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Sport and Sport Science

Degree: Bachelor of Science

75%, 50%: mandatory

25%: not required

Course commences: winter semester only
Standard course duration: 6 semesters
Focus option: 75%; 50% (with Teaching Degree option); 25%
Language requirements: none
Other features: entrance examination (sport aptitude)
Language of instruction: German

Faculty of Behavioural and Cultural Studies

Note for prospective students interested in coming to Heidelberg University to take the Teaching Degree course qualifying its graduates to teach at higher secondary (grammar) schools (Gymnasien) in Germany:

In accordance with the statutory provisions laid down by the State of Baden-Württemberg, students wishing to embark as of winter semester 2015/2016 on a Teaching Degree qualifying them to teach at higher secondary (grammar) schools (Gymnasien) in Germany can only do so by enrolling in two-tier courses with a Bachelor/Master structure (polyvalent two-subject (50%) Bachelor programme with a Teaching Degree option; Master of Education course scheduled to start in winter semester 2018/2019).

As of winter semester 2015/2016, the subject described on this page can be studied in a polyvalent two-subject (50%) Bachelor course with a Teaching Degree option. It has to be combined with another 50% subject of relevance for secondary-school education.

For more information, go to

Note for students already enrolled in a Teaching Degree course in the framework of the Examination Regulations for Teachers at Higher Secondary Schools (GymPO I):

In the winter semester 2015/2016 and later, students enrolled by 31 July 2015 in a Teaching Degree course regulated by the provisions of GymPO I (2009) are entitled to switch to a different main subject under the conditions set out in said GymPO provided that the change is in accordance with the statutory provisions.

In this case, the following transitional regulations apply:

For more information, go to

Course outline

Sport science is a discipline in which work with and for people is the central concern. Accordingly, research in the subject is strongly application-oriented. Central research topics focus on the different sectors of sport in society, school sport, amateur/leisure-time sport, competitive/professional sport, sport and health, etc. School sport, for example, encompasses physical education and specific training, effects of sporting activity on health, institutional parameters, conditions for physical instruction in groups. The amateur or leisure-time sport sector, by contrast, focuses on the pleasure involved in sporting activity, health preservation and performance enhancement, conditions for organised sport, the dynamics and stability of sport-related motives, and changing value systems.

Sport scientists either coordinate and integrate insights and findings from various sciences or develop interdisciplinary approaches of their own to relevant fields. Sport science encompasses sectors like sport pedagogy, sport psychology, sport sociology, sport history, motion and training, sport orthopaedics, and sport physiology.

The Institute of Sport and Sport Science (ISSW) is one of the largest and most long-established institutions of its kind in Baden-Württemberg. Rankings of sport institutes from all over Germany regularly list the ISSW up among the leaders. The specific profile of the Institute derives from its focus on empirical research programmes, knowledge transfer within research, and a special interest in sport for children and adolescents.

The programme

As of the winter semester 2015/2016, the B.Sc. course in Sport Science will be undergoing a change. This is due to the adjustment of Teaching Degrees in Baden-Württemberg to accord with a Bachelor/Master course structure.

Graduates from the Sport Science B.Sc. programme will be in possession of an initial degree enabling them to carry on and take the M.Sc. course in the same subject. Depending on their inclinations, they can then either qualify as a sports teacher at higher German secondary schools (the Teaching Degree option; M. Sc. course as of winter semester 2018/2019) or branch out into other sectors of sport science. These can be scientific, educational, supervisory, organisational or administrative in nature, providing career opportunities with clubs, associations and other institutions/enterprises dedicated to sport, sport science and health promotion, and also extending to (sport-related) business and the media.

To obtain a B.Sc. degree involving Sport and Sport Science, students are required to amass a total of 180 credit points (CP) in the course of the programme they have embarked on. In the 50% Sport Science B.Sc. course (with Sport Science as first main subject), the requisite credit points come from the B.Sc. thesis (12 CP) and from 12 modules totalling 74 CP. For detailed information on learning and qualification targets, course content and preconditions for successful completion of these modules, please consult the Module Handbook. Information on the requirements in the other main (50%) subject studied (also 74 CP) can be found on the website of that subject. A total of 20 CP is required from classes dedicated to Cross-Disciplinary Skills (ÜK). When selecting classes in the ÜK sector, it will be advisable to take into account the admission prerequisites for a later M.Sc. course (if relevant).

Course structure

The major concerns of the B.Sc. course in Sport Science (50%) are fourfold: (1.) Theory (lectures, seminars), (2.) Sport in Theory and Practice (practical seminars, practical classes, elective subjects, excursions), (3.) Research Methods (lecture, practical class) and (4.) Cross-Disciplinary Skills (ÜK).

Standard course duration is six semesters.


Foundational theoretical instruction focuses on four sectors:

  • Sport and Education (Sport Pedagogy, Sport Didactics)
  • Sport, the Individual and Society (Psychology, Sociology and History of Sport)
  • Movement and Training (Kinesiology, Training Science)
  • Body, Performance, Health (Sport Orthopaedics, Sport Physiology)

Sport in Theory and Practice

Classes in this sector focus on practical and theoretical engagement with individual disciplines, kinds of sport or sectors of sport (e.g. water sport, winter sport, small-scale games). After attending these classes, students should be equipped with the general and specific motoric skills required for instituting and organising learning and teaching processes.

