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BSc (Hons) Sport and Exercise Science with Foundation Year

TARIFF: 32 - 56
  • Study Mode: Full time
  • Location: High Wycombe
  • Duration: Four Years
  • Start Date: September 2022

You can also study this course:

Whether your goals are to increase performance of professional sports people, aid talented young players or fight societal issues such as obesity, a sport and exercise science degree from Buckinghamshire New University will help you gain the skills and experience you need to stand out in today’s workplace.
With this British Association of Sports and Exercise Sciences (BASES) endorsed degree, you can gain valuable experience using our state-of-the-art facilities and learn about biomechanics, physiology and psychology, graduating with an in-depth knowledge of sport and exercise science.  
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We understand that when it comes to deciding where you’d like to study, there are a lot of things to consider. Come along to our Open Day and discover why BNU could be the place for you. You can find out more about your course, meet the course team, and get all your questions answered.

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Application Guide

For everything you need to know about applying, check out our Application Guide. You can find useful information for each stage of your application journey – from before you even apply to what to do if you receive an offer, and everything in between.   

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Students' Union

At BNU, we believe in putting our students first. That’s why we’re the only university in the UK to offer free access to such a diverse and exciting range of activities through our SU – all to enrich your university experience. 

Why study this subject?

Sport and exercise science is the application of scientific principles, and research methodology in sport and exercise. You will study the following three core branches of sports science: biomechanics, physiology and sport psychology.

Sport and exercise science attempts to answer questions such as:

  • What happens to the body during physical activity and rest?
  • How and why do injuries occur and how can you prevent them?
  • How does the body and mind react in extreme environments?
  • What can physical activity do to support the prevention and treatment of chronic diseases?
  • How can athletes improve their performance and reach the next level based on scientific understanding of their body?

It’s also an opportunity to develop new theories and gather data in the field through activity-based research. You can conduct experiments doing the things you love - movement, sport and exercise.

After graduation some of the areas you could work is with members of the public and NHS as an exercise scientist. You can also work in sports teams and with professional athletes and local clubs. When considering your career in sports and exercise science, think about what professional accreditations the industry is looking for, such as The British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES) accreditation.

A popular entry point into sports and exercise science (according to the UK government national careers survey) is a university degree covering the core of biomechanics, physiology and psychology, with professional body accreditation.

Why study at Buckinghamshire New University?

Our focus is on improving your employability, helping you gain relevant working experience in sport and exercise science and providing you with an in-depth understanding of the key skills required in the workplace.

Employers today want to see your skills and your work experience. We offer you a chance to get both the skills and the experience and show it off. We do this by giving you the chance to apply your skills wherever possible in simulated real-world environments, using industry standard facilities in the field and in our Human Performance Lab.

This course has been endorsed by the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES), the professional body for sport and exercise sciences in the UK. Graduating with an endorsed degree provides you with a competitive advantage that is recognised nationally and internationally.

Using our partnerships with professional bodies, sports teams, athletes and local schools and colleges we have based your course on what’s needed out in the field today.

The quality of our links to industry speak for themselves. We’re currently linked with Watford FC, Wycombe Wanderers, Reading Ladies WSL and academy teams, Amateur Swimming Association, British Rowing, GB para-athletes and many community level sports clubs, athletes and local schools.

We’ve made sure our lecturers are actively engaged in a professional practice setting and have many years of professional experience in teaching and industry. We are constantly strengthening relationships with high-performance sports organisations and clinical providers giving you even more opportunity to learn from the real industry leaders.

BNU has an inspired and friendly community of lecturers and support staff. We are here for the student, prioritising the student experience, feedback, self-improvement and the things which make university great.

In this course you’ll learn the foundations of sport and exercise science, as well as having the opportunity to practically apply your new knowledge and skills in professional environments, supporting professional athletes currently at the top of their game.

What facilities can I use?

Most of our work with you and our professional partners takes place in the Human Performance, Exercise and Wellbeing Centre. This is where the body can be fully tested and evaluated, using specialist equipment used by sport and exercise scientists in the world of work.

It contains a working clinic and human performance laboratory and the work you will complete here is a step up from your previous studies and helps prepare you for your future career.  

Additionally, the University has a commercially run sports hall and fitness centre giving you the opportunity to learn within a sports centre environment.

The Gateway Gym is on our High Wycombe Campus, with competitive student rates. It contains all you need to gain experience, undertake training, enhance your learning, and develop your fitness levels.

What will I study?

The foundation year is designed to prepare you for undergraduate study and is designed to help you build the skills you need to learn, excel and grow as a person. This sports and exercise science degree aims to cover the three cornerstone subjects of sports and exercise science: biomechanics, physiology and psychology. These are the core skillsets most in demand within the sports and exercise science field.

This course has been endorsed by the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES), the professional body for sport and exercise sciences in the UK. Graduating with an endorsed degree provides you with a competitive advantage that is recognised nationally and internationally.

You will study how the body reacts and measure those reactions, based upon changes to local conditions. We gather data on our findings and offer ways in which we can optimise training for different types of people, using our work to evaluate health, wellbeing and performance for many different body types.

In this course you will study many subjects including sports nutrition, coaching, sports injury and rehabilitation, anatomy, data analysis and how they interact in the world of sport and exercise science.

We will learn how to approach sport performance with a broad and holistic knowledge of coaching, physical development, physical activity, nutrition and anatomy.

You can take to the field and conduct experiments with physical activity, sport, fitness and exercise at its core, either on your own or in groups. Practical lessons are essential to learning.

