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What makes Applied Sports Performance Analysis MSc at Worcester special?

Over the past decade the sports science discipline of Performance Analysis has seen a rapid growth at both elite and grass roots levels. Our course has been specifically designed to provide you with the knowledge and skills needed to thrive as a Performance Analyst.

At Worcester you will have access to the latest software and hardware, giving you experience of new and emerging technologies at the forefront of the discipline. The applied nature of the course forms the core of the programme with a significant part being vocationally based.

The course content builds on the foundational skills and theory learnt on an undergraduate degree course in sports coaching, sports science or performance analysis. Enabling you to obtain the essential skills, knowledge and experience to enter employment.

Overview

Overview

Key features

  • Heavy emphasis on development and application of the applied skills of a performance analyst
  • Strong links to professional sports clubs and organisations
  • Excellent facilities, including two performance analysis laboratories, Motion & Performance Centre, McClelland Health & Wellbeing Centre, 2,000-seat sports arena, two indoor sports centres, floodlit 3G astro, floodlit synthetic pitch, exercise physiology suite (BASES accredited), sports science laboratories, gymnasia and dance studio
  • Full or part-time options, with a flexible modular scheme so that you can study at your own pace
Entry requirements

What qualifications will you need?

Entry requirements

You will normally have a 2:1 classification in a sport-related degree.

Those who hold a sport-related degree classification of either 2:2 (or below) or a non-sport-related degree will be considered on a case-by-case basis and may be required to submit a portfolio of evidence to demonstrate relevant experience/knowledge.

All applicants shall be interviewed.

International students require IELTS of 6.5 (with no less than 5.5 in any component) or equivalent.

Other information

If you have any questions about entry requirements, please contact the Admissions Office on 01905 855111 or email pgadmissions@worc.ac.uk for advice.

Course content

What will you study?

Our courses are informed by research and current developments in the discipline and feedback from students, external examiners and employers. Modules do therefore change periodically in the interests of keeping the course relevant and reflecting best practice. The most up-to-date information will be available to you once you have accepted a place and registered for the course. If there are insufficient numbers of students interested in an optional module, this might not be offered, but we will advise you as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative. 

Modules

  • Evidence-Informed Performance Analysis
  • The Role of the Analyst
  • Future Directions in Performance Analysis of Sport
  • Professional Placement
  • Sport Research Project

What will you study and when?

An example of the structure which will be followed by a full-time student on any of the pathways, starting in September 2019 and finishing in September 2020 would be:

  • 1 x 30 credit pathway specific module to be taken in semester 1 (September – January)
  • 1 x 30 credit The Role of the Analyst module in semester 1 (September – January)
  • 1 x 30 credit work-based placement module in semester 2 (January – May)
  • 1 x 30 credit pathway specific module to be taken in semester 2 (January - May)
  • 1 x 60 credit Research Project module including research methods to be taken between May and September. 

Part time students would normally complete the course over 2 years:

  • In Year 1 they would take one pathway specific module in semester 1 and 2.
  • In Year 2 they would take The Role of the Analyst in semester 1, complete their placement in semester 2, and complete their Research Project over the summer.

The MSc Sport (Applied Performance Analysis) has been specifically designed for students wishing to progress in their careers as a sports performance analysts, in either an athlete support or a research role. Sports performance analysis is an objective way of observing and recording performances to quantify key performance elements in a valid and consistent manner to inform future practice. 

Sports performance analysts are now employed by virtually every professional club to provide coaches, athletes and other support staff with objective data to aid in improve sporting performance. Roles that sports performance analysts typically fulfil include coding performances to prepare reports and videos to evaluate past and/or future performances, identifying trends and patterns between teams/individuals through statistical analyses, using objective performance data to answer key performance related questions posed by coaches, players and/or other performance related staff etc.

In particular, the course aims to facilitate the development of theoretical and practical knowledge, understanding and professional skills of sport performance analysts working in or hoping to work in the sports performance industry. With this in mind the primary focus of content and the flexible learning delivery method is related to developing and enhancing the competencies of an applied sports performance analyst. This specific focus provides students with a greater depth of understanding and technical skills and will better prepare students to further their careers in the highly competitive field of applied sports performance analysis.

Teaching and assessment

How will you be taught?

We place emphasis on enabling you to develop the independent learning capabilities that will equip you for lifelong learning and future employment, as well as academic achievement.

A mixture of independent study, teaching and academic support through the personal academic tutoring system enables you to reflect on progress and build up a profile of skills, achievements and experiences that will enable you to flourish and be successful.

