EXERSCI 712 : Advanced Exercise Prescription


2020 Semester One (1203) (15 POINTS)

Course Prescription

The physiology and interpretation of cardiovascular and respiratory functional assessments to enable the advanced prescription of accurate and progressive exercise programmes for people with co-existing health conditions. This course provides an understanding of how respiratory and cardiac physiology interact through the lifespan, and the implications this has on prescribing exercise for a wide range of clinical presentations.

Course Overview

Development of an exercise-based rehabilitation program aimed at improving health and functioning in someone afflicted with chronic illness is guided by thorough assessment.  This course teaches the theoretical underpinnings of advanced techniques for assessing human physical functioning in health and disease and how to use the findings of assessment to develop individualized and targeted exercise rehabilitation therapies.  Relevant course materials are provided via Canvas and students are expected to review assigned material before each class meeting.  Class meetings are structured as tutorials to support skill development (e.g., test analysis, derivation of numeric variables, interpretation) and as seminar discussions of case studies to develop clinical reasoning with respect to assessment selection, application and interpretation for prescription design.    

Course Requirements

Restriction: SPORTSCI 712

Capabilities Developed in this Course

Capability 1: Disciplinary Knowledge and Practice
Capability 2: Critical Thinking
Capability 3: Solution Seeking
Capability 5: Independence and Integrity

Learning Outcomes

By the end of this course, students will be able to:
  1. Develop theoretical competence for a variety of assessment tools that measure human physical capacity for exercise in health and disease (Capability 1, 2, 3 and 5)
  2. Identify appropriate and inappropriate applications for various physical fitness assessments (Capability 1, 2 and 3)
  3. Create and justify a comprehensive assessment plan for individuals that have one or more chronic illnesses (Capability 1, 2 and 3)
  4. Interpret and synthesize data from a compressive physical fitness assessment (Capability 1 and 2)
  5. Develop theoretical competence on the use of and adaptations to various forms of exercise training in patients with chronic illness. (Capability 1, 2, 3 and 5)
  6. Develop, design and justify an evidence-based, assessment informed, exercise prescription to improve the health and functional capacity of a patient affected by one or more chronic conditions (Capability 1, 2, 3 and 5)


Assessment Type Percentage Classification
Coursework 25% Individual Test
Coursework 25% Individual Test
Case Studies 50% Individual Coursework
Assessment Type Learning Outcome Addressed
1 2 3 4 5 6
Case Studies

Key Topics

- General Concepts & Principles of Exercise Prescription 
- Evidence-based Practice
- Health Screening and Risk Classification
- Work, Energy & Power Calculation
- Cardiopulmonary Exercise Testing, Analysis and Interpretation
- Field Assessment of Aerobic Capactiy
- Body Composition (Weight gain & Loss)
- Posture & movement  
- Mobility & flexibility  
- Musculoskeletal Function
- Improving Mobility
- Prescription Principles for Aerobic & Musculoskeletal Improvement

Learning Resources

Journal articles will be assigned throughout the term and can be accessed freely on the intranet using a University of Auckland computer and/or student identification necessary to access University subscribed content.  

Suggested Textbook Resource: VH Heyward & AL Gibson (2014). Advanced Fitness Assessment & Exercise Prescription 7th edition. Human Kinetics, Torrens Park, South Australia. ISBN-13: 9781450481021. Available at http://www.humankinetics.com/products/all-products/Advanced-Fitness-Assessment-and-Exercise-Prescription-7th-Edition-eBook for $63.30 as an ebook. 

Suggested Textbook Resource: D Riebe (2018). ACSM’s Guidelines for Exercise Testing and Prescription 10th edition. Wolters Kluwer, Philadelphia, PA USA. ISBN: 978-1-4963-2906-5  

Special Requirements

Class meetings are tutorial and seminar format. Students should expect to participate in class discussions and can preaper by reading assigned material prior to the class meeting. 

Workload Expectations

This course is a standard 15 point course and students are expected to spend 10 hours per week involved in each 15 point course that they are enrolled in.

For this course, you can expect 3 hours of tutorial/seminar, 5 hours of reading and thinking about the content and 2 hours of work on assignments and/or test preparation per week.

Digital Resources

Course materials are made available in a learning and collaboration tool called Canvas which also includes reading lists and lecture recordings (where available).

Please remember that the recording of any class on a personal device requires the permission of the instructor.


The content and delivery of content in this course are protected by copyright. Material belonging to others may have been used in this course and copied by and solely for the educational purposes of the University under license.

You may copy the course content for the purposes of private study or research, but you may not upload onto any third party site, make a further copy or sell, alter or further reproduce or distribute any part of the course content to another person.

Academic Integrity

The University of Auckland will not tolerate cheating, or assisting others to cheat, and views cheating in coursework as a serious academic offence. The work that a student submits for grading must be the student's own work, reflecting their learning. Where work from other sources is used, it must be properly acknowledged and referenced. This requirement also applies to sources on the internet. A student's assessed work may be reviewed against online source material using computerised detection mechanisms.

Inclusive Learning

All students are asked to discuss any impairment related requirements privately, face to face and/or in written form with the course coordinator, lecturer or tutor.

Student Disability Services also provides support for students with a wide range of impairments, both visible and invisible, to succeed and excel at the University. For more information and contact details, please visit the Student Disability Services’ website at http://disability.auckland.ac.nz

Special Circumstances

If your ability to complete assessed coursework is affected by illness or other personal circumstances outside of your control, contact a member of teaching staff as soon as possible before the assessment is due.

If your personal circumstances significantly affect your performance, or preparation, for an exam or eligible written test, refer to the University’s aegrotat or compassionate consideration page: https://www.auckland.ac.nz/en/students/academic-information/exams-and-final-results/during-exams/aegrotat-and-compassionate-consideration.html.

This should be done as soon as possible and no later than seven days after the affected test or exam date.

Student Feedback

During the course Class Representatives in each class can take feedback to the staff responsible for the course and staff-student consultative committees.

At the end of the course students will be invited to give feedback on the course and teaching through a tool called SET or Qualtrics. The lecturers and course co-ordinators will consider all feedback.

Your feedback helps to improve the course and its delivery for all students.

Student Charter and Responsibilities

The Student Charter assumes and acknowledges that students are active participants in the learning process and that they have responsibilities to the institution and the international community of scholars. The University expects that students will act at all times in a way that demonstrates respect for the rights of other students and staff so that the learning environment is both safe and productive. For further information visit Student Charter (https://www.auckland.ac.nz/en/students/forms-policies-and-guidelines/student-policies-and-guidelines/student-charter.html).


Elements of this outline may be subject to change. The latest information about the course will be available for enrolled students in Canvas.

In this course you may be asked to submit your coursework assessments digitally. The University reserves the right to conduct scheduled tests and examinations for this course online or through the use of computers or other electronic devices. Where tests or examinations are conducted online remote invigilation arrangements may be used. The final decision on the completion mode for a test or examination, and remote invigilation arrangements where applicable, will be advised to students at least 10 days prior to the scheduled date of the assessment, or in the case of an examination when the examination timetable is published.

Published on 11/01/2020 03:00 p.m.