This course equips those who wish to pursue a career within business and management in the sports industry, with relevant knowledge and skills.
The MSc Sport Management course is designed for aspiring graduates who wish to develop a career in the sports industry, focusing on the business of sport. Such students recognise the need to gain business and management knowledge to complement their undergraduate study before embarking on their chosen career. The course aims to equip you with the essential academic knowledge in business and management, in addition to the personal skills which are applicable to all industries and to the more specific knowledge of the sports industry in particular which will help you launch your career.
The course is regularly ranked within the top courses of its kind worldwide and thus should provide applicants with an assurance as to the relevance and value of its content.
The MSc Sport Management is one of the few Master's courses which gives its students the opportunity of putting theory into practice through an internship. This helps you to apply what you have learned and to build your CV and work experience which should place you at an advantage in the job market.
The course has an excellent track record of success, its graduates occupy managerial positions across a number of organisations both locally and internationally and as such it is a much sought after qualification.
Sign up for course updates
Sign up to receive regular updates, news and information on courses, events and developments at Ulster University.
We’ll not share your information and you can unsubscribe at any time.
About this course
In this section
The course has been introduced to meet an increasing demand from students and employers who recognise the need for highly skilled managers in the area of sport. It aims to give students an introduction to the key areas of business, management and sports management which are essential to build a successful career in the sport industry.
The course combines the expertise of two of the University’s Schools: the Department of Management and Leadership and the Ulster Sports Academy and is suitable for aspiring graduates from any academic discipline.
This MSc is designed for those who recognise the need to progress their academic study in order to embark on a successful career in sports management. The modules on the course offer a comprehensive introduction to the essential areas of business and management. In addition to the taught modules, the course places a substantial emphasis on developing students’ employability skills. During the course you will be exposed to masterclasses in areas such as CV design, presentation skills and interview techniques, for example.
During the course, guest speakers are regularly invited in to talk to students about how business and management theory is applied in various organisations. Students are also invited to attend business and networking events which provide an opportunity for them to build up their network of contacts.
The modules on the MSc course will provide you with a thorough grounding in sports business and management principles. In semester 3, two modules are studied and students are then required to complete their Internship and associated Management Project.
Sport Policy, Planning & Implementation examines the development of policy and planning for sport within the mixed economy of leisure. Managers must have a critical understanding of the policy process and how this impacts on European, National and Local levels of operation. Students will learn how to design capital management opportunities for sporting organisations and, as a result, be better equipped to add value to organisations to which they seek employment.
Enterprise and New Venture Creationenables students to develop an understanding of business from an entrepreneur's perspective. Students will experience the consequences of decision making in all aspects of a small business (such as sales and marketing, finance and operations) by creating, and actively trading with, their own business start-up.
Finance provides students with an introduction to the financial issues and techniques involved in managerial decision-making and control. It is important that managers understand the integrative nature of financial decision making both at an operational and strategic level.
Strategic Sports Marketing provides students with an opportunity to critically and conceptually engage with issues related to the strategic sport marketing of organisations. Managers need to be able to understand, develop and implement the strategic marketing process to achieve competitive advantage.
Managing and Leading People: Good managers are not only effective in their use of economic and technical resources, but also in their management of people. This module equips students with the knowledge and understanding essential for effective and efficient management practice, in particular, effectively managing, leading and developing people.
Operations and Supply Chain Managementis the planning, design, organisation, and control of the transformation process (inputs - people/materials, to outputs - goods and services). Students will develop a comprehensive understanding of key principles and techniques of supply chain management including topics such as inventory management, demand and capacity management, supply chain partnerships and IT.
Business Model Innovation examines a range of theoretical and practical issues surrounding business model innovation and will help students better understand the concepts of innovation, creativity, value creation and value capture. Students will work with real organisations in the assessment and development of innovative business models.
The Internship and Management Projectenables students to apply knowledge and skills acquired throughout the programme to an organisational issue or problem, and develop workplace skills and experience which will enhance their future career prospects. The Internships last for approximately 12 weeks. For students who are in a relevant job this project can be based on their place of work, thus creating value for their organisation.
The MSc Sport Management course is offered on both a full-time and part-time basis. The part-time route is studied over two years, starting in the Autumn Semester (September).