At the end of the course you will have gained:

  • an understanding of the fundamental principles which underpin applied sport and exercise science in most disciplines it can be applied
  • learn how to analyse and evaluate sport performance and physical fitness needs and adapt athletes based on your findings
  • design and deliver training interventions with the goals of improving health and wellbeing, optimising sport performance and minimising the likelihood of injury through injury prevention techniques
  • work with all fitness levels, from the recreational hobbyist to the elite athlete, to deliver real change and meaningful insights
  • experience of working in applied settings, either professionally or simulated which could be sports clubs and their members, schools and the wider community.

Over the three years you will also focus on other key areas such as self-improvement techniques. You will also have the support of our University to help prepare you for life after uni, such as CV writing, professional skills, communication and teamwork.

In your final year, you’ll also work closely with a lecturer to dive into an area you’re particularly passionate about through your dissertation project.

How will I be taught and assessed?

This course combines underlying scientific theories and practical skills from the sport and exercise science disciplines.

We combine principles from classic disciplines like physiology, biomechanics and sports psychology with skills from contemporary ones like strength and conditioning, sports coaching, performance analysis and nutrition.

You’ll be taught by our incredible teaching team through lectures, practical sessions, seminars and workshops.

Additionally, you will be using our Human Performance Lab to measure body response and look at adaptations to your training plans, test theories and further your understanding of sports science hands on.

Your work will be assessed through a variety of means such as:

  • presentations
  • portfolio assessments
  • viva’s
  • practical assessments
  • time constrained assessments
  • written work.

We want to offer you a broad range of professional skills which set you up for a career after graduation, with the additional option to specialise later down the line with further postgraduate study or using your final year dissertation.

Placements Plus

BNU is a Placements Plus university. So, whatever degree you do, you can be sure there’ll be plenty of industry-relevant opportunities on offer, to help you get into your chosen field.

We’ll also prepare you for work beforehand, with special skills for work training, further boosting your CV, and building skills employers will value. In recognition of the value we place on these skills we have incorporated this experience into your study time.

Placements Plus is all about helping you get some valuable experience under your belt while you’re a student, to increase your choices later, and help you get the graduate-level job you want.

Useful Information

BSc (Hons) Sport and Exercise Science Programme Specification

What are the course entry requirements?

A typical offer will require a UCAS tariff score of: 32 - 56

Applicants who do not meet the minimum requirements for the 3-year undergraduate programme, or those who do not feel fully prepared for a Level 4 course, will be considered for the 4-year programme including a Foundation Year. If you wish to enquire further, please send your query along with any academic evidence or references to

Find out more about our General Entry Requirements.


This provides a guide of the modules that make up your course. You can find more information about how your course is structured on our Academic Advice section.

Year 1 Modules

Preparing for Success Knowledge and Creativity

Preparing for Success Self-development and Responsibility

Inquiry and Research Skills

Introduction to Sport Development and Performance

Year 2 Modules

Introduction to Coaching Theory and Practice

Introduction to Health Physiology

Human Anatomy

Foundations of Exercise Physiology

Data Analysis of Sports and Exercise Science

Foundations of Biomechanics

Foundations of Sport & Exercise Psychology

Fundamentals of Strength and Conditioning

Year 3 Modules

Coaching and Athlete Development (optional)

Research in Sport and Exercise

Applied Exercise Physiology

Cognition and Emotion in Sport and Exercise Psychology (optional)

Sports Nutrition

Applied Biomechanics

Exercise Prescription and Instruction

Performance Analysis in Sport

Applied Sport and Performance Psychology

Year 4 Modules

Contemporary Coaching Issues (optional)

Research Dissertation

Clinical Biomechanics (optional)

Training and Periodization in Physiology and Nutrition (optional)

Professional Issues in Sport and Exercise Psychology (optional)

Sports Injury and Rehabilitation

Exercise Referral

Sports Science in Practice

Skill Acquisition and Learning in Sport

What are the tuition fees


Home, Academic Year 2022 - 2023

£9,250 per year


Overseas/International, Academic Year 2022 - 2023

£14,250 per year

The University is unable to accept any new applications from students who require sponsorship for a student visa to start in September 2022. This is due to the overwhelming popularity of our courses and visa processing timeframes.  Applications are still being taken from students who are already in the UK and hold the right to study.

From September 2022, those students living in the UK or Republic of Ireland, and EU nationals with settled status in the UK, will be considered Home students.

Most courses will involve some additional costs that are not covered by your fees.

You could benefit from financial support through a bursary or scholarship during your time as a student. For more details visit our financial support, bursaries and scholarships section.

Questions about fees?

Contact our Enquiries Team:

0330 123 2023

What are my career prospects?

Throughout your time with us we’ll support you on the route to your chosen career. We’ll help you to develop crucial skills, encouraging you to become enterprising, employable and good leaders. We also help you find employment after graduation. Have a look at our Careers and Employability pages to find out more.

The blend of theoretical, practical and work-based learning you’ll experience in this course will set you up for a career within the fields of high-performance sport or clinical exercise.

Our course will help prepare you for a range of career possibilities, such as:

  • sport and exercise scientist
  • strength and conditioning coach
  • health assessment and screening
  • performance analysis
  • sports coach
  • teacher training
  • health and fitness club management
  • fitness consultancy
  • personal fitness training
  • corporate health advice
  • the armed forces

Graduates can also choose to study for a postgraduate course like MSc Sports Therapy or MSc Sports Performance. You’ll also have the chance to go on to BASES membership which is a key membership and is now becoming required for many jobs in the industry.

Previous graduates have gone on to work in a wide range of roles such as personal trainers, fitness instructors, elite sports science support, graduate sport programmes, and specialists in well regarded organisations.

Course leader

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Rich Collins
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Jade Hewitt
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Phil Woodbridge
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Dr Mark Homer
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