"To lead, inspire and shape the future of sport"
The main aim of the course is to produce graduates who are equipped with the key knowledge and skills to develop coaching within Northern Ireland to assist with lifelong participation in sport or physical activity, excellence and leadership. This will be achieved by accruing and disseminating a body of knowledge from key experts involved in coach development both directly and in partnership with governing bodies in sport, utilising innovative and appropriate communication to benefit all learners. This would be a cutting-edge programme that will support those involved in coaching and link with the needs of the industry.
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About this course
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The aim of this course is to facilitate the continuing development of sports coaching professionals and to enhance their knowledge and skills appropriate to the management and control of the diverse components within the field of sports coaching, commensurate with the requirements of the profession, their employers, associated professional bodies and community, commercial and industrial interests. The MSc is offered in both full- and part-time modes. Students will complete 180 credit points for the award of MSc, with the option to exit after completing 120 credits for the award of Postgraduate Diploma. Full-Time students will take 60 credits in each of the three semesters, while the part-time students will take 30 credits in each semester of years one and two and 60 credits in year three. There are six taught modules on the course, all of which are compulsory. Three of the programme modules are 30 credits points whilst the Research Project Preparation and Professional Development are 15 credit point modules and the dissertation is 60 credits (the dissertation is not necessary for those who choose to exit with the PgDip). Students wishing to graduate with a PGCert will study 60 credits which is offered in semester 1 of the programme. All modules are compulsory, with students being offered the opportunity to choose what aspect of coaching and specific sport they will write about for their assessments. The Dissertation module also provides students with a choice of topic.
This programme will be delivered in FT and PT mode. The means of delivering will be in blocks throughout each semester of study.
- September 2017
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.
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Personal Skill and Leadership Development
This moudle is designed to provide the student with an opportunity to develop their leadership and mentoring skills as well as identify and support peer and work colleagues to develop their leadership and mentoring skills. This module aims to enable students to further develop their personal and professional skills.
Motor Cognition and Performance
Through a series of lectures and tutor-led practical sessions, students will be able to critically reflect on the theoretical and practical importance of motor learning and performance. Students will also develop experience delivering a movement skills programme.
Performance Analysis and Monitoring
In order to provide optimal outcome for the sports person and the career development of the sports coach, it is essential to understand the key scientific, professional and practical concepts of coaching and athlete/ team performance. This module will advance the students? ability to manage and coordinate the range of support services within coaching, exploring the link between research and science based concepts of athlete monitoring with practical strategies to inform coaching, business and welfare based decisions to achieve maximal benefits against agreed outcomes. This module draws upon the student's previous knowledge and skills to ensure a multifaceted approach to the development of professional practice in Sports Coaching
Advanced Coaching Process
The professionalisation of coaching is a contemporary issue from both an academic and industry perspective. This module utilises an applied industry context to encourage students to critically reflect on existing theory, draw upon existing knowledge and experience to support the development of personal and professional skills.
Research Project Preparation in Sports Coaching
This module will engage the student in critically anlysing research problems from an organisational context. Students will be awarded the opportunity to select and critcially evaluate appropriate methodological approaches for undertaking research acknowledging strengths and limitations explicitily.
Research Project in Sports Coaching
This module provides students with the opportunity to conduct an independent research project in an area of their choosing within the cognitive field of sports coaching. They will present their findings and engage in critical assessment of their work by way of a written research project of between 12,000 and 16,000 words in total.
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.
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Applicants must: (a) have gained; (i) a second class honours degree or better in a related discipline (for example – BSc Sports Coaching, BSc Psychology; BSc Sport and Exercise Psychology; BSc Sports Studies; Sports and Exercise Sciences or Physical Education) from a university of the United Kingdom or the Republic of Ireland, or from a recognised national awarding body, or from an institution of another country which has been recognised as being of an equivalent standard; or (ii) an equivalent standard (normally 50%) in a Graduate Diploma, Graduate Certificate, Postgraduate Certificate or Postgraduate Diploma or an approved alternative qualification; and (b) provide evidence of competence in written and spoken English (GCSE grade C or equivalent); In exceptional circumstances, as an alternative to (a) (i) or (a) (ii) and/or (b), where an individual has substantial and significant experiential learning, a portfolio of written evidence demonstrating the meeting of graduate qualities (including subject-specific outcomes, as determined by the Course Committee) may be considered as an alternative entrance route. Evidence used to demonstrate graduate qualities may not be used for exemption against modules within the programme.
