Diploma in Sports Psychology

  • Overview
  • Course Content
  • Structure
  • Career Opportunities
  • Fees
  • Next Steps


Sports Psychology

Click here to view provisional 2020 timetable.

This programme will be of relevance to anyone who has an interest or involvement in sport. Aimed at coaches and athletes alike, the course explains the theory and techniques used by sport psychologists to help athletes develop their mental skills and ultimately improve their performance.

Programme Aims and Objectives

The programme was developed to give sports enthusiasts a general introduction to the often misunderstood subject of sport psychology. The programme provides an ideal opportunity for people to understand exactly what sport psychology is, how sport psychologists work and how athletes use sport psychology to enhance their performance. On completion of the programme, students should have acquired the skills to identify the psychological skills important for success in sport and the theory based interventions that help to develop these mental skills.


To meet the requirements of the Diploma in Sports Psychology, a student will be assessed on the basis of an assignment that is completed within the 10 weeks. 90% of the course marks  will be awarded for the written assignment, with 10% going towards an oral presentation of work completed.

Please note this programme is not on the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ).

Programme  Content

Introduction to Sport Psychology

The module will examine the relationship between the mind and the body, the role of the sport psychologist and the route to  becoming a sport and exercise psychologist.   


Students will approach the different ways there are to motivate teams, individuals and coaches. The various theories of motivation and their relation to performance will be examined. Methods of measuring & increasing motivation will be assessed. The module will also examine the value of material reward in the world of sport.

Imagery and Mental Rehearsal

Various forms of imagery and mental rehearsal, and their role in athletic preparation will be examined. The student will study the role, value and effectiveness of mental rehearsal and visualisation in sport in relation to different tasks facing both the individual and team performers.

Stress and Anxiety

This module will investigate sources, symptoms and causes of anxiety and stress in athletes, and how such emotions can affect performance. Ways of measuring anxiety will be outlined. Methods of controlling emotions both before and during performance will be discussed.

Goal Setting

A number of facets of goal setting will be covered, including how to set goals, why goal setting is important in sport and there will be an exploration of techniques/approaches used in applied settings to set goals.

Concentration and Attention

The differences between these constructs will be outlined, and methods of testing and training these skills will be discussed. In particular, differences in concentration type and level required for various sports will be examined. Expert-novice differences in these skills will be highlighted.


This module will examine theories of self confidence, including sources of confidence for athletes, ways of measuring it, and methods of improving it. The dangers inherent in engaging in sport fulltime will also be discussed.Self -talk and  the ability to control and regulate  thoughts will be outlined also. 

Specific Issues in Team Sports

Although all modules will involve discussion of topics surrounding both team and individual sports, this module will assess team-specific issues such as group cohesion, leadership, relationship management and the home advantage phenomenon. Discussion of issues specifically relating to team sports will constitute two modules.

Psychological Disorders in Sport

Issues such as depression and substance abuse and their prevalence amongst sporting populations will be explored.The area of athletic retirement and  the challenges inherent in this will also  be examined.


The course is delivered in a relaxed, informal environment. Students are actively encouraged to share their own sporting experiences. Psychology related sports stories reported in the media are discussed on weekly basis. An elite athlete is invited as a guest lecturer every semester to share their experiences and outline their use of sport psychology from a practical perspective. Video clips and quotes from athletes/managers/coaches are regularly used to highlight how theory relates to practice.

Career Progression Opportunities

This programme is particularly beneficial for coaches who want to broaden their knowledge base and add a unique dimension to their coaching CV. Athletes/sportspeople will also benefit from this course by gaining an understanding of the mental requirements of their particular sport and learning about their own psychological strengths and areas of improvement.

Student Profile

Students vary widely in age, sporting interest and involvement in sport. Coaches, managers, sports parents, current or retired athletes are catered for. The  programme is relevant to any sport, whether team or individual, amateur or professional.

Further Study Options

As this Diploma programme provides students with a foundation in the area of psychology students may wish to proceed to study one of the DBS diplomas or degree in Psychology (minimum entry requirements will apply).


The fee for this Diploma is €1,325. This is inclusive of tuition, registration, exam fees and DBS library membership. This fee must be paid in full before the course begins.  View all DBS Evening Diploma Fees here.

DBS Diploma students can also avail of a wide range of facilities to assist them in every aspect of their studies, please see below for more details.

DBS Student Facilities

• Online Notes System (DBS Moodle) - is an eLearning system designed to provide you with a range of course material which will enhance and support your learning experience within DBS.
• DBS Library Aungier Street- the Library provides a programme of classes in the areas of Library resources, essay writing skills, avoiding plagiarism and referencing to assist you in your studies. 
• DBS Careers and Appointment Service- which provides a range of services for Diploma students such as career advice and workshops in CV writing and interview skills.
• Subsidised Parking- DBS provides subsidised parking arrangements for students, which provides easy access to all main public transport routes in and out of the city centre.
• Subsidised Student Canteen- Diploma students can avail of the Student Canteen which is open in the evenings and offers a wide variety of choices on its menu.

Next Steps

Visit Us

Open days are a great way to help you make your decision about your course of interest. The open day will give you the opportunity to receive one on one advice and direction from leading academics in your chosen subject area, meet current students and also have your questions answered on entry requirements, student support and the admissions process. Find out when our next Open Event is taking place. The Admissions Office is located in our Aungier Street campus and you are welcome to visit the college to speak with a member of our admissions team from Monday to Fridays, 8:45am – 5:15pm. Alternatively, you can contact us by email.

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Course overview

Schedule: 1 evening per week, 6.15-9.30pm
Intake: September & February
Duration: 10 weeks Part-time

Contact Us

We are now accepting applications for programmes taking place in 2020. Contact our admissions team for more information

Email: admissions@dbs.ie
Phone: 01 417 7500
Opening times:
Monday to Friday
8:45am to 5:15pm