Bachelor of Arts Sports Coaching & Business Management (GAA) CW807

  • NFQ Level 7
  • CW807
  • 20
  • 700 Portfolio
  • 3 Years
  • Overview
  • Further Studies
  • Career Prospects
  • Entry Requirements
  • Subjects
  • Enquiries

What is the Course about?

Sports bodies require their management and coaching staff to have well-rounded understanding and knowledge of their chosen sport as well as in the area of business and management. A Sports Coaching and Business Management degree explores the cross-functional nature of business and sport and equips students with the necessary skills to attain careers in: sports management, club development, games development and club administration. Applicants can apply for both the BA (Honours) Sport Management and Coaching (CW858 - NFQ Level 8) Sports Coaching and Business Management (GAA), (CW807 - NFQ Level 7) on the CAO application. Both programmes run concurrently for the first three years.

This three-year degree programme is delivered by IT Carlow in association with Leinster GAA. The Sports Coaching and Business Management degree combines business and sports modules. Mandatory subjects over the life of the programme include: player development; coach education; anatomy and physiology; writing and research; sports management; finance; applied programme planning.  

IT Carlow runs this programme in association with Comhairle Laighean and the GAA which provides the tuition on the player development and games development modules.  

Special Features:

  • This is the only programme of its kind in Ireland and is delivered in association with the GAA.  
  • Competitive IT Carlow team environment in GAA, with 2015 national title wins including; All Ireland Hurling League and the Fr Meachair Cup in Camogie.  
  • Experienced coaches and coach educators from each of the sporting bodies deliver the player development and coach education modules of the course.
  • Premium sporting facilities including elite sports gym, general student gym, GAA and rugby pitches with full changing facilities and viewing stands.

What follow-on study opportunities are available?

Graduates of this programme may be eligible to progress to Year 4 of the BA (Honours) Sport Management and Coaching (CW858).

What exemptions will I receive?




What will I be able to do when I finish the course?

Graduates will be qualified to work in a variety of sport related careers, including sport development officers, sport management, club development and/or administration, sport coaching and fitness instruction.

Graduate Profiles

Peter Hally - 2014 BA in Sport Management and Coaching 

I found the balance between the theoretical and practical components of the sports science and coaching modules very interesting and applicable to my current role with Wexford GAA. The business and management subjects also helped prepare me for the many organisational aspects of my current role. By studying at IT Carlow, I was given the opportunity to tutor and gained a lot of practical work experience in the areas of strength and conditioning, functional screening and new techniques for coaching teams. 

I am currently Football Development Officer with Wexford GAA. 

My job involves the following: 

  • promoting Gaelic Football throughout Wexford county. 
  • coordinating Wexford football academy squads 13 to 17 years. 
  • designing and implementing coach education programmes throughout the county. 
  • facilitating coaching workshops with clubs to upskill coaches. 
  • developing mentorship programmes with each club to improve playing standards with the county. 

The course gave me the knowledge and skills I needed. I have broadened my knowledge in coaching and business practices such as player development, strength and conditioning, and marketing. Studying management practices also enabled me to understand managerial leadership and public relations in the work environment. These are essential in my line of work today. 

Emma Byrne - 2010 – 2014 BA in Sport Management and Coaching 

I was always interested in coaching and sports management and wanted to gain a deeper understanding and knowledge in this area. Sport and coaching is a passion of mine and the programme provided an opportunity to merge both. The balance of theoretical and practical content was very enjoyable and helped to relate the theory and science to the practical setting. Practical subjects such as player development, coach education and exercise and fitness instruction where balanced with theory subjects ranging from marketing and sponsorship to finance for sport. 

I continually broadened my knowledge in coaching and business practices by volunteering for many projects in my free time throughout the four years of my course. I gained practical experience in many areas such as fitness testing, strength and conditioning, performance analysis and sports management and GAA club administration. 

  • GAA Games Promotions Officer with Dublin GAA in St Vincents GAA Club involves: 
  • promoting Gaelic football and hurling in local primary and secondary schools; 
  • coaching 800 children per week in local feeder schools; 
  • providing club assistance to all team mentors within the club; 
  • delivering coach education workshops and programmes blitz camps; 
  • coordinating weekly academy and nursery programmes. 

I got the opportunity to develop both as a player and person. I have gained an in-depth knowledge in the areas of Sports management and coaching through theory and practical learning. I completed a work placement abroad in China where I was responsible for developing GAA in China. I worked with various GAA Clubs on areas such as club development, club administration roles, club structures and coaching assistance in 6 major cities-Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Suzhou and Dalian. I also have been involved working as a Performance Analyst with Kilkenny senior hurlers for the last 4 years while completing this programme. IT Carlow provides top class facilities and staff that allows each student reach their potential. The variety of modules provided a wide range of disciplines to focus in on. It has also allowed me to continue my education by completing a Master’s programme in Strength & Conditioning in IT Carlow.

Brian Hurley - 2008

2010 – 2013 BA Sport and Exercise (GAA)

2013 - 2014 BA Management Practice

I loved the way business was mixed with sport, we did finance, economics, HR and management, coaching and strength and conditioning all in the one day. We were always active and this improved my football performance as the course thaught me how the body works and how to make it to the top.

In the future our careers won’t always in sport, so I think it is important to have a business degree also. I now have a sports degree and level 8 business degree which can offer me great career paths.

I am currently working as Sales representative with Abco Kovex Packaging.

What are the minimum entry requirements?

Leaving Certificate:

  • 5 subjects at Ordinary Level Grade O6 or Higher Level Grade H7 or better.

Subjects required:

  • English or Irish at Ordinary Level Grade O6 or Higher Level Grade H7 or better.

Portfolio: Applicants will be required to submit a portfolio with details of applicant's playing, administration and coaching background. 

Mature applicants must also submit portfolio and will be assessed on an individual basis and may be interviewed.


GAA Portfolio Form march 2016.pdf

For Further Information Contact

Programme Director
Brian Dunne, BSc, MSc

Programme Leader
Michael Dempsey