Sport Management

MSc, Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma


Sport Management is an exciting degree that will help you develop your career in the sport industry. It has been designed to meet the industry’s need for well-qualified managers who can combine management and financial skills with specialist knowledge of sport. The course will help you acquire the necessary knowledge, understanding and skills to enable reflective management practice in a range of sport settings.

Key information

  • Degree type: MSc, Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma
  • Study methods: Full-time, Part-time, Campus based
  • Start date: September
  • Course Director: Dr Mathieu Winand

Sport Postgraduate Recruitment Team School of Sport
University of Stirling
+44 (0) 1786 466498

View fees and finance

Course objectives

The course will help you acquire the necessary knowledge, understanding and skills to enable reflective management practice in a range of sport settings.

Throughout the course you will be challenged to evaluate the dynamic environment in which sport organisations in the public, commercial and voluntary sectors strive to flourish, and to apply your developing knowledge and management skills to meet the inherent sport management challenges.

Taught by staff with consultancy and research experience, this MSc reflects the current industry trends and employer needs. Your studies will include: strategic management, finance, research methods, professional practice and integrated sport management studies. You will also have the opportunity to widen or deepen your knowledge through selection of two option modules.

On successful completion you will be able to:

  • identify and evaluate recent changes in sport participation and policies, and their implications for sport management practices.
  • apply management theory to the context of managing sport organisations.
  • conduct research into sport issues relevant to managing and developing sport organisations and events.

What makes us different?

World-class library and teaching facilities

Studying for a degree means learning in different ways; managing your own time; conducting research; mastering new computer skills. We have the facilities and advice on hand to help you do all this - and do it well.

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Life at Stirling

Of the many reasons students come to Stirling, such as academic reputation and research standards, one factor is always cited: the outstanding beauty of the University's Stirling campus. View our online films to get a picture of what it's like to live and study on our beautiful campus.

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Entry requirements

Academic requirements

A minimum of a second class Honours degree (2.1 preferred) or equivalent. Applicants without these formal qualifications but with significant appropriate/relevant work/life experience are encouraged to apply.

INTO University of Stirling offers a Graduate Diploma for those students who do not meet the required criteria for this course. If you successfully complete the Graduate Diploma in Business, Finance and Sport and meet the required progression grades, you will be guaranteed entry onto this Master's degree.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language you must have one of the following qualifications as evidence of your English language skills:

  • IELTS: 6.5 with 5.5 minimum in each skill
  • Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE): Grade C
  • Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE): Grade B
  • Pearson Test of English (Academic): 60 with 51 in each component
  • IBT TOEFL: 90 with no subtest less than 17

For more information go to English language requirements

If you don’t meet the required score you may be able to register for one of our pre-sessional English courses. To register you must hold a conditional offer for your course and have an IELTS score 0.5 or 1.0 below the required standard. View our range of pre-sessional courses.

Structure and teaching

Structure and content

You can study either full-time or part-time to Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma or MSc levels.

You must attain 180 SCQF points to be awarded an MSc in Sport Management. You will achieve this by successfully completing the following modules:

  • Principles of Management in Sport (20 credits)
  • Sports Finance (20 credits)
  • Professional Practice (20 credits)
  • Research Methods for Sport (20 credits)
  • Sport Event Management (20 credits)
  • Sport Management Challenges (10 credits)
  • Sport Marketing (10 credits)
  • Dissertation (60 credits)

You will have the chance to work on case studies, learn from people in the business and to develop specific interests through a research dissertation. 

On successful completion you will be able to:

  • identify and evaluate recent changes in sport participation and policies, and their implications for sport management practices.
  • apply management theory to the context of managing sport organisations.
  • conduct research into sport issues relevant to managing and developing sport organisations and events.

Delivery and assessment

Management concepts and theories will be delivered through traditional lecturing methods. Theory will be applied to practice through case study analysis, discussion with sport management practitioners, seminars and research. You will acquire ‘softer’ management skills such as problem-solving, team-working, leadership, analysis, evaluation and presentation through a range of learning activities, and which are essential if you are to become an effective manager. The modules are assessed by coursework only and designed to encourage students to link theory to professional practice.


