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Undergraduate Course

Sports and Exercise Therapy BSc (Hons)

Develop the knowledge, understanding and practical skills to be an effective Sports Therapist. Learn to reduce the risk of injury, assess and treat injury, rehabilitate and recondition, and return athletes to sport.

On this degree you will develop the knowledge, understanding, and professional and practical skills to be a competent and confident Sports Therapist that can work effectively in different settings. You will also develop as an evidence-informed, problem solver and decision maker who adapt to the demands of contemporary practice. The course fosters self awareness and curiosity as a basis for ongoing professional development.

100% of Sport and Exercise Therapy BSc (Hons) students thought that staff made the subject interesting. (National Student Survey 2022)

11th in the UK for Sport Science (Guardian University Guide 2023)

Accredited by the Society of Sports Therapists (from 2022 entry onwards)

York campus

  • UCAS Code – C6C3
  • Duration – 3 years full time | 6 years part time
  • Start date – September 2023, September 2024
  • School – School of Science, Technology and Health

Minimum Entry Requirements

    104 UCAS Tariff points

    3 GCSEs at grade C/4 (or equivalent) including English Language and Mathematics.

Tuition Fees

    UK 2023 entry £9,250 per year full time

    International 2023 entry £13,000 per year full time

Discover Sport at York St John University

Course overview

Sports and exercise therapy is an aspect of healthcare that applies sport science and medical principles to prevent injury and rehabilitate athletes back to optimum levels of functional, occupational and sports specific fitness, regardless of age and ability level.

This degree has been designed with the Society of Sports Therapists (SST) and external partners to equip you with the knowledge, understanding and skills to work in sport and exercise injury settings. When you graduate you will be eligible to apply for membership of the SST and practise under the title of Graduate Sports Therapist. As a Graduate Sports Therapist you will have the knowledge, skills, and abilities to:

  • Optimise performance and preparation and prevent injury
  • Provide immediate care of injuries and illness
  • Assess, treat, rehabilitate, and refer when necessary
  • Provide soft tissue interventions to non-injured and injured tissue
  • Plan, deliver and evaluate rehabilitation, reconditioning and return to sport programmes

By training in sport therapy you will learn to help athletes perform better, recover faster and train more effectively. We are committed to making sure everyone has opportunities to benefit from sport, regardless of background, age or ability. Through this course you will develop into a competent and confident sports therapist who:

  • Maintains high standards of performance
  • Is person-centred
  • Solves injury problems using an evidence-informed and interdisciplinary approach
  • Makes well-informed clinical decisions
  • Can work effectively with other practitioners as part of a multidisciplinary team

Course structure

Year 1

Our academic year is split into 2 semesters. How many modules you study each semester will depend on whether you are a full time or part time student. 

In your first year, if you are a full time student, you will study: 

  • 3 compulsory modules in semester 1
  • 3 compulsory modules in semester 2

If you are studying part time, the modules above will be split over 2 years.

You can find out which modules are available in each semester on the Course Specifications.

Modules

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

On this module you will learn about the importance of human anatomical and physiological systems for sport and exercise. You will learn about the nervous, musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, and respiratory systems, and explore how these function at rest and in response to acute exercise. You will develop the necessary skills to perform a range of physiological measures that can be used to evaluate an individual’s health and acute physiological responses to exercise.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

Sports Therapy is an aspect of healthcare that is concerned with reducing the risk of injury, and the rehabilitation of the athlete back to optimum levels of functional, occupational and sports specific fitness, regardless of age and ability. In this introductory module, you will learn about the profession of sport and exercise injury. You will also learn introductory practical skills for the safe and competent delivery of therapeutic practices. This module focuses on developing knowledge and understanding, practical application, and being evidence informed.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

To effectively prevent, assess, treat and rehabilitate musculoskeletal (MSK) pathologies, understanding MSK anatomy is essential. Practical MSK anatomy underpins sport and exercise therapy decision making and practice, and allows Sports Therapists to work with diverse athlete groups. On this module you will learn to identify, palpate, and move key musculoskeletal anatomical structures.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

