BSc (Hons) Sports Coaching (Top-up)

The global sport coaching industry is worth billions, and with growing awareness of the health benefits of keeping fit, trained coaches are in demand. Sports coaches, managers, assistants, coordinators and instructors all help individuals reach their sporting potential.

As a qualified coach, you could work across all sporting areas with amateur athletes or sporting professionals. You will create and manage practice sessions. Evaluate performance and improve people’s skills, techniques, form and stamina.

Your Profile

You are enthusiastic, passionate and a great communicator. Your passion and commitment to sport knows no bounds. You have the ability to inspire confidence, motivate performance and mould the sportsmen and women of the future.

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IntroductionModulesEntry RequirementsCareersAdditionalVideo

The BSc (Hons) in Sports Coaching (third year top up) will be a direct progression route for students who have successfully completed a Higher National Diploma in Sport. This will provide students the opportunity build upon their skills and knowledge obtained on the HND programme to progress onto a one year BSc (Hons) top-up.

The year will focus on extending three key sports specific strands; coaching, management of sports development strategy and sports science. The programme will have a strong vocational relevance through applying theory into working with athletes as part of a multi-disciplinary team. The year will have a strong focus on ensuring students are prepared to undertake a dissertation in a related sports area through the research skills in sport module.

The BSc (Hons) Sports Coaching programme will provide you with the knowledge and experience needed for a professional career in sport and fitness coaching. As a student, you will have the opportunity to tailor your qualification to specialise in a sport of your choice. You will develop an awareness of sports science, nutrition, safeguarding and first aid, and explore motivational techniques, styles of communication, performance analysis and plans for athletic progression.

You will learn in a range of sporting settings and benefit from a placement, which will ensure you can apply theory you have learnt in seminars and lectures to real-life sporting environments. You will be taught by academics and vocational experts who will stretch and challenge you at each stage of your journey, and make use of the institution’s own gym, which is furnished with the latest TechnoGym equipment.

The course operates on a modular basis that provides flexibility and choice. Each module is worth a specified number of credits, with most modules counting for 40 or 20 academic credits, with each credit taken equating to a total amount of study time which includes scheduled teaching, independent study and assessment activity.

Most full-time students will take modules worth 60 credits per semester, with part-time students taking proportionately fewer credits per semester. Overall grades for the course and degree classification are based on the marks obtained for modules taken at levels 6 only.

Course Modules
  • Successful completion of a Higher National Diploma (HND) in a relevant sports programme will enable progression onto the Top-up year.
  • Students will have successfully completed the HND (level 5) at a minimum pass level, along with positive references at application.

*UCAS Tariff points where shown, are for entry on to higher education programmes starting from September 2021.

International applicants

If English is not your first language you will need an IELTS score of 6.0, with a minimum score of 5.5 in each component (Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking), or an equivalent English Language qualification.

Additional requirements for International Students:

  • You must provide evidence of having been in general education for at least 10 years and of having studied within the last five years
  • a face-to-face interview is required before an offer is made.

As a newly qualified professional in the area of sport and fitness coaching, you could progress into a diverse selection of roles including in government agencies, private coaching, sporting agencies, team management or sports therapy. Your career will leave a lasting impression on individuals of all abilities and you could shape the future of sport in the UK.

The BSc Sports Coaching programme is designed to enable students to enter employment in sport with an appreciation for the importance of being able to work as part of a multidisciplinary team. Students are supported to fully examine a range of careers within related fields/ within the multidisciplinary team (other than those directly related to sports coaching), for example, sports nutritionist, sports psychologist, physiotherapist/ sports therapist, exercise physiologist, lifestyle advisor, health and fitness professionals and teaching PE.

Timetables: Timetables are normally available one month before registration. Please note that while we make every effort to ensure that timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week. Part-time classes are normally scheduled on one or two days per week.

Teaching and Learning: You are taught through a combination of lectures, seminars and practicals. Seminars enable smaller group discussions to develop understanding of topics covered in lectures.

