Applied Exercise and Health Science


Year of entry

This programme is for those that wish to enhance both academic knowledge and advance their practical skills in the field of Exercise and Health.

The MSc in Applied Exercise and Health Science provides students with an extensive applied and practical experience.  We want to fully utilise your skills and expertise, and provide you with further opportunities whilst studying on this programme. 

The Section of Sport and Exercise Sciences has allocated a minimum of 200 hours of paid work that will be delivered by MSc students that are studying on this programme. 

The aim of this work is to support the activities of the Section, and will enhance your profile and experiences whilst studying with us at CCCU. If you wish to be considered for this work, once registered there will be an ‘expression of interest’ process which will require you to indicate your skills and attributes that would be useful to the Section.

20% Alumni discount

UK and EU Christ Church alumni are eligible for a 20% discount on self-funded Postgraduate Taught Masters and Masters by Research.

The MSc in Applied Exercise and Health Science builds on expertise at Canterbury Christ Church University to deliver a programme of academic and practical study. Drawing upon cross School, Faculty, and University expertise, as well as our industry links, the programme aims to produce graduates with a detailed academic knowledge, which is supported by an advanced practical skill set that has the potential to expand employment opportunities within the industry.

The MSc is set in the context of the current health climate, where there is an emphasis on the need to develop quality health services for all ages across the health and social sector. Poor lifestyle habits including physical inactivity are associated with the prevalence of certain chronic diseases and this programme aims to develop graduates who can critique current thinking in these areas and, through advanced scholarship, develop ideas to progress this field. The technical skill sets that are required in this field will also be fully explored by you on the programme. The technical and practical work should be viewed on the programme as part of an advanced academic experience, developing the abilities to plan, collect, analyse and interpret advanced data in this field.

Some examples of the laboratory practical work you will engage with include cardiac and vascular scanning, respiratory physiology, heart rate variability, ECG interpretation, body composition, and cellular level physiological investigation. The practical application of psychological strategies involved in behaviour change, intervention and counselling will be explored.

On the programme you will be expected to understand concepts associated with how health and wellbeing are considered and reflected in models of health promotion. This will also encompass the challenges of establishing criteria to define and measure health which are both key underpinning themes associated with the programme.

This broad spectrum of activities will allow for you to engage with the material; from those progressing directly from a theory based undergraduate programme to those that have extensive work­related experience. In lectures, seminars and practical sessions you will be expected to bring your experiences to these learning events to explore some of the key concepts in this field.

You will study: a broad Research Methods module; the promotion of health policy and associated politics (with health professionals from the Faculty of Health and Wellbeing); and exercise scientists will deliver modules on physical activity, disease, and behavioural change based on both a case study approach and the investigation of specific populations. With the exercise scientists you will study concepts and evidence from single, multi and an interdisciplinary approach using expertise in physiology, psychology, biomechanics and sociology.

The integration of practical work with academic study will help you to increase potential employment outcomes, and is also aimed at supporting ambition if you wish to go on to study at a higher level.

The MSc in Applied Exercise and Health has already opened my eyes to a whole avenue of job routes which until now, I was unaware of. This taught MSc allows you to dig deeper into areas of health and exercise that could potentially become a career in the health sector. Not only does it give you a variety of topic areas from, how to change exercise behaviour, to hands on laboratory techniques. It also gives you the opportunity to explore a research study of your very own. This MSc will not only provide you with a post-graduate degree, but also a variety of skills for the world of exercise and health."

megan-washington-70x70Megan Washington, class of 2017/18

The course is designed for those who wish to work or undertake further study in the exercise and health industry.

Specifically, the course offers you the opportunity to study a breadth of topic areas, but also an element of self­ direction in the topics and practical skills that you would wish to enhance and be assessed on.

The course is of particular relevance, though not exclusive, to recent graduates of sport and exercise science, health science, or related disciplines.

The MSc Applied exercise and health science, has proven to be an enjoyable and informative course, allowing me to explore interesting themes of the field in depth. It has given me inspiration to peruse a career in the area of exercise and health science. The postgraduate structure provides a comfortable environment to learn in, with the correct support and guidance to help you succeed. Each module provides variety and delves into the different challenges and successes the field has, with up to date information about the real applications."

Eleanor Santer, class of 2017/18

You will study six (20 credit) core modules, and will then engage with a 60 credit dissertation in the final term of study.

LevelModule Title

Research Training

The structure of the MSc Applied Exercise and Health Science will provide an interaction of both applied practical skills and academic knowledge. You will develop research methods skills associated with the broad field of exercise and health science with the support of Faculty expertise at Christ Church, where both qualitative and quantitative tools and methods of data collection and interpretation will be explored.

Disciplines of Study

The disciplines of psychology, biomechanics, sociology and physiology will be investigated within a number of health and exercise contexts both independently and in an interdisciplinary context; specifically in relation to health promotion, culture and policy, behaviour change, interaction of physical activity and disease (analysis, manifestation and progression). You will also explore these issues and their varied approaches to dealing with special populations and individual case studies.

