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SPEX12-311: Motor Control and Learning in Exercise and Sport September 2021 [Standard]

General information

This subject introduces the primary theories and applications of motor control and learning. Various motor control theories will be examined concerning the role of sensory and motor function and how this interaction may impact our health and ability to perform activities of daily living, exercise, and play sport. Students will examine a range of factors that influence the assessment of motor function and how best to assist clients in improving their motor learning and skill acquisition.


Academic unit:Faculty of Health Sciences and Medicine
Subject code:SPEX12-311
Subject title:Motor Control and Learning in Exercise and Sport
Subject level:Undergraduate
Semester/Year:September 2021
Credit points:10

Delivery & attendance

Delivery mode:


Workload items:
  • Lecture: x12 (Total hours: 24) - Weekly Lecture
  • Lecture: x12 (Total hours: 12) - Weekly Lecture
  • Seminar: x12 (Total hours: 12) - Weekly Seminar
  • Sports Lab: x12 (Total hours: 36) - Sports Lab
  • Personal Study Hours: x12 (Total hours: 36) - Recommended Study Hours
Attendance and learning activities: The subject is designed to integrate material presented in lectures, seminars and practical laboratory classes to understand the basis of learning and relearning motor skills. Therefore, attendance at all lectures, seminars and practical laboratory classes is required.


Prescribed resources:
  • Spittle, M. (2013). Motor learning and skill acquisition. 1st ed., Palgrave Macmillan Australia
After enrolment, students can check the Books and Tools area in iLearn for the full Resource List.
[email protected] & Email:[email protected] is the online learning environment at Bond University and is used to provide access to subject materials, lecture recordings and detailed subject information regarding the subject curriculum, assessment and timing. Both iLearn and the Student Email facility are used to provide important subject notifications. Additionally, official correspondence from the University will be forwarded to students’ Bond email account and must be monitored by the student.

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Enrolment requirements

Requisites: ?


Restrictions: ?


Assurance of learning

Assurance of Learning means that universities take responsibility for creating, monitoring and updating curriculum, teaching and assessment so that students graduate with the knowledge, skills and attributes they need for employability and/or further study.

At Bond University, we carefully develop subject and program outcomes to ensure that student learning in each subject contributes to the whole student experience. Students are encouraged to carefully read and consider subject and program outcomes as combined elements.

Program Learning Outcomes (PLOs)

Program Learning Outcomes provide a broad and measurable set of standards that incorporate a range of knowledge and skills that will be achieved on completion of the program. If you are undertaking this subject as part of a degree program, you should refer to the relevant degree program outcomes and graduate attributes as they relate to this subject.

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Subject Learning Outcomes (SLOs)

On successful completion of this subject the learner will be able to:
  1. Identify the strengths and limitations of techniques to assess processes of motor learning and control.
  2. Explain the changes in motor function or motor performance that may occur with motor learning and development across the lifespan.
  3. Discuss the common theoretical models proposed to explain motor control and the processes of motor learning.
  4. Assess aspects of an individual’s motor function in physical activity and exercise contexts including applying risk management and risk assessment concepts associated with the motor learning and control of exercise science.
  5. Describe the structure and function of the neuromuscular and sensory systems as they relate to the control of voluntary and involuntary movement and motor learning.
  6. Design motor learning environments and protocols to maximise specific motor learning and control outcomes in a range of physical activity and exercise contexts.
  7. Apply motor learning principles and skill acquisition principles, including the effective use of learning cues and movement progressions, for teaching and correcting movement and exercise technique.


Assessment details

TypeTask%Timing*Outcomes assessed
*Class Participation Class participation 10% Progressive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7.
Presentation Oral presentation in which one research paper is reviewed (5-6 mins) 10% Week 6 2, 3, 4.
Essay The focus of this assignment is to provide you a practical opportunity to apply relevant motor control and learning principles in the development and coaching of an evidence-informed skill acquisition program and assessment approach that demonstrates improvement in the motor, decision-making and/or tactical performance of your client. 25% Week 10 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 7.
Presentation An oral presentation reflecting on your skill acquisition project and how well you utilised different motor control and learning principles in your coaching (10-12 mins). 15% Week 12 2, 3, 6, 7.
Computer-Aided Examination (Closed) Exam 40% Final Examination Period 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 7.
  • * Assessment timing is indicative of the week that the assessment is due or begins (where conducted over multiple weeks), and is based on the standard University academic calendar
  • C = Students must reach a level of competency to successfully complete this assessment.

