Specialist Award in Fitness Science

Study exercise science online. Learn about human biology, fitness, and disease prevention to work as a coach, fitness instructor, or personal trainer.

Course Code: VRE023
Fee Code: PA
Duration (approx) Duration (approx) 500 hours
Qualification Specialist Award
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Study Fitness Science 

  • >Professional Development Course
  • Develop a deeper scientific understanding of fitness 
  • A course for Fitness Leaders, Personal Trainers, Leisure Professionals and others who work in fitness and related areas

While many people enter the fitness industry by doing a short fitness leaders certificate; the entry level course is often relatively short, and the jobs available to such graduates are often relatively low paid, and with limited opportunity for advancement.

This course is far more substantial, designed to set you apart from the "ordinary" fitness instructor.

Employers will always value the employees with greater skills and knowledge; and this course allows you to set yourself apart in that way.



Modules

Core ModulesThese modules provide foundation knowledge for the Specialist Award in Fitness Science.
 Industry Project I BIP000
 Industry Project II BIP001
 
Elective ModulesIn addition to the core modules, students study any 3 of the following 17 modules.
 Anatomy II (Human) BSC112
 Biochemistry I (Animal and Human) BSC103
 Biopsychology I BPS108
 Physiology II (Human) BSC111
 Sports Coaching VRE109
 Sports Psychology BPS106
 Advanced Aerobics BRE208
 Aquafitness BRE207
 Biochemistry II (Plant & Animal) BSC203
 Bioenergetics (Human Biology IB) BSC201
 Muscles & Movement (Human Biology II) BSC202
 Cardiorespiratory Performance (Human Biology III) BSC301
 Neuropsychology BPS306
 Psychopharmacology (Drugs & Psychology) BPS302
 Sports Nutrition BRE303
 Technical Writing (Advanced) BWR301
 Weight Loss Consultant BRE307
 

Note that each module in the Specialist Award in Fitness Science is a short course in its own right, and may be studied separately.


WHAT DO  YOU NEED TO BE A FITNESS LEADER?

 

Fitness leaders in Australia, the UK and other countries will often have entered the industry after completing a relatively short course of not much more than a week or perhaps 2 weeks training.

This may be all you need to get a relatively low paid job in a gym or health club; but in reality, this level of training does not commonly lead to a long term, well paid career in the fitness industry!

Think about it: A doctor commonly trains for 6 years in order to advise people on their health and wellbeing. A school P.E teacher trains for 3 or 4 years to teach school children sport and fitness.

What is needed to develop a Sustainable Career in Fitness?
Success comes from having a level of knowledge and skill that is of real benefit to your clients. If you understand biological science, psychology, nutrition and other things related to fitness; and have acquired some sound experience on top of that knowledge -you will then have the capacity to make a difference to the people you work with. Some graduates will start work as a fitness leader, sports trainer, or in some other related situation (eg. even working in a health food shop, or selling gym equipment). Eventually some may work as personal trainers, a sports coach or run their own business,
Whatever you find yourself eventually doing; the potential to make a good income and sustain a long term career, will all depend upon more than just a qualification -success is all about building your skills and knowledge to a high level, so that you shine above all of your competition.

This Course

This is a unique course for people working in Fitness, Health or Sports industries: 60%  of this course provides you with an opportunity to undertake subjects to fill gaps in your knowledge or experience; and the remainder an opportunity to further develop what you have learnt through workplace based learning such as research, attendance at industry meetings or work experience.

Recommended Reading -books written by our staff

>Aerobic Fitness 2nd edition -click for details

 

click for details

Working in Fitness

The fitness industry has emerged from almost nothing a few decades ago, to become a significant and rapidly changing field in today’s world.

Fitness Leaders are the “coal face” workers of the industry. They provide guidance to clients on development and maintenance of fitness (commonly dealing with a class or informal group using a gym).  Fitness leaders often get very low rates of pay, and have relatively poor job security; but for many in this industry, this can be a starting point.
 
Personal Trainers provide personal guidance on fitness (dealing with one individual only in a session). Personal trainers usually earn a lot more than fitness leaders, but they are commonly self employed, and need good business and marketing skills as well as expertise in fitness if they are to be successful.
 