An appreciation of the mechanics which underpin human movement, including fundamental movements, specific techniques and skills, is essential for sport therapists. This module will provide you with a foundation of knowledge and understanding in mechanics, which is vital for the evaluation of human motion. We will introduce you to the founding theoretical concepts which underpin the study of biomechanics, and draw upon multidisciplinary knowledge and skills to provide a foundational understanding of movement analysis.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

This module will help to prepare you for the in depth research you will carry out later in your degree. We will introduce you to a broad range of fundamental concepts and principles which guide research in the field of sport. We will also teach you to recognise and interpret these fundamental concepts when you encounter them in published research. You will learn the analytical skills to make sense of findings reported in published research, and answer basic research questions in sport. Through this you will become an informed reader able to evaluate and interpret research evidence.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

On this module we will introduce you to the fundamental concepts of strength and conditioning, within a Sports Therapy context. Developing athletic capacity is crucial to reducing injury risk, but also to maximising sports performance in athletes. You will learn field and gym-based techniques and associated coaching cues to develop aerobic and anaerobic performance for multiple sports. You will also learn how to develop principles of training and integrate these into a structured training programme over a prolonged period.

Year 2

In your second year, if you are a full time student, you will study:

  • 3 compulsory modules in semester 1
  • 3 compulsory modules in semester 2
  • 1 compulsory year long module

In the Sport and Exercise Therapy Placement and Practice module you will need to engage in a minimum of 75 hours of sport and exercise therapy practice.

If you are studying part time, the modules above will be split over 2 years.

You can find out which modules are available in each semester on the Course Specifications.

Modules

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

Participation in sport and exercise carries an inherent risk of trauma and illness. Being able to effectively manage trauma and illness in recreational, training, occupational and competitive sport and exercise environments is one of the fundamental roles of a Sports Therapist. On this module you will learn about:

  • Systematic action planning for the eventuality of trauma and illness
  • Recognition and treatment for life-threatening and non-life-threatening trauma and illness
  • The correct handover or referral pathways following sport and exercise trauma and illness
  • Management of conditions such as suspected spinal injury, head trauma, fractures and dislocations

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

On this module you will learn about the importance of physical activity and exercise initiatives for the general health of the community. This will be presented with a multi-disciplinary focus, evaluating public health interventions and approaches from sociology, policy, psychology, therapeutic, and behavioural perspectives. You will explore the psychosocial impact of exercise and lifestyle behaviours for the promotion of healthy living and wellbeing, as well as considering UK and global health issues surrounding physical activity.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

On this module you will develop practical and professional skills in effectively assessing sports specific injuries or illness, which is a foundational skill of a sport and exercise therapy. You will learn to conduct a subjective and objective assessment of sports specific, joint and regional injuries, as well as considering how this information can inform clinical reasoning around management, treatment, and potential referral.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

One thing that makes sports therapy different to other clinical therapies is that they need to prepare athletes for high-level sporting actions rather than just activities of daily living. On this module you will learn to use the demands of sports to inform return to play decision making, taking a performance-based approach to return to sport (RtS). You will take a systematic, and athlete-centred approach, using criterion measures relevant to the sport, and monitored to prevent re-injury or setbacks. This will prepare you to work with both individuals and groups of athletes. You will learn to prescribe, coach, and evaluate appropriate exercises for rehabilitation.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

Once a sports therapist has recognised and evaluated an injury, they then need to be able to effectively plan, treat and help manage it. On this module you will develop practical and professional skills in treatment planning, delivery of manual therapy skills, and the broader management of sport and exercise injury to the peripheral joints. You will learn about:

  • Anatomical theory
  • Treatment planning, informed consent, and outcome measures
  • Peripheral joint mobilisations for lower and upper limbs
  • Sports massage to injured tissue
  • Self-management strategies
  • Common surgical intervention on peripheral joints

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

On this module we will introduce you to a range of quantitative and qualitative research designs that are commonly used in sport research. You will also learn to critique research, identifying the strengths and weaknesses of different designs, and develop more advanced analytical skills to interpret and report both quantitative and qualitative data. This is an opportunity to progress beyond being an informed consumer of research, towards becoming an informed critical thinker able to produce quality research.

