Our lecturers have vast research and applied experience in sports and exercise training, physiology, nutrition, biomechanics and psychology. Working with experts ensures you gain a good mix of theoretical knowledge and hands-on practice, in our first-class facilities and in the local community. We offer module options and placement opportunities which allow you to specialise and work towards your career goals and increase your employability.
Reasons to study Sport and Exercise Science at Kent
Our excellent facilities enhance your learning experience with hands-on practice in our laboratories and custom-built teaching spaces. Our public clinics provide the opportunity for applied real-world experience supporting athletes and the public.Our lecturers have top-level experience in their fields, having worked with the England Football team and Olympians, Science in Sport and Team Sky, as well as links with sports clubs and companies, the NHS and many sporting bodies.Canterbury campus is home to an outstanding sports centre and gym, outdoor pitches, indoor and outdoor tennis and netball courts and plenty of green space as well as more than 60 extra-curricular sports clubs.The programme is endorsed by the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES)If you are already competing at county level or equivalent (at least), you can apply for a sports scholarship from the University.Sports Science at Kent scored 88% overall in the Complete University Guide 2023.Flexible Foundation Year options available.
What you’ll learn
You study the science behind sports performance and physical activity. Topics include anatomy and physiology, biomechanics, sport psychology, sport nutrition and research methods.
Introductory modules cover the nutrition, physiology and psychology aspects of sport and exercise, plus anatomy and biomechanics and the foundations of research methods. You then move on to study more advanced modules covering these topics as well as exercise testing and prescription for special populations and techniques for research analysis required for your dissertation.
In your final year, as well as carrying out an independent research study in sport and exercise science, you take a number of optional modules. These include topics such as sport and exercise psychology, the physiology of training, nutrition and clinical exercise prescription.
Additional work experience can be completed through placements in the sport, health and leisure industry, or sport science support with athletes. There are other opportunities for experience working with us on community engagement projects (e.g. outreach work in schools).
If you are already competing at county level or equivalent, you can apply for a sports scholarship from the University. One of our best-known graduates is Olympic gold medallist Susannah Townsend. During her time at Kent she had a sports scholarship and played for Canterbury Hockey Club (where she continues to play midfield).
Teaching involves practical laboratory and sports-based sessions, lectures, small group seminars and private study. You will have a number of lectures and practical sessions and a series of seminars each week – depending on the optional modules you select. You may also be required to spend time developing your practical skills and experience in placement or event situations.
Methods of assessment vary depending on the module but predominantly involve coursework, observed assessment, practical tests and, where appropriate, clinical assessments. Some modules are assessed via written exams.
Knowledge and understanding
You gain knowledge and understanding of:
- anatomical and physiological principles
- the human response to exercise
- the theoretical basis of qualitative and quantitative research
- the nutrition required to perform at an optimum level
- the ability to evaluate physical capacity and exercise training programmes
- the nature of skill and models relating to the acquisition and performance of motor skills
- exercise prescription for a range of population groups
- social processes which influence individual and group behaviour and participation/performance in sport.
You gain the intellectual skills to:
- engage in academic study including critical evaluation
- plan, execute and communicate a piece of independent work that requires a critical engagement with relevant data
- solve familiar and unfamiliar problems in order to develop reasoned arguments and challenge assumptions
- self-appraise and reflect on practice
- recognise and respond to moral, legal, ethical and safety issues that relate to your studies.
You gain subject-specific skills in the following areas:
- relating the concepts of anatomy, physiology and metabolism to the body’s response to exercise
- practical skills in the physiological interpretation of data from fitness testing
- the appraisal and evaluation of the effects of sport and exercise interventions
- the ability to analyse, interpret and show critical judgement in the evaluation of the sport sciences.
You gain transferable skills in:
- communication, presentation, numeracy and IT
- interactive skills and group work
- problem solving
- self-appraisal and reflection on practice
- how to plan and manage your own learning.
The programme aims to:
- provide a multi-disciplinary education
- prepare students to meet the challenges of an expanding and rapidly changing sports industry, while providing them with a wide choice of careers paths.
- provide the skills to promote the health and performance of an individual or a group using a multidisciplinary approach
- enable a critical knowledge and understanding of the sport sciences
- make students aware of current research within sport and exercise science
- provide a curriculum supported by scholarship, research and intellectual debate.