Life Coaches provide guidance on many different things that affect well being. This may include fitness, career, money, general health, relationships etc. They also are commonly self employed, and require skills that are broader and deeper than a fitness leader

Opportunities
Fitness professionals find employment in small and large organisations, government and private enterprise, both self employed contractors and employed by others.
 

They may be employed in any of the following:

  • Fitness leaders or instructors in Gymnasiums, health clubs or Leisure Centres

  • Personal Trainers

  • Life Coaches

  • Sports Coaches

  • Fitness Teacher or Specialist Instructor

  • Facility managers

  • Marketing (eg. Fitness or Sports equipment, Sales, PR, Advertising, etc)

  • Event Managers

Fitness jobs range from relatively low paid part time or casual positions to highly paid professional careers that require a great deal of expertise and training.

Risks and challenges
The fitness industry is highly competitive so can be challenging to find work/clients. You will need to develop skills to make you stand out from the rest - something that makes you unique, and inspires people to train with you over other trainers.

Many people choose this profession believing it to be relatively healthy and stress free; but in reality, if you run your own business or work in a position of responsibility in any industry, there will always be times of stress.
 
Fitness professionals in theory should be more conscious of how to manage their own wellbeing, but it is an unavoidable occupational hazard that you will tend to attract clients with problems and helping them deal with those problems will place unavoidable pressure upon anyone who cares. You need to care in order to do a good job; but if you care too much, your own well being suffers and in turn your capacity to do the job suffers.

Also keep in mind the nature of your work – the majority of the day will be spent in fitness training, so you will need to be cautious of how much of the activity you do yourself, so as not to wear yourself out too much.

Getting Started

It is important to recognise that you need a holistic approach. Doing a course may be one piece of the puzzle; but a sustainable career is not likely to come from just doing the same course as a thousand others when there is only a minor % of good, long term jobs jobs available.  You need to learn skills that other people do not have; get experience that your competition doesn't get, start networking (sometimes it is who you know that counts), build communication skills, and cultivate a healthy and optimistic attitude coupled with patience and perseverance.

 


ACS is a Member of the Complementary Medicine Association.

Member of Study Gold Coast Education Network.

ACS Global Partner - Affiliated with colleges in seven countries around the world.


How can I start this course?

You can enrol at anytime and start the course when you are ready. Enrolments are accepted all year - students can commence study at any time. All study is self paced and ACS does not set assignment deadlines.

Please note that if a student is being assisted by someone else (e.g. an employer or government subsidy), the body offering the assistance may set deadlines. Students in such situations are advised to check with their sponsor prior to enrolling. The nominal duration of a course is approximately how long a course takes to complete. A course with a nominal duration of 100 hours is expected to take roughly 100 hours of study time to complete. However, this will vary from student to student. Short courses (eg. 100 hrs duration) should be completed within 12 months of enrolment. Certificates, Advanced Certificates and Awards (eg. over 500 hours duration) would normally be completed within 3 -5 years of enrolment. Additional fees may apply if a student requires an extended period to complete.
If a student cannot submit their assignments for 6 months to ACS, they should advise the school to avoid cancellation of their student
registration. Recommencement fees may apply.

Simply click on the ENROL OPTIONS button at the top of this screen and follow the prompts.

You can see the course price at the top of this page. Click 'enrolment options' to see any payment options available.

You can pay by Credit Card, PayPal, Afterpay or bank transfer.

Yes! We have payment plans for most courses. Click 'enrolment options' to see the available payment plans.
We also have Afterpay that will allow you to pay for your course or payment plans in four instalments (if you are in Australia).


What do I need to know before I enrol?

There are no entry requirements that you need to meet to enrol in our courses, our courses are for everyone.
If you are under 18, we need written permission from your parent/ guardian for your enrolment to continue, we can arrange that after you have enrolled.

You don’t need to purchase any additional resources to complete our courses.

We aim to teach you the essentials without you having to purchase any specific computer program.
We recommend that you have access to a word processing program, such as Microsoft Word or Google Docs, so that you can easily complete and submit your assignments.

You sure can. We are here to help you learn whatever your abilities.

