Sport and Exercise Nutrition - PgDip/MSc
This programme provides a postgraduate pathway for graduates who are interested in pursuing a career in the area of sport and exercise nutrition.Take a look
This programme provides a postgraduate pathway for graduates who are interested in pursuing a career in the area of sport and exercise nutrition.
Diet and nutrition significantly affect sport and exercise performance. The food and fluid which an athlete consumes before, during and after training and competition affects health and body composition, as well as performance in, and recovery from the effects of exercise. Sound knowledge of sport and exercise nutrition can therefore ensure a healthy balance between exercise and diet for a range of athletes, from amateur to elite levels within different sports. This programme provides a postgraduate pathway for graduates who are interested in pursuing a career in the area of sport and exercise nutrition. As an accredited course, the programme achieves the competencies required for graduate registration with the British Dietetic Association (BDA) Sport and Exercise Nutrition Register (SENr) meaning those students graduating with the PgDip/MSc are automatically eligible to register with the SENr as a graduate registrant.
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About this course
In this section
The programme is delivered by distance learning. Students enrolled for the PgDip Sport and Exercise Nutrition course need to undertake modules to a total of 120 credit points and for the MSc undertake an additional research project of 60 credit points. Modules studied will include: nutrition and exercise metabolism, nutritional assessment, recommendations and requirements, sport-specific nutrition issues, research design and biostatistics, nutrition for health and disease prevention, evidence-based practice in healthcare sciences, practical sports nutrition and the sport and exercise nutrition research project.
The full-time programme (over 1 calendar year; i.e. three academic semesters) is comprised of taught modules in semester one and two and the research project which is completed in semester three. All modules are delivered by distance-learning.
- September 2019
Teaching, Learning and Assessment
The content for each course is summarised on the relevant course page, along with an overview of the modules that make up the course.
Each course is approved by the University and meets the expectations of:
- the relevant generic national Qualification Descriptor
- the applicable Subject Benchmark Statement
- the requirements of any professional, regulatory, statutory and accrediting bodies.
Attendance and Independent Study
As part of your course induction, you will be provided with details of the organisation and management of the course, including attendance and assessment requirements - usually in the form of a timetable. For full-time courses, the precise timetable for each semester is not confirmed until close to the start date and may be subject to some change in the early weeks as all courses settle into their planned patterns. For part-time courses which require attendance on particular days and times, an expectation of the days and periods of attendance will be included in the letter of offer. A course handbook is also made available.
Courses comprise modules for which the notional effort involved is indicated by its credit rating. Each credit point represents 10 hours of student effort. Undergraduate courses typically contain 10- or 20-credit modules (more usually 20) and postgraduate course typically 15- or 30-credit modules.
The normal study load expectation for an undergraduate full-time course of study in the standard academic year is 120 credit points. This amounts to around 36-42 hours of expected teaching and learning per week, inclusive of attendance requirements for lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical work, fieldwork or other scheduled classes, private study, and assessment. Part-time study load is the same as full-time pro-rata, with each credit point representing 10 hours of student effort.
Postgraduate Master’s courses typically comprise 180 credits, taken in three semesters when studied full-time. A Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) comprises 60 credits and can usually be completed on a part-time basis in one year. A 120-credit Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip) can usually be completed on a part-time basis in two years.
Class contact times vary by course and type of module. Typically, for a module predominantly delivered through lectures you can expect at least 3 contact hours per week (lectures/seminars/tutorials). Laboratory classes often require a greater intensity of attendance in blocks. Some modules may combine lecture and laboratory. The precise model will depend on the course you apply for and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. Prospective students will be consulted about any significant changes.
Assessment methods vary and are defined explicitly in each module. Assessment can be a combination of examination and coursework but may also be only one of these methods. Assessment is designed to assess your achievement of the module’s stated learning outcomes. You can expect to receive timely feedback on all coursework assessment. The precise assessment will depend on the module and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. You will be consulted about any significant changes.
Coursework can take many forms, for example: essay, report, seminar paper, test, presentation, dissertation, design, artefacts, portfolio, journal, group work. The precise form and combination of assessment will depend on the course you apply for and the module. Details will be made available in advance through induction, the course handbook, the module specification and the assessment timetable. The details are subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. You will be consulted about any significant changes.
Normally, a module will have 4 learning outcomes, and no more than 2 items of assessment. An item of assessment can comprise more than one task. The notional workload and the equivalence across types of assessment is standardised.
Calculation of the Final Award
The class of Honours awarded in Bachelor’s degrees is usually determined by calculation of an aggregate mark based on performance across the modules at Levels 5 and 6, (which correspond to the second and third year of full-time attendance).
Level 6 modules contribute 70% of the aggregate mark and Level 5 contributes 30% to the calculation of the class of the award. Classification of integrated Master’s degrees with Honours include a Level 7 component. The calculation in this case is: 50% Level 7, 30% Level 6, 20% Level 5. At least half the Level 5 modules must be studied at the University for Level 5 to be included in the calculation of the class.