  • Principles of Management in Sport (SPSP038) 
  • Sports Finance (SPSP001) 
  • Research Methods for Sport (SPSP039) 
  • Professional Practice  (SPSP049) 
  • Sport Event Management (SPSP058)
  • Sport Management Challenges (SPSP059) 
  • Sport Marketing (MKTP022) 
  • Dissertation -  for full-time students  (SPSP010) 
  • Dissertation -  for part-time students (SPSP053)


Recommended reading

Students will only be expected to purchase three to four key texts for the course relating to key management principles and relevant research methodologies. In addition to core texts, reading will be supplemented with relevant and contemporary (empirical) journal articles. Students with little knowledge of sport management are directed to the following text as preparatory reading:

Taylor, P. (2011) Torkildesen’s Sport and Leisure Management (6th Edition), London: Routledge

Modes of study


Certificate: six months
Diploma: nine months
MSc: nine months


Certificate: 12 months
Diploma: 24 months
MSc: 24 months

Study method

Full-time and Part-time

Example timetable

The timetable below is a typical example, but your own timetable may be different.



11-12 12-1 1-2 2-3 3-4


Tues Sports Research Methods     Sport Finance                           

Principles of Management in Sport


Why Stirling?


In REF2014 Stirling was placed 6th in Scotland and 45th in the UK with almost three quarters of research activity rated either world-leading or internationally excellent.


A particular strength of this course is the focus on real practice enabled by the knowledge and industry experience of module tutors.  Amongst the course tutors are trustees of National Governing Bodies of Sport, those who have employment experience in sport management and a team who, in combination, has provided consultancy support to a wide range of national and international sport organisations. This offers students a unique insight into real life practice and opportunity to access a substantial network of industry contacts.

As Scotland’s University for Sporting Excellence we are closely aligned with many sports organisations and have formal links with a growing number of organisations with regard to facilitating student research projects, work experience and guest lectures by industry practitioners.  We are also pleased to have a close association with the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity.

Academic Strengths

This course is delivered by a team of highly qualified academics with experience and research interests that complement and support teaching activities. Of particular note is that fact that tutors of what may be regarded as generic management disciplines have a publications record which evidences their specific interest in applying generic theory to the sporting context.

Our students

This course attracts national and international students: the current cohort includes students from the UK, Norway, USA, Spain, India and China. While some students are furthering their studies in sport, others are in the process of career transition having studied a different, though related, subject at undergraduate level.

This is one of the most exciting periods for Scottish sport with the Commonwealth Games and their legacy set to transform the opportunities for everyone in the community. The MSc in Sport Management at Stirling provides an excellent grounding in the challenges and opportunities in this field. I am positive that graduates from this programme will be among those who will provide the leadership in Scottish sport for many years to come.

Derek Casey, former Interim Chief Executive, Glasgow 2014 


Careers and employability

Career opportunities

Gaining this degree will prepare you for sport management jobs with a local authority, a commercial organisation or with a voluntary sport organisation such as a governing body of sport.

A key benefit of this course is the opportunity to gain expert management knowledge that can be applied to a wider range of industrial sectors than just sport.


You will have the opportunity to work with a sport organisation during a 30-hour internship as well as organising and marketing a local sport event with Active Stirling. That experience will increase your employability for the job you aim for in the sport sector.

Industry connections

The University has strong partnerships with a number of organisations including: PGA Scotland, Scottish Professional Football League, Senscot, Scottish Sport Federations, Forth Valley Football Academy and Active Stirling.

Online application process

Please choose a start date and study method from the drop-down list below, and click the Apply Now button below to begin the online application process. (Please make sure you have consulted the Postgraduate Study pages on the University website and the Online Application Guidance Notes before continuing).



2016/17 Overseas £13,950
2016/17 Home/EU £4,500
2015/16 Overseas £13,500
2015/16 Home/EU £4,500

You should expect to pay fees for every year you are in attendance and be aware fees are subject to revision and may increase annually. Students on programmes of study of more than one year should take this into account when applying.

Please note there is an additional charge for the conferral of your degree. This will be charged at the rate applicable when you complete your studies. View more information

Scholarships & funding

Postgraduate Tuition Fee Loan

This course is currently approved for PTFL (Postgraduate Tuition Fee Loan) funding from SAAS.  More information

For information on possible sources of funding, visit:

Scholarship finder
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