Otago Polytechnic

Bachelor of Applied Science (Physical Activity, Health and Wellness)

Keen to encourage people to lead healthier lifestyles? Want to prepare for a career in the sports science, health and wellness or fitness industries?

Follow this unique Bachelor of Applied Science degree pathway and develop the required skills, knowledge and expertise to enter these allied health industries. Physical activity and lifestyle interventions are well-recognised as essential elements in the promotion of good health and disease prevention, and this pioneering programme has been designed to provide a health workforce that meets the future demands of a diverse population in a modern society. With a strong emphasis on applied learning, acquire practical experience and a variety of transferable skills to enhance your employment potential. Job opportunities may arise in health services, education, sports administration or community care services, and you could play an integral part in primary prevention, rehabilitation and care, lifestyle promotion, personal training and work place wellness facilitation. Alternatively, use this qualification as a springboard into postgraduate study and research projects.

Develop the theoretical knowledge, critical thinking and reflective practice necessary to work as a wellness professional in Aotearoa New Zealand and the global context. With hard work and experience, you could even set your sights on becoming a private consultant in your own practice. Benefit from the chance to gain valuable industry insight and forge important relationships during a work placement that integrates academic learning with hands-on practice. Learn in a stimulating and supportive environment where the focus is on ensuring you have the best chance of success through innovative teaching techniques and a range of assessment modes.   

Skills required
  • Self-motivation and a good work ethic
  • The ability to get on well with people
  • Adaptability and openness to new ideas
  • Good communication skills.
Entry requirements
  • NCEA Level 3 including:
    • Three subjects - at Level 3 or above, made up of:
      • 14 credits each, in three approved subjects, and
    • Literacy - 10 credits at Level 2 or above, made up of:
      • 5 credits in reading and 5 credits in writing, and
    • Numeracy - 10 credits at Level 1 or above, made up of:
      • specified achievement standards available through a range of subjects OR
      • package of three numeracy unit standards (26623, 26626, 26627- all three required).
  • You must have a current First Aid Certificate before you can commence practical work.
  • International students will be individually assessed to ensure they meet degree-level entry requirements and must have achieved the equivalent of Year 13 biology, human biology or physical education (other sciences may be considered).
  • If English is not your first language, you must also demonstrate English language skills equivalent to an IELTS overall band score (academic) of 6.0, with no band score less than 6.0.   
Pathways into this programme

Our Diploma in Applied Sport and Exercise Leadership (Level 5) is the perfect pathway into this programme. You can specialise in Sport Management and Coaching, or Personal Training and Exercise Prescription, and successful completion of either specialty will enable you to achieve advanced standing and you may choose to progress into the second year of this degree. Successful completion of our Diploma in Advanced Therapeutic Massage (Level 6) will also allow you to do this. 

Additional documentation

Please note that you are required to complete a declaration regarding criminal convictions for the purpose of a work placement. A full police check may also be requested from you by a placement provider.

Selection procedure

Where the number of successful applicants exceeds the places available, a waiting list will be maintained in order of the application date. Applicants will be offered a position in waiting list order.

Additional costs

You will be required to spend approximately $1,000 per year on textbooks and clothing, and pay any costs associated with travelling to work placements.

Further study

Choose to continue learning and take the opportunity to bridge across into other Otago Institute of Sport and Adventure programmes. Alternatively, increase your career prospects by applying for postgraduate studies at other tertiary institutions.

Programme specific risks

During the programme, you will be provided with information identifying potential risks. These include accident or injury due to lifting weights, fatigue and/or exhaustion due to training/testing, exam- or assessment-related stress and stress from working with special populations.

You will study

Practical physical education is a critical part of this programme and will underpin teaching at all levels. Practicals are embedded in the majority of first and second year courses and work placements are offered in year two and three. Through innovative methods of blended delivery and e-learning, study a broad range of topics and produce a Personal Development Portfolio to evidence your formative learning, transferable skills and professional practice.

Physical Activity, Health and Wellness Career opportunities:

Upon successful completion of this qualification, you will be able to seek employment in the following areas/positions:

  • Physical activity development
  • Lifestyle consultancy
  • Physical activity prescription specialist
  • Health promotion
  • Public health research
  • Teaching
  • District Health Boards, health centres, ACC, non-governmental organisations, government agencies (Ministry of Health, Sport and Recreation New Zealand), local council programmes
  • Private Consultant - maybe in your own private practice
  • Postgraduate study and research opportunities in fields related to health promotion, physical activity, health and wellness.      
Your workload

This programme involves a mix of class-based learning, work experience and self-directed learning, and you should expect a workload of approximately 40 hours per week.

Qualification structure

 

YEAR ONE COURSES

Level

Credit

Anatomy and Physiology

5

15

Fitness Assessment

5

15

Introduction to Nutrition

5

15

Professional Communication

5

15

Physical Activity in Disability and Disease

5

15

Health in the Context of Aotearoa New Zealand

5

15

Exercise Prescription and Programming

6

15

Promoting Health and Wellness

5

15

Total

 

120

YEAR TWO COURSES

Level

Credit

Research Methods

6

15

Issues in Weight Management

6

15

Placement 1

6

15

Professional Theory and Practice

6

15

Psychology of Health, Disease and Physical Activity

6

15

Physiology of Physical Activity in Aging

6

15

Wanaka Hauora

6

15

Physical Activity, Lifestyle and Health

5

15

Total

 

120

YEAR THREE COURSES

Level

Credit

Applied Nutrition

7

15

Placement 2

7

15

Applied Physical Activity for Special Populations

7

15

Contemporary Issues in Physical Activity,
Health and Wellbeing

7

15

Physical Activity and Rehabilitation 

7

15

Research Project

7

30

Movement Analysis and Skill Acquisition

6

15

Total

 

120

Student loans/allowances

Student loans and allowances are for domestic students only. For information about student loans and allowances please visit the Studylink website. It is important to apply for your student loan/allowance at the same time as you apply for this programme, due to the length of time Studylink take to process. Loan/allowance applications can be cancelled at any time if you decide to withdraw your programme application or if it is unsuccessful. 

Recognition of prior learning

If you already have extensive knowledge and skills gained from practical experience in this area, enquire about our recognition of prior learning process at Capable NZ. You may have already gained credits towards this qualification in the course of your life. Visit the Capable NZ website. 

Disclaimer

While every effort is made to ensure that this sheet is accurate, Otago Polytechnic reserves the right to amend, alter or withdraw any of the contained information. The fees shown in this document are indicative ONLY. Both domestic and international fees are subject to change and are dependent on the development and implementation of Government policies. Please note that additional fees may from time to time be required for external examination, NZQA fees and/or additional material fees.

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