What is the BSc (Hons) in Sport & Exercise Science?
The BSc (Hons) in Sport & Exercise Science is a full-time, four year, honours degree course of study that can be chosen within the Exercise Sciences Common Entry Route. The Sport and Exercise Science programme will give graduates the knowledge and skills to evaluate sport and athletic performance from a biomechanical, physiological and psychological perspective. They will then be capable of working with athletes and coaches on an ongoing basis to improve performance, health and well-being. The programme will emphasise the traditional sports science disciplines of biomechanics, physiology and psychology but also newer applied sports science disciplines including strength and conditioning, sports nutrition and team performance analysis.
At the end of the programme, graduates will be able to:
Measure, analyse and evaluate athletic performance using sports science laboratory apparatus and analysis software
Evaluate psychological profiles and mood states using sports psychology assessment tools
Assist athletes and coaches in improving performance during the training year and in preparation for major competitions in challenging environments
Plan sports-specific strength and conditioning programmes for athletes and teams
Assist athletes and coaches in distinguishing fact from fiction with reference to the sports science research literature
Department staff have extensive experience providing sports science support to elite athletes and teams. Staff currently or recently
Assist elite teams and athletes of the region in monitoring body composition changes during the training year
Work with intercounty GAA teams and various athletes in strength and conditioning, psychology and nutritional support roles
Provide ongoing performance testing for elite cyclists and triathletes as well as teams
Work with the Sport Ireland Institute to assist elite student athlete development
Are accredited sports psychology service providers with the Institute of Sport, working with Olympic athletes and teams
Provided sports science support to the Irish Paralympic team over 2 Olympic cycles
Provided sports psychology and backup team support at the Olympic Games in London and Rio
Laboratories and apparatus available for practical classes and research projects include 3 human performance laboratories, a high-performance gym, DEXA body composition analyser, Dartfish performance analysis software. Certain classes are delivered in the teaching and laboratory facilities of the WIT ARENA.
A 12-week work placement offers supervised experience in a sport and exercise science environment. The Department has an extensive network of placement opportunities or students may be able to organise their own. Examples include:
Undertaking performance analysis with Premiership football clubs
Assisting with strength and conditioning programmes with professional rugby clubs
Personal trainer in community and private enterprises
Providing sports science support to athletes or teams
Working in sports science centres and laboratories
Research and Project Work
Students in the programme have an opportunity to experience the full research process culminating in the completion of a dissertation in the final year of the programme. Students will benefit from exposure to the sport and exercise science PhD research ongoing in the Department including:
evaluation of functional movement screening for injury prevention
relative age effect in soccer talent development
psychological distress and mental health in jockeys
sprint performance and resistance-based training interventions
physiological demands of horse racing
career transitions in student athletes
REPS Ireland recognised fitness instructor awards are built into the programme, including Fitness Instruction, Group Fitness Instruction and Personal Training that can be obtained by the end of year 2.
Teaching, Learning and Assessment
The programme combines classroom teaching, tutorials with practical experience through exercise science laboratories and work experience. Assessment approaches utilise continuous assessment, practical examinations, group work and written examinations.