Teaching

Students are taught through a combination of intensive weeks, interactive workshops, lectures, seminars, fieldwork, practical activities etc. Interactive workshops take a variety of formats and are intended to enable the application of learning through discussion and small group activities. Seminars enable the discussion and development of understanding of topics covered in lectures, and practical activities are focused on developing subject specific skills and applied individual and group project work.

Contact time

For intensive study weeks students are expected to have 5 x 8 hours of contact time per intensive week (2 in total). While studying the distance learning content, students are expected to have approximately 2 hours of contact time (via virtual learning) per module, per week. In addition, students are able to access 8 hours of tutorial support during the course of their Sports Research Project study. Students will also receive two days of structured Research Project preparation.

Independent self-study

In addition to the contact time, students are expected to undertake substantial personal self-study per week. Typically, this will involve online study tasks, reading journal articles and completing formative assignments. MSPO4270 requires approximately 100 hours for the completion of work based project learning and online tasks, and the Sports Research Project requires the completion of approximately 600 hours of work.

Independent learning is supported by a range of excellent learning facilities, including the Hive and library resources, the virtual learning environment, and extensive electronic learning resources.

Duration

  • 1 year full time
  • Typically 2 years part time

Timetables

Timetables are normally available one month before registration. Please note that whilst we try to be as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week; and some classes can be scheduled in the evenings. Given the importance of planning ahead, indicative timings of intensive teaching blocks are normally available at time of application / interview.

 

Assessment

The course provides opportunities to test understanding and learning informally through the completion of practice or ‘formative’ assignments. Each module has one or more formal or ‘summative’ assessment which is graded and counts towards the overall module grade. Assessment methods include a range of coursework assessments such as essays, reports, portfolios, performance, presentations and a final research project. The precise assessment requirements for an individual student in an academic year will vary according to the course selected.

 

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.

Meet the team

You will be taught by a teaching team whose expertise and knowledge are closely matched to the content of the modules on the course and have experience of both research and applied practice and consultancy. 

You can learn more about the staff by visiting our sports staff profiles.

dr-john-francis

Dr John Francis

John Francis returned to the University of Worcester in 2018 as a Lecturer in Performance Analysis. He has an array of applied and research experience in performance analysis with elite able-bodied and disabled sports teams. John has provided support to a variety of teams during six European Championships, three World Championships, one World Cup and a Paralympic Games. His research has involved working closely with the British Wheelchair Basketball squads, where his findings helped the male and female performance squads secure a bronze medal and a fourth place finish at the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games. More recently, he has begun exploring how coaches, athletes and support staff perceive the use of performance analysis to help improve the delivery of the sport science discipline. John uses all these different experiences and skills to help engage students in the field and develop future performance analysts.

Careers

Where could it take you?

University of Worcester graduates in the field of performance analysis have continued to study higher level qualifications at both UW and other institutions across the UK. Many have found employment within professional sports clubs and some have extended their internship into a part-time paid role. 

The success of students studying on this programme has primarily been based within elite sport but has also been as diverse as local authority organisations (performance analyst role). The course has a strong record of helping students gain employment upon completion of studies.

Upon successful completion of the Masters Programme, students have gained first employment, promotion within their own organisation, gained international employment or move to a senior management position in other organisations. The Masters also provides a platform to other research/higher degrees in sport and promotion in other professional organisations. The completion of the Masters may also provide students with the ability to enhance their current working practices. 

Katie Sorenson

Katie Sorenson

U9-U12 Performance Analyst at Manchester City Football Club

“The MSc course has helped me with projects within my role at Southend United. At university, I especially enjoyed the Work Based Project modules, as it allowed me to apply my knowledge into a professional analysis setting. I did a project on set pieces within my club, which had a very positive outcome within my club.

“We were able to score more goals from set pieces as we found what suited our players and style of play, and we conceded fewer opportunities when defending set pieces. Another module, which focused on feedback with coaches, has ensured I have improved how I inform the coaching process with my analytical insight. 

“The structure allowed me to work at my placement as well as play semi-pro football. Without the structure of course, I would not have been able to balance the three. I missed a few lectures due to work/football commitments, but it was available for me to catch up on and go over the lectures the next day. It meant I could be flexible, and didn't have to stress.

