Welcome to our Department of Sport and Nutrition
Thank you for taking the time to come and check out what we offer at University College Birmingham, the highest ranking university in the region as voted by students at the 2023 Whatuni Student Choice Awards. Our student support is award-winning too, as is our provision for international students.
If you are looking at joining us to carve out a career in sport and nutrition, from working in strength and conditioning to sustainable food production, here is a glimpse into our student and staff community - and the enrichment we offer - to see if we are the right choice for you.
Welcome from Laura Hodgkiss
As head of department, I am extremely proud of what we offer to ensure you excel in these fields. There’s so much to look forward to on our courses, which are informed by industry needs, are challenging and will best prepare you for the workplace.
We have seen our sports and nutrition facilities go through an enormous transformation and we have some really great partners, including Bournville Rugby Club, as well as fantastic placements and trips.
Our graduates range from a Coventry United Ladies FC sports therapist who supported at the Rugby World Cup and a marketing strategist for a Canadian Major League Soccer team to new product developers creating on-trend and sustainable products. A diverse mix! We look forward to helping you meet your aspirations.
*Laura was a semi-professional footballer who played nationally and internationally before moving into education
“This is a university with incredible facilities and student-centred staff. And that includes myself – you are always welcome at my informal ‘Talk with the Dean’ sessions, your chance to say what’s going well and what we can improve on.”
Sports therapy graduate wins best injury clinic for second year in a row
Sports therapist Stacey Naylor – who set up her own clinic just after graduating from University College Birmingham wh…Read more
New industry accreditation for strength, conditioning and sports nutrition students
Students on the Strength, Conditioning and Sports Nutrition degree at University College Birmingham now hav…Read more
Sports therapy duo playing key role for Team Scotland at Commonwealth Games
A lecturer and a graduate from University College Birmingham have joined Team Scotland to play a key role in suppor…Read more
Man Utd psychologist to Royal Ballet physio: meet lineup for 2022 sports conference
From a psychologist for top-flight footballers to injury specialists for elite ballet dancers and rugby pla…Read more
Track star Sadam eyes Commonwealth Games after medal success in new event
A University College Birmingham athlete is hoping to follow his Olympic debut by representing England at this year's…Read more
Students support Whitworths on development of new vegan Protein By Nature range
University College Birmingham students have put their food training into action by supporting a top industry fi…Read more
Placements with pulling power
Our partnerships with major sports clubs and organisations have provided students with incredible opportunities over the past year, including working with Team Scotland at the 2022 Commonwealth Games, Birmingham Rockets basketball team and the Professional Game Match Officials Board (PGMOB).
Skills for endurance
We completed our second annual 24-hour endurance challenge for the Young Minds charity this year, giving our students an opportunity to put their skills into practice.
Our Strength, Conditioning and Sports Nutrition degree has this year been accredited by the International Universities Strength and Conditioning Association (IUSCA), transforming the profession through innovation and collaboration.
Cotswolds sustainable demo farm
Our Food and Nutrition students visited Honeydale demonstration farm in the Cotswolds. They heard from the head of sustainable farming about how Brexit and the Ukraine war are affecting supplies, as well as visiting the micro dairy, orchards and greenhouses before a meal made with the farm's produce.
Berlin and Seville residentials
Sports Management students toured Berlin on bikes, visiting the velodrome, Mercedes Benz Arena, Olympic Stadium, Berlin TV Tower, Brandenburg Gate and Berlin Wall. Our final year students went to Seville, visitng the Real Betis stadium, Plaza de Toros and Royal Alcazar Palace before a match at Sevilla FC.
Beyond the classroom
At University College Birmingham, we offer education and training that goes far beyond everyday classes and lectures. We are committed to providing additional enrichment opportunities for our students, from industry trips and expert visits to linkups with local charities, entry into competitions and much more.
Scroll through the slides to find out more about what's been going on recently in our department:
Meet Stephen Garvey
My role is to ensure we stay at very forefront of progress across the education sector and across industry, building innovative technology and skills such as immersive virtual reality into your educational experience.
