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Designing a degree programme “fit” for the sport industry

Rob Griffiths (University of Glamorgan)
Paul Rainer (University of Glamorgan)

Journal of Applied Research in Higher Education

ISSN: 2050-7003

Article publication date: 1 January 2010


The strategy for sport in Wales, Climbing Higher, establishes some very ambitious targets for raising the levels of sport and physical activity participation over the next 20 years. To support its strategy, the Welsh Assembly Government has promised an additional 12,000 jobs within the sport and recreation sector. Research conducted with employers highlights that many sports degree programmes are not “fit for purpose” and are not fully preparing graduates for work within the industry. This paper considers how the University of Glamorgan, in liaison with key industry partners, has designed a sports development degree “fit” for the industry and which meets the expectations of Climbing Higher. The success of the degree programme relies upon the formation of multi‐agency partnerships at a local and regional level. Experiential learning underpins the degree with students required to reflect upon the challenges that they face in getting participants more active; the community placements embedded within modules allow students to experience the complexities of working within the sports development sector. It is a unique and holistic approach, supported by key local and national partners and is fundamental in supporting the objectives set by the Welsh Assembly Government.



Griffiths, R. and Rainer, P. (2010), "Designing a degree programme “fit” for the sport industry", Journal of Applied Research in Higher Education, Vol. 2 No. 1, pp. 48-57.



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