Project Description

Higher Certificate in Strength & Conditioning


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Course Overview

Course Background

The Higher Certificate of Science in Strength and Conditioning (QQI Level 6) is a further step along the undergraduate pathway. It consists of 12 modules and provides 120 credits to the graduate.

The programme is designed to produce coaching professionals capable of working in Strength and Conditioning and Health and Fitness related fields.

This programme will provide the learner with a specialised education in a broad range of Strength and Conditioning and Health and Fitness disciplines. It will also equip the learner with the knowledge and skills to independently administer a medium to long-term sport, health and fitness, physical activity and Strength and Conditioning programme of development. Students will study one module at a time, each lasting three months. The course duration is three years and student intakes occur at three stages throughout the year, during the first week in March, September and December.

Course Content

Progression is from the six modules of the Certificate in Strength and Conditioning, through to the more advanced modules of the Higher Certificate.

The additional 6 modules completed in this course include:

Modules covered:

  1. Anatomy, Physiology & Biomechanics
  2. Growth, Movement & Development
  3. Long Term Player or Athlete Development
  4. Coaching Skills
  5. Coaching Philosophy & Sports Psychology
  6. Fitness Testing

Course Details & Information

Strength and Conditioning is becoming globally recognised as a professional pathway in the sports and general wellness industries. Our programmes cover a broad range of topics such as functional screening, coaching skills, fundamental movement and fitness testing with a key emphasis on sports technology. Students are introduced to and get to use the latest technology whilst attending workshops at our SportsLab.

As well as providing online programmes Setanta College partners with universities both in Ireland and internationally to provide full time academic programmes. We are also applying S & C and Performance Science methodologies and research into much broader fields such as general wellbeing. For example we work with the Army, Fire Brigade and Police Force to develop methodologies and bespoke programmes to improve the health and wellbeing of their staff. These new developments will create a much greater marketplace within which our students can contribute and gain employment.

Setanta College is recognised as a world-leading educator in Strength and Conditioning for the following reasons:

  • Our programmes are recognised by the National Strength and Conditioning Association (30,000 members), World Rugby (35,000 registered on our partnership programmes) and Titleist Performance Institute.
    Padraig Harrington is our brand ambassador and has been implementing the philosophies and skills of Dr Liam Hennessy for 20 years. Padraig highly recommends Setanta College for knowledge and skills in Performance Science and Strength and Conditioning.
  • Dr Liam Hennessy and a global network of Strength and Conditioning practitioners have agreed the key elements which inform a world class Strength and Conditioning educational programme.
  • Each programme module is updated every 18 months with new developments and current thinking and research.
  • Setanta College students get to use the latest technology in sport because of our partnerships with StatSports, Daniel Cohen at ForceDecks and Orreco as well as our state of the are 3D Marker Less Motion Capture System.
  • Our practical application workshops are conducted at a €4 million specially designed Strength and Conditioning SportsLab.
  • Setanta College lecturers are qualified to MSc or PhD level and are former high level sports people, active coaches or both.
All modules of this course are delivered part-time via blended or distance learning.

Weekly lectures will be delivered through our virtual learning environment and are completed entirely online.

The practical face-to-face elements of the course are delivered on campus once every 4 – 5 weeks. Student knowledge is examined using continuous assessment comprising of online questionnaires and essay-style project work.

The course has been designed to accommodate the working professional and will fit in a flexible manner into your daily schedule.

Watch Sample Lecture Video
On successful completion of this course the graduate will:

  • Display a specialised knowledge of strength and conditioning for sports.
  • Be able to formulate exercise and training programmes based on sound scientific principles.
  • Have a broad range of practical analytical skills, capable of analysing the physical and movement demands of their chosen sport.
  • Identify the needs of the athlete, player and other individuals involved in the pursuit of strength and conditioning development.
  • Transfer and apply theoretical concepts and technical skills to a range of sporting contexts.
  • Take responsibility for the design, planning and implementation of a comprehensive programme of fitness development for their athletes, players or teams.
  • Understand, evaluate and selectively apply current and new research and thinking in strength and conditioning.

Students will be prepared to work with sport and recreational participants across a wide range of levels from beginners through to elite athletes.

Additionally, students will be provided with the skills to perform effectively in a wide range of fitness related industries, such as rehabilitation, personal training, health and wellness, gym instructing, tutoring etc.

After completing this Higher Certificate, graduates will have the opportunity to complete their degree in Strength and Conditioning part-time over 18 months.

Setanta College offers a range of Professional Development courses up to our industry led Professional Masters in Performance Science.

Setanta College has appointed a world renowned advisory board to inform and oversee our programmes and research strategy. This board, comprising of professors and practitioners from around the world, keep Setanta College at the cutting edge of Performance Science, Technology and Strength and Conditioning.

Our lecturers are qualified to MSc or PhD level and are former high level sports people, active coaches or both. We have a team of international specialists who lecture on both our online and full time programmes.

  • Applicants must be 18 years or older on the 1st of January on the year of admission. Applications for all our undergraduate programmes must meet the minimum entry requirements for the college. A minimum of two H5’s and four O6’s (to include English & Maths) in the Leaving Certificate or equivalent, is required. All applicants under the age of 23 will have to provide their Leaving Certificate transcript and proof of age prior to enrolment.
  • If you are over 23 years of age you may apply as a mature student. Mature student applications are assessed on the basis of age, coaching/playing experience, general education standard, motivation and commitment to the programme for which they are applying.
  • Minimum admission requirements for graduates of QQI/FETAC Level 5 awards (former NCVA Level 2 or 3) is a full QQI/FETAC award in a course in a cognate area with a distinction grade in at least three modules.
  • In the case of international learners where English is not their first language, they will be required to demonstrate a sufficient level of English Language proficiency. Setanta College accept the following:
    1. IELTS (International English Language Testing System), or equivalent score of TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) normally IELTS 6 which must be dated within 2 years of enrolment onto programme.
    2. CEFR standard (Common European Framework of Reference for Languages) B2+ which must be dated within 2 years of enrolment onto programme.
    3. Successful completion of major award at level 5 or higher mapped to the NFQ completed through English.

Fees & How To Enrol

Pay In Full


Pay for 3 Modules


Pay For 1 Module


Pay Over 36 Instalments

22000per month

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