Introduction

Applied Sports Science integrates lab-based science learning with practical field-based experience to help prepare students for a career in sports-related industries. Using the state-of-the-art facilities at Aberdeen Sports Village, and building on clinical excellence at the Foresterhill Health Campus, students will develop skills to promote healthy living throughout life.

This programme is studied on campus.

Applied Sports Science integrates laboratory-based science learning with practical field-based experience. The programme has been designed for students with interests in the science of sport and the application of this science discipline to real life sport development and sports career destinations. During the four year programme, you will study a range of topics, including:

  • Understanding how the body adapts to the demands of physical activity
  • The ways in which psychology affects performance
  • Optimisation of training through understanding strength and conditioning, periodization and monitoring of athletes
  • The role of biomechanics in analysing technique for the purpose of enhancing or limiting physical performance
  • Sport nutrition and the impact the athletes’ diet can impact performance.

In addition, you will have access to the excellent facilities on offer at the internationally recognised Aberdeen Sports Village, learn from experts in your chosen field, and have the opportunity to use the skills and knowledge you have gained to undertake a field-based placement in your third year.

The BSc in Applied Sports Science will prepare you for a career in the sport, exercise or health industries. The programme also offers flexibility to elite and competitive athletes who want to combine training and competing with studying for a sports related degree in a world class sports environment.

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Key Programme Information

At a Glance

Learning Mode
On Campus Learning
Degree Qualification
BSc
Duration
48 months
Study Mode
Full Time
Start Month
September
Location of Study
Aberdeen
UCAS Code
C605

What You'll Study

The degree programme is designed to provide students with the experience of working with athletes and sports teams to deliver sport science support in maximising performance, training practice and competition preparation. These goals are achieved by the application of the theoretical principles of Physiology, Biomechanics, Nutrition and Psychology that underpin sports preparation, performance and recovery.

Year 1

Year 1

In year 1 you will take the following courses:

  • Introduction to Science of Sport, Exercise and Health
  • Fitness, Performance and Survival

Compulsory Courses

Professional Skills Part 1 (PD1001)

This course, which is prescribed for level 1 students and optional for level 2 students, is studied entirely online and covers topics relating to careers and employability, equality and diversity and health, safety and wellbeing. During the course you will learn about the Aberdeen Graduate Attributes, how they are relevant to you and the opportunities available to develop your skills and attributes alongside your University studies. You will also gain an understanding of equality and diversity and health, safety and wellbeing issues. Successful completion of this course will be recorded on your Enhanced Transcript as ‘Achieved’ (non-completion will be recorded as ‘Not Achieved’). The course takes approximately 3 hours to complete and can be taken in one sitting, or spread across a number of weeks and it will be available to you throughout the academic year.

This course, which is prescribed for level 1 students and optional for level 2 students and above, is studied entirely online and covers topics relating to careers and employability, equality and diversity and health, safety and wellbeing. During the course you will learn about the Aberdeen Graduate Attributes, how they are relevant to you and the opportunities available to develop your skills and attributes alongside your University studies. You will also gain an understanding of equality and diversity and health, safety and wellbeing issues. Successful completion of this course will be recorded on your Enhanced Transcript as ‘Achieved’ (non-completion will be recorded as ‘Not Achieved’). The course takes approximately 3 hours to complete and can be taken in one sitting, or spread across a number of weeks and it will be available to you throughout the academic year.

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Chemistry for the Life Sciences 1 (CM1020) - 15 Credit Points

This course covers the foundations of chemistry that underpin the life sciences at a molecular level. The course aims to consolidate a general background in chemistry by putting chemical concepts into a life sciences context. The basic concepts of chemistry will be covered, along with organic molecules, acids and bases, and the basic principles behind the driving forces of reactions.

Laboratory classes introduce important practical techniques, with experiments that reinforce and complement the taught material.

The course will allow students to continue with other chemistry courses as part of their enhanced study by providing discipline breadth.

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Introduction to Medical Sciences (SM1001) - 15 Credit Points
  • Topics covered in this course span medical science through the ages; from ancient civilizations to the modern day science of genomics and synthetic biology.
  • Alongside lecture material, in depth practical classes will cover biomedical measurement techniques, forensic science and a research-based mini project.
  • Overall, this course is a journey through some of the key milestones that underpin the discipline of medical science we see today.