When not attending lectures, seminars and practicals or other timetabled sessions you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-directed study. Typically, this will involve reading journal articles and books, working on individual and group projects, undertaking research in the library, learning zone or technical learning resources, preparing coursework assignments and presentations, and preparing for examinations

Assessment: The course provides you with opportunities to test your understanding of the subject informally before you complete the formal assessments that count towards your final mark. Each module normally contains at least one piece of practice or ‘formative’ assessment for which you receive feedback from your tutor. Practice assessments are developmental and any grades you receive for them do not count towards your module mark.

There is a formal or ‘summative’ assessment at the end of each module. Assessment methods include written examinations and a range of coursework assessments such as essays, reports, portfolios, performance, presentations and your final year major project. The grades from formal assessments count towards your module mark.

 Feedback: You will receive feedback on all practice assessments and on formal assessments undertaken by coursework. Feedback is intended to help you learn and you are encouraged to discuss it with your module tutor.

BSc (Hons) Sports Coaching (Top-up)
LevelLevel 6
DurationOne Year
UCAS CodeC600
Academic Year2022-2023
Study ModeFull-Time
CampusUniversity Centre Colchester
Start DateSeptember 2022
Fee(s)2021-22: £8,250 per year
Awarding/Validation BodyUniversity of East Anglia
Course Modules

Module Code and Title:

(01H) Research Methodologies in Sport (20 Credits)

This module will deepen your knowledge of research by investigating a wider range of research approaches and methods to research. A number of different areas related to research methodology and the approaches to presenting data will be discussed.

Participants are invited to explore the types of questions that might be asked, and answered, by educational research and to evaluate what the implications of these questions for designing research are, as well as engaging or even influencing policy and practice.

The role of the researcher, her/his relationship with the research participants, and the ethical dimensions of this will be key considerations.  The learners will be able to progress their research in more depth via a research project evidencing an increased understanding of different methodologies and data presentation techniques.

Module Code and Title:

(02H) Planning and Performance Management (20 Credits)

This module is intended to provide you with an understanding of management concepts and sports development strategy in the United Kingdom.

The key areas to be investigated will include Government’s influence on sport and an understanding of the key agencies acting on its behalf.

You will gain a working knowledge of the work processes and influences on the production, implementation and evaluation of a Sports Development Strategy.

The production of work programmes for Sports Development Officers and the application of relevant performance indicators and measures will also be analysed.

The module will include an exploration of the relevant strategies affecting the planning and performance process of Sports development strategy.

Module Code and Title:

(03H) Performance Coaching (20 Credits)

This module is intended to provide you with an understanding of the influences and issues affecting high performance coaching for performance and elite athletes.

Areas you will investigate will include the environment in which the coaching of performance and elite athletes takes place, coaching practice, planning for competition and the analysis of coaching.

Module Code and Title:

(04H) Nutrition, Lifestyle and Health for Athletes (20 Credits)

This module will cover lifestyle, health and nutrition considerations of athletes both from the athlete and coach perspective.

Athlete’s lifestyle is of increasing importance and consideration of an athlete’s transitions, choices and pressures surrounding them can affect their wellbeing and health. Therefore this module will explore some of the key aspects in an athlete’s lifestyle both related to their sport and performance and externally.

The module progresses onto consider key nutritional issues for athletes and the main energy providing food groups. The requirements and problems encountered by different athletic groups will be discussed, with some basic remedies as an outcome. Whilst considering other topics such as menu planning and nutritional assessment gaining information which will help to ensure that diets and interventions are nutritionally balanced and can support athletic performance.

Module Code and Title:

(05H) Dissertation (40 Credits)

The aim of the dissertation is to give the student an opportunity to conduct a sizeable piece of research into an area of sport coaching and management of their choosing.  It will develop and consolidate research skills and academic writing.  It will increase knowledge and understanding regarding an academically rigorous research process.  Areas to consider will include how to formulate effective inquiry problems and devise research questions; identify the significance of asking the right questions; assess the significance of how questions are theorised; understand how research is related to policy and practice within an identified area of pedagogical praxis.



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The course information describes programmes offered by University Centre Colchester at Colchester Institute. The College takes all reasonable steps to provide courses as described, but cannot guarantee provision. The information is for guidance and does not form any part of a contract.

The College reserves the right to update and amend information as and when necessary. University Centre Colchester at Colchester Institute will do its best to provide the courses shown, but may have to modify or withdraw a course depending on customer demand and other factors.