The course is taught one day a week in semesters 1 and 2 with a “block” module being taught in semester 3 of each year. There is also a residential at the beginning of the course which takes place over two days.
The modules on the course will provide students with a thorough grounding in general business and management principles as well as the specifics relating to the area of sports management. Students begin the course by studying towards the Postgraduate Diploma. On successful completion of this they progress onto the full Master's qualification.
- September 2018
Here is a guide to the subjects studied on this course.
Courses are continually reviewed to take advantage of new teaching approaches and developments in research, industry and the professions. Please be aware that modules may change for your year of entry. The exact modules available and their order may vary depending on course updates, staff availability, timetabling and student demand. Please contact the course team for the most up to date module list.
In this section
Enterprise and New Venture Creation
This module enables students to develop an understanding of business from an entrepreneur's perspective. Students will develop an awareness of the role of the entrepreneur in the new venture creation process and the capabilities to recognise, plan, set up and run new venture opportunities. Students will understand, and experience, the consequences of decision making in all aspects of a small business (such as sales and marketing, finance and operations) by creating, and actively trading with, their own business start-up.
Finance for Managers
The aim of the module is to provide participants with an introduction to the financial issues and techniques involved in managerial decision-making and control. Financial decisions and their implications are required to be considered by all organisations. The accounting function cannot be viewed in isolation from the other key functional areas of management and it is important therefore, that managers understand the integrative nature of financial decision making both at an operational and strategic level.
Managing and Leading People
Good managers are not only effective in their use of economic and technical resources, but also in their management of people. This module aims to enable students to acquire knowledge and an understanding of the core areas of Human Resource Management (HRM) and the factors which influence behaviour within organisations. This knowledge and understanding is essential for effective and efficient management practice, in particular, effectively managing, leading and developing people. Learning will be by teaching, discussion and independent study.
Managing Operations will determine whether organizations deliver the highest levels of service. This module aims to enable students to acquire knowledge and a critical understanding of key operations management concepts that enable excellent service to be provided by organizations. Students should acquire an understanding of the tasks, issues and decisions that are necessary to manage processes effectively and the tools to analyze operational performance.
Business Model Innovation
This module will examine a range of theoretical and practical issues surrounding business model innovation. This will be important to understanding the concepts of innovation, creativity, value creation and value capture. The development of business model by student teams will immerse students in key methods of innovation and value propositions, that are relevant for contemporary managers as well as aspiring entrepreneurs. This module will combine real world research and applications in the form of several case studies from major EC projects carried out in the Ulster Business School, video and live guest speakers. This will be combined with key theoretical concepts and relevant empirical research studies, concrete business model and innovation methods.
Strategic Sports Marketing
This module will provide students with an opportunity to critically and conceptually engage with issues related to the strategic sport marketing of organisations. The module is designed to ensure the students gain the underpinning knowledge and competencies to serve as managers in the fastest growing global industry of the 21st Century.
Sports, Management and the Law
This module enables participants to examine a range of aspects of law which specifically affect the organization of sport. It will familiarise participants with a range of legal principles and then apply these to a range of sporting situations. Participants will engage through a block series of lectures, seminars and group activities and make ideally links between these aspects and their own organizational situations.
Sports Management Internship
This module is designed to enhance the employability of the student, whilst giving them experience of a workplace environment. In considering this they produce both reflective reports which help aid skills development, and also an internship project in which they review the theoretical concepts encountered on the course to their live management issue.
We recognise a range of qualifications for admission to our courses. In addition to the specific entry conditions for this course you must also meet the University’s General Entrance Requirements.
In this section
Students should have normally obtained a good second class Honours degree from a recognised institution. The degree can be in any discipline as the MSc Sport Management course is designed for graduates of all disciplines.
Students on the MSc Sport Management course have a truly international flavour and in recent years students have come from across five continents to study the course. Students on the course typically come from a wide range of academic backgrounds including the arts, humanities, engineering and sciences.
In order to apply for entry students shall normally have gained:
• A second class Honours degree or better from a University of the United Kingdom
or Republic of Ireland, or from another institution which has been recognised by the
Senate for this purpose; OR
• An equivalent standard in a professional or other qualification recognised by the
Senate for this purpose.
