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Sports Coaching & Performance (Online Distance Learning) (MSc/PgDip/PgCert)

Course Description

Programme description

This online course in sport coaching and performance is intended for practising coaches and coach developers to extend their knowledge and understanding of the coaching process.

Globally, coaching is in its most dynamic era in history. Today coaching effectiveness is measured on a host of factors that ultimately contribute to the overall development of athletes rather than a season or career win-loss record. Twenty-first century technology provides greater accessibility to information and visibility to a global community. In this environment, coaches have a responsibility to improve and expand their own capabilities to fully meet the needs of their athletes.

Coaching is critical to sporting development and success. Inspirational and motivational coaches energise others, enabling them to expand their horizons and realise their potential. Talented coaches stimulate interest, encourage commitment and enhance performance in sport. Coaches also need to be supported by informed organisations and individuals, for example, performance directors, strategic leads for sport and coach educators. Sport and physical activity have considerable benefits for current and future physical and psychological well-being. For levels of sporting participation to rise, more educated and skilled sport coaches are required and coaching systems need to ensure strategies are in place to support all those involved in coaching delivery, planning and management.

The professionalisation process can be seen as a key element in the 'up-skilling' of coaches and can be considered critical if the occupation of coaching is to play a part in the upkeep of health and increase the degree and longevity of participation in physical activity, as well as contributing to the success of elite athletes and teams. Recent research has highlighted the need for coaches to have the knowledge and skills to address development perspectives and sport systems to highlight distinct pathways for both athletes and coaches. The development of this masters programme links to local, national and international coach education programmes and performance frameworks to address the importance of promoting sport at all levels of ability and talent.

Building on the extensive history of Sport and Physical Education at Moray House School of Education this MSc will be delivered by staff actively researching sport coaching. This new MSc will enable coaches to develop and evaluate coaching qualifications, encourage coach education and training, interact across international boundaries, and establish ethical guidelines and standards of practice.

Online learning

Online learning is aimed at people who want to study for a postgraduate qualification alongside ongoing work or other commitments. You can study at times most convenient to you.

Programme structure

The degree can be taken full-time over 12 months or part-time over 72 months. Students can complete the full MSc (180 credits) or exit earlier with a Postgraduate Certificate (60 credits) or a Postgraduate Diploma (120 credits).

There are a range of options for part-time students including single courses to contribute to CPD, and interested students should contact the programme directors directly to find out more.

Certificate-level courses

Students must complete all three of the following courses to be awarded a Postgraduate Certificate.

Managing the Coaching Process
Diagnostic Analysis of Coaching Practice
Performance Development and Expertise

Diploma-level courses

To progress to Postgraduate Diploma, students are also required to complete the following.

Coach Development and Mentoring
Professional Issues
Research Methods

Masters-level courses

Sports Coaching Dissertation

Students are required to complete a dissertation to be awarded the MSc. In order to progress to the dissertation stage of their Masters programme, students must pass all taught courses for the Certificate and Diploma in line with the University’s postgraduate teaching regulations.

Career opportunities

Potential career paths, exit routes and employers are very diverse given the global nature of the course but include: national sporting organisations; coaching bodies; sport and fitness industry; postgraduate research; sport and coaching development; performance planning; performance management; coaching consultancy; teaching in further and higher education institutions.

Visit the Sports Coaching & Performance (Online Distance Learning) (MSc/PgDip/PgCert) page on the University of Edinburgh website for more details!

Entry Requirements

The normal entry requirement is an upper second class honours degree in a relevant discipline. Where an applicant does not meet these requirements consideration may be given to other equivalent academic qualifications and significant professional training and experience. The applicant must be coaching within an appropriate coaching organisation and environment and have access to broadband for the duration of their course. It would also be preferred if the applicant had UKCC Level 3 or equivalent, or was operating at this level of coaching.

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Recipient: University of Edinburgh
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