Yes, if you are enrolling in a Certificate or Advanced Certificate, you might be eligible for credits if you have evidence of your previous studies or relevant experience. More information is here.

We recommend that you are able to browse websites, send emails and conduct online research. You will need to be able to type and submit your assignments.
If you have limited computer skills, we can make special arrangements for you.

This is possible, it depends on the institution. We recommend that if you would like to use our courses that you contact the institution first. Our Course Handbook is a good resource for this.

Our courses are written in English and we only have English speaking academic staff. If you can read and complete your assignments in English, our courses are ideal for you.

Our courses are designed to build knowledge, hands on skills and industry connections to help prepare you to work in the area, running your own business, professional development or as a base for further study.

This course is aimed at providing you with a solid understanding in your selected discipline. It has been designed to take 600 hours, which includes your course reading, assignment work, research, practical tasks, watching videos and more. When you complete the course, will have a good understanding of the area/ industry you want to work in.

It’s up to you. The study hours listed in the course are a rough guide, however if you were to study a short course (100 hours) at 10 hours per week, you could finish the course in 10 weeks (just an example). Our courses are self-paced, so you can work through the courses in your own time. We recommend that you wait for your tutor to mark and return your assignment before your start your next one, so you get the benefits of their feedback.

The course consists of course notes, videos, set tasks for your practical work, online quizzes, an assignment for each lesson (that you receive feedback from your tutor from) and ends in an exam (which is optional, if would like to receive the formal award at the end), using our custom built Learning Management System - Login.Training.

Our courses are designed for adults to gain professional development and skills to further their careers and start businesses.

Our custom online learning portal allows you to conduct your learning online. There may be practical tasks that you can do offline. You have the option of downloading your course notes or print them to read later.

There is also the option to pay an additional fee for printed course notes and or USB (availability limited to location and deliverability).

Yes, if you don’t have access to the internet, you can receive the course as paper notes or on a USB stick for an additional fee. We can also make alternative arrangements for you to send your assignments to us.

We offer printed notes for an additional fee. Also, you can request your course notes on a USB stick for an additional fee.

Yes, your tutor is here to help you. Simply post any questions you have in your login.training portal or contact the office and we can pass on a message to your tutor.

We are more learning focussed, rather than assessment focussed. You have online quizzes to test your learning, written assignments and can complete an exam at the end of the course (if you want to receive your certificate). You will not receive a pass/ fail on your course work. If you need to add more details on your assignment, we will ask you to resubmit and direct you where you need to focus. If you need help, you can ask your tutor for advice in the student room.

Each module (short course) is completed with one exam.

Exams are optional, however you must sit an exam if you would like to receive a formal award. You will need to find someone who can supervise that you are sitting the exams under exams conditions. There is an additional cost of $55 (AUS) $50 (O/S) for each exam.
More information is here

There are practical components built into the course that have been designed to be achieved by anyone, anywhere. If you are unable to complete a task for any reason, you can ask your tutor for an alternative.

When you complete the course work and the exams (6 exams) and you will be able receive your course certificate- a Certificate. Otherwise, you can receive a Letter of Completion.

You can bundle the short courses to create your own customised learning bundle, Certificates or Advanced Certificates. More information is on this page.

Yes, our courses are built to be applicable for people living anywhere in any situation. We provide the fundamentals, and each student can apply their own unique flair for their own interests, region and circumstances with the one-on-one guidance of a tutor. There is also a bit of student directed research involved.

Employers value candidates with industry skills, knowledge, practical skills and formal learning. Our courses arm you with all of these things to help prepare you for a job or start your own business. The longer you study the more you will learn.

ACS has an arrangement with OAMPS (formerly AMP) who can arrange Professional Indemnity from Australian and New Zealand graduates across all disciplines. Ph: 1800 222 012 or email acs@oamps.com.au.


Who are ACS Distance Education?

ACS Distance Education have been educating people for over 40 years.

We are established and safe- we have been in education for over 40 years.
We are focused on developing innovative courses that are relevant to you now and what you will need to know in the future.
We are focused on helping you learn and make the most of your experience.
You can enrol at any time, you can work on your course when it suits you and at your own pace.
We are connected to many industry bodies and our staff participate in continuous improvement and learning activities to ensure that we are ahead of what learning is needed for the future.