Credits: 0

Compulsory module

This is an opportunity to experience professional practice, helping you apply the theoretical knowledge you have learned to real situations. Experiencing the day-to-day practice of a Sports Therapist will help you make decisions about your career, and to understand the professional standards required of the role. You will have the chance to participate in sport and exercise therapy practice, supervised by experienced professionals. We will help you to find a work-based placement with academic staff aligned to your career objectives and professional development. Through this placement you will develop confidence and problem solving skills, as well as building your professional network.

Year 3

In your third year, if you are a full time student, you will study:

  • 2 compulsory modules in semester 1
  • 2 compulsory modules in semester 2
  • 2 compulsory year long modules

In the Sport and Exercise Therapy Placement and Practice module you will need to engage in a minimum of 125 hours of sport and exercise therapy practice.

If you are studying part time, the modules above will be split over 2 years.

You can find out which modules are available in each semester on the Course Specifications.

Modules

Credits: 40

Compulsory module

On this module you will investigate a topic of your choosing, taking into consideration the ethical issues associated with research. With support from your tutor, you will analyse data, evaluate your findings and produce a final research report.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

On this module you will learn to adopt a holistic approach to reducing injury risk. We will outline the systematic process that you should follow to identity and prioritise injury prevention strategies, informed by contemporary research. Initially you will appraise athlete competency by considering their sporting demands, before action planning to reduce injury risk. We will also introduce you to a range of evidence informed techniques and concepts that reduce the incidence of injury, such as load management, accelerated recovery and neuromuscular training protocols. You will be encouraged to take a critical approach when evaluating the effectiveness of each intervention, to help build your clinical reasoning and decision-making skills in preparation for practice.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

The incidence and prevalence of back pain in sporting and non-sporting populations is high, and as a sports therapist it is likely that you will have to work with athletes with back pain during your careers. This module focuses on manual therapy and management of vertebral pain and pathology. You will develop practical and professional skills in assessment, treatment planning, delivery of manual therapy skills, and the broader management of sport and exercise injury to the vertebrae.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

An athlete should return to sport when they are physically, biologically, psychologically, and technically ready. In comparison to physical and biological readiness, technical readiness is understudied and under practised. This module focuses on evaluating technical sport and exercise movements to aid return to sport decision making. You will learn about the causes of altered movement due to injury, the technical modelling of common sports movements, and some of the interventions and assistive devices available to manage movement.

Credits: 20

Compulsory module

Sports therapists work with complex individuals that exist in complex social spaces. As such, contemporary practice often involves making decisions on evolving and complex problems. This module is framed around such problems, and considers how sports therapists can best manage complexity in their practice. This will prepare you to work as a modern clinic-based, sport-based or health service-based sports therapist. This module will also address some of the key business skills, such as marketing and data management, that are essential for success in the industry.

Credits: 0

Compulsory module

This is your second opportunity to experience professional practice, and apply the theoretical knowledge you have gained throughout your degree. We will encourage you to find a different work-based placement to the one you carried out in your second year, as you further extend your skills and professional development. We expect you to challenge yourself by taking on appropriate responsibility to develop confidence, problem solving skills and competency.

Teaching and assessment

Teaching and learning

As a student on this course you will encounter a range of teaching and learning experiences, including face to face, online, self-directed, and experiential opportunities. As you progress through the course you will be increasingly expected to make significant contributions to your own learning and become more independent and self-directed.

A typical week will consist of:

  • Lectures
  • Practical sessions
  • Seminars

Our teaching draws on both our research and professional experience. This means your learning is informed by the most current thinking in the subject area. You can find out more about our research and backgrounds by visiting our staff pages.

Assessment

You will be continually assessed throughout the course to evaluate your learning. You will encounter a variety of assessment types including:

  • Written reports and essays
  • Practical exams
  • Oral presentations
  • E-portfolios
  • Online exams
  • Lab based reports

As you develop and learn more the assessments will change in nature, becoming more diverse and challenging over the course of your degree.

Attendance and engagement are key to your overall experience. The assessments we use are designed to develop skills which will be applicable to a career in sport. This includes a lot of applied practical work, giving you the hands on experience which will be essential to your future career.

You will receive feedback on your work throughout each module. This will help you to improve your work for your graded assessments. You will also benefit from self evaluation and peer assessment with your classmates.

