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Safeguarding in Sport MA

Critique current practices and cultures within sport. Explore the policy around prevention of abuse and maltreatment. Prepare for a career in safeguarding and athlete welfare with this pioneering course delivered by recognised researchers.

Subject to validation.


Course length: 1 year full-time
2 years part-time
Start dates: September 2024
September 2025
Location: Edge Hill University
Subject(s): Sociology and Social Sciences
Faculty: Arts and Sciences
Department: History, Geography and Social Sciences
Two students sit on a bench by the Sports Centre overlooking the running track.

Studying our MA Safeguarding in Sport, you’ll explore current practice, policy, and research to prepare for a future protecting people in the sporting world. You might have recently graduated in a related area, be interested in athlete welfare or already work in the sector.

We’ve designed this specialist course to boost your professional profile and open doors to new opportunities in this growing area of employment. You’ll look at preventative strategies and practices established within the national and international sports sectors.

To succeed in this area, it’s critical you can apply theoretical ideas to the real world. Explore codes of conduct, professional values and research ethics. Build a toolkit of transferable skills including problem-solving, creative thinking and project design.

Learning online and on campus, you’ll develop your own specialist areas of expertise and carry out research that interests you. You might also join us for an insightful international field trip.

Course features

  • International students can apply

What you'll study

Studying this specialist MA Safeguarding in Sport course, you’ll explore a range of concepts and theoretical perspectives to investigate and interpret the abuse and maltreatment of children and athletes in sport.

We’ll encourage you to take a critical, evidence-informed approach. You’ll examine the institutional contexts of safeguarding policy and practice, exploring how children and athletes’ rights are generated, negotiated and implemented.

Becoming confident with research methods is a key part of the course too. You’ll apply skills in this area to your own supervised dissertation on a topic of your choice.

To shape your studies, you’ll also get to pick from a range of optional modules which focus on specialist areas like children’s emotional distress. You’ll also have the chance to get experience on placement and take part in a cultural analysis on an international field trip.

Compulsory modules:

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Abuse in Sport
Childhood in International Context
Safeguarding and Athlete Welfare in Sport
Social Science Methodologies

Two of:

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International Field Trip
Psychiatrised Childhoods
Self-Directed Learning
Work-Based Learning and Employability

Where your course includes optional modules, these are to provide an element of choice within the course curriculum. The availability of optional modules may vary from year to year and will be subject to minimum student numbers being achieved. This means that the availability of specific optional modules cannot be guaranteed. Optional module selection may also be affected by timetabling requirements. Some restrictions on optional module choice or combinations of optional modules may apply.

How you'll study

The course is delivered via blended learning, with a combination of face-to-face discussions and online and independent study.

Taught sessions will be delivered in two-day intensive teaching blocks, held two or three times each semester per module studied. There is also the opportunity to participate in additional sessions via the virtual learning environment.

You will learn through a combination of lectures, interactive seminars, individual and small group tutorials, and one-to-one supervision.

Learning will take place in the classroom, online and in professional or practice environments.

You can expect to receive your timetable at enrolment. Please note that while we make every effort to ensure that timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day or evening of the week.

How you'll be assessed

Modules will typically be assessed through one or two pieces of coursework, including essays, reports, reviews and presentations.

There are no formal written examinations as part of the current assessment methods on this course.

Who will be teaching you

You will be taught by research-active staff who have expertise in safeguarding in sport and child and athlete welfare. Their ongoing research and strong external networks, established over many years of research, evaluation, consultancy and advocacy, directly inform the curriculum.

Guest speakers will further enhance your learning experience. These are expected to include victims and survivors of abuse in sport, as well as external experts and professionals.

Entry criteria

Entry requirements

You should have a degree equivalent to UK first-class or second-class honours (2:2 or above) in a relevant subject, such as social sciences or other human sciences.

Appropriate work experience will also be considered, subject to an interview, if you have a minimum of five years’ experience and can demonstrate evidence of continuous professional development.

English language requirements

International students require IELTS 6.5, with a score no lower than 6.0 in each individual component, or an equivalent English language qualification.

If your current level of English is half a band, one band, or one-and-a-half bands lower, either overall or in one or two elements, you may want to consider our Pre-Sessional English course.

How to apply

This is a new course currently in development. Online applications will open once the validation process is complete.

Should you accept an offer of a place to study with us and formally enrol as a student, you will be subject to the provisions of the regulations, rules, codes, conditions and policies which apply to our students. These are available at

Visit Edge Hill University

There’s plenty of opportunities to come take a look around campus. Attend one of our open days to see what life at Edge Hill University is all about.

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Geosciences buildingThe Department of History, Geography and Social Sciences is based in the Geosciences building. The contemporary facilities combine with a friendly and supportive learning environment to ensure that your studies are a rich and rewarding experience.

The Geosciences building features a large lecture theatre, small group teaching rooms, IT facilities and smaller tutorial spaces. There is also a large social area which encourages a more informal and interactive style of learning.

Where you'll study



Tuition fees

UK Full-Time


for the course

UK Part-Time

£50 per credit

for 180 credits



for the course

EU/EEA and Swiss students who have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme, as well as Irish nationals, may be eligible for the UK tuition fee rate.

Financial support

Please view the relevant Money Matters guide for comprehensive information about the financial support available to eligible UK students joining postgraduate courses at Edge Hill University.

EU/EEA and Swiss students who have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme may be eligible to apply for financial support. Irish nationals can ordinarily apply to Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI). If you are an EU student who does not have settled or pre-settled status, or are an international student from a non-EU country, please see our international student finance pages.

Your future career

The global sports sector is investing in and improving the sports environment for children and athletes. As a result, national and international organisations, such as Sport England, have identified safeguarding as central to their strategies and future development.

By the end of our MA Safeguarding in Sport, you’ll be the perfect match for specific safeguarding roles, teams and units in the public, private and voluntary sectors. For example, you might secure a position with a national governing sports body.

Your knowledge and skills will also be relevant to a wide range of careers within the sports sector and beyond. These include a variety of roles that involve working with children, including coaching, sports development and sports management, as well as other areas of youth work.

If you enjoyed carrying out your own research, you could continue your academic journey with a PhD.

Course changes

Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this information, however our courses are subject to ongoing review and development. Changing circumstances may necessitate alteration to, or the cancellation of, courses.

Changes may be necessary to comply with the requirements of professional bodies, revisions to subject benchmarks statements, to keep courses updated and contemporary, or as a result of student feedback. We reserve the right to make variations if we consider such action to be necessary or in the best interests of students.

Track changes to this course

Download our course leaflet