Sport and Exercise Science MSc

Postgraduate (12 months, 28 months full-time, part-time)



Part-time teaching times

Semester 1: Monday 9am-5pm
Semester 2: Monday 9am-5pm


If you’re passionate about sport and exercise science and want to have an impact on future generations, the research skills you’ll develop on our MSc Sport and Exercise Science course will prepare you for a rewarding career. Our British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES) accredited lab allows you to secure real-world experience and employability skills, working across a number of performance sport settings.

Full description


Depending on your research focus you could enter a career in clinical- biomechanics, exercise physiology, teaching, advanced sports coaching, sports science support, sports consultancy, the NHS or further academic study. With our MSc in Sport and Exercise Science course you’re in the perfect position to continue your academic career and move up to our Sport and Exercise Sciences PhD.

Modules & assessment

Core modules

  • Advanced Research Practice in Exercise Science
    We'll give you a theoretical framework to investigate the research methods in sport and exercise sciences at the post-graduate level. Throughout this module, you'll be encouraged to develop an increasingly autonomous and critical approach to research. You'll be challenged to develop your research philosophy; what it is to research and the impact this can have on society, as well as effectively analyse data using a range of advanced techniques used in sport and exercise science research. This will develop your critical understanding of the principles of data collection and analysis for the sport scientist using various higher level methods. You'll become a critical researcher through being able to draw conclusions using multiple sets of data, effectively compare and contrast data and use literature to support ideas and / or theories. Our module is driven by real-world research questions with example data sets provided to facilitate understanding of statistics. You'll learn through a combination of seminars, practical sessions and mainly online through our Virtual Learning Environment(VLE). You'll gain a wide range of highly useful transferable, research and analysis skills which are highly relevant in the research and employment environment.
  • Contemporary Issues in Sport and Exercise Science
    Develop an awareness of some of the wider existing issues which are relevant to and affecting the sport and exercise scientist. Understanding the potential problems or issues faced by the sport scientist in the modern exercise science environment will allow you to be pro-active in avoiding or dealing with issues in a professional manner. We'll link some of these problems to the wider exercise science industry so that you can critically consider your long term career aspirations. You'll consider the sport and exercise scientist across the spectrum of employment scenarios and reflect on the different skill set required as the professional role changes relative to the type of the client/athlete and experience of practitioner. You'll gain an insight into national governing agencies and how their remit affects professional practice within sport and exercise science and associated areas. An in-depth investigation in to legal, ethical and equitable practice of the exercise scientist will be considered. You'll be required to identify where they are positioned with regards to achieving longer term career aspirations. Assessment will, in conjunction with your tutor, require you to research and critically discuss a contemporary issue of your choice. You'll also complete an in-class presentation on your contemporary issue as well as completing a skills audit and action plan to map your journey in to the sport and exercise profession.
  • Advanced Modalities in Sport and Exercise Science
    Develop an appreciation of how advanced modalities (i.e. methods/techniques) and the data sets that it generates are influencing sport and exercise science research. We'll give you a cross discipline historical synopsis on this area, giving you an understanding of how data quality and volume has created new opportunities in research. Understanding the precision and reproducibility of different methods and technology is important in research, so we'll identify the reliability and validity of different modalities and discuss acceptable boundaries. In the second part of the module, you'll work with tutors and independently gain a high level understanding and appreciation of the advanced modality which will form the basis of your research project. You'll be given opportunities to use and participate in data collection and analysis episodes, enhancing your understanding of the method, process and/or technology relevant to you. We'll assess your learning through a critical essay comprehensively reviewing a specific process or technical component related to the modality of your choice. Additionally, you'll be required to develop a high quality innovative 5 minute online media communication tool which will detail a unique aspect of the process or technical device of your choice, to be used to educate another exercise science professional at postgraduate level.
  • Research Project - Planning and Development
    Gain an introductory framework for working as a postgraduate researcher. You’ll cover project design and planning, critically reflecting on how a research study would come to fruition. You’ll explore journey of the research study, reflecting on the aspects of time management, working in a research team or group and how to prioritise work. This will lead you into a wider discussion of the aspects of research design and the design process. What makes a good study, what are the potential limitations to studies and what differentiates a postgraduate research study from that completed at the undergraduate level? You’ll also debate the aspects of systematic reviews and meta-analysis and how the completion of literature-based reviews is critical to the development of the research question and reflect on the strengths and weaknesses of each approach and how the data provided can be interpreted and evaluated. Throughout the module you’ll develop your scientific voice and focus on how do you express yourself through scientific communication, both verbal and written. This will be accompanied by an introduction to writing for publications.
  • Research Project - Pilot testing and Development
    Continue to progress working as a postgraduate researcher and develop critical reflection skills as your research plans are finalised by evaluating earlier planning documents and revisiting the literature. This process will lead you to further discussion on research process and design before your plans are confirmed. Part of the planning process will require you to complete a pilot study linked to your research and you’ll reflect on the rationale for pilot testing in the scope of the research design. Throughout the module you’ll develop your academic skills, how you express yourself through scientific communication, both verbal and written. There’ll be continued development of skills with regards to writing for publications, considering where your research may be published in the future. You’ll be assessed by an oral presentation and a reflective piece considering the outcome of the pilot study and how this may influence a final research plan.
  • Research Project
    You now have the opportunity to select and explore in-depth, a topic that is of interest and relevant to your course in order to develop a significant level of expertise. You will: demonstrate your ability to generate significant and meaningful questions in relation to your specialism; undertake independent research using appropriate, recognised methods based on current theoretical research knowledge, critically understand method and its relationship to knowledge; develop a critical understanding of current knowledge in relation to the chosen subject and to critically analyse and evaluate information and data, which may be complex or contradictory, and draw meaningful and justifiable conclusions; develop the capability to expand or redefine existing knowledge, to develop new approaches to changing situations and/or develop new approaches to changing situations and contribute to the development of best practice; demonstrate an awareness of and to develop solutions to ethical dilemmas likely to arise in their research or professional practice; communicate these processes in a clear and elegant fashion, and evaluate your work from the perspective of an autonomous reflective learner.