English Language Requirements
English language requirements for international applicants
The minimum requirement for this course is Academic IELTS 6.0 with no band score less than 5.5. Trinity ISE: Pass at level III also meets this requirement for Tier 4 visa purposes.
Ulster recognises a number of other English language tests and comparable IELTS equivalent scores.
Teaching and learning assessment
The course is taught by experts from Ulster University, and we also invite a range of guest speakers from industry to come and present to students.
We try to ensure that the content of modules and their assessment is as practical and work focused as possible, Assessment is via coursework, both group and individual, with presentations forming part of the criteria in some modules.
Careers & opportunities
In this section
There are a variety of careers available to graduates of the course. Many students take up roles within the sports industry, for example in consultancy, marketing or administration. Other graduates have made use of the more generic business and management skills that are taught on the course to gain employment with organisations such as Apple, for example.
Many students use their internship as an opportunity to build links with employers. Over the past few years for example, students have worked for organisations such as the Belfast Giants, Ulster Sport Academy, Sport Ireland, Adidas, Ecco and the IFA.
Work placement / study abroad
An internship forms an essential part of this course. For those students who are already in work however, their project can be based within their current organisation allowing an in-depth investigation of a current business issue and creating value for the organisation.
Students have worked in local sport goods manufacturers and clothing organisations such as Ecco and Adidas as well as with sports clubs, teams and organisations such as the Belfast Giants, Ulster Rugby and the IFA, for example.
Those who teach on the course are experts in their subject area, many are engaged in related research and some staff also have experience of working in industry before taking up post at Ulster University.
We also bring in guest lecturers from industry to further enhance the classroom experience and bring a practitioner perspective.
Fees and funding
In this section
Fees (total cost)
Important notice - fees information
Fees illustrated are based on 18/19 entry and are subject to an annual increase. Correct at the time of publishing. Terms and conditions apply. Additional mandatory costs are highlighted where they are known in advance. There are other costs associated with university study.
Visit our Fees pages for full details of fees
- Northern Ireland & EU:
- £13,680.00 Scholarships available
Scholarships, awards and prizes
Prizes are awarded each year on the course to mark the outstanding achievements of students.
Additional mandatory costs
Tuition fees and costs associated with accommodation, travel (including car parking charges), and normal living are a part of university life.
Where a course has additional mandatory expenses we make every effort to highlight them. These may include residential visits, field trips, materials (e.g. art, design, engineering) inoculations, security checks, computer equipment, uniforms, professional memberships etc.
We aim to provide students with the learning materials needed to support their studies. Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. Computer suites and free wifi is also available on each of the campuses.
There will be some additional costs to being a student which cannot be itemised and these will be different for each student. You may choose to purchase your own textbooks and course materials or prefer your own computer and software. Printing and binding may also be required. There are additional fees for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines. Additional costs vary from course to course.
Students choosing a period of paid work placement or study abroad as part of their course should be aware that there may be additional travel and living costs as well as tuition fees.
Please contact the course team for more information.
"From a Continuous Professional Development point of view I was keen to study a Master's course related to my employment. With a background of 13 years full time experience in the Sports Development and Community Sport Sector and currently being employed as a Sports Outreach Manager I felt this particular course was best suited to me. I knew the range of modules covered had the best mix of areas I was familiar with but also areas which would challenge my comfort zone. On top of this I always felt I had never fully achieved academically to the best of my ability and saw the course as somewhat of a personal challenge to finally excel academically.
I loved and hated the course all at the same time. On a personal level, working full time and studying proved to be a challenge in terms of timetabling suitable time for reading and assignment completion. Whilst the workload is extensive the support from teaching staff is great. From a professional point of view however, I know for sure that I have been able to take knowledge from every module (without exception) and practically apply them positively at work.
There is no doubt in my mind that the course has helped me professionally. Completing assignments informed by up to date research has increased my knowledge immeasurably in areas which are critical to my work. This has helped when planning strategically in making more informed decisions and when considering operational elements of the work I do. The course was both a journey of self-discovery in terms of academic achievement but also an eye opener into many new areas which have helped me professionally. For me this is the biggest positive influence the course has had, the legacy for me is applying my learning from the course to my working life. I genuinely believe that completion of this Masters course will be of great benefit to me moving forward as I now have the Academic qualifications to back up my experience."