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2 Years



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Nicola Evans
Nicola Evans

Programme Director, Sports Coaching Foundation Degree
020 8240 4179

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This two-year foundation degree course is aimed at individuals who are currently working or gaining experience within the Sports Coaching industry, or those looking to become a sports coach whilst studying. 

Sports Coaching video

Why study Sports Coaching?

Studying Sports Coaching at university can empower graduates to develop a career that inspires young people, adults and communities to make the best of themselves through sport and physical activity.

Whether developing athletes to greater performance or encouraging individuals towards participating in physical activity for health benefits, the UK is a developing area for coaching education.

This two-year degree is aimed at individuals who are currently working or gaining experience within the Sports Coaching industry, or additionally, those looking to progress in the field.

One key aim is to develop self-sufficient sports coaches within two years and you will be encouraged by your tutors to build on your professional experience and industry qualifications.

Why St Mary's?

Sports Coaching at St Mary's has been designed to provide you with a thorough grounding in key areas of Sports Coaching, via a strong vocational element. You will frequently be required to put your academic and work-based learning into context through modules that relate to the science of sports coaching.

In the first year of study, you will undertake a professional observation; we can assist you in securing a place in an observational setting. During the second year of the course, you will complete a more formal work placement.

Successful completion of the programme leads to the award of a foundation degree and provides students with the opportunity of spending a further year completing a BSc (Hons) Sports Coaching Science undergraduate degree.

Key facts

  • Flexible two-day a week schedule
  • Substantial vocational aspect to the programme
  • Strong focus on personal development
  • Integration of practical and theoretical concepts
  • Enables individuals to develop a CV and enhance their career opportunities
  • Opportunity to study for one further year to achieve a full BSc award after successful completion of the Foundation degree
  • Taught on our historic Strawberry Hill campus.

Course content

Year one

  • Business Development and Professional Observation 
  • Core Study Skills 
  • Fitness Instruction and Programme Design 
  • Key Coaching Concepts One 
  • Key Coaching Concepts Two 
  • Scientific Underpinning 

Year two

  • Applied Coaching Practice One 
  • Applied Coaching Practice Two 
  • Developing Professional Practice 
  • Experience and Employment in Sport 
  • Lifestyle Management and Health Promotion 
  • Performance Analysis 
Please refer to the programme specification document for a summary of the programme.

Career opportunities

Many pathways can be followed by graduates of the Foundation Degree, including: 

  • Sports coaching in clubs and schools
  • Sport recreation and development
  • Coaching with private companies and organisations
  • Teacher training (following graduate training schemes or PGCE courses)

The Careers Service has more information on graduate careers and part-time work available during your course.

How the degree is taught

Teaching methods

A range of teaching methods including presentations, discussions, small group work, workshops and practical sessions are utilised.

Students are expected and challenged to bring their own work experiences into the discussions and to learn to place their academic work into an appropriate vocational context.

This degree regularly welcomes specialists in the field of Sports Coaching to deliver visiting lectures on current trends and applications of theory to the workplace.

Assessment methods

The assessments are structured so as to reflect the underlying vocational principal of the course. Methods of assessments include presentations, coursework and portfolios, as well as practical and spoken assessment.

Students will need to develop their critical analysis and reflective skills in order to develop writing and reasoning through a range of topics relating to Sports Coaching. It is also critical in  this field to be ‘fit to practice’ and so students must be well versed in practical demonstration alongside the theoretical underpinning.

There are no traditional written exams.


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Fees and funding

2020/21 fees

  • Home/EU: £8,660
  • International: £12,250

2019/20 fees

  • Home/EU: £8,320
  • International: £11,750

Information about tuition fees, student loans and funding your studies can be found within our fees and funding section.

The UK Government has confirmed that EU applicants starting in 2019 or 2020 remain eligible for 'home fee status' and can access financial support.

Additional costs

Your tuition fees will cover the cost of all mandatory elements of your programme.

Additional costs could be incurred depending on optional modules chosen and other projects undertaken. For further information about additional costs please contact


A range of scholarships and bursaries are available to new foundation students. This includes:

Further information

UCAS Application Timeline