Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Undergraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2023-2024 (archived)

Module SPRT3201: Active Communities: Placement

Department: Sport and Exercise Sciences

SPRT3201: Active Communities: Placement

Type Tied Level 3 Credits 20 Availability Available in 2023/24 Module Cap Location Durham
Tied to C603
Tied to C605
Tied to C609
Tied to C606
Tied to C607
Tied to C608


  • All students must provide evidence of a successful DBS check before they are permitted onto the module.


  • None.

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None.


  • The module is aimed to enable students to develop into effective, independent and critical professionals within a vocationally relevant youth (or young adult) sport or exercise/health context.
  • This third year module aims to complement student's academic studies by providing a vocational insight through practical experience in a professional sport or exercise/health environment. It also aims to provide an insight into the administration, management and working structure of the placement agency, whilst forging positive partnerships between the University and external professional organisations. It is an optional module for students on the BA (Hons) Sport, Exercise & Physical Activity, and BSc Sport & Exercise Science programmes. Students will be encouraged to reflect upon, and critically analyse their experiences of being on placement, and use the lessons learnt to contextualise their academic studies, put theory into practice, and inform both their studies and future career path.


  • This module will focus on:
  • Providing students with a placement-experience within an approved sport or exercise/health setting, learning from direct experience and observation; working with people in a practical context; organising, planning, and delivering sport/exercise activities, programmes or events; analysing and reviewing the effectiveness of these professional activities; critically self-reflecting upon performance; the identification of personal and professional skill development; and the attainment of professional competencies.
  • Brief overview of lecture & workshop content:
  • Professional sport and/or exercise agencies and partners (exploring placement opportunities with Team Durham Partners);
  • Placement preparation and application; understanding expectations of the host agency;
  • Legal & ethical considerations, and managing risk in the workplace;
  • Development of a Curriculum Vitae and identification of personal & professional skills;
  • Personal & professional skills development and reflective practice;
  • Placement experience;
  • Application of theory and subject knowledge to an applied context;
  • Sports-related career planning.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • By the end of this module students will be able to:
  • Gain practical experience of working within structured sport and/or exercise contexts;
  • Experience planning and evaluation of structured sport provision with experienced practitioners;
  • Appreciate the nature of working with young people, adults, performers, coaches, and/or sport development teams in real world professional settings;
  • Gain an understanding of the influence and role of key organisations in structured sport and/or exercise settings;
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the values, aims and purposes of the agency where the placement has taken place;
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the professional standards and ethical responsibilities related to working with people in sport and/or exercise contexts;
  • Demonstrate the ability to plan, perform, evaluate and record in a teaching/ coaching/ or sports development environment;
  • Analyse and review methodology, resources, programmes and structures;
  • Demonstrate how the practical placement has contributed to the development of their personal key skills and vocationally relevant competencies;
  • Reflect upon their own performance in the roles they have undertaken on placement.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • By the end of this module students will be able to:
  • Generate evidence of theoretical understanding & application within an applied sport and/or exercise context;
  • Generate evidence of how they have made use of appropriate learning resources (including applied research and literature) to inform their practice;
  • Further develop their understanding of subject-relevant professions and organisations;
  • Plan for, organise and deliver a range of structured sport and/or exercise experiences and opportunities within professional settings.
Key Skills:
  • By the end of this module, students will be able to:
  • Demonstrate their ability to communicate, work with others, use ICT appropriately, solve problems; use theory to inform applied practice, and apply numerical skills;
  • Develop effective independent learning strategies, and problem-based learning approaches to resolving issues in the placement setting;
  • Take responsibility for their own learning and professional development needs.
  • Employability Skills:
  • Prepare and effectively apply to a placement opportunity, demonstrating an effective CV and the identification of a personal skills profile relevant to the placement experience;
  • Manage effective professional relationships in a work environment;
  • Provide an evidence-based portfolio demonstrating the acquisition of key professional skills and competencies attained from within the professional placement context.