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Introduction to the Science of Sport, Exercise and Health (SR1002) - 15 Credit Points
  • this course introduces core concepts of physiology, sport science and biomedical science and sets foundations for further study of these topics;
  • the course uses responses and adaptations to exercise and physical challenges to integrate and highlight links between biomedical subjects like anatomy, nutrition, pharmacology or bioenergetics;
  • the course uses a streamlined modular system to deliver and assess the course content and fortnightly online assessments ensure effective learning and are highly commended by students;
  • each subject or practical class is delivered by specialized members of staff to ensure state-of-the-art content and delivery

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Chemistry for the Life Sciences 2 (CM1512) - 15 Credit Points

Chemistry plays an important role in the life sciences, explaining the shapes and properties of biomolecules, and helping to provide an understanding of how biological processes work at a molecular level.

The shapes and function of important biomolecules will be covered. Organic molecule reaction mechanisms will give insight into how different types of molecules can be synthesised. The energetics and importance of equilibrium in driving reactions will be covered.

Methods of chemical analysis and measurement introduce other important topics linking the chemical and life sciences.

Workshops and labs complement lectures by consolidating learning and developing problem-solving and hands-on practical skills.

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The Cell (SM1501) - 15 Credit Points
  • cells are the fundamental unit of life – without them life could not exist, and as such understanding how they function is crucial to our understanding of biology and medical science;
  • this course provides theoretical knowledge in a diverse range of topics covering the fascinating world of cells, from molecules like DNA, to how different cell types function within our bodies;
  • all practical classes are research based and will provide theoretical knowledge and skills training in many areas of molecular and cell biology;
  • employability skills will also be explored through a highly interactive session run by the Scottish Institute for Enterprise

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Fitness, Performance and Survival (SR1503) - 15 Credit Points
  • this course further develops and integrates core concepts of physiology, sport science and biomedical science and expands foundations for more advanced study of these topics;
  • the course integrates various subjects of biomedical science such as Physiology, Nutrition, Biochemistry or Sport Sciences to understand responses and adaptations to exercise and physical challenges;
  • the course uses a streamlined modular system to deliver and assess the course content and fortnightly online assessments ensure effective learning and are highly commended by students;
  • each subject or practical class is delivered by specialized members of staff to ensure state-of-the-art content and delivery

View detailed information about this course

Optional Courses

Plus 30 credit points from courses of choice

Year 2

Year 2

In year 2 you will take the following courses:

  • Science of Sports Performance
  • Principles of Strength and Conditioning
  • Exercise and Health

Compulsory Courses

Physiology of Human Cells (BI20B2) - 15 Credit Points
  • Physiology is the science of understanding life. It allows you to explore and understand why your body does what it does and how it does it;
  • This introductory physiology course explores living processes at the level of cells and molecules;
  • The course lays down many of the fundamental concepts of physiology required to appreciate advanced study of many of the medical science disciplines;
  • You will gain practical experience and understanding of electrophysiological techniques required for the study of electrically excitable tissues, like nerves and muscle;
  • You will also gain valuable experience in the key skill of writing formal scientific reports

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The Science of Sports Performance (SR2002) - 15 Credit Points
  • understanding the fundamental factors that limit exercise performance is of great importance for human health and athletic performance;
  • this course integrates the knowledge in biomechanics, physiology, psychology and pharmacology in order to build a comprehensive understanding of physical activity and exercise performance in humans;
  • this core knowledge prepares you for more advanced study of sports and health sciences;
  • you will also participate in practical series focussed on energy expenditure, fitness testing and body composition which will build essential laboratory and data analysis skills of importance for employability in the area of sports and health

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Physiology of Human Organ Systems (BI25B2) - 15 Credit Points
  • the digestive, cardiovascular, respiratory, renal and reproductive systems are covered using a variety of innovative teaching methods;
  • you will participate in practical classes where students act as subjects and investigators. These will reinforce lecture material, develop scientific acumen and build team working skills;
  • focussed and interactive problem solving sessions apply knowledge to clinical scenarios, and begin developing fundamental skills critically required in the final years of the degree;
  • informal teaching sessions allow one-to-one staff-student interaction and encourage discussion in a non-threatening environment;
  • a low stakes in-course mock exam is included to prepare you for the high stakes degree exam

