module specification

SP4063 - Introduction to Biomechanics (2022/23)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2022/23
Module title Introduction to Biomechanics
Module level Certificate (04)
Credit rating for module 15
School School of Human Sciences
Total study hours 150
4 hours Assessment Preparation / Delivery
118 hours Guided independent study
28 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
In-Course Test 40%   MCQ test
Coursework 60%   Practical Written Report (1200 words)
Running in 2022/23

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Spring semester North Thursday Morning

Module summary

This module aims to provide an introduction to human biomechanics. The focus is on the basic anthropometry and kinematics of the human body. The module is designed to provide students with the basic understanding of mechanical principles of the human body and their application in sport, exercise and rehabilitation. The module aims to help you understand how internal and external forces acting upon the human body affect movement, and how these principles are used to help improve performance. In addition, the biomechanical principles can help you understand the mechanical mechanisms of musculoskeletal injury pathologies, and how to apply them to reduce the risk of injury in sport and guide treatment. In this module you will be able to learn biomechanical measurement techniques, understand and evaluate the relevance of the measurement of the physical characteristics of humans to sport and athletes. You will also learn about how soft tissue structures behave under mechanical load and how it relates to sporting activities, exercise, and rehabilitation techniques.

The teaching methods for this module include lecture and practical sessions. The practical sessions take place in the physiology laboratory and you will be separated in small groups.

Prior learning requirements

Available for Study Abroad? No


Arthrokinematics (LO1)
Levers (LO1, LO2)
Goniometry (LO1, LO2)
Basic movement description (LO1)
Body composition and somatotyping (LO2)
Anthropometry and kinanthropometry (LO1, LO2)

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

The material included in this module is delivered by a combination of lecture and practical sessions. The lectures include several topics concerning the biomechanics of human movement. The seminar sessions are designed to give you an opportunity to gain hands-on skills on measuring human physical characteristics and evaluate the relevance of the biomechanical measurement techniques. Therefore, this module will provide an in-depth analysis of a key biomechanics technique, including data collection, analysis and report writing.

Guided independent study is supported by material on Weblearn.  Anatomy teaching benefits from availability of specialised software. Students are encouraged to reflect on their learning throughout the module and particularly in periodic independent-study weeks.

Students’ study responsibilities are articulated in the Student Charter which is available via the University Web site.

Learning outcomes

LO1: Recall and describe basic biomechanics of the human body
LO2: Interpret simple practical biomechanical measurements carried out in the lab and provide coherent written reports.

Assessment strategy

Achievement of the learning outcomes is assessed through two assessment components.
A 30-minute multiple choice questions (MCQ) on-line test will take place in class time during the semester. Students will be expected to answer a series of MCQ in a closed and controlled environment based on material taught up to the point of the assessment. This assessment component will contribute 40% towards the module overall mark.

Summative coursework will consist of one practical written report (1200 words) arising from the experimental biomechanics work carried out in the laboratory. This assessment component will contribute 60% towards the module overall mark.
The aim of this practical lab report is to evaluate and describe the use of biomechanical measurements technique, and produce a scientific and academic written paper. The writing-up of the laboratory based practical session provides practice and an opportunity to develop skills in readiness for second year practical report writing and the final year undergraduate project. The development of report writing skills is a key part of academic work, and the approach to report writing is essentially the same whether you are writing up a laboratory report or submitting a research paper for publication.