All other qualifications have an overall grade determined by results in modules from the final level of study. In Master’s degrees of more than 200 credit points the final 120 points usually determine the overall grading.
The University employs over 1,000 suitably qualified and experienced academic staff - 59% have PhDs in their subject field and many have professional body recognition.
Courses are taught by staff who are Professors (25%), Readers, Senior Lecturers (18%) or Lecturers (57%).
We require most academic staff to be qualified to teach in higher education: 82% hold either Postgraduate Certificates in Higher Education Practice or higher. Most academic staff (81%) are accredited fellows of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) - the university sector professional body for teaching and learning. Many academic and technical staff hold other professional body designations related to their subject or scholarly practice.
The profiles of many academic staff can be found on the University’s departmental websites and give a detailed insight into the range of staffing and expertise. The precise staffing for a course will depend on the department(s) involved and the availability and management of staff. This is subject to change annually and is confirmed in the timetable issued at the start of the course.
Occasionally, teaching may be supplemented by suitably qualified part-time staff (usually qualified researchers) and specialist guest lecturers. In these cases, all staff are inducted, mostly through our staff development programme ‘First Steps to Teaching’. In some cases, usually for provision in one of our out-centres, Recognised University Teachers are involved, supported by the University in suitable professional development for teaching.
Figures correct for academic year 2019-2020.
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
Evidence-Based Practice in Healthcare Sciences
A work-based module where students review, after consultation with their line manager, an aspect of their professional practice identifying evidence to support their recommendations, initiate the keeping of a professional reflective diary and submit a report of evidence to support their action research plan. Students currently not in employment will be given advice on suitable topics from the module co-ordinator.
Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism
This module will provide an introduction to the biochemical principles of exercise metabolism and will highlight the importance of nutrition in enhancing athletic performance.
Nutritional Assessment, Recommendations and Requirements
This module will introduce the principles of nutrition assessment. It will review the anthropometric, biochemical and dietary assessment methodologies, including the advantages and limitations of each.
Sport-Specific Nutrition Issues
This module discusses sport-specific nutrition issues and provides students with an opportunity to study in-depth current issues and challenges facing practitioners working within the area of sports nutrition.
Research Methods and Biostatistics for Food and Nutrition
This module provides the foundation for research methods for food and nutrition sciences. The design of experimental investigations and the use of statistical methods are discussed. The module requires the completion of a critical evaluation of published literature and development of the research project proposal and problem-based assessments; issues relating to research governance are also included.
Nutrition for Health and Disease Prevention
This module considers the relationship between nutrition, health and disease. The module provides the student with the opportunity to further develop an understanding of the human body and how good nutritional practices can be effective for good health and disease prevention.
Practical Sports Nutrition
This module considers the practical application of sports nutrition knowledge. The module provides the student with the opportunity to further develop their skills when working with a diverse range of athletes and how good nutritional practices can be effective in improving exercise performance.
Sport and Exercise Nutrition Research Project
Carrying out an original, independent piece of research from the formulation of a research question through to reporting findings in accordance with the conventions of the academic area is an important part of the research training provided by Masters level study. This module provides students with an opportunity for students to carry out an original independent piece of research in the area of sport and exercise nutrition and present findings in the form of a journal manuscript and a conference presentation.
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
Applicants must hold a degree or equivalent in a related discipline (for example – BSc Honours in Biochemistry, Dietetics, Food and Nutrition, Human Nutrition, Physiology, Sport and Exercise Science, Sports Science or other relevant degree discipline) or demonstrate their ability to undertake the course through the accreditation of prior experiential learning. Applicants must also demonstrate evidence of competence in written and spoken English (e.g. GCSE grade C or equivalent). Students holding an IOC Diploma in Sports Nutrition are eligible to apply for direct entry to the MSc programme following completion of a short research proposal module (10 credits) prior to completing the sport and exercise nutrition research project (60 credits) following approval of a suitable research project in consultation with the project module co-ordinator.
English Language Requirements
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.
Careers & opportunities
In this section
Career options within sport and exercise nutrition are expanding and include becoming a freelance sports nutritionist/performance nutritionist or working with sporting/government organisations. Professional Recognition as an accredited course, the programme achieves the competencies required for graduate registration with the British Dietetic Association (BDA) Sport and Exercise Nutrition Register (SENr) meaning those students graduating with the PgDip/MSc are automatically eligible to register with the SENr as a graduate registrant, and following appropriate professional experience graduates are encouraged to pursue full registration. For more information please visit www.senr.org.uk.
This programme achieves the competencies required for graduate registration of the British Dietetic Association (BDA) Sport and Exercise Nutrition Register (SENr).
Fees and funding
In this section
Fees (total cost)
Important notice - fees information
Fees illustrated are based on 19/20 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:
- £14,060.00 Scholarships available
Where the postgraduate course selected offers multiple awards (e.g. PG Cert, PG Dip, Master’s), please note that the price displayed is for the complete master’s programme. Postgraduate certificates and diplomas are charged at a pro-rata basis. Find out more
Additional mandatory costs
£20 for a Nutritics software licence.
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.
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