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Research Skills for Medical Sciences (SM2501) - 15 Credit Points
  • this course cultivates literature research skills, building confidence in team-working and communication through scientific writing and seminar presentation;
  • it encourages student-led learning and organisation in researching a topic on human health or disease of your own choice, with tutors providing guidance;
  • you will learn to use online and library resources to search for information from primary research articles and relay that information in the form of a written report and a Powerpoint presentation to peers and academic tutors;
  • these are all fundamental skills for scientific researchers, but are also transferrable talents for many other career pathways

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Exercise and Health (SR2501) - 15 Credit Points
  • this course covers many ways in which exercise can be a useful tool in the prevention of disease and the promotion of health;
  • examples of the areas covered include cardiovascular disease, metabolic disease, cancer, ageing, psychological conditions and immune dysfunction. The pathophysiology underlying these conditions will be introduced and how exercise can be a modulating factor;
  • this will prepare you for further study in clinical exercise physiology;
  • practical classes will deliver hands on science and will also cover data handling and statistical analysis

View detailed information about this course

Optional Courses

Plus 30 credit points from courses of choice

Year 3

Year 3

In year 3 you will take the following courses:

  • Applied Practice in Sport Science I
  • Sports Psychology
  • Applied Practice in Sport Science II

Compulsory Courses

Integrative Physiology (PY3002) - 30 Credit Points
  • this course integrates advanced physiological knowledge using examples from four different organ systems to help explain how these systems interact in health and disease;
  • use of real-life clinical examples, diagnostic test data and a literature-based research project facilitates an enquiry and interest-based learning experience;
  • with an aging population and ever-increasing number of people with complex diseases, you will appreciate why understanding how organs interact is the key to improving the diagnosis and treatment of various disorders;
  • state-of-the-art practical classes measuring physiological functions delivers hands-on science and clinically-related skills to develop professional preparation and knowledge-based practice

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Sports Psychology (SR3022) - 30 Credit Points
  • This course will develop an understanding of the psychology of health, sport and exercise;
  • look at psychological factors likely to affect individuals and their performance in the sporting environment;
  • develop psychological approaches to improve health and well-being through key theories on behaviour and behaviour change;
  • provide research driven insights and strategies designed to benefit professionals and participants within the health, sport and exercise community.

View detailed information about this course

Optional Courses

Plus choose one of the following courses:

  • SR3506 Biochemistry and Nutrition of Exercise
  • SR3511 Nutrition, Health and Exercise

Plus 30 credit points from courses of choice

Biochemistry and Nutrition of Exercise (SR3506) - 30 Credit Points
  • This course integrates the key concepts in nutrition and metabolism which are essential for understanding how these metabolic and biochemical processes underpin human physiology;
  • You will be able to apply specialist knowledge of how exercise training and dietary intake influence human adaptation and optimise exercise performance;
  • You will gain in depth and focussed knowledge through core sport and exercise science practicals which enhance employment skills, in addition to improving problem solving, experimental design and data interpretation skills;
  • All this will prepare you for advanced study of human and exercise physiology

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Nutrition, Health and Disease (SR3511) - 30 Credit Points
  • This course covers a range of scientific nutrition topics including constituents of food, assessment of dietary/nutritional status, energy balance, and nutrition for exercise and sport;
  • Current nutritional recommendations and policies are explored by world experts, including researchers from the prestigious Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health;
  • You will be able to apply specialist knowledge of how exercise training and dietary intake influence human adaptation and optimise exercise performance and/or health;
  • You will gain in depth and focussed knowledge through core nutrition and exercise science practicals which enhance employment skills, improving problem solving, experimental design and data interpretation skills.

View detailed information about this course

Year 4

Year 4

In your final year you will take the following courses:

  • Research Topics in Sport Science and Studies
  • Exercise Science Project
  • Nutrition, Obesity and Metabolic Health or Exercise Physiology

Compulsory Courses

Honours candidates are required to take both a two hour general examination (SM 4901) and a three hour problem solving examination (SM 4902) at the end of the Final Honours Year.

Research Topics in Sports Science and Studies (SR4007) - 30 Credit Points
  • this course covers the most recent research in a variety of topics in sports science and sports studies;
  • you will gain cutting edge, in depth and focussed knowledge of advances in topic ranging from nutrition, muscle, health and metabolism;
  • this knowledge and skills in literature searching will prepare you for you honours research project;
  • in course assessments will focus on writing scientific abstracts and also presentation of scientific material – transferable skills aiming to develop graduate attributes and employability

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Exercise Science Project (SR4501) - 60 Credit Points
  • Final year Honours projects offer an excellent opportunity to carry out cutting-edge literature or lab-based scientific research
  • With projects from disciplines throughout the School of Medicine, Medical Science and Nutrition to choose from, this is a opening to follow your interests working with staff and leading researchers
  • Projects form the zenith of your degree and fosters development of the skills and knowledge gained throughout your degree, as well as heightening analytical and critical thinking abilities
  • The opportunity to be part of novel, yet-to-be published research projects can be career-defining, and provides experience to prepare you for the future.

