You are viewing information for England.  Change country.
Coaching swimming team photo

Foundation Degree in Sport and Fitness

This foundation degree will help put you on track for a career in fitness training, sports coaching or management. It develops work-related and academic skills to enhance your performance and prospects at work, and explores the key principles of sports science, training, leadership and management. You’ll apply your learning to your own practice, focusing on meeting participants’ physical and psychological needs. By the end of the course, you’ll be a more effective, reflective practitioner and you’ll be well on the way to a degree.

Key features of the course

  • Increases your current effectiveness as a coach or exercise instructor 
  • Uses case studies and reflects on real and potential work situations
  • Enhances your employability
  • Builds a solid foundation for further study.

Please note: in addition to your OU study, you’ll need to identify and complete a UK-accredited (or equivalent) qualification in either coaching or exercise instruction. 

This programme of study is also available as the Diploma of Higher Education in Sport and Fitness (W07), which will be of particular interest to students living and working in Scotland. 

Save to My Study Plan

Foundation Degree

Course code
X07
Credits

Credits

  • Credits measure the student workload required for the successful completion of a module or qualification.
  • One credit represents about 10 hours of study over the duration of the course.
  • You are awarded credits after you have successfully completed a module.
  • For example, if you study a 60-credit module and successfully pass it, you will be awarded 60 credits.
240
How long it takes
Part time – 4 years
Full time – 2 years
Time limit – 12 years
Study method
Distance learning
Course cost
See Fees & funding
Entry requirements
For details see Am I ready?

Register for this course

Start dates

Credit transfer: apply by 13/08/2015

Request your prospectus

Explore our subjects and courses.

Request your copy today

Course details

This qualification has two stages, each comprising 120 credits. Stage 1 provides the underpinning knowledge and skills needed for more advanced study at Stage 2.

If you have little or no knowledge or experience of studying, you may prefer to start your studies with an Access module as an additional preparatory stage.

Stage 1 (120 credits)

Stage 1 explores the organisation, practice and delivery of sport and fitness activity. You’ll investigate who takes part in sport and fitness, how facilities cater for their needs, how can fitness be improved, and how the scientific basis of nutrition informs coaching. You’ll also consider what makes a good leader; effective communication; and motivating participants and colleagues. 


Compulsory modules (120 credits)

Stage 2 (120 credits)

Stage 2 focuses on the scientific aspects of sport and exercise. You’ll develop your analytical and communication skills while focusing on sports and exercise science research and the psychological aspects of participation in sport and fitness. You’ll also study a work-related learning module investigating how either sports and fitness instructors or sports coaches develop, drawing on your own experiences of completing an external validated coaching or fitness qualification. 

A nationally recognised qualification in its own right, the foundation degree is also equivalent to the first two thirds of our BA (Honours) Sport, Fitness and Coaching (Q76).



The modules quoted in this description are currently available for study. However, as we review the curriculum on a regular basis, the exact selection may change over time.


Learning outcomes, teaching and assessment

This qualification develops your learning in four main areas:

  • Knowledge and understanding
  • Cognitive skills
  • Practical and professional skills
  • Key skills

The level and depth of your learning gradually increases as you work through the qualification. You’ll be supported throughout by the OU’s unique style of teaching and assessment – which includes a personal tutor to guide and comment on your work; top quality course texts; e-learning resources like podcasts, interactive media and online materials; tutorial groups and community forums.

Read the detailed learning outcomes here

Credit transfer

If you have already studied at university level, you may be able to count it towards your Open University qualification – reducing the number of modules you need to study. It’s not just study completed at a university that can be considered, you can transfer study from a wide range of professional qualifications as well. A full list of the qualifications and institutions we can consider for credit transfer can be found on our credit transfer website.

You should apply for credit transfer before you register, at least 4 weeks before the registration closing date. We will need to know what you studied, where and when and you will need to provide original evidence of your previous study. We will compare this against the learning outcomes for your chosen qualification and inform you of any award.

For more details of when you will need to apply by and to download an application form, visit our Credit Transfer website.


On completion

On completion of this undergraduate course, you will be awarded a Foundation Degree in Sport and Fitness with either Exercise instruction or Coaching. 

Regulations

As a student of The Open University, you should be aware of the content of the following regulations:

These regulations are also available on our Essential Documents website.


Compare this course

Entry requirements

You do not need experience of working in sport and fitness prior to starting this qualification. But you’ll find the modules and the assignments much easier and more fulfilling if you can draw on employment experience (paid or unpaid) in the sector during your study.

As part of the Stage 2 work-based learning module you’ll need to have gained in the last eight years – depending on your professional interest – either:

  • an exercise instruction qualification recognised by the Register of Exercise Professionals (REPs) or
  • a coaching qualification from an established sport with a recognised National Governing Body.

If you do not hold a suitable qualification prior to commencing the module, you’ll need to obtain one in parallel with your OU studies. Details of which certificates and levels are acceptable are available here.

General study skills

Anyone can study with The Open University, but if it's a while since you did any academic work it's worth checking that your time management, computing and English skills are up to speed. Visit Can I do it? to find out more.

How much time do I need?

  • Most of our students study part time completing 60 credits a year.
  • This will normally mean studying for 16–18 hours a week.
Read about how some of our students have fitted OU study into their lives, then find out if you have enough time to study by completing our time planner.

