MSc Sports Physiotherapy
Qualifications and durations
This is a distance-learning programme.
- Part-time Postgraduate Certificate (1-3 years)
- Part-time Postgraduate Diploma (2-4 years)
- Part-time MSc (3-5 years)
Some units can be taken independently as part of our Continuing Professional Development programme.
This world-class course is for physiotherapists seeking a specialist qualification in sports physiotherapy, compliant with international standards of practice. You will develop a problem-solving and clinically reasoned approach to sports physiotherapy, athlete management and performance enhancement.
The blended learning environment combines distance learning with face-to-face teaching and clinical skills practice. You will experience an innovative blend of knowledge-based, activity-based and experiential learning.
The face-to-face induction event and residential teaching weeks in the first and second years of the programme will enable you to meet and work together with other students on real-work problems, and engage in debate with practitioners from a variety of contexts.
- Flexible and online, allowing you to study alongside your clinical practice.
- Endorsed by the Chartered Society of Physiotherapists (CSP).
- Meets international competencies and standards set by the International Federation of Sports Physiotherapists (IFSP).
- Integrates the Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Sports Medicine (ACPSM) CPD pathway.
This is a flexible programme. Our students typically study over three and a half years, however there is opportunity to complete units in up to five years.
Residential teaching events take place at the University and you will be expected to attend the following:
- Sports Science Residential Week - Year One (January)
- Clinical Residential Week - Year Two (June)
The programme is made up of the following compulsory units:
Year one (Certificate)
- Sports Physiotherapy in Practice 1
- Sports Environment
- Exercise Physiology
- Athlete Biomechanics and Sports Analysis
Year two (Diploma)
- Sports Physiotherapy in Practice 2
- Performance Physiotherapy (spine, lower limb, upper limb)
- Athlete Management
Year three (MSc)
- Evidence Based Clinical Sports Physiotherapy
- Research Project Design
- Sports Physiotherapy Research Project
- The programme catalogue and units listed above are applicable for the 2012/13 academic year only and should be treated as an example of the programme content. Students beginning or continuing their studies in 2013/14 and beyond should not assume that later years of a programme will be in the format displayed here.
- Programmes and Units are subject to change at any time, in accordance with normal University procedures.
- Availability of units will be subject to constraints such as staff availability, minimum and maximum group sizes, and timetabling factors as well as a student's ability to meet any pre-requisite rules.
Learning and teaching
The majority of the content of the programme is delivered online to allow you to engage in flexible study alongside your clinical practice. To complement the online teaching there is a face-to-face induction event at the University and residential teaching weeks. Reflective, practice-based elements are provided through professional experiential learning and online virtual workshops.
Our Sports Physiotherapy teaching team have a wealth of professional experience, which has enabled them to develop a high level of expertise and work with an impressive range of clients. Our tutors have worked in the EIS, NHS and private practice in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, USA and the UK and at a wide range of events for different sporting disciplines. Examples include the Beijing Olympics, Commonwealth games, Paralympic World Cup and World University Games.
Methods of assessment
Each unit is individually assessed and may involve a mixture of written assignments, case studies, presentations and reflective discussion reports. Sports Physiotherapy in Practice 1 and 2 involve assessment of a portfolio of evidence relating to practice. There is a clinical exam during Phase 2, which takes place during the residential event at the University.
The MSc requires successful completion of an innovative research project and dissertation, including dissemination of findings to a target audience.
Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL)
If you have studied for postgraduate units from another institution then you may be eligible to transfer credit for this prior learning (this is only the case if you have not already received an award for this prior learning).
Depending on the programme of study, you can gain APL for up to 50% of the total credits required (this credit must have been obtained within the previous five years).
Claims for APL will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Please contact us for further details.
Unfortunately, for the MSc Sports Physiotherapy programme we cannot exempt you from any units through Accreditation for Previous Experiential Learning (APEL).
- First or 2:1 Honours degree (or equivalent) in physiotherapy, from a recognised university.
You must provide evidence of the following in your application:
- Current registration/licence to practice as a Physiotherapist (Health Professionals Council for UK applicants, international students should provide equivalent licence to practice as a physiotherapist in their country of jurisdiction).
- Chartered Physiotherapist status (necessary for UK applicants only), international students should provide evidence of membership of relevant professional bodies and professional indemnity insurance as appropriate.
- A minimum of two years post-licensure work experience in a physiotherapy role (as evidenced by CV/employment history).
- Letter to support your application outlining why you would like to participate in the Sports Physiotherapy programme (max. 500 words)
A consideration for entry will be your ability to obtain practice experience in sports physiotherapy. We strongly advise that you arrange this before applying, and detail this in the supporting statement on the application form.
International students will need to be in a position to fulfil sports physiotherapy practice and experiential requirements in their own country.
English Language requirements
Certificates must be dated to within two years of the start of the programme of study.
- IELTS 6.5 (with not less than 6.0 in each of the four components)
- TOEFL 580 (paper-based test) or 237 (computer-based test) with a score of not less than 4 in TWE or 92 (internet-based test) with not less than 24 in each of the components.
If you wish to improve your English proficiency before commencing your studies, pre-sessional language training can be arranged through the English Language Centre.
- One academic reference is required.
Read details for how to apply to study.
Potential sources of funding
- 28 June 2013 for International Students
- 31 July 2013 for Home/EU students
- Funding deadlines for Studentships and Scholarships
The induction event at the University of Bath will take place 5-6 September 2013.