“The intensive weeks were great as it was great to meet everyone in September and then catch up with everyone again when it came to the January intensive week. It was great to see how everyone had grown within their roles at their clubs, through the aid of the MSc course. I have managed to stay in good contact with a few of the course. We continue to share code windows, ideas and analytical insight. As well as continuing to talk about jobs that come up at clubs!”

Matt Lewis

Matthew Lewis

Senior First Team Performance Analyst at Norwich City Football Club

"My journey as a performance analyst began during my undergraduate degree in Sport Coaching at the University of Worcester. I enjoyed the experience so much that I went back for postgraduate study where I specialised in performance analysis.

"The industry links of the staff ensured that there were many opportunities for me to gain applied experience within the performance analysis industry, as well as ensuring that what we were taught was relevant to what analysts did. The placement opportunities gave me a real taste for the life as a performance analyst as well as helping me grow and develop – improving my knowledge and understanding of not only the theory but practices of analysts too. Staff were always willing to help and support me along the way.

"Studying as a distance learner allowed me to be located at a football club without the necessity to travel to Worcester for all of my lectures and tutorials. The staff are incredibly helpful and go above and beyond to support me as the student, creating time for online tutorials, telephone calls and replying to my emails to ensure I feel comfortable with the tasks in hand. The facilities and resources are of the highest quality. The two performance analysis labs are fully equipped with the latest hardware and software and provide a great space to work in.

"I would certainly recommend the MSc programmes at the University of Worcester, especially completing academic study alongside an applied placement opportunity. Being able to apply theoretical knowledge to practical activity is so beneficial and increases the chances of obtaining full time employment. This provides a real edge on other courses at other institutions. I feel there wouldn’t have been a better place to learn and develop skills, not only academically, but ‘in the real world’."

Danny Barham

Danny Barham

Head of Academy Performance Analysis & Data at Birmingham City Football Club

"The MSc in Applied Performance Analysis course has helped me add academic rigour and understanding behind my practices and processes. This is so important when dealing with senior members of staff and coaches in the professional environment.

"The best thing about the course was the fact that a large proportion of the content is accessible online allowed me to manage my full-time work at the club with my studies which is imperative as the football industry is so demanding.

"A lot of the analysts on the course are practising analysts in other environments and having established relationships with them only aids club-to-club idea sharing. This is so important to growing our industry!"

mukesh talwar is wearing sports kit and standing against a green background.

Mukesh Talwar

U18 Performance Analyst at Birmingham City Football Club

"This MSc Course has provided me a greater insight of Performance Analysis. It has taught me many of the significant factors of how analysis fits within the world of sport i.e. The coaching process and the tools and mechanisms used. The course has helped me with the development of the players I have been working with.

I am currently working with the Under 18’s at Birmingham City Football Club and this course has been very useful in relation to my daily work, such as the delivery and feedback process for athletes. I have been able to use evidence-based literature to rationalise my decision-making process within my working environment, applying theory into a practical setting and vice versa, which has enabled me to make real impact to the coaching process.

One of the best things about the MSc is that it’s built around you. Working within a professional football environment where you are working 6/7 days a week for numerous hours it would be difficult to attend lectures on a weekly basis. However, with this MSc course you have interactive online lecturers which you can view from the comfort of your home or at work. If you can’t watch a lecture on the day, you can view it within the week to catch up on anything that you have missed.

The course has fantastic lecturers which is a bonus. They are easily contactable for any concerns that you might have and, from my own personal experience, they have been very helpful during my time on the course."

Ben Cresswell is smiling and looking into the camera

Ben Cresswell

Academy Data Insights Technician at Southampton Football Club

 

“The University offered a specialised Performance Analysis course where I could develop knowledge of the theory of analysis alongside the practical skills required to be an analyst. I was able to work in a professional sporting environment where you could link the applied work to your University work was beneficial to develop the skills of an analyst in a real-world environment.

“The curriculum we followed was very closely aligned to the requirements of a working analyst which ensured we were prepared to work following completion of this. Completing an Internship at Birmingham City during this time also introduced me to how analysis could be applied in a sporting setting. This experience in a sporting environment was invaluable when it comes to the skills I developed over this period.

“As the course put me alongside a group of people wanting to get into analysis, it was a great use to be able to interact with others on the course to either run new ideas past or help when I was struggling with something.”

Costs

How much will it cost?

Fees

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

Postgraduate loans

The Government will provide a loan of up to £10,609 per student for postgraduate Masters study. It will be at your own discretion whether the loan is used towards fees, maintenance or other costs.

For full details visit our postgraduate loans page.

How to apply