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BSc (Hons) in Sports Therapy - Flexible Delivery Mode

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3 Years


Degree Level 8


Awarding Body

Start Date

Start Date
October 2019

BSc (Hons) in Sports Therapy - Flexible Delivery Mode

With the demand and opportunities for professionally qualified therapists at an all time high, Portobello Institute has designed this degree as a blended learning option with supported seminars held over the weekend. This gives mature students and those working full-time, the opportunity to access this degree qualification that can lead to a career as a sports therapist. This programme is delivered over 3 academic years, each 8 months in duration. There are between 4 and 5 modules per academic year. Each module commences with a tutorial designed to support students progress through the module with a revision seminar held at the end of the academic year. A tutor is assigned to each student, for each module, with allocated one to one support time available. There is also a full-time programme manager available to offer students support during their learning journey.

Portobello Institute's BSc Hons in Sports Therapy gives graduates the opportunity to attain a level 8 honours degree through a flexible mode of delivery combining contact tuition with onlinelearning. Students obtain professional membership of the global Society of Sports Therapists – the only programme in Ireland to carry this recognition - membership of the association has many unique benefits as detailed below.

What is Sports Therapy?

Sports Therapy is an aspect of healthcare that is specifically concerned with the prevention of injury and the rehabilitation of the patient back to optimum levels of functional, occupational and sports specific fitness, regardless of age and ability.  It utilises the principles of sport and exercise sciences incorporating physiological and pathological processes to prepare the participant for training, competition and where applicable, work.

A Sports Therapist is a healthcare professional who has the knowledge, skills and ability to:

  • Utilise sports and exercise principles to optimise performance, preparation and injury prevention programmes
  • Provide the immediate care of injuries and basic life support in a recreational, training & competitive environment
  • Assess, treat and, where appropriate, refer on for specialist advice and intervention.
  • Provide appropriate sport and remedial massage in a sport & exercise context
  • Plan and implement appropriate rehabilitation programme

The spectrum of expertise that a Member of The Society of Sports Therapists must possess is built within five key areas of competency related to injury and illness in the sport and exercise environment. These are:

  • Prevention
  • Recognition & evaluation
  • Management, treatment & referral
  • Rehabilitation
  • Education & professional practice issues

Within each of these areas Sports Therapists and specifically those at Graduate level, are trained and educated in principles that have sound practical and evidence based philosophies with solid sport and exercise science foundations.
As such, Sports Therapists who are Members of The Society of Sports Therapists are required to meet clearly defined competency levels which cover the breadth of the above areas and gives them the knowledge, skills and ability to work at all levels of the sport and exercise continuum.

More importantly:

Sport and Exercise Therapy is not just about Sports Massage. However, Sports Therapists will possess massage skills that are an integral part of their scope of practice.

Sports Therapists are not Physiotherapists, but Sports Therapists will apply “physiotherapy” skills because physiotherapy is defined as “the treatment of disease, injury or deformity by physical methods including massage, heat treatment, electricity and exercise, rather than drugs or surgery”

Consequently, Sports Therapists will apply many skills and modalities that are included within this list but in a sport and exercise perspective rather than a traditional healthcare context.

Sports Therapists are not just first aiders. More significantly they are first responders who have the training, knowledge, skills and expertise to provide immediate care in a first response role.

Allied to their Sport and Exercise science knowledge, therapeutic abilities and understanding of sport, Sports Therapists, and especially Members of the Society of Sports Therapists, are capable and proficient in applying the necessary rehabilitation principles, to enable their patients to achieve the optimum levels of recovery, that their injury or disability will allow. As such, the journey from injury to a return to activities can be facilitated by professionals who have the knowledge, skills and science based principles to meet the needs of a clearly defined patient group. Sports Therapy is a distinct occupational title that applies to a clearly defined scope of practice. Furthermore, since 1990, The Society of Sports Therapists continues to ensure that both its Members and the profession are respected for the distinct scope of practice and science based foundations that are inherent and integral to Sports Therapists and Sports Therapy.

BSc (Hons) in Sports Therapy awarded by London Metropolitan University (LMU)

Students become registered as a Student Member of The Society of Sports Therapists at the beginning of Year 2.

