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Physical Activity and Health

Reducing the nation's health problems is more important now than it has ever been, and the drive to promote physical activity among individuals and communities is key to making us healthier. A multidisciplinary perspective will help you to understand the impact of physical activity, other health behaviours and exercise on the health and wellbeing of individuals.

Next Start Date: September

Degree type: BSc (Hons)

UCAS Code: C600 BSc/SE

Duration: 4 years (full-time)


This is one of the specialist routes within the sports portfolio at Abertay. You will make your choice of specialist route at the end of stage 2 of the BSc (Hons) Sport and Exercise programme.   

Why choose this course?

  • Teaching is underpinned by research and there is a strong emphasis on the links with industry, including opportunities for placements and internships
  • 91% of students said they were 'very satisfied overall' with their Sports programme at Abertay University in the 2015 National Student Survey

The study of Physical Activity and Health is identified as a key area to facilitate health promotion interventions, and is therefore crucial for improving the wellbeing of the population. Teaching draws on the core disciplines of physiology, psychology, sociology and public health theory as well as how to apply these knowledge and skills in the practice setting.


What you study

What you study

In the Years 1 and 2, students study the scientific underpinnings of Physical Activity and Health within a sport and exercise science context. This includes Physiology, Biomechanics, Psychology and Social Science.  The theoretical knowledge gained will be applied to a variety of practical-based modules, with several options that allow you to establish a strong foundation from which to specialise in Physical Activity and Health.  Students will also have the opportunity to study theme-based interdisciplinary elective modules in the early years.

In Years 3 and 4, you will study more specific Physical Activity and Health modules, which cover aspects such as Public Health Policy and Health Promotion, and Exercise Prescriptions for General and Specialist populations.

Placement opportunities exist throughout the programme, and optional courses will allow you to take modules from other programmes, offering the opportunity to tailor the course to your own needs and interests.

In the Year 4, you will complete an individual piece of research of your own design, which focuses on your particular area of enquiry within the field of Physical Activity and Health.

How you learn and are assessed

The programme consists of a mixture of lectures, practical laboratory classes, seminars/tutorials and independent study.  The practical laboratory classes offer the chance to learn relevant scientific techniques first hand, and provide an opportunity to engage in research by designing experiments and collecting and analysing data.

The assessment strategy is aimed at developing a variety of skills that are valued by employers.  The vast majority of the assessment is by innovative, coursework-related submissions such as lab reports, essays, oral and poster presentations, portfolios, reflective logs and practical tests.  Exams only form a small percentage of the overall assessment, approximately 15%.

Examination techniques

You will be assessed by the use of portfolio, reflective logs, case studies, laboratory reports, practical competencies, oral and poster presentations, as well as essays and exam-based assessment.  Assessments are designed to reflect the prospective needs of employers. 

Entry routes

Years 1 or 2

Entry to year 1 or 2 of this programme is through the BSc (Hons) Sport and Exercise programme which will allow you to progress to this programme at the end of year 2.

Year 3

Advanced entry is available to applicants with a suitable HND.  Please refer to the articulation routes to BSc (Hons) Sport and Exercise on our Coming from College pages.


All applicants are required to provide certified proof of competence in English Language and the University's minimum requirements are listed here

Fees and scholarships

Fee Category Tuition Fees
Scholarships & Bursaries
Scottish and other EU students

Current fees

Other forms of support
English, Welsh and Northern Irish

Current fees

Bursaries & Scholarships
Overseas (non EU) students

Current fees

Overseas Scholarships

Fees shown are payable annually, and may be subject to increase each year.

Additional costs
Sport students have to cover the cost of the PVG scheme in order to be able to work with children and vulnerable adults (cost £59 for a new application, £19 for renewal).  They also have to purchase Abertay branded sports kit for use in practical sessions and placements.  The cost of the basic kit is £84. All costs stated are correct at April 2016. 

Further info

Career prospects

Graduates from this programme are well equipped to obtain employment across a wide range of vocations.  For example, as active schools and physical activity co-ordinators, health promotion workers in community setting, and lifestyle analysts in gym settings.  This programme will also help develop a range of transferable skills which help prepare graduates to take on a variety of professional challenges across diverse working environments.  In addition, students will have acquired the necessary knowledge and expertise to pursue postgraduate studies in a related area.

Specialist facilities

You have access to our Human Performance Laboratory, with running, rowing, fitness testing and weights machines. You will also have opportunities to meet the numerous professional sportsmen and sportswomen who draw on the expertise of our lecturing staff within this facility.

Industry links

You will have the opportunity to develop links with various sports industries and work towards achieving awards through this. Work placements that are embedded in the curriculum are an integral part of this process.

Abertay staff have strong research links and many are members of professional societies. There are good links between Division of Sport and Exercise Science staff and industry, and many staff are also current practitioners.

Want to know more?

Student Recruitment Office
T:  +44 (0) 1382 308080
F:  +44 (0) 1382 308081

"I left university feeling very confident about my own abilities and I think that shone through at interviews. I definitely would not have been able to do this job without my degree at Abertay. "

Caroline Ness

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