Our courses are not accredited by the Australian Government. However many of our courses are recognised and held in high regard by many industry bodies.

Our courses are written by our staff, who all have many years experience and have qualifications in their speciality area. We have lots of academic staff who write and update our courses regularly.


How do I enrol my staff/ sponsored students?

Yes, you can do a request for a bulk enrolment and request an invoice on our Invoice Request Form

We can prepare an invoice, quote or proforma invoice. Simply complete your details on our Invoice Request form

We can arrange bulk discounts for your course enrolment, please get in touch with us to discuss your needs.

Yes, we have many students who are in locked facilities, such as prisons or hospitals. We can cater by also offering paper notes at an additional cost.


What if I have any more questions or need more information?

We can assist you to find the right course for your needs. Get in touch with us via email (admin@acs.edu.au) call on +61 7 5562 1088 or complete our course advice form.


What if I change my mind?

Please get in touch with studentservices@acs.edu.au if you would like to be removed from our mail list.

If you would like ACS Distance Education to delete your information at any time (whether you are a customer or a prospective customer), please contact our privacy officer and we will process this ( admin@acs.edu.au ).




Course Contributors

The following academics were involved in the development and/or updating of this course.

Karen Lee

Nutritional Scientist, Dietician, Teacher and Author.
BSc. Hons. (Biological Sciences), Postgraduate Diploma Nutrition and Dietetics.
Registered dietitian in the UK, with over 15 years working in the NHS. Karen has undertaken a number of research projec

John Mason

Writer, Manager, Teacher and Businessman with over 40 years interenational experience covering Education, Publishing, Leisure Management, Education, and Horticulture. He has extensive experience both as a public servant, and as a small business owner.
J

Jade Sciascia

Biologist, Business Coordinator, Government Environmental Dept, Secondary School teacher (Biology); Recruitment Consultant, Senior Supervisor in Youth Welfare, Horse Riding Instructor (part-completed) and Boarding Kennel Manager.
Jade has a B.Sc.Biol, Di





Tutors

Meet some of the tutors that guide the students through this course.

Megan Cox

Megan has completed a Bachelor of Science (Environmental Conservation) with Honours from Writtle University College, as well as a Master of Science Degree in Countryside Management from Manchester Metropolitan University.

Her experience includes working as a Botanist, Ecologist, Head Gardener, Market Gardener and a Farming and Conservation Officer.

She has worked in various roles in Horticulture, Agriculture and Ecology since 2005. Megan has worked for the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) and the Centre for Environment and Rural Affairs among other organisations in the UK, as well as in Australia and Cambodia.

Robert Browne

B.Sc., PhD

Robert’s science employment has included consultancy with biotechnology corporations and in response to the global biodiversity conservation crisis, and has focused on amphibian conservation and sustainability. Working with zoos in Australia, the USA, Europe, and as Research Officer for the IUCN has led Robert to work with collaborative conservation programs in the USA, Peoples Republic of China, Australia, Russian Federation, Islamic Republic of Iran, and Cameroon.

Robert has experience in a wide range of research fields supporting herpetological conservation and environmental sustainability. He has published in the scientific fields of nutrition, pathology, larval growth and development, husbandry, thermo-biology, reproduction technologies, and facility design. In addition to his work in research and other international projects for the conservation of amphibians, other vertebrates, and invertebrates, Robert is establishing a sustainability project with a research facility based in the region of a coastal village in Belize.

Lyn Quirk

M.Prof.Ed.; Adv.Dip.Compl.Med (Naturopathy); Adv.Dip.Sports Therapy

Lyn has 35 years of experience in the Fitness, Health and Leisure Industries. She has a string of qualifications that are far too long to list here; being qualified and registered to teach, coach or instruct a wide range of different sports and other skills.

Lyn established and managed Health clubs at three major five star resorts on Australia's Gold Coast, including The Marriott. She was a department head for a large government vocational college (TAFE), and has conducted her own aquafitness business for many years. Lyn has among her other commitments worked as a tutor for ACS for almost 10 years, and over that time, participated in the development or upgrading of most courses in her fields of expertise.

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