Career Opportunities & Progression

Successful completion of this course offers career opportunities as a Sports Therapist working with teams, in a clinic or as a self-employed practitioner. 

The first cohorts from this programme graduated in June 2017 and une 2018. To date over 70% are employed in careers directly relating to Sport. Some of those graduate stories are detailed below with graduates now working as sports therapists for organisations including Shamorock Rovers, Santry Sports Clinic, the GAA and the FAI as well as other smaller sports clinics.

The programme is also excellent preparation for further research or study and over 20% of the first graduate cohorts have chosen to progress their studies to Masters level. This included studying for M.Sc in Physiotherapy and M.Sc. in Sports and Exercise Medicine. There are a wide range of universities, including Trinity College, that recognise and accept this undergraduate degree qualification for progression to Masters level. 

The entry routes are as follows:

With a Leaving Certificate;

Minimum of grade C or O6 in ordinary level Biology, English and Maths with a pass in 3 other subjects


Without the required Leaving Certificate, students should meet one of the following criteria;

  • QQI level 5 major award containing a biology subject
  • ITEC level 2 award containing anatomy & physiology
  • An undergraduate degree in another subject
  • QQI Level 5 Anatomy & Physiology - available through Portobello Institute
  • Mature entry at 21 years without meeting the above criteria
  • Equivalent qualifications with biology/anatomy & physiology module


Application Process

Step 1 - Complete the online booking form.

Step 2 - Applicants will be contacted for confirmation of the entry criteria

Step 3  - Confirmation of a place will be given to applicants immediately meeting the criteria.


Applicants who do not meet the criteria, maybe required to attend an interview with an offer of a place on the programme issued following assessment of suitability. Applicants confirm acceptance of offer by returning acceptance form.

Please note places on this course are only confirmed once tuition fees have been received.

Students will be registered as an undergraduate degree student  with London  Metropolitan University.

This is a blended learning course delivered over 3 academic years with supported seminars held over a weekend.

Year 1 commences 05/10/19 - 23/05/20.


An exact schedule of seminars will be released on 07/06/19

Each module commences with a supported seminar the purpose of which is to intoduce the module tutor, set out the learning outcomes, content, the assessment strategy and expectations for skills/knowledge development. To complete this course, students must have a basic knowledge of using a computer and searching the internet for research purposes.

Year 1 provides a solid foundation of general subjects underpinning Sports Therapy including anatomy, human physiology and sports science. In-depth studies of the Sports Therapy examination and assessment protocol and rehabilitation and are the focus of Year 2 and during Year 3 the emphasis is placed on advanced and applied aspects of Sports Therapy including manual therapy, electrotherapy, placement work, related theory, clinical reasoning skills and business developments in sport.

Year 1
Human Anatomy & Biomechanics

Human Physiology & Training Principles

Foundations of Sport Therapy

Sports Research Skills

Year 2
Sport Exercise & Physiology

Clinical Examination & Assessment

Peripeheral Manual Therapy

Sports Rehabilitation

Sports Science Research Methods

Year 3
Sports Science and Therapy Dissertation

Advanced Sports Therapy Techniques

Business Developments in Sport

Principles of Sports Psychology & the Elite Athlete

Learning Outcomes

1. Knowledge and understanding:

 - Have a thorough systematic knowledge of the various scientific and clinical topics studied
 - Show an ability to apply knowledge in practical settings involving sport, exercise and rehabilitation from injury
 - Have the capacity to demonstrate the advanced scholarship required to execute and critically evaluate research relevant to exercise science, injury and rehabilitation

2. Cognitive intellectual skills:

 - Be able to understand and develop clear & logical arguments in support or criticism of medical and scientific theories with support from primary sources of evidence and scholarly reviews
 - Demonstrate an ability to solve problems by applying underpinning knowledge to the clinical situation
 - Be able to analyse medical and patient information to provide a diagnosis and treatment plan based on current evidence
 - Show fluency with appropriate quantitative and numerical skills, involving relevant mathematical and statistical methods
 - Demonstrate academic and scientific literacy at graduate level

