BSc (Hons) in Sport & Exercise Science

Bachelor of Science (Honours)Sport & Exercise Science

Full Time
2019 CAO range:
        282 - 484
Cork Road
4 years
240 ECTS

What is the BSc (Hons) in Sport & Exercise Science?

The BSc (Hons) in Sport & Exercise Science is a full-time, four year, honours degree course of study that can be chosen within the Exercise Sciences Common Entry Route. The Sport and Exercise Science programme will give graduates the knowledge and skills to evaluate sport and athletic performance from a biomechanical, physiological and psychological perspective.  They will then be capable of working with athletes and coaches on an ongoing basis to improve performance, health and well-being. The programme will emphasise the traditional sports science disciplines of biomechanics, physiology and psychology but also newer applied sports science disciplines including strength and conditioning, sports nutrition and team performance analysis.

At the end of the programme, graduates will be able to:

  • Measure, analyse and evaluate athletic performance using sports science laboratory apparatus and analysis software

  • Evaluate psychological profiles and mood states using sports psychology assessment tools

  • Assist athletes and coaches in improving performance during the training year and in preparation for major competitions in challenging environments

  • Plan sports-specific strength and conditioning programmes for athletes and teams

  • Assist athletes and coaches in distinguishing fact from fiction with reference to the sports science research literature

Programme features


Department staff have extensive experience providing sports science support to elite athletes and teams. Staff currently or recently

  • Assist elite teams and athletes of the region in monitoring body composition changes during the training year

  • Work with intercounty GAA teams and various athletes in strength and conditioning, psychology and nutritional support roles

  • Provide ongoing performance testing for elite cyclists and triathletes as well as teams

  • Work with the Sport Ireland Institute to assist elite student athlete development

  • Are accredited sports psychology service providers with the Institute of Sport, working with Olympic athletes and teams

  • Provided sports science support to the Irish Paralympic team over 2 Olympic cycles

  • Provided sports psychology and backup team support at the Olympic Games in London and Rio


Laboratories and apparatus available for practical classes and research projects include 3 human performance laboratories, a high-performance gym, DEXA body composition analyser, Dartfish performance analysis software.  Certain classes are delivered in the teaching and laboratory facilities of the WIT ARENA.


A 12-week work placement offers supervised experience in a sport and exercise science environment. The Department has an extensive network of placement opportunities or students may be able to organise their own. Examples include:

  • Undertaking performance analysis with Premiership football clubs

  • Assisting with strength and conditioning programmes with professional rugby clubs

  • Personal trainer in community and private enterprises

  • Providing sports science support to athletes or teams

  • Working in sports science centres and laboratories

Research and Project Work

Students in the programme have an opportunity to experience the full research process culminating in the completion of a dissertation in the final year of the programme.  Students will benefit from exposure to the sport and exercise science PhD research ongoing in the Department including:

  • evaluation of functional movement screening for injury prevention

  • relative age effect in soccer talent development

  • psychological distress and mental health in jockeys

  • sprint performance and resistance-based training interventions

  • physiological demands of horse racing

  • career transitions in student athletes


REPS Ireland recognised fitness instructor awards are built into the programme, including Fitness Instruction, Group Fitness Instruction and Personal Training that can be obtained by the end of year 2.

Teaching, Learning and Assessment

The programme combines classroom teaching, tutorials with practical experience through exercise science laboratories and work experience. Assessment approaches utilise continuous assessment, practical examinations, group work and written examinations.

In order to facilitate the delivery of programmes during the Covid-19 pandemic, module outline and order may change slightly for the academic year 2020/2021.

Year 1
Semester 1Semester 2
Fitness and MovementSport & Exercise Biomechanics 1
Functional Anatomy & KinesiologyIntroduction to Exercise Psychology
Promoting Physical ActivityBiochemistry & Cell Physiology
Research & LearningStrength & Conditioning
Human PhysiologyData & Measurement
Introduction to Sport PsychologyBusiness for the Exercise Professional
Year 2
Semester 3Semester 4
Teaching for the Exercise ProfessionalExercise Physiology
Exercise Prescription for Program Design IResearch Methods & Statistics
Nutrition 1Nutrition 2
Motivational InterviewingGroup Fitness Instruction
Physical Activity InterventionsExercise Prescription for Program Design II
Sport Psychology & Skill AcquisitionPositive Psychology
Year 3
Semester 5Semester 6
Advanced Performance AnalysisApplied Biomechanics
Applied Sport and Exercise PhysiologyExercise Psychology in Practice
Conditioning for performance sportMajor Project in Sport and Exercise Science 1
Contemporary Issues in Sport and Exercise Science of Elite Sport Performance
Sport & Exercise Biomechanics 2Sports Medicine
Sport & Exercise Nutrition
Year 4
Semester 7Semester 8
Work Placement in Sport and Exercise ScienceAdvanced Sport & Exercise Physiology
Ergogenic Aids in Sport & Performance
Major Project in Sport and Exercise Science 2
Professional Practice and Social Media
Sport psychology in practice

Leaving Cert: Minimum entry requirements for the BSc (Hons) in Sport & Exercise Science:

2 subjects: H5
4 subjects: O6/H7
English or Irish: O6/H7
Mathematics: O6/H7

How to apply for the BSc (Hons) in Sport & Exercise Science on the CAO:

The entry route for this programme is from WD006 BSc (Hons) in Exercise Sciences (Common Entry). Applicants who select degree option WD006 ESS (Sport and Exercise Science) are guaranteed a place in that programme, subject to meeting the entry requirements and points. Applicants who are undecided about their degree option should choose WD006 GEN.

At the end of semester 3, students must confirm their degree option and may change their selection up to that date.

Advanced and Equivalent Entry for the BSc (Hons) in Sport & Exercise Science:

Career Opportunities for BSc (Hons) in Sport & Exercise Science graduates


Follow on Study for BSc (Hons) in Sport & Exercise Science graduates:

Opportunities exist within the Department of Sport and Exercise Science for post graduate study through either taught Masters programmes or research degrees at Masters and Doctoral level.

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