Career outcomes

Your future with a degree in Sports and Exercise Therapy

You will graduate from this course with the knowledge and practical experience to help people prevent or recover from sport injury. The skills you develop will also benefit you in a range of other careers in sport and health. These include critical thinking, communication, working with clients and fieldwork.

This degree could be the first step toward your career in:

  • Sport therapy
  • Sport massage
  • Physiotherapy (after further study)
  • Sport management
  • Outdoor education
  • Teaching

Discover more career options on Prospects careers advice pages.

You could also progress onto a postgraduate degree and take your learning even further.

 

Whatever your ambitions, we can help you get there.

Our careers service, LaunchPad provides career support tailored to your ambitions. Through this service you can access:

  • Employer events
  • LinkedIn, CV and cover letter sessions
  • Workshops on application writing and interview skills
  • Work experience and volunteering opportunities
  • Personalised career advice

This support doesn't end when you graduate. You can access our expert career advice for the rest of your life. We will help you gain experience and confidence to succeed.

Entry requirements

Qualifications

Minimum Entry Requirements

    104 UCAS Tariff points

    3 GCSEs at grade C/4 (or equivalent) including English Language and Mathematics.

Calculate your UCAS Tariff points

International Students

If you are an international student you will need to show that your qualifications match our entry requirements.

Information about international qualifications and entry requirements can be found on our International pages.

If English is not your first language you will need to show that you have English Language competence at IELTS level 6.0 (with no skill below 5.5) or equivalent.

International entry requirements

This course is available with foundation year

If you do not yet meet the minimum requirements for entry straight onto this degree course, or feel you are not quite ready for the transition to Higher Education, this is a great option for you. Passing a foundation year guarantees you a place on this degree course the following academic year or you can proceed onto one of our integrated masters courses.

Sport foundation year

Mature Learners Entry Scheme

If you have been out of education for 3 years or more and have a grade C GCSE in English Language or equivalent, you are eligible for our entry scheme for mature learners. It's a scheme that recognises non-traditional entry qualifications and experience for entry onto this course. Information on how to apply can be found on our dedicated page.

Mature entry offer scheme

Terms and conditions

Our terms and conditions, policies and procedures contain important information about studying at York St John University. You can read them on our Admissions page.

Fees and Funding

To study for an undergraduate degree with us, you will need to pay tuition fees for your course. How much you pay depends on whether you live inside the UK, or internationally (outside the UK). Tuition fees may be subject to inflation in future years.

UK 2023 entry

The tuition fee for 2023 entry onto this course is:

  • £9,250 per year for full time study
  • £6,935 per year for the first 4 years if you study part time

These prices apply to all UK, Jersey, Guernsey and Isle of Man students

You can find out more about funding your degree by visiting our funding opportunities page:

Funding Opportunities

Placement year funding

If you choose to take a placement year, and your course offers it, you can apply for the Tuition Fee and Maintenance Loan for your placement year. How much you are awarded is based on the type of placement being undertaken and whether it is a paid or unpaid placement. The tuition fee for your placement year will be reduced.

Tuition Fees

    UK 2023 entry £9,250 per year full time

    International 2023 entry £13,000 per year full time

International 2023 entry

The tuition fee for 2023 entry to this course is £13,000 per year for full time study.

This price applies to all students living outside the UK.

Due to immigration laws, if you are an international student on a Student Visa, you must study full time. For more information about visa requirements and short-term study visas, please visit the International Visa and Immigration pages.

Find out more about funding your degree:

International Fees and Funding

Additional costs and financial support

There may also be some additional costs to take into account throughout your studies, including the cost of accommodation.

Course-related costs

While studying for your degree, there may be additional costs related to your course. This may include purchasing personal equipment and stationery, books and optional field trips.

Study Abroad

For more information on tuition fee reductions and additional costs for studying abroad, please visit our study abroad pages.

Accommodation and living costs

For detailed information on accommodation and living costs, visit our Accommodation pages.

Financial help and support

Our Funding Advice team are here to help you with your finances throughout your degree. They offer a personal service that can help you with funding your studies and budgeting for living expenses. 

For advice on everything from applying for scholarships to finding additional financial support email fundingadvice@yorksj.ac.uk.

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