Prospective Students

B.Sc. in Athletic Therapy and Training (Bachelor Honours Degree)


Fact File

CAO Code: DC204
Points Last Year: 505
Duration: 4 years
Type of degree: Full-time
Contact: Dr Noel McCaffrey

Understanding the Course:

Preventing, Treating and Rehabilitating Injuries in Sport and Physical Activity

We all know that physical activity is a necessary and important part of daily life. Unfortunately, injuries - musculoskeletal injuries in particular - are incurred by people during physical activity in sport, leisure and work. An Athletic Therapist and Trainer (ATT) is an important member of the overall health care profession who specialises in the prevention, assessment, treatment and rehabilitation of musculoskeletal injuries. Such injuries can occur across all ages, standards of sporting ability and population types (including for example, people with a disability).

We want you to qualify with excellent medical knowledge, clinical skills, communication skills, confidence, problem solving skills and extensive practical experience. Importantly, you should also develop a profound respect for patients and a highly professional approach when dealing with them.

How does an ATT differ from a physiotherapist?
Physiotherapy is a broad based health care profession
that not only addresses musculoskeletal care of the physically active but also deals with a number of diverse medical fields, including oncology, obstetrics, gynaecology, paediatrics, rheumatology, respiratory and neurological illnesses and burn injuries.

In contrast Athletic Therapy and Training specialises in musculoskeletal injuries related to physical activity. Such specialisation allows students of Athletic Therapy and Training to examine this area in much greater detail than a student of physiotherapy.

About You:

You should be passionate about looking after the health of athletes and the general public, specifically relating to musculoskeletal health. It is not necessary to be physically active yourself, but an interest in sport or physical activity is essential.

Course Structure:

Much importance is placed on understanding the anatomy of the body. Year One begins with anatomy and the basic sciences, giving you an understanding of the pathophysiology of injury. You will also study the theory and practice that underpin physical conditioning to prevent and rehabilitate injury, and enhance health and performance.

In Year Two you will start to learn how to assess, treat and rehabilitate injuries and develop further the theory and practice of training. You will also undertake First Aid and Emergency Care in order to prepare you to provide pitch-side assistance to various sports. In addition, you will start the Clinic modules that will continue each semester for the whole course. These modules will provide you with clinical field experience as well as allow you to assist in the student-led sports injury clinic based within the School. Year Three will see you expand your knowledge, as well as learning in-depth principles of rehabilitation, therapeutic modalities and soft tissue therapies.

In the first half of Year Four you will gain three to five months experience working full-time in a clinical setting in Ireland or abroad (including athletic therapy and training facilities in American and Canadian universities). The latter half of the fourth year includes a major research project.

At all times, how you communicate and work professionally with patients will be emphasised.

View the subjects currently taught on this course (2016 - 2017)

Why DCU:

  • A truly unique course aimed at the large number of students who wish to study and work in the area of musculoskeletal injuries related to sport and physical activity.
  • Clinical teaching from sports medicine physicians, chartered physiotherapists and athletic therapists and trainers.
  • A working sports medicine clinic within DCU provides patient-based teaching and learning throughout Years Two, Three and Four.
  • The course is supported by state-of-the art assessment, rehabilitation and treatment facilities and physiology, biomechanics and psychology laboratories.
  • Relatively small classes will allow for individual attention from high quality staff.

What Our Students Say
"I have really enjoyed the last three years of this course learning the skills to diagnose and treat an extensive range of injuries in both clinical and emergency situations. This has been done while still enjoying the college life that DCU has to offer. The course is now also providing me with the opportunity to travel to America to complete a five-month clinical placement at the University of Pittsburgh."
Kevin Boyd, Athletic Therapy and Training, Year Four

Career Prospects:

The clinical experience gained in Year Four gives you a genuine competitive edge with employers when you graduate. Career prospects include:

  • Sports injury clinics
  • Sports clubs and teams
  • National governing bodies of sports associations
  • Health and fitness centres
  • Self-employed athletic therapist and trainer

Entry Requirements:

Leaving Certificate
In addition to the general entry requirements for admission to the university the following entry requirements apply:

OC3 or HD3 in Mathematics PLUS Grade OC3 or HD3 in one of Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Physics with Chemistry or Agricultural Science

GCE A Level
In addition to the general entry requirements for admission to the university the following entry requirements apply:

GCE A-Level D or GCE AS-Level C or GCSE C in Mathematics PLUS GCE A-Level D or GCE AS-Level C or GCSE C in one of Physics, Chemistry, Biology or Agricultural Science.

FETAC Level: 5
No Entry Path

Transfer Applications
Applications are welcomed from students who have successfully completed a Higher Diploma (Level 8) in a related field of study OR students who have successfully completed or are about to successfully complete one year of study of a degree course (level 7 or 8) awarded by the Higher Education and Training Awards Council (HETAC) formerly the National Council for Education Awards (NCEA) or by a university established under the Universities Act 1997, or an equivalent qualification awarded by a similar body outside of the State. It is NOT necessary for the candidate to have studied in a similar or related subject to the course to which they are applying.

International Applications
International candidates are expected to have educational qualifications of a standard equivalent to those outlined above. In addition, where such candidates are non-native speakers of the English language they must satisfy the university of their competency in the English language. For further information on international applications click here.

How to Apply and Closing Dates

Applicants presenting EU School Leaving examinations:

Apply through the Central Applications Office (CAO) by 1st February or 1st May

Applicants presenting examinations from outside the EU:

Candidates should apply directly to DCU. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis up to 1st July. All Non-EU candidates are advised to apply early, as places are limited.

Mature Applicants

All mature applicants apply through the CAO by 1st February. For further information and for special application procedures for mature students, please click here

EU Transfer Applicants

Apply directly to DCU by the 1st July

Make an Application

Candidates required to apply through the CAO can apply online at
Candidates required to apply directly to DCU can download, print and complete a direct application form by clicking here

Fee information