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • The module learning, teaching and assessment strategy is designed to provide students with an experiential learning framework, within which they will develop a variety of key personal and professional skills relating to employability in a sport or exercise/health development, coaching, leadership or educational environment. The main focus of the module is around placement-based learning. This will be supplemented by the inclusion of informative lectures and workshops, and individual tutorial support.
  • Lecture & Workshop Programme: Staff led content, including individual and group-based activities, will explain the purpose of the placement, the process and the assessment. Key lectures will focus on the foundation knowledge necessary for students to appropriately prepare for and apply to a professional placement. Applied tasks and workshops will allow for the identification of personal professional skills, and the development of CV's and placement application letters. Students will also receive key information and knowledge on how to critically self-reflect upon their professional experiences and competencies, as preparation for their placement and associated summative assessments.
  • Tutorials: Tutorial support will be offered and implemented to all students, in order to appropriately support them through the placement process. This also allows for regular contact to be maintained between the placement supervisor and the student, to ensure that the student is supported in the work environment.
  • The Professional Placement: A professional placement within a supervising structured sport and/or exercise agency will permit the student to further develop their understanding and applied experiences of professional contexts. The professional placement will enable students to develop into effective, independent and critical professionals within a vocationally relevant sport and/or exercise context. The placement duration will be a minimum of 32 hours, which may typically be achieved by 2 hours per week of contact with the placement host, across 16 weeks of the academic year. The actual pattern of working can be flexible however, and is negotiable between the student and the host placement agency. The placement will typically commence within Term One, and will continue across into Term Two of the academic year. Students will be advised and supported in the identification of appropriate placement opportunities, with the assistance of the Team Durham coordinators. Prior to any formal confirmation, the proposed placement must be approved by the Module Convenor, in collaboration with Team Durham coordinators.
  • Independent Study - Preparation and Reading: The student is expected to engage in their own self-selected activities focusing on the development of key skills, research, and preparation for individual tasks specifically related to their placement setting. There will be a range of resources available via the Module VLE site, which the student can access to further enhance their knowledge and skills related to working in sport and/or exercise contexts. The student is encouraged to use the preparation and reading time to identify, negotiate and confirm appropriate professional work placement planning suitable to the placement setting and the student's academic development needs.
  • The lectures/workshops will focus upon preparation for the placement experience and associated assessments. As such, attendance will be strongly encouraged and monitored. It is anticipated that the lectures/workshops will be delivered asynchronously (e.g. online lectures, directed study tasks, etc.); Some opportunities for synchronous content will be accommodated where possible.
  • The Placement Portfolio will take the form of a professional document, demonstrating the student’s preparation for the placement, a placement journal/ logbook of activity, and a & reflective statement.
  • Placement Mentor Assessment report: Mentors will complete an assessment of the student from within the placement organisation. The report will comment upon the quality of the student contribution to the organisation, and the fulfilment of their roles and responsibilities.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Lectures/Workshops* 8 7 in term 1; 1 in term 2 1 hour 8
Tutorials with Placement Supervisor Variable Students will have the opportunity to request tutorials with the Module Convenor at key times across the placement experience 15 mins 4
Work-Based Placement*. Flexibility is built in to allow students to attain a total of 32 hours of practical experience in a way that is conducive to the placement setting (e.g. across a vacation period; once per week, etc.). 32
Preparation and Reading 156
Total 200

Summative Assessment

Component: Placement Portfolio Assessment Component Weighting: 80%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
The Placement Portfolio will take the form of a professional document, demonstrating the student’s preparation for the placement, a placement journal/ logbook of activity, and a reflective statement. Reflective Statement component: 2,000 words 100% None
Component: Placement Assessment Component Weighting: 20%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Placement Mentor Assessment report TBD 100% None

Formative Assessment:

Placement Application Portfolio: - Compulsory element of Formative Assessment (2,000 words), to be submitted in Term One. - The portfolio will demonstrate evidence of student preparation for the placement. It may include the following: Identification of personal skills and experiences relevant to a placement context; Development of a CV; Development of a letter of application to a placement supervisor; Evidence of placement research, contact with organisation; consideration of what will be required within the placement setting; Reflection on what has been learnt in the process of applying for the placement.

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University