Assessment criteria

High Distinction 85-100 Outstanding or exemplary performance in the following areas: interpretative ability; intellectual initiative in response to questions; mastery of the skills required by the subject, general levels of knowledge and analytic ability or clear thinking.
Distinction 75-84 Usually awarded to students whose performance goes well beyond the minimum requirements set for tasks required in assessment, and who perform well in most of the above areas.
Credit 65-74 Usually awarded to students whose performance is considered to go beyond the minimum requirements for work set for assessment. Assessable work is typically characterised by a strong performance in some of the capacities listed above.
Pass 50-64 Usually awarded to students whose performance meets the requirements set for work provided for assessment.
Fail 0-49 Usually awarded to students whose performance is not considered to meet the minimum requirements set for particular tasks. The fail grade may be a result of insufficient preparation, of inattention to assignment guidelines or lack of academic ability. A frequent cause of failure is lack of attention to subject or assignment guidelines.

Quality assurance

For the purposes of quality assurance, Bond University conducts an evaluation process to measure and document student assessment as evidence of the extent to which program and subject learning outcomes are achieved. Some examples of student work will be retained for potential research and quality auditing purposes only. Any student work used will be treated confidentially and no student grades will be affected.

Study information

Submission procedures

Students must check the [email protected] subject site for detailed assessment information and submission procedures.

Policy on late submission and extensions

A late penalty will be applied to all overdue assessment tasks unless an extension is granted by the subject coordinator. The standard penalty will be 10% of marks awarded to that assessment per day late with no assessment to be accepted seven days after the due date. Where a student is granted an extension, the penalty of 10% per day late starts from the new due date.

Policy on plagiarism

University’s Academic Integrity Policy defines plagiarism as the act of misrepresenting as one’s own original work: another’s ideas, interpretations, words, or creative works; and/or one’s own previous ideas, interpretations, words, or creative work without acknowledging that it was used previously (i.e., self-plagiarism). The University considers the act of plagiarising to be a breach of the Student Conduct Code and, therefore, subject to the Discipline Regulations which provide for a range of penalties including the reduction of marks or grades, fines and suspension from the University.

Bond University utilises Originality Reporting software to inform academic integrity.

Feedback on assessment

Feedback on assessment will be provided to students within two weeks of the assessment submission due date, as per the Assessment Policy.

Accessibility and Inclusion Support

If you have a disability, illness, injury or health condition that impacts your capacity to complete studies, exams or assessment tasks, it is important you let us know your special requirements, early in the semester. Students will need to make an application for support and submit it with recent, comprehensive documentation at an appointment with a Disability Officer. Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Office at the earliest possible time, to meet staff and learn about the services available to meet your specific needs. Please note that late notification or failure to disclose your disability can be to your disadvantage as the University cannot guarantee support under such circumstances.

Additional subject information


Subject curriculum

An introduction to the area of motor control and learning, definition and classification of motor skills and discussion around how various inherent abilities and learning styles may influence motor control and learning

Defining similarities and differences between learning and performance and what characterises learning of motor skills

What constitutes effective transfer of learning and how does the way you present skills and practice tasks to your clients influence the degree of learning and transfer

Description, evidence behind the use of, and ways to implement different practice schedules for different types of learners and motor skills

Specificity of practice, creating an optimal challenge, skill progressions, session planning; intrinsic and augmented feedback and their role in motor control and learning

Importance of active monitoring and supervision, frequency and timing of augmented feedback as well as comparing direct and indirect instructional approaches

Focusing on the dynamic system approach to the field of motor control and learning

Theoretical perspectives on movement preparation and the implications of this to our understanding of the definition, assessment and interpretation of reaction time and anticipation

Roles of attention including attentional focus and different aspects of memory in motor control and learning

A focus on the neurophysiology of voluntary and involuntary movement and how this may change across the lifespan and as a result of motor learning programs.

A focus on the neurophysiology of voluntary and involuntary movement and how this may change across the lifespan and as a result of motor learning programs.

Potential applications of mental practice/imagery, observational learning and simulations in improving motor performance, particularly anticipation and decision-making

Approved on: Jul 20, 2021. Edition: 3.2