3. Transferable skills including those of employability and professional practice:

 - Have the ability to devise and sustain arguments, both orally and in writing, in a concise, clear and professional manner
 - Have an understanding of: ethical, equal opportunity and professional issues and work within the professional code of conduct
 - Be able to demonstrate strong decision-making skills and work effectively as part of a multidisciplinary sports or medical team to prevent injury and diagnose and rehabilitate post injury
 - Demonstrate a range of other key transferable skills including active involvement in learning, exercise of initiative and judgement, use of appropriate resources and technology
 - Appreciate the skills necessary to secure and retain employment, including: punctuality, professionalism, communication, consideration for others, creativity, and commitment
 - Demonstrate an understanding of the need to continually develop professionally

4. Subject-specific practical skills:

 - Be able to analyse patient information and derive a diagnosis and treatment plan supported by current scientific and medical evidence
 - Be able to make informed judgements to competently and safely implement treatment and rehabilitative strategies to a patient with a sports injury
 - Have an understanding of the main philosophies of practice in the sports rehabilitation arena whilst appreciating the limits of knowledge
 - Demonstrate an ability to lead and motivate others with an awareness of the different needs of patients
 - Demonstrate an understanding of practical skills relating to sport and exercise science, from psychological inventories, and in implementing appropriate interventions
 - Be able to suggest appropriate methodologies for a variety of measurements in sports and exercise science

Course Aims

The student will develop the subject-specific knowledge and the ability to relate it to the clinical situation. To understand the evidence-based nature of the therapies, it is essential that a level of understanding of science be achieved. Thus there is a substantial component of human and exercise science in the course. As the Society of Sports Therapists set the competency benchmarks for membership, these are reflected in the topics studied throughout the degree. It is essential that the students develop an ability to problem solve and clinically reason. These skills are the foundations for accurate diagnosis and treatment formulation. The course aims to develop these critical and analytical skills to ensure that practice remains current but supported by a body of scientific knowledge.  The ultimate aim is to produce a contemporary course that reflects current clinical practice in sports therapy. The students obtain a high level of clinical competence through practice and the problem based learning. The course develops these skills by directing the students to the resources that help them find solutions. Practical demonstrations and presentations ensure that they achieve the benchmarks for society membership.  The course encourages student interaction and contribution by developing their ability to work independently, in proposing and developing solutions to problems in a systematic and effective manner, and in communicating confidently and clearly both in writing and verbally.

Course price €4,795 per academic year

Exam fee £220 per academic year - due at start of academic year

Society of Sports Therapy - £275 (paid at the start of academic year 2)

Easy Payment Scheme:

Deposit of €1,200, 6 monthly payments of €633 per month payable by debit/credit card on 5th of each month, commencing month after the academic year commences. Total payable is €4,998 per academic year

Please note if you  wish to pay by instalment, contact our enrolments department on 01-8920041 as our website can only process full payment.


01 8920041


The Student Sports Clinic has been an invaluable part of our BSc Sports Therapy Degree training. Our Sports Therapy Students are insured to practice under the Society of Sports Tharspists. Our Student Clinic runs on a Thursday evening in the College. As a therapist, practitioner-skills are typically not learned from books or lectures but from years of hands-on work. Our students gain early client-contact hours in our Sports Therapy clinic where they are tasked with setting up the clinic, completing client consultations, providing sports therapy treatments and providing rehabilitation or follow-up as required. In doing so, our students learn essential clinical skills and work autonomously (with guidance and support from our Clinic Supervisor).


As a client, our students and tutors really appreciate your time and presence at the clinic and feedback is always welcomed. On booking a treatment with our Student Clinic you will be shown to the clinic room, towels, blankets and privacy screens are available for your comfort. You will be introduced to your Student Therapist and brought through a safety screening and consultation assessment before commencing your treatment to ensure that your Therapist can tailor your treatment to meet your needs. Afterwards, follow-up recommendations or interventions may be provided and our Students are always happy to answer any questions you may have. 

Apply Now

Course Code Location & Info Price
SBSB-B-DS-OC-19 Portobello Institute, Dublin 1

Year 1 - 05/10/2019 - 23/05/2020
5 weekend seminars are held on Saturday and Sunday, 9.30am - 4.30pm
€4795 Book Now
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