Practical Experience

You will study a module on developing laboratory techniques which is associated with precise measurement. This module will evaluate your practical skills associated with essential techniques within this field of study. Practical engagement and laboratory use will also be a key feature of other modules on the programme ensuring that you are exposed to technology and techniques to enhance knowledge at this level of academic study. The practical focus of study will mean you are involved in practice scenarios, with both participant and experimenter responsibilities which are expected from all students.

Professional internship opportunities

You have the option to undertake a professional Internship, a non­credit bearing opportunity that will be outlined on your academic transcript. The value of this experience may allow you to apply academic subject knowledge in a work environment, gain expertise and experience in a setting of interest to you, enhancing your employability. Full guidance and support is available and the School has strong links to appropriate settings related to this postgraduate programme


The dissertation module will engage you in a substantive research investigation with an aligned supervisor negotiated with the programme team. It is envisaged that your topic area of the dissertation is aligned with your future intentions and ambitions.

I have found that everything I have been taught has built upon my knowledge gained during my undergraduate degree, allowing me to enhance my knowledge further. The MSc has confirmed to me that I want to pursue a career within the field of exercise cardiology, plus Christ Church is a great university to study at."

Jessamy RolfeJessamy Rolfe, class of 2017/18

This programme is designed to enhance the employment prospects of those that want to work in applied exercise and health sciences by developing both academic knowledge and an advanced practical skill set for varied roles within this industry.

The course is suited for those interested in careers such as exercise rehabilitators, exercise physiologists, health care scientists, health improvement specialists, or various roles in the health and fitness industry or further study.

One such potential career path is described by a local Community Health Foundation Trust employee:

"My job as Team Lead for the Exercise and Lifestyle team in the Community Cardiac Rehabilitation Service is varied and rewarding. The role allows me to contribute to the recovery of service users that have had a recent cardiac event, by facilitating them in making positive lifestyle changes, increasing habitual exercise and physical activity. Often the service users’ quality of life is also substantially increased."

98% of our Applied Exercise and Health Science students students were satisfied with the teaching quality of their course.

Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey 17/18

You will be taught on the MSc in Applied Exercise and Health Science using a range of different learning events. These will include group lectures, seminars, and laboratory classes. Lectures may consist of tutor led sessions, and internal and external speakers who are research and/or practice active. The learning schedule and methods of delivery are designed to build a learning community around the topics of discussion, draw in student experience as a partner in the learning and teaching process, and will provide significant support for the transition to this level of study. The variety should allow you to maximise your potential in an environment stimulated by research and research enhanced delivery.

Materials for sessions will include University produced electronic material designed to enhance your experience, consider different perspectives (such as internationalisation and global citizenship), and allow to consider views and approaches in varied virtual and physical environments.

As a partner in the process of learning seminars you will lead these sessions alongside staff. These events will focus on reading, dissemination of key ideas, theory, and critical reflection and will require significant interaction and debate. Sessions will allow you to enhance your understanding, give you the opportunity to explore and reflect, and develop academic resilience in an arena of support and challenge. Again in this context relevant active staff and external expertise will be a feature of these learning events to ensure relevant research and industry related currency, thus integrating themes aligned with your graduate employability.

Laboratory classes and practical work will be used to plan, demonstrate, measure and evaluate various key aspects of your study. These physical environments could represent the future workplace for some individuals; the laboratory work will be flexible and responsive enough to consider your individual and class interests.

The term ‘laboratory’ in the context of this programme will reflect the environment in which you can collect robust data for analysis, so this will include both explicit facilities and the context of data collection in the social environment. In both academic learning and practical classes, you will experience approaches from cellular function to more holistic whole body interaction in the process of learning. Industry relevant technology and IT packages will also be utilised in the teaching process to ensure currency for future employment. Indeed, technological support will be a key feature of your programme from the use of the University’s virtual learning environment (VLE) for e­lecture notes and video material, key reading and both programme and module information.

It is anticipated that other study support mechanisms may also be found on the VLE such as interactive lectures, web based links to relevant data sources, e­discussion boards, alongside institutional regulatory documents and programme management processes. Beyond the use of the VLE to enhance learning, the offsite availability of this resource will enable some flexibility in engagement with key materials for this programme. Although ‘work based learning’ is not an explicit route of delivery of material for this programme, the utilisation of staff active in practitioner roles will allow you to engage with industry driven policy and process, and engage in applied work with industry staff supervision.

“Studying Applied Exercise and Health Sciences at masters level has really helped put everything I have learnt from my undergraduate study into perspective.  Now I am happy I will be working towards a career path that will suit my inclinations.  The modules taught in the exercise and health related sciences are geared towards preparation for working in a clinical perspective.  Learning the physiological aspects of physical activity, health and disease, the psychological underpinnings of health related behaviour change, advanced laboratory techniques and health and exercise with special populations, to name a few, provide a deep insight into the specific components of the health sciences."

Maken Alexander, class of 2017/18

The methods of assessment will also be varied to support the potential for learning. This variety will ensure that you have experience of different forms of assessment, most of which are linked to industry tasks or requirements. In order to support different approaches to learning, there will be opportunity for formative feedback on tasks, enhancing opportunities to create, test and communicate ideas, which will enhance clarity, quality and confidence in your summative assessment submissions. This is considered a key aspect of the programme assessment design and scheduling to provide an outstanding student experience of learning, teaching and assessment.