Help! I'm not sure I'm ready!

Study for free

If your study skills are a bit rusty or you want to try out Open University study before committing yourself, don’t worry! You can get started with an Access module – fascinating courses designed to introduce subject areas, build your confidence and prepare you for further study.

For this qualification, we recommend:

People, work and society Access module

What you will study

This is a multidisciplinary module that allows you to develop your subject knowledge and your general study skills. It provides an excellent introduction to a wide range of subject areas, including children and young people, health, law, management, psychology and social sciences.

View full details of People, work and society Access module

Your next step

Call us on +44 (0)1908 659253 or book a call back. Our friendly team of advisers will discuss your study options with you, and help you decide on the best starting point for you. Or come and meet us at an event near you.

How much will it cost?

We believe cost shouldn’t be a barrier to achieving your potential. That’s why we work hard to keep the cost of study as low as possible and have a wide range of flexible ways to pay to help spread, or even reduce, the cost.

  • Fees are paid on a module-by-module basis – you won't have to pay for the whole of your qualification up front.
  • A qualification comprises a series of modules, each with an individual fee. Added together, they give you the total cost.
  • If (like most OU students) you study part time at a rate of 60 credits a year, you'll take six years to complete an honours degree. Our current fee for 60 credits is £2,700*.
  • Our current fee is £5,400* – based on 120 credits of study – which is equivalent to a year's full-time study.
  • The total cost of your chosen qualification starts from £10,800* based on our current fees.
  • This qualification includes modules with a higher than typical cost. This will increase the overall cost of the qualification quoted. Please call us for further information.
  • This qualification includes modules with a higher than typical cost. If you choose to study one of these modules the overall cost of the qualification may increase. Please call us for further information.

*The fee information provided here is valid for modules starting before 31 July 2016. Fees normally increase annually in line with inflation and the University's strategic approach to fees.

Additional costs

Study costs

There may be extra costs on top of the tuition fee, such as a laptop, travel to tutorials, set books and internet access.

If you're on a low income you might be eligible for help with some of these costs after you register.

Ways to pay for your qualification and other support

We know there’s a lot to think about when choosing to study, not least how you can pay. That’s why we offer a wide range of flexible payment and funding options to help make study more affordable. Options include Part-Time Tuition Fee Loans (also known as student loans), monthly payment plans and employer sponsorship. 

We’re confident we can help you find an option that’s right for you.

Just answer these simple questions to find out more about the options available to you for courses starting before 31 July 2016.




How many credits are you planning to study per year? You will need [xxx] credits to complete this qualification

Part time study

Full time study


Do you already hold a degree?

Are you employed?

British Forces

  • If you have a BFPO address, you are only eligible for UK course fees if you are a currently serving member of the British armed forces, and you're temporarily and unavoidably working abroad. Other students using BFPO addresses should contact us on +44 (0)300 303 5303 for UK fee eligibility to be assessed.
* The fee and funding information provided here is valid for courses starting before 31 July 2016. Fees normally increase in line with inflation and the University’s strategic approach to fees.

An OU qualification will always help you stand out from the crowd, now and in the future – whether you’re just starting out, developing your career, or changing direction entirely.

Skills for career development

Jobs in sport and fitness demand well developed skills for motivating customers; including the communication skills (written, oral and online) needed to enhance good relationships and coaching. This foundation degree will boost your career potential and help you develop key skills that are highly valued by employers, including:

  • leadership
  • empathy with participants
  • knowledge of safety and welfare issues
  • understanding group and individual psychology
  • searching for and presenting information
  • use of IT.

Overall, you’ll become a more critically aware leader who can reflect on your own and others’ practice and apply scientific theory to practical situations.

Career relevance

This foundation degree is ideal if you want to enhance your prospects in sports coaching, fitness training or the leadership of recreational groups. It’s also valuable if you’re self-employed in the sport and fitness sector, working at sports clubs or keen to develop your career in sports management or sports development. 

Other careers

Some students use this qualification as a route towards physical education (PE) teaching, although you’ll need to complete an honours degree and subsequent post-graduate training.

In addition to improving your career prospects, studying with the OU is an enriching experience that broadens your horizons, develops your knowledge, builds your confidence and enhances your life skills. 

Exploring your options

Once you register with us (and for up to three years after you finish your studies), you’ll have full access to our careers service for a wide range of information and advice – including online forums, website, interview simulation, vacancy service as well as the option to email or speak to a careers adviser.  Some areas of the website are available to see at any time, including help with looking for and applying for jobs. You can also read more general information about how OU study enhances your career.

In the meantime if you want to do some research around this qualification and where it might take you, we’ve put together a list of relevant job titles as a starting point (note that some careers may require further study, training and/or work experience):

  • sports club manager
  • sports coach
  • fitness instructor
  • recreational group leader
  • personal trainer
  • fitness centre manager 
  • outdoor activities/education manager
  • secondary school teacher (PE)
  • sports development officer 
  • theme park manager
  • human resources manager
  • customer service manager
  • event organiser 
  • sports administrator 
  • tourism officer 
  • tourist information centre manager
 


Want to see more jobs? Use the career explorer for job ideas from the National Careers Service, PlanIT Plus in Scotland and Prospects across all nations. You can also visit GradIreland for the Republic of Ireland.

career_explorer

Study plan - Overview
x