Tel: +44 (0)1225 38 5233
Main areas of research
The Department carries out research and teaching in health, medicine, exercise and sport, making significant contributions to national and international health agendas.
The Department aims to produce high-quality research with a strongly applied focus. We aim to contribute to promoting the health of the population and to improving the quality and efficiency of the health services that people rely on and pursue this agenda with a variety of partners at local, regional, national and international levels. Our work is organised around the two main themes of population health and healthcare. We are also pleased to offer a range of Research degrees.
Historically, health policy has focused almost exclusively on sickness services provided by agencies such as the National Health Service. Although this focus on healthcare remains hugely important, it is increasingly complemented by aspirations to improve the health of the population by tackling the social determinants of health such as poverty and pollution and by encouraging people to adopt health promoting behaviours such as healthy diets and increased physical activity and to stop health damaging ones such as smoking. There is also growing national and international concern that improvements in health should be fairly distributed by reducing health inequalities. The Department for Health organises its work related to population health improvement in three main ways. Much the largest element in the population health portfolio is related to sport, health and exercise science, but the School attaches growing importance to tobacco control and health inequalities.
The Department’s expertise in Healthcare focuses on innovation in the design, delivery, organization, and evaluation of healthcare interventions. We have a particular emphasis on disabling and distressing, long term or life-limiting conditions, such as chronic pain, stroke, dementia, rheumatic disease, and severe mental health problems. Current research activity involves collaborations with NHS colleagues in Bath at the Royal National Hospital for Rheumatic Diseases – RNHRD, the Royal United Hospital, the Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Care Trust, the Pan Bath & Swindon Primary Care Research Consortium and RehabNET.
Faculties in the Department have significant research expertise and experience in a range of topics including:
- Addictions and addictive behaviour
- Alcohol, drugs and the family
- Assistive technology and rehabilitation
- Child and adolescent cognitive behavioural therapy
- Complex Regional Pain Syndromes
- Dementia care
- Evidence based pain management
- Leadership and change
- Mental health service development and evaluation
- Spondolarthropathy disease and related disability
- Stroke rehabilitation
- Work, health and wellbeing.
About the Department
The School for Health was established within the University of Bath in 2003, to centralise the high profile research and teaching in the health-related disciplines already taking place throughout the university, so creating a single entity through which links with the health sector at national and international level can be channelled, co-ordinated and developed.
In 2010 the School joined the Faculty of Humanities & Social Sciences and became the Department for Health, providing excellent opportunities for academic teaching and research collaborations with other departments, such as Psychology and Social & Policy Sciences. The Department's postgraduate teaching and research programmes now form part of the Faculty's new Graduate School, also launched in 2010, providing postgraduate students with dedicated support and a strong community in which to base their studies - whether on campus or by distance learning.
In keeping with government initiatives surrounding population health and more general public concerns, the Department divides its activities between two main pillars: Healthcare and Population Health – one focuses on the NHS, healthcare and health services research and the other focuses on population health, healthy living, sport & physical activity and tobacco control; each of these groups, in turn, contain both teaching programmes and research activities. Furthermore, there is a bridging spine between both pillars and which houses the Professional Doctorate in Health, Research in Health Practice and the administrative, finance, learning & teaching development, marketing and support activities of the Department.
The Department’s aims are:
- To develop a research portfolio that is both of the highest academic standard and has applications in the real world
- To build on external links with the public services and other bodies concerned with health and society
- To innovate design and delivery of healthcare services
- To change corporate approaches to healthy organisations
- To support government reform of health and social care provision
- To identify and facilitate opportunities for academic collaboration and new developments.
The Department's postgraduate taught programmes combine academic excellence with flexible and innovative design and delivery; our postgraduate portfolio is distinguished by the provision of a number of Professional Masters and a Professional Doctorate programme designed to be studied part-time by learners working in a wide range of healthcare roles from all around the world. All our postgraduate courses are taught online and this has proved to be one of our unique selling points, with students able to continue within their practice area or working environment whilst gaining a further qualification.
The Department is renowned for its exemplary attention to educational design, integrating knowledge with research evidence and resulting in programmes which are highly relevant to contemporary practice; in addition, the Department boasts some of the most innovative and successful approaches to online and part-time education, recognised through a number of awards.
At all levels, learning and teaching in the Department provides a strong focus on high quality education for real world situations and produces graduates with skills and knowledge relevant to professional roles and in high demand from employers.
Teaching programmes on offer within the Department include:
- Sport & Exercise Medicine, the world renowned flexible masters programme exclusively for doctors
- Sports Physiotherapy, a specialist programme designed by physiotherapists for physiotherapists
- Research in Health Practice, a programme launched in 2008 aimed at health and social care professionals interested in conducting their own research
- The innovative Professional Doctorate in Health which focuses on both Population Health and Healthcare within the Department, providing a doctoral level programme to develop expert practitioners and researchers in practice.
Facilities, equipment, other resources
Sport and exercise science and medical science laboratories. Close links with the English Institute of Sport and the Department of Sports Development and Recreation.
International and industrial links
There are current links with primary care trusts, strategic health authorities, the two hospitals in Bath and colleagues in industry. The Department works closely with esteemed international academic institutions, and individual health practitioners, in order to meet the regional, national and global challenges facing health and social care.
Postgraduate research students gain a wealth of experience to assist them with their next step and are offered personal career advice at the University. The Department has an established research training skills programme for all research students. The taught programmes enable students to extend their health and social care career pathways and to build important networks for further professional opportunities.