Practical seminars link up in various ways with the theoretical content of Sport Science classes. They include “Dance, Creativity, Presentation – Gymnastics/Dance”, “Physical Aesthetics and Equipment – Apparatus Gymnastics”, “Running, Jumping, Throwing – Athletics”, “Movement in Water – Swimming”, “Football” and “Volleyball”. In addition, there are classes of a cross-disciplinary nature, excursions (sailing, skiing/snowboard, wind surfing, etc.) and electives (canoeing, rowing, tennis, badminton, cycling etc.). The availability of these classes is subject to the ISSW staff structure at a given time.

Research Methods

In accordance with the empirical approach prevalent at the Institute of Sport and Sport Science, students are given sound training in empirical research methods and statistics.

Cross-Disciplinary Skills (ÜK)

When selecting classes in the ÜK sector, it will be advisable to take into account the admission prerequisites for a later M.Sc. course (if relevant). This means that

  • students intending to go into secondary-school teaching (Teaching Degree option) will acquire their credit points in the ÜK sector in accordance with the “Framework Regulations for the Teaching Degree Option in Bachelor Courses at Heidelberg University”, i.e. largely in Education Studies (16 CP). Sport Science accounts for a further 2 CP and the remaining 2 CP are acquired in the other (joint) subject.
  • students with no intention of going into teaching will need to obtain a total of 10 CP in Sport Science. The remaining 10 CP in the ÜK sector are accounted for by the other (main) subject.

Main research interests

Alongside teaching, research in sport science is one of the core concerns of the ISSW. At present research focuses on

  • Kinesiology/Training Science: biomechanical motility analyses, motoric learning, motoric development, technique/tactics/creativity training, training for the young, talent promotion, sport play research
  • Sport Psychology: judging and deciding in sport, optimising competition and referee performance, social motivation and sporting performance, psychology of intuition, mindfulness
  • Sport Pedagogy: research on childhood and adolescence, research on school sport, pedagogical aspects of high-performance sport, pedagogical potential of sport in the CV
  • Sport in Prevention and Rehabilitation: health education and promotion, sport with special groups, sport in old age, evaluation of health programmes, corporate health management

General university sport

The Institute of Sport and Sport Science is also responsible for the planning, organisation and conduct of the General University Sport programme for all students at the University (and other partner universities/colleges). Its three pillars are Competitive Sport, Leisure-Time Sport and Sport for Health Purposes.

In the competitive sector, Heidelberg has long been one of the most successful German universities. In the leisure-time sector, the Institute provides a programme encompassing 34 different kinds of sport for approx. 8,000 participants per week. Sport for Health Purposes revolves around a varied, high-quality course system jointly organised with the Techniker-Krankenkasse health insurance institution.

Formal requirements


The course is admission-restricted (limited intake). The current Selection Regulations are available here. Application online. Click here for information on the entrance examination (sport aptitude).

International applicants:

There are special regulations for international applicants. For more information, apply to the International Relations Office of Heidelberg University (Seminarstraße 2).

Subject combinations

Possible subject combinations are listed in the Catalogue of Subjects.

Study and examination regulations

Examination Regulations
Examination Regulations (27.05.2015, last change 28.09.2016)
Examination Regulations  (27.05.2015, last change 26.05.2017)


Module Handbook

Please click here to find the latest Module Handbook.

Examinations board

Issues arising in connection with examinations, credit transfer and academic credential recognition are dealt with by the relevant examinations board/office. For more information, consult the academic advisor(s) indicated below.


Tuition fees at Heidelberg University are payable at the beginning of each semester.

Master courses

For students intending to teach at higher secondary schools in Germany, Heidelberg University plans to offer a Master of Education course (M.Ed.) as of winter semester 2018/19. Successful graduates can then proceed from there to the Preparatory Service stage.

For students who do not intend to go into teaching, Heidelberg University offers a consecutive M.Sc. course in Sport and Exercise in Childhood and Adolescence.

Academic Advisors

All inquiries on the entrance examination (sport aptitude) should be addressed to

You will also find more information on the entrance examination on the website of the Institute of Sport and Sport Science.

B.Sc.: Sport Science 50%

Dr. Jan Sohnsmeyer
Im Neuenheimer Feld 720, Office 106
Tuesdays 9.30 – 11.30 am and by arrangement
phone: +49 (0)6221 544672

Frederik Borkenhagen
Im Neuenheimer Feld 700, Office 018
Tuesdays 11 am – 12 noon and by arrangement
phone: +49 (0)6221 546100


Institut für Sport und Sportwissenschaft
Im Neuenheimer Feld 700/720
D-69120 Heidelberg

Secretaries' office:
phone: +49 (0)6221-54-8622
fax: +49 (0)6221-54-4387

Student representationStudent representation:
Im Neuenheimer Feld 700

E-Mail: Seitenbearbeiter
Letzte Änderung: 2018-07-18
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