Throughout the course, we’ll use a range of assessment methods to help you measure your progress. These include written reports, essays, reflective working, data collection online and seminar discussions, audits and technology development.

Where you'll study

Your faculty

The Faculty of Science & Engineering is one of the largest of the four faculties at Anglia Ruskin University. Whether you choose to study with us full-time or part-time, on campus or at a distance, there’s an option whatever your level – from a foundation degree, BSc, MSc, PhD or professional doctorate.

Whichever course you pick, you’ll gain the theory and practical skills needed to progress with confidence. Join us and you could find yourself learning in the very latest laboratories or on field trips or work placements with well-known and respected companies. You may even have the opportunity to study abroad.

Everything we do in the faculty has a singular purpose: to provide a world-class environment to create, share and advance knowledge in science, technology and engineering fields. This is key to all of our futures.

Where can I study?

Lord Ashcroft Building on our Cambridge campus

Our campus is close to the centre of Cambridge, often described as the perfect student city.

Explore our Cambridge campus

Specialist facilities

Our sport and exercise science laboratories contain industry-standard equipment including 3D motion capture suite, high speed treadmills, metabolic carts for the assessment of cardiorespiratory responses, force plates, hydrostatic weighing tank for assessing body composition, full haematology suite, an array of cycle and rowing ergometers, GPS systems for field work and eye-tracking glasses. You’ll also have access at any time to a wide range of sports science software packages.

Fees & funding

Course fees

UK & EU students, 2019/20 (per year)


UK & EU students, 2019/20 (part-time, per year)


International students starting 2019/20 (per year)


International students starting 2019/20 (part-time, per year)


Important fee notes

The part-time course fee assumes that you're studying at half the rate of a full-time student (50% intensity). Course fees will be different if you study over a longer period. All fees are for guidance purposes only.

How do I pay my fees?

Paying upfront

You won't need to pay fees until you've accepted an offer to attend, but you must pay your fees up-front, in full or in instalments.

How to pay your fees directly

International students

You must pay your fees up-front, in full or in instalments. You will also be asked for a deposit or sponsorship letter/financial guarantee. Details will be in your offer letter.

Paying your fees

Funding for UK & EU students

It’s important to decide how to fund your course before applying. Use our finance guide for postgraduate students to learn more about postgraduate loans and other funding options.

We offer a fantastic range of ARU scholarships, which provide extra financial support while you're at university. Find out more about eligibility and how to apply.

Funding for international students

We offer a number of scholarships, as well as an early payment discount. Explore your options:

Entry requirements

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Important additional notes

Our published entry requirements are a guide only and our decision will be based on your overall suitability for the course as well as whether you meet the minimum entry requirements. Other equivalent qualifications may be accepted for entry to this course, please email for further information.

When applying you’ll need to select a research topic from one of our areas of research expertise. To find out more about the areas we can supervise for your research project download our MSc Sport and Exercise Science research areas PDF below.

The selection of a research topic as part of the application process is important. We encourage you to contact the academic associated with the research topic directly before submitting your application, for more information and to confirm they will be able to support your research topic.

MSc Sport and Exercise Science research areas PDF

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you'll need to make sure you meet our English language requirements for postgraduate courses.

International students

We welcome applications from international and EU students, and accept a range of international qualifications.

Improving your English language skills

If you don't meet our English language requirements, we offer a range of courses which could help you achieve the level required for entry.

We also provide our own English Language Proficiency Test (ELPT) in the UK and overseas. To find out if we are planning to hold an ELPT in your country, contact our country managers.

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Get more information

UK & EU applicants

01245 68 68 68

Enquire online

International applicants

+44 1245 68 68 68

Enquire online