We are committed to providing face-to-face teaching as we know students value this quality time with their lecturers and fellow students. But to support your academic studies, we also have a sophisticated lecture capture system that provides accessible recorded lectures, where possible.
We are very proud of the exceptional and sustained record of teaching excellence we have in the provision of our vocational educational experiences, and the future-focused curriculum we have to offer you.
*Stephen is a registered dietitian with a background in research
Our teaching and learning
Whatever sport or nutrition-based degree you are studying, our aim is simple - to turn you into a stand-out professional. Since we launched our degrees in these fields, we have earned a reputation for the highest quality courses and a learning experience that sets us apart from bigger universities.
Our degrees are designed to develop you personally and professionally, with graduate advantage, employability and enrichment sessions threaded throughout the curriculum, sitting alongside really interesting theory modules. Our partnership with the University of Warwick, a top-ranking Russell Group university, also brings extra opportunities including access to guest speakers and additional resources.
Our courses are developed and taught by experienced lecturing staff, many of whom still work in industry. This means they can draw on years of experience to make scenario-based discussions, debates and concepts come to life, supporting the linking of theory to practice.
You will learn so much from our lecturing teams, who are passionate about their profession and eager to inspire and nurture the next generation of professionals.
We also have many invited guest lecturers participate in our courses, sharing their knowledge and experiences to enhance your learning.
Students also have a lot to bring and as a team, we will also learn a lot from you! We encourage you to share your perspectives and viewpoints, especially when reflecting on your own life and placement experiences.
Placements are key to success as employers want you to have real experience. We have excellent links with employers and organisations across the region, all bolstered by our designated employer boards.
As well as excellent training facilities, we have a unique partnership with Bournville Rugby Club and have access to their pitches for practical sessions. Sport, Coaching and Fitness, Sports Therapy and Strength, Conditioning and Sports Nutrition all use the space for a range of modules. Students have collected GPS data during football sessions, developed their coaching skills and ran pitch-based conditioning sessions.
Our Food Science and Innovation Suite provides an excellent training environment to put theory into practice, with educational trips helping students to gain wider understanding of key issues.
Our support is exceptional, so much so, our students voted to make us the winner of the Student Support award at the Whatuni Student Choice Awards 2022.
Throughout your studies, you will not only have a personal tutor, but a link tutor during placements and module leaders to support you through academic modules. And we have a whole range of additional support services available, providing you with as much or as little support as you need to succeed in your degree. Our smaller teaching groups enable all students to grow and flourish, with strong peer support and friendship.
Our Learning and Teaching Strategy 2021-24 is key to how we approach the educational journey, focusing on three main pillars that set out our commitment to your learning and teaching experience while you are studying with us.
- Pillar 1 – Provide accessible and inclusive teaching and learning across a wide range of vocationally-led courses
- Pillar 2 – Develop next generation opportunities and skills through innovative, future-focused curriculum and pedagogy
- Pillar 3 – Shape local and global sectors, promoting sustainable futures and global citizenship
When the Covid-19 pandemic impacted his hospitality career, Samuel decided it was time to pursue his passion for the world of sport.Read more
Studying a master's at University College Birmingham has helped footballer Jess make an immediate real-life impact in the sporting sphere.Read more
Kayleigh had incredible opportunities for gaining experience during her sports therapy degree – including working with the Scotland team at the Rugby World CupRead more
When James Decker decided to leave the US Navy, he found a new calling in fitness training and joined University College Birmingham to learn the ropes as a mature student.Read more
Tom is having a ball as marketing strategist for a Canadian Major League Soccer team, and it all started at University College Birmingham.Read more
Lucy is proving invaluable as a healthy lifestyle coach helping people with everything from managing their weight to stopping smoking.Read more
Sport and nutrition facilities
Our university facilities were shortlisted in the 2022 Whatuni Student Choice Awards and include excellent sport and food and nutrition facilities, helping you gain industry experience to prepare you for work or further study.
Our Human Performance Centre includes a 35-metre sprint track, six Olympic lifting platforms, integrated force plates and a range of conditioning equipment. We have an AlterG anti-gravity treadmill, used to help rehabilitate injured athletes as we support them on their return to play journey.
