you spend a full year on a work placement, you will pay a reduced fee. Find out more in the fees section.

How do I apply?

There is no need to apply directly to this programme: apply via UCAS for BSc Exercise and Sport Sciences, and you can apply to transfer onto the four-year programme with Professional Placement once you are at Exeter. 

Fees

Tuition fees for 2024 entry

UK students: £9,250 per year
International students: £29,700 per year

Year abroad

If you transfer onto the four-year version of this degree programme and spend a full academic year studying abroad, you will pay a reduced fee of 15 per cent of the maximum fee for that year.

Professional placement year

If you choose the four-year version of this degree programme and spend a full year on a work placement (in the UK or abroad) you will pay a reduced fee of 20 per cent of the maximum fee for that year.

Scholarships

The University of Exeter has many different scholarships available to support your education, including £5 million in scholarships for international students, such as our Global Excellence Scholarships*. Financial support is also available for students from disadvantaged backgrounds, lower income households and other under-represented groups to help them access, succeed and progress through higher education.

* Terms and conditions apply. See online for details.

Find out more about tuition fees and scholarships

Facilities

Our specialist facilities include:

  • Life Sciences Resource Centre containing a vast selection of anatomical models used for both teaching and during opening hours outside of taught sessions where students can come and use them to enhance learning. There is also a wide selection of books and real human bones.
  • Purpose-built laboratories for sport and exercise physiology, sports biomechanics, and health and performance psychology, cognitive and social psychology.
  • Well-equipped psychophysiology and human movement science studios, including instrumented treadmills, motion capture, eye tracking and Virtual immersive technology.

Investment in premier sporting facilities

Over the last decade the University has invested over £20 million in the creation of some of the highest quality training environments and resources for the development, coaching and playing of sport.

The Sports Park on the Streatham Campus boasts some of the most cutting-edge facilities in the UK including the Russell Seal Fitness Centre. This facility boasts a 200-station gym and numerous exercise studios.

Additional facilities include:

  • A 200-station gym
  • Squash courts
  • Indoor and outdoor grass pitches including flood lit astro and 3G pitches
  • Indoor cricket centre
  • Indoor tennis centre
  • Indoor and outdoor swimming pools
  • A fleet of boats at the Roadford RYA Sailing Centre

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Learning and teaching

How will I learn?

  • Lectures: introducing topics, and providing a framework for further reading, and background material for extended work.
  • Laboratory and practical sessions: work in smaller groups with specialist equipment to gain applied experience.
  • Seminars: discussion, role play and short presentations in smaller groups.
  • Independent research and study: reading, researching, writing, practice assignments, projects and dissertation.
  • Study groups: work with other students and utilise their support.
  • Dissertation: an extended and original piece of independent research conducted in an area related to your specialism. You will present this at a third-year Sport Science dissertation conference.
  • Guest lectures: hear from visiting experts in exercise and sport.

On average you’ll have 15 hours of teaching time per week with more at the beginning of the programme and less as you progress and take more responsibility for your own learning.

We’re actively engaged in introducing new methods of learning and teaching. For example, positive feedback from our students has led us to increase use of our learning environment, an easily navigable website where you can access detailed information about modules and utilise multimedia learning resources.

Learn from experts

We believe every student benefits from being part of a research-led culture and being taught by experts. Our staff have close links with a wide range of industrial, medical and sporting organisations with whom there may be the chance to collaborate for your final year research project.

Assessment

All modules are assessed, with second and third year modules contributing towards your final degree classification. Modules are assessed using a variety of methods including essays, exams, oral and written presentations, laboratory reports and a dissertation. We aim to strike a 50:50 balance between coursework and exams over the duration of the programme.

Academic support

Teaching staff on every module are available for individual tutorial sessions when required. Module leaders are available to discuss module logistics, examinations and absences. Teaching staff also make themselves available at the end of lectures for further discussion and debate.

Extra-curricular support is also provided in the form of ‘drop-in’ sessions for more challenging parts of the course such as statistical analysis, scientific writing, and research methodology.

For pastoral support students are assigned a personal tutor, with whom they meet regularly in small groups or in one to one meetings.

Optional modules outside of this course

Each year, if you have optional modules available, you can take up to 30 credits in a subject outside of your course. This can increase your employability and widen your intellectual horizons.

Proficiency in a second subject

If you complete 60 credits of modules in one of the subjects below, you may have the words 'with proficiency in [e.g. Social Data Science]' added to your degree title when you graduate.