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 will aim to deliver a range of learning experiences that will enable students to
develop their knowledge and skills (at Level 7) and support the development of Graduate
Qualities. The primary aim is to encourage students to become active and motivated learners, to question and critically analyse subject material and make specific reference to the role of sports coaching in addressing change in a sports coaching environment. Successful students will be able to achieve this prime aim in the first instance by employing scientific theories, concepts and empirical knowledge in their practice. To further help fulfil this aim, the course team encourages critical thinking, creative and strategic skills in students.This is directly in line with two of the University’s strategic learning and teaching aims, these being to promote and foster creativity and innovation in curriculum design and delivery, and to promote learning, professionalism and employability through the integration of academic theory and relevant professional and vocational experience. Creativity is defined here in its broadest sense to include critically informed approaches to existing issues in sports coaching, as well as innovative ways of delivering and evaluating practices to enhance the learning of all involved. Thus, it has direct relevance for the development and enhancement of professional and practical skills. The breadth and relevance of the curriculum, the resources available to students, the flexible options for attendance coupled with the variety in teaching, learning and assessment methods are anchored in the University’s strategic learning and teaching aims, particularly in seeking to enhance the overall student learning experience and seeking to target, recruit and retain a diverse range of students.
Teaching, learning and assessment takes a wide variety of forms, and in order to achieve
this, approaches will vary across modules depending on the prescribed requirements. All students have on-line access to a programme handbook, as well as a distinct Course Support Area on BB Learn, made available at the start of the academic year. This details the organisation of teaching and learning, it describes the programme-wide arrangements for submission and return of assessment as well as specific information regarding the expectations that the programme team will have of each student. Individual module learning will also be supported by the provision of module handbooks including the module descriptor, module content, assessment information and any other material considered relevant for learning and teaching.
Exemptions and transferability
Exemptions from modules will be on a case by case basis depending on the prior learning of the student cohort. Regulations of the University in relation to credits will also be taken into correspondence fo each student and their learning.
Careers & opportunities
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The climate for developing sport and coaching in Northern Ireland and the UK has never been more positive. With major international events being hosted here, coach education and development have become a major focus for policy and funding decisions by Governmental Departments. The establishment of the UKCC across four levels and different coaching contexts being developed, this has provided an opportunity to modernise existing coach qualification and learning programmes.
Graduates who successful achieve sports coaching degrees fulfil roles in a wide range of sport and non-sport related organisations.
Sport Governing Bodies
·Strength and Conditioning coach
·Sports Development Officer
·Active Schools Coordinator
·Physical education teacher
·High school coach
·University coach development officer
·Director of Sport
·Full-or part-time coach
The expectation of what makes an expert coach is growing and there is a need therefore for coaches of elite athletes or teams (at all levels) to become more highly qualified which will be achieved by continuing in education at postgraduate level.
Work placement / study abroad
There are a range of approaches that will be utilised in this programme with regards to work based learning from minimal workplace guidance in some modules to full mentoring support in the Advanced Coaching Process module which entails the academic mentor viewing the student in their coaching environment. The value of this model of work-based learning is that it enables students to receive observational assessment in the workplace. All assessments will be reflective in nature which will ensure the engagement of work based practice.
Fees and funding
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Fees (total cost)
Important notice - fees information
Please note fees displayed are for 2017/18 Academic Entry. Fees are correct at the time of publishing. Additional mandatory costs are highlighted where they are known in advance. There are other costs associated with university study.
Visit our Fees pages to find out more
- Northern Ireland & EU:
- £13,240.00 Scholarships available
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.