Our Food Science and Innovation Suite features the industry-standard scientific analysis equipment, which you get to use across all levels of the Food and Nutrition degree course.
Sport and Exercise Science Level 3
Excited by the prospect of a career in the sport and exercise sector? This Level 3 BTEC course combines scientific knowledge with practical application to p…Read more
Sport and Fitness Level 3
Join the booming health and fitness industry by studying our Sport and Fitness college course. Gain essential skills and knowledge in exercise, anatomy and physiolog…Read more
Sport, Exercise and Fitness Level 2
Do you love sport? Thinking of going into a career in the industry? Our Level 2 course gives you the ideal introduction to the knowledge and skills you wil…Read more
Sports Coaching and Development Level 3
Kick off your sports industry career by studying our Level 3 college course. Whether you want to become a coach, fitness trainer or performance analyst…Read more
Food and Nutrition BSc (Hons) / FdSc
Our Food and Nutrition degree will give you essential knowledge of food science and covers a wide range of core competencies to prepare you for an array o…Read more
Football Business Management FdA
Football is big business. This degree explores everything from sponsorship, marketing and finance to education and leadership, opening doors to a wide variety…Read more
Sport, Coaching and Fitness BSc (Hons) / FdSc
Kick off your career in the dynamic and rewarding fields of sport, fitness and coaching. If you’re passionate about helping others and being acti…Read more
Sports Management BA (Hons) / FdA
Our Sports Management degree course opens the doors for you to enter a wide variety of management careers within the sports industry, from working for nation…Read more
Sports Therapy BSc (Hons) / FdSc
Want to work with professional athletes or treat patients in a sports injury clinic? This specialist course will arm you with advanced practical sports therap…Read more
Strength, Conditioning and Sports Nutrition BSc (Hons) / FdSc
Do you aspire to become a strength and conditioning coach? Accredited by the NSCA, this course combines theory and practical work…Read more
Strength, Conditioning and Performance MSc
Aligned with the NSCA and standards developed by CIMSPA, our Strength, Conditioning and Performance postgraduate course will help mould you into an…Read more
Meet your lecturers
I completed my Sports Therapy degree in 2017 at UCB. I was then successful in becoming a graduate teaching assistant, working with the HE Sports Therapy staff and the FE Sport s…Find out more
My engagement with public health started as an undergraduate when I co-chaired a legislative action team which aimed to increase the accessibility of women’s health care…Find out more
For more than 17 years I have been greatly immersed in rehabilitation, working with athletes at varying levels and working in clinical settings including cardiac rehabilitation…Find out more
I completed my MSc in Exercise and Nutrition Science at the University of Chester in 2011. Since then I have previously worked as a further education lecturer and as a streng…Find out more
I have worked in sport for more than 12 years in a number of roles including personal training, strength and conditioning, sports coaching and sports nutrition.Find out more
I joined the British Army after leaving comprehensive school in 1995. Coaching and participating in sports during my time in the Army, my main role was as a physical training ins…Find out more
I entered the world of academia after 8 years of experience in the sports sector, working for and with most of the stakeholders in the industry, and covering various roles such…Find out more
I have been involved in the sports industry since 1996. My main focus prior to 2004 was sports centre management and worked at a variety of sports facilities, starting off as a l…Find out more
I have had a varied career initially training as a chef, completing an NVQ in Catering, Hospitality and Restaurant Supervision and Professional Cookery. I’ve worked in a range…Find out more
I have practised as a Sports and Exercise Therapist since 1995 and have worked in a number of musculoskeletal clinics in the Midlands.Find out more
Gareth is a graduate sports therapist who has worked in a combination of private practice, elite and professional sport as well as academia over the past 16-years.Find out more
I have been involved in sports coaching and teaching for more than 20 years and have taught in both the private and public sectors (FE and HE).Find out more
I studied management and treatment of sports injuries through the football association at lilleshall then studied Physiotherapy at Salford University, I then completed my PGCE…Find out more