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Nutrition, Obesity and Metabolic Health (SR4008) - 15 Credit Points

Obesity is a major worldwide health problem and in simple terms is caused by an imbalance between energy intake and energy expenditure. However, this simple equation ignores the complex range of factors that control how individuals respond to today’s energy rich environment. These include differences in the way we sense hunger, our capacity to store or burn energy, our response to nutrients and how circulating factors affect the function of our metabolically important tissues. This course examines how body weight is controlled, why obesity can cause ill-health and what we can do to prevent or treat obesity and associated diseases.

View detailed information about this course

Optional Courses

Plus select a further 30 credit points from course(s) of choice.

Course Availability

We will endeavour to make all course options available; however, these may be subject to timetabling and other constraints. Please see our InfoHub pages for further information.

How You'll Study

You will be taught using a variety of methods and styles and we continually seek to make the teaching engaging, exciting and responsive to the latest research in your subject area. The research we carry out in the School directly informs and guides our teaching, particularly in the final Honours year. Our commitment to teaching is recognised by the range of University of Aberdeen Student-led Teaching Awards given to staff from our School.

As a student, your learning is supported by MyAberdeen, our virtual learning environment from which you can access the lecture Powerpoint slides, online practice tests, links to related reading, and tutorial support material.

We make innovative use of 'educational voting' handsets in class, remote control 'clickers' that allow each and every student to electronically respond in class by anonymous vote to questions posed by the lecturer.

Your academic development is supported from year 1 through to year 4 by an assigned personal tutor, who acts as adviser and mentor throughout your University career.

Learning Methods

  • E-learning
  • Field Work
  • Group Projects
  • Individual Projects
  • Lab Work
  • Peer Learning
  • Research
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials
  • Workshops

Assessment Methods

Students are assessed by any combination of three assessment methods:

  • coursework such as essays and reports completed throughout the course;
  • practical assessments of the skills and competencies they learn on the course; and
  • written examinations at the end of each course.

The exact mix of these methods differs between subject areas, years of study and individual courses.

Honours projects are typically assessed on the basis of a written dissertation.

Why Study Applied Sports Science?

  • The programme integrates laboratory-based science learning with practical field-based experience with a focus on how exercise and sport can help promote healthy lifestyles linking sport to nutrition and clinical care.
  • You will have access to the excellent facilities on offer at the internationally recognised Aberdeen Sports Village and will have the opportunity to work with their staff on projects and summer placements.
  • You will have the chance to use the skills and knowledge you have gained to undertake a field-based placement in your third year which may help in building a portfolio for professional recognition with the British Association for Sport and Exercise Science.
  • You will get first-hand experience of working with athletes and sports teams to deliver sport science support in maximising performance, training practice and competition preparation.
  • Specialist and relevant teaching in biomechanics, sports psychology and conditioning/rehab are offered in the curriculum.
  • The programme runs from the Foresterhill Health Campus which includes a large teaching hospital, Medical School and the Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health, providing easy access to facilities and specialists from a range of disciplines.
  • The programme provides flexible learning support for elite and competitive athletes that may have to travel and compete abroad.
  • The University of Aberdeen is a Top 30 UK University, Complete University Guide 2020
  • The University of Aberdeen is ranked 1st in Scotland and 6th in the UK for Sports Science, Guardian League Tables 2019
  • The University of Aberdeen is a World Top 170 University (Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2020)

Entry Requirements

Qualifications

The information below is provided as a guide only and does not guarantee entry to the University of Aberdeen.


General Entry Requirements

2020 Entry

SQA Highers

Standard: AABB*

Applicants who have achieved AABB (or better), are encouraged to apply and will be considered. Good performance in additional Highers/ Advanced Highers may be required.

Minimum: BBB*

Applicants who have achieved BBB (or are on course to achieve this by the end of S5) are encouraged to apply and will be considered. Good performance in additional Highers/Advanced Highers will normally be required.

Adjusted: BB*

Applicants who have achieved BB, and who meet one of the widening participation criteria are encouraged to apply and will be considered. Good performance in additional Highers/Advanced Highers will be required.

