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Before you start this course

This step provides a brief outline of the course, its target audience, learning outcomes, and rules of engagement.
Digital illustration portraying online abuse with hands pointing and gesturing at the person sitting next to a computer screen.
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This step provides a brief outline of the course, its target audience, learning outcomes, and rules of engagement.

Who is this course for?

This course has been created for anyone who wants to learn about online abuse and its impact in sport. This includes a wide number of people, from amateur participants to casual fans. Specifically, it will be of use to those who work within the sporting and leisure industries. It is not only athletes that are subject to and impacted by online abuse. It involves a wide number of professional stakeholders including, but not limited to, administrators, executives, those who work in human resources, equality, diversity and inclusion, social media, journalism, law, coaching, refereeing as well as a wide range of volunteers. Such stakeholders are also a key part of the response to the problem.

Managing expectations

This course involves the discussion of topics that may make individuals feel uneasy and/or trigger discomfort. Learners from marginalised groups in particular may experience anxiety while working through the content, as the instances of online abuse discussed disproportionality target those groups. It is important to consider this before engaging fully with the material.

Learning outcomes

Week 1: Introduction to Online Abuse in Sport

  • Understand the triggers, targets, and forms of online abuse
  • Recognise the contextual significance of sport when it comes to online abuse
  • Understand the impact of online abuse on specific stakeholders and wider society

Week 2: Legal Responses to Online Abuse in Sport

  • Discuss responses to online abuse based on criminal, civil, and administrative law
  • Appreciate the different types of legal offences related to online abuse
  • Recognise and discuss different tensions in legal responses to online abuse

Week 3: Combatting Online Abuse in Sport

  • Recognise the main challenges in combating online abuse
  • Understand the different approaches used to tackle online abuse
  • Understanding the role of different stakeholder groups in tackling online abuse

Engaging with other learners

Online abuse impacts people and institutions in different ways. Even those with no interest in sport can be impacted indirectly because of the socio-political tensions that are often associated with sport.

Throughout this course you will be encouraged to actively engage in discussions, share your experiences and reflect on key issues with other learners.

Respect has to be a key priority in these engagements. Fostering a secure, encouraging, and impartial atmosphere where all individuals feel empowered to learn and freely share their ideas lies at the core of our values.

Introduce yourself

Tell us a little about yourself and what encouraged you to take this course in the comments section below.

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Online Abuse in Sport

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