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The University of Worcester welcomes applications to undertake research towards MPhil and PhD degrees in Sport and Exercise Science.

Our Research School has expanded and developed into a varied and dynamic learning facility as the University has grown in size. As a research student you will join our vibrant student community and become part of our driven and knowledgeable research environment.



Researcher Development Programme

You will have the opportunity to be supervised by leading researchers in your field and take advantage of our rich Researcher Development programme which will help you to develop the skills and knowledge you need to complete your research degree but also enhance the skills you will need in any future career.

Entry requirements

What qualifications will you need?

Entry qualifications

For MPhil

  • First or Upper Second Class Honours Degree or an approved equivalent award


  • Research or professional experience which has resulted in appropriate evidence of achievement.

For PhD

  • Postgraduate Masters Degree in a discipline which is appropriate to the proposed programme of study


  • First or Upper Second Class Honours Degree or equivalent award in an appropriate discipline


  • Research or professional experience at postgraduate level which has resulted in published work, written reports or other appropriate evidence of achievement.

International applicants

International applicants will be required to demonstrate that they have the appropriate level of written and spoken English.

For MPhil/PhD this is an IELTS score of 7.0 with a minimum score of 7.0 in Written English.

Course content

What will you study?

Wide variety of research interests

The School of Sport and Exercise Science has a strong mix of academics with a high degree of professional and personal experience, enabling you to get the most out of your programme.

Our staff have expertise in a diverse range of sport and exercise disciplines including Physical Activity, Health and Well-being, Biomechanics, Physiology, Psychology, Business Management, Sports Coaching and Sport Education.

Teaching and assessment

How will you be taught?

Excellent supervision

Benefit from a professional and challenging relationship with your supervisory team, drawn from experienced academics working at the forefront of their disciplines.


Access to the University of Worcester’s virtual resources and its state of the art library facilities. The Sport and Exercise Science team at Worcester have an excellent range of resources available to support your learning and your research project, including; a motion capture and biomechanics laboratory, well equipped physiology laboratories, the University Arena a first class multi-purpose sports facility, performance analysis laboratories and a sports and fitness centre. Additionally we have access to and engage in research in the McClelland Health Centre and a world leading climate controlled chamber at the University.

The School of Sport and Exercise Science also offer a Masters by Research in Socio-cultural Studies of Sport and Exercise.

Current research students are exploring the migration of professional basketball players; and the impact of notational analysis, the analyst and feedback on performance enhancement in elite wheelchair basketball. Additionally, our two newest students are conducting research on Olympic legacies post London 2012; and optimising physical activity for the regulation of acute energy balance and effective weight-management strategies. Past successful projects in Sport and Exercise Science have concerned the hierarchical model of intrinsic and extrinsic motivation and the rivalry between the fans of Aston Villa and Birmingham City football clubs.

Programme specification

For comprehensive details on the aims and intended learning outcomes of the course, and the means by which these are achieved through learning, teaching and assessment, please download the latest programme specification document for the MPhil or PhD.


Dr Paul Blakey 
Expertise: The Business of Sport: sport marketing, sport sponsorship, branding in sport, sports entrepreneurship, digital applications in sport, and sports event leverage and impact analysis.

Dr Andy Cale 
Expertise: Sports coaching, sports pedagogy, coach education and applied sports psychology. Research in Applied settings across a variety of team sports.

Dr Matthew Cook 
Expertise: Effects of functional foods on exercise performance and physiological responses.

Dr Mark Corbett 
Expertise: Cycling biomechanics and bike fitting; repeatability and variability of motion capture and gait analysis; electromyography and interdisciplinary elements of pacing.

Dr Dan Eastough 
Expertise: Perception and action; motor control; effect of observation on action; movement volition; minimalist footwear.

Dr Christian Edwards 
Expertise: Muscularity-oriented body image (drive for muscularity, Muscle Dysmorphia, and associated behaviours); psychology of strength exercise; qualitative, quantitative, and mixed method approaches to research.

Dr Paul Golz 
Expertise: arts enhanced learning: dance as an education tool; dance and digital: how digital technologies can enhance and change the performance paradigm, especially augmented reality and wearable technology; strength and conditioning in dance: creating s&c sessions that can be delivered within a dance context; deaf dancing: using technology to improve inclusion within dance in the deaf and hard of hearing community.

Dr Lisa Griffiths 
Expertise: Physical activity and health; lifestyle interventions for patients with mental illness.

Dr Louise Martin 
Expertise: Variability of athletic performance; regulation of pacing.

Dr Gyozo Molnar 
Expertise: Globalisation; labour migration; the Olympic movement; post-colonial socio-cultural issues; sociology of the body; ethnography and social theories.

Andrew Renfree 
Expertise: regulation of pacing.

Dr Clare Rhoden 
Expertise: Psychological factors associated with exercise, ageing and physical activity; age stereotypes and physical activity; emotions and affect in sports performance; psychological factors associated with sports performance.

Dr Don Vinson 
Expertise: Sports coaching; sports pedagogy; Game Sense; coach education; servant leadership. Experience in supervising quantitative, qualitative and multiple methods approaches.


Where could it take you?

All research students must engage with the Researcher Development Programme (RDP), a core curriculum of training and development which provides them with the general and subject-specific knowledge, skills and behaviours to support them in the completion of their research degree. At the beginning of an MPhil/PhD degree, you will be allocated to one of two pathways depending on your experience and knowledge as a researcher. This will determine which elements of the programme are core and which are optional.At the beginning of the programme you will be required to complete a Training Needs Analysis (TNA) in conjunction with your Director of Studies. This identifies the training that you will need to undertake, in addition to the mandatory elements of RDP, in order to complete the programme and to become an effective researcher. This TNA is revisited at the beginning of each subsequent academic year. All students are offered a wide range of optional training workshops throughout the programme focused around the following themes:

  • Developing and Managing Your Research
  • Dissemination, Impact, Engagement
  • Completing Your Research Degree
  • Research Methodology Master classes
  • Data Analysis
  • Research Funding
  • Wellbeing and Personal Effectiveness
  • Careers and Employability
  • Enterprise and Entrepreneurship

How much will it cost?


The current fees can be found within the tuition fees document on our figure out finances page.


Finding the right accommodation is paramount to your university experience, and our welcoming student communities are great places to live and study.

We have over 1,000 rooms across our halls of residence. With rooms to suit every budget and need, from our 'Traditional Hall' at £102 per week to 'En-suite Extra' at £165 per week (2019/20 prices).

For full details visit our accommodation page.

How to apply

How do you apply?

Additional information

As part of the application process, you will be asked to submit a research outline. We recommend preparing your research outline before beginning your online application. Some guidance on preparing your research outline is available here.

If your research involves working with vulnerable adults and/or children then you may be required to obtain a DBS check. There will be a small charge for this. For more information please contact

We are committed to making reasonable adjustment. If you require an alternative format for making your application due to a disability, please contact us to discuss your needs on 01905 542182 or

How to apply

Please make your application via our online application form. If you have any questions, please contact the Research School on 01905 542182 or

Before you submit a full application, please contact Dr Don Vinson ( to discuss your research project and the availability of appropriate supervision.

January start

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October start

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