Summative assessments will be individual in nature (group work will be conducted in a formative environment), and will comprise 20 credit modules of practical assessment, case study presentation, critical review, oral presentation, examination, essay, portfolio and exam. There is a maximum of two assessments on each of the modules, to ensure a focused assessment timetable. The dissertation module will ensure a wide variety of ethical issues are considered in the proposal assessment phase, with a choice of submission ‘type’ for the dissertation document (thesis, or paper in the style of an appropriate academic journal). The dissertation module will offer the opportunity for you to co-construct your curriculum. You will individually specialise in a negotiated area, and consider future employment opportunity with the topic, content, and presentation of this work. All students will receive detailed feedback on summative work.


2019/20 tuition fees for this course

Full-time £7,700 £12,420
Part-time £3,850 N/A

Alumni of Canterbury Christ Church University are eligible for a 20% discount on this course, subject to terms and conditions.

Tuition fees for all courses which last more than one academic year are payable on an annual basis, except where stated.

There will be an annual inflationary increase in tuition fees for this course where the course lasts more than one academic year. For further information read the 2019/20 Tuition fee statements and continuing fee information.

Government loans of up to £10,906 are available for some postgraduate Master’s courses for students starting their course from 1 August 2018. Loans are subject to both personal and course eligibility criteria.

The rules around course eligibility mean that in some cases it may depend on how you are studying (full-time or part-time) as to whether you can apply for a postgraduate loan. To check whether your course is eligible, you can  email the Student Fees Team or call 01227 923 948.

Read more about  postgraduate masters student loans.

Students may self-fund their course or a sponsor may fund or part-fund. Bursaries, scholarships and fee discounts may also be available.

Further information


Additional course costs

Although we aim to minimise any additional costs to students over and above the course tuition fee, there will be some additional costs which students are expected to meet.

Costs applicable to all students

Text books Own purchase text books
Travel to other sites Where travel to other sites is required, this will be payable by the student
Library Fees and Fines Where students fail to return loaned items within the required time they will be responsible for the cost of any library fees and fines applicable
Printing & Photocopying The cost of printing and photocopying undertaken by students to support their individual learning are payable by the student
Graduation ceremonies It is free for the student to attend the ceremony itself. Guest tickets and robe hire / photography are additional costs payable by the student

General principle policy

The University’s general principles policy for additional course fees are set out here

CategoryIncluded in the tuition feeAdditional cost to student
Field trips (including trips abroad and trips to museums, theatres, workshops etc) No, if the trip contributes to the course as an optional module. Yes if the trip is optional.
Travel and accommodation costs for placements  No

Travel and accommodation costs for professional placements within the Education and Health & Wellbeing Faculties.

Travel and accommodation costs for other work placements. 
Text books No Own purchase text books.
DBS / Health checks No Yes
Professional Body registration No Yes
Travel to other sites (e.g. travel to swimming pool for lessons) No Yes
Clothing / Kit Yes, where the clothing / kit is essential for Health & Safety reasons. Yes, where the clothing is kept by the student and not essential for health and safety reasons.
Learning materials Essential learning materials (excluding text books) in connection with the course. Additional materials beyond the standard provision essential for the course or where the costs are determined by the student’s area of interest and the outputs are retained by the student.
Library fees and fines No Yes
Printing and photocopying No Yes
Social events No, unless the event forms an essential part of the course. Yes, unless the event forms an essential part of the course.
Graduation ceremonies It is free for the student to attend the ceremony itself. Guest tickets and robe hire/ photography are additional costs payable by the student.

The applications and admission arrangement operate in-line with the standard arrangements of the University. Applicants in the first instance should make enquires to

Applications for this course can be completed online.

For further information, please read our guidance on how to apply online.

Applicants will be considered by a panel of exercise science academic staff. All applicants will be considered individually and we will take into account academic qualifications and/or relevant experience in addition to paying great detail to the personal statement and references provided.

Applicants will normally be invited for an interview.

Fact file

UCAS institution code

  • C10


  • 1 year full-time
    2 years part-time


  • September 2019

Typical contact hours per week

  • 12 hours per week

Entry requirements

  • Our standard offer for accepting students onto this programme is an undergraduate degree at 2.2 or above. Applicants from a range of undergraduate subjects (health, science, sport and exercise) will be considered.

    This is in addition to a brief personal statement outlining interest and areas of specialism being considered, as well as a complete CV. The University has a well-established Accreditation of Prior Certificated Learning (APCL) and Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL) structure in operation. Students without previous qualifications may be accepted as part of this process.

    If you are unsure whether your qualifications are appropriate you can contact the programme team direct to Dr Hayley Mills.



100% of our Applied Exercise and Health Science students were satisfied with the quality of their course.

(Postgraduate Taught Experience Survey, 17/18)

Last edited 01/05/2019 14:02:00

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Last edited: 01/05/2019 14:02:00