  • A Foreign Language
  • Data Science
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Innovation
  • Law
  • Leadership
  • Social Data Science

Find out more about proficiency options

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Being taught by fantastically engaging lecturers that are currently researching topics in sport sciences gives us access to the most up-to-date knowledge. Lectures are engaging, and all of the lecturers are so supportive and approachable.

Gemma

BSc Exercise and Sport Sciences

Your future

Employer-valued skills this course develops

A degree in Sport and Health Sciences will help you develop the key transferable skills valued by employers, such as leadership, decision-making, planning and organising, and personal communication. Vocational skills such as advanced laboratory training for biomechanical and physiological testing further enhance your employability.

Our graduates compete successfully for jobs across a diverse range of sectors including law, finance and business - as well as sport and health sciences - as they offer strong analytical and problem-solving skills which are valued highly across all sectors.

Supporting your career in Sport and Health Sciences

Each year Sport and Health Sciences students are able to access a huge range of opportunities when considering their future career options.

Employability sessions put on for students include: career talks from visiting alumni and employers from a range of backgrounds; career conversations with employers; an annual Careers and Networking Sports Health Science evening with alumni, organisations and employers; and a Careers in Healthcare event. In addition students receive support to access high-quality work placements through the optional Career Development module.

You will also be encouraged to attend and present at student conferences, such as the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES) Student Conference, and to be involved in initiatives including the student ambassadors scheme and workplace internships.

Careers services

We have a dedicated, award-winning Careers Service ensuring you have access to careers advisors, mentors and the tools you need to succeed in finding employment in your chosen field on graduation. We offer the Exeter Award and the Exeter Leaders Award which include employability-related workshops, skills events, volunteering and employment which will contribute to your career decision-making skills and success in the employment market.

The University of Exeter has an excellent reputation with graduate recruiters and our students and graduates compete very successfully in the employment market. Whatever path you wish to follow, we’re here to help and support you with all your career and employability needs.

Career paths

Whatever you choose to do after graduation, your Sport and Health Sciences degree will stand you in good stead, with excellent employment prospects and transferable skills.

Many of our graduates are employed in discipline-relevant roles in the UK and overseas including health and wellbeing coaching, sports and fitness coaching, physiotherapy, sports nutrition, sports law, sports psychology, sports physiology, general teaching and marketing, sports management and administration for the public sector, sports governing bodies and health and lifestyle consultancy.

Below are a few examples of initial jobs undertaken by graduates from our Sport and Health Sciences undergraduate programmes.*

Recent graduates are now working as:

  • Sports coaches, instructors and officials
  • Chartered and certified accountants
  • Primary and secondary education teaching professionals
  • Natural and social science professionals
  • Project support officers
  • Finance and investment analysts and advisers
  • Marketing associate professionals
  • Business executives
  • IT professionals

Recent graduates are now working for:

  • Ashfords LLP
  • British Army
  • David Lloyd
  • Everton Football Club Co Ltd
  • Global Data Ltd
  • Gloucester-Hartpury Rugby Football Club
  • Kick Start Education
  • Ministry of Defence
  • Pure Sports Medicine
  • Royal Yachting Association
  • Teach First

Further study

Further study is a popular choice for a number of students following graduation from a Sport and Health Sciences undergraduate degree. Below are a few examples of further study undertaken by recent graduates of undergraduate programmes.*

  • MRes Medicine and Health
  • MSc Applied Data Science and Statistics
  • MSc Exercise Physiology
  • MSc International Business
  • MSc Performance Psychology
  • MSc Physiotherapy
  • MSc Sport and Exercise Medicine
  • MSc Sports Marketing
  • MSc Sports Rehabilitation
  • PGCE Physical Education Secondary

*This information has been taken from aggregating the responses from full-time, first degree, UK domiciled students who completed 2017/18 and 2018/19 Graduate Outcomes surveys. Please note that, due to data protection, the job titles and organisations are listed independently and do not necessarily correspond.

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As Strength and Conditioning Coach for English Institute of Sport, I work with British Skeleton athletes and England women’s rugby players. It was a strength and conditioning module in the 2nd year of my course that spurred me on to get into this area. An employability module put me in touch with Exeter City FC: I did my volunteering with them and then they kept me on.

I stayed at Exeter to do a Masters as the way elite sport is moving it’s a real plus to have one. I worked with Hockey Wales and as I handed in my dissertation started working with GB rowing which I continued up until the Rio Olympics.

Skeleton is the sport where you head down a frozen track on what looks like a tea tray head first – it’s not for the faint-hearted! It’s mentally challenging– there’s lots of pressure and it’s all over in less than a minute. The sprint start is really important and it’s my role to make our start world-class.

Read more from Mitch

Mitch

BSc Sport and Exercise Science graduate