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BSc Health, Physical Activity and Sport

UCAS Code LL34

The BSc (Hons) degree course in Health, Physical Activity and Sport (HPAS) is an innovative, multidisciplinary course, which seeks to enhance the skills and expertise of those wishing to further their careers in a range of organisations in the fields of health promotion, education, fitness, physical activity, physical education (PE), and sport. The course will also appeal to those with an active involvement in working with young people in formal and informal settings and also provides opportunities to proceed to post-graduate courses in education, health promotion, sport science, sports development and sports coaching.

Teaching & Learning

Opened in 2007, Orchard Building provides state of the art facilities for HPAS students.  Facilities include a sports hall, dance studio, exercise laboratory, fitness suite and seminar rooms providing excellent facilities to deliver the course in comfortable surroundings.

The team of lecturers is drawn from a range of backgrounds - physical education, sports development, health promotion and leisure management.  The staff team is also supported by a Course Consultative Committee which includes representatives from industry to advise on the content of the degree. 

In order to allow students to build on the skills, knowledge and expertise which they have already developed before entering the course, the staff provide a supportive and flexible approach to the modules. Key Skills are also developed throughout the modules, during all three years of the course. The importance of information and communication technologies (ICT) is acknowledged through workshops which are available to students in addition to the degree modules.

As students gain confidence and expertise, Years 2 and 3 of the course require greater amounts of self-directed study accompanied by project work as well as a research-based project (Dissertation) in Year 3. This approach will facilitate the development of effective practitioners.

A recent development in the College is the introduction of the Student Communication Centre which is staffed by students and provides advice and support in relation to the skills needed for students to fulfil their potential at undergraduate level.

Entry Requirements




Minimum C in Maths, English & Science

GCE / VCE Grades


GCE A Level Subjects Required

Physical Education / Sports Studies / Biology / Home Economics

VCE A Level Subjects Required

Leisure & Recreation / Health & Social Care 12-unit award + contrasting 6-unit award or GCE A level


65% average

Other Factors

GCSE Profile / Personal Statement/ Reference



Course Structure

The course is made up of 18 modules over three years, with the equivalent six modules to be taken per year.  The modules include a blend of practical and academic elements and a period of work placement which helps students to develop their thinking about career options.  The placement also provides important opportunities to develop skills and a context for many modules, particularly a research-based dissertation.

Students may participate in the ERASMUS programme, with the opportunity to study at universities in Austria, Sweden, Malta or Turkey.  In addition, each year, a small number of students take the opportunity of a placement year, working in a relevant field to extend further their knowledge, understanding and skills.

Course Content

The first year of the course includes a foundation in psychology, sociology, human physiology, exercise science, management and practical aspects of PE and sport.  Students entering the course in year one will also develop personal and transferable skills in ICT.  In years two and three, health promotion, exercise and fitness, health and safety, management, and a range of aspects of PE and sport are further developed.  Teaching and learning on the course take place through lectures, seminars and tutorials and include group-work presentations, and a broad range of assessment methods.  The course culminates in a research-based self-directed dissertation which allows students to explore, in depth, a topic of their choice in the areas of health and leisure.  Whilst all modules in year one are compulsory, there is an increasing degree of student choice in the second and third years.

Career Opportunities

The degree programme will provide professional skills and expertise in the broad disciplines of fitness, health, health promotion, physical activity, PE and sport.  It will be of interest to those seeking employment as professionals in these areas, in a wide range of organisations across Northern Ireland and beyond.  During the course, students are offered opportunities to broaden their qualifications and experience in areas such as sports coaching, employability skills and voluntary work.  Each year, a number of students continue their studies after graduation by progressing to post-graduate courses, leading to qualified teacher status, Master's and/or Doctoral level.  The College currently offers a Master's in Education with a specialism in PE.


Access NI: Criminal record checks

It is a legal requirement that all students who are working with children/vulnerable groups are subject to criminal history checks.  They will be required to complete the online Disclosure Form for an ‘Enhanced Disclosure Check’ in order to progress their studies.  The cost of this check is £33 and for BSc Health, Physical Activity & Sport students this is undertaken when they first join the course.

Further information on Access NI can be found by clicking here.