* Including good performance in at least two Mathematics/ Science subjects by the end of your senior phase of education.

More information on our definition of Standard, Minimum and Adjusted entry qualifications.

A LEVELS

Standard: BBB*

Minimum: BBC*

Adjusted: CCC*

* Including good performance in at least two Mathematics/ Science subjects by the end of your senior phase of education.

More information on our definition of Standard, Minimum and Adjusted entry qualifications.

International Baccalaureate

32 points, including 5, 5, 5 at HL*.

* Including good performance in at least two Mathematics/ Science subjects by the end of your senior phase of education.

Irish Leaving Certificate

5H with 3 at H2 AND 2 at H3 OR AAABB*, obtained in a single sitting. (B must be at B2 or above)

* Including good performance in at least two Mathematics/ Science subjects by the end of your senior phase of education.

Entry from College

Advanced entry to this degree may be possible from some HNC/HND qualifications, please see www.abdn.ac.uk/study/articulation for more details.

The information displayed in this section shows a shortened summary of our entry requirements. For more information, or for full entry requirements for Sciences degrees, see our detailed entry requirements section.


English Language Requirements

To study for an Undergraduate degree at the University of Aberdeen it is essential that you can speak, understand, read, and write English fluently. The minimum requirements for this degree are as follows:

IELTS Academic:

OVERALL - 6.0 with: Listening - 5.5; Reading - 5.5; Speaking - 5.5; Writing - 6.0

TOEFL iBT:

OVERALL - 78 with: Listening - 17; Reading - 18; Speaking - 20; Writing - 21

PTE Academic:

OVERALL - 54 with: Listening - 51; Reading - 51; Speaking - 51; Writing - 54

Cambridge English Advanced & Proficiency:

OVERALL - 169 with: Listening - 162; Reading - 162; Speaking - 162; Writing - 169

Read more about specific English Language requirements here.

Fees and Funding

You will be classified as one of the fee categories below.

Fee Waiver

Most RUK students (England, Wales and Northern Ireland) on a four year honours degree will be eligible for a full-fees waiver in their final year. Scholarships and other sources of funding are also available.

Fee information
Fee category Cost
Home / EU £1,820
All Students
RUK £9,250
Students Admitted in 2020/21
International Students £17,200
Students Admitted in 2020/21

Additional Fees

  • In exceptional circumstances there may be additional fees associated with specialist courses, for example field trips. Any additional fees for a course can be found in our Catalogue of Courses.
  • For more information about tuition fees for this programme, including payment plans and our refund policy, please visit our InfoHub Tuition Fees page.

Our Funding Database

View all funding options in our Funding Database.

Careers

The BSc in Applied Sports Science will prepare you for a career in the sport, exercise or health industries. The programme also offers flexibility to elite and competitive athletes who want to combine training and competing with studying for a sports related degree in a world class sports environment.

Industry Links

Aberdeen Sports Village

Aberdeen FC Community Trust

Sportcity, Netherlands

Top in Scotland for Sports Science

We are ranked 1st in Scotland and 6th in the UK for Sports Science (The Guardian league tables 2019)

Our Experts

Other Experts
Professor Alison Jenkinson
Dr Michael Scholz
Dr Jennifer Gregory
Programme Coordinator
Dr Derek Ball

Information About Staff Changes

You will be taught by a range of experts including professors, lecturers, teaching fellows and postgraduate tutors. Staff changes will occur from time to time; please see our InfoHub pages for further information.

Facilities

Image for Foresterhill Health Campus
Foresterhill Health Campus

Foresterhill Health Campus

The Foresterhill Health Campus is one of the largest clinical complexes in Europe which includes the Medical School, large teaching hospital, the Institute of Medical Sciences and the Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health.

Image for Dedicated teaching labs
Dedicated teaching labs

Dedicated teaching labs

Our commitment to teaching is underscored by our recent rebuild and modernisation of the teaching lab space dedicated to practical teaching at years 1, 2 and 3.

Image for Aberdeen Sports Village
Aberdeen Sports Village

Aberdeen Sports Village

The excellent facilities at Scotland's premier sport and exercise facility are available to students for field-based practicals, individual projects and summer placements.

Get in Touch

Contact Details

Address
Student Recruitment & Admissions Service
University of Aberdeen
University Office
Regent Walk
Aberdeen
AB24 3FX