Come and Celebrate With Us

~~~Sports Awards Evening~~~

Wednesday 26th April at Ewood Park

Tickets £13 available from any member of the PE Staff

This is always a popular event so book your place early!

Physical Education

Head of Department: Dr M E Butler

Why choose Physical Education at A Level?

AS/A2 Level Sport and Physical Education provides candidates with the opportunity to explore the vast world of sport in a more focused and informed fashion. Sport and Leisure have been revolutionised in recent years primarily as a result of vast media coverage and the injection of funds into facility provision and coaching. You are embarking upon an AS/A2 Level course of study at a time when the future of sport across the British Isles is very exciting. With London 2012 having now received the handover, opportunities for a potential career in sport have never been greater! As such, candidates with a recognised Advanced Level qualification will be naturally viewed as having a distinct advantage in what is likely to become a highly competitive sports career market.

The aims of the A Level course are essentially three-fold:

  1. To enable students to understand and analyse the major concepts and principles underlying sport and Physical Education
  2. To develop an understanding of the historical, physical, social, cultural and psychological factors which influence sport and Physical Education
  3. To encourage the understanding of theoretical principles through practical involvement in sporting examples.

What does the Sport and Physical Education course involve?

The course comprises four assessment modules: two for AS and two for A2. Candidates will complete AS at the end of their first year of study and A2 at the end of their second year of study.

What topics will be covered?

AS Level

Module 1

Applied anatomical and physiological Aspects which influence performance. Functional anatomy. Structure and action of skeletal muscle. Gaseous exchange and transport including the circulatory system. Fitness and measurement of fitness. Exercise and health. Training Principles

Socio-Cultural and Psychological Aspects which influence performance. Conceptual factors - Public Schools, technical developments and girls’ schools. Development and organisation of sport. Nature of skilled performance. Learning and performance. Information processing. Motivation. Presentation of information. Optimising performance

Module 2

Practical Work – students plan, perform and evaluate 3 roles as performer, coach and official

A2 Level

Module 3

Socio-Cultural and Psychological Aspects which influence elite performance - amateurism, professionalism, excellence. Social class - race, gender, religion. Social order - drugs, violence. Principles, theories, transfer of learning. Teaching styles. Individual differences, personality, attitudes, aggression. Social influences - social facilitation, socialisation, groups, leadership. Anatomical and Physiological Aspects which influence performance. Functional anatomy. Forces in action. Angular motion. Muscle contraction and control. Energy concepts. Synoptic assessment

Module 4

Optimising practical performance in a competitive situation. Observation and analysis of own performance in relation to that of an elite performer

How will I study?

Physical Education specialists deliver the various modules throughout the course. Homework is set regularly and deadlines are closely adhered to. In addition to theory lessons, students will undertake practical work in their chosen specialist areas. Video evidence is required from the outset of your performing in your chosen sport / activity.

How will I be assessed?

AS Examination

Opportunities for and the effects of leading a healthy and active lifestyle {60% AS marks, 30% of the total A Level marks} 2 hours) {PED1}

Analysis and evaluation of physical activity as a performer and / or in adopted role(s) {40% of AS marks 20% of the total A Level marks} {Internally assessed, externally moderated} {PED2}

A2 Examination

Optimising performance and evaluating contemporary issues {30% of the total A Level marks} (2 hours) {PED 3}

Optimising practical performance in a competitive situation {20% of the total A Level marks} {Internally assessed, externally moderated} {PED4}

What qualifications do I need to start the course?

A grade B in GCSE Physical Education is a minimum entry requirement for this course. Whilst it remains highly advantageous to have studied Physical Education to GCSE standard, this is not a pre-requisite though students will be expected to have gained a minimum of a grade A in Biology. Moreover, anyone interested in the course irrespective of academic entry must demonstrate practical prowess in a recognised sporting activity up to a minimum club/school standard.

With what other subjects does Sport and Physical Education fit?

An A Level in Sport and Physical Education sits alongside most other subject combinations. The course itself involves elements of Mathematics, Biology, Sports Psychology, Sports History and Biomechanics in its structure so a combination of these would supplement it nicely. Check the entry requirements for universities offering sports medicine related courses and physiotherapy as specific combinations are likely to be required (… and some do not automatically state ‘Sport and / or Physical Education’ as a pre-requisite!). Speak to the 6th Form Careers Officer for further advice.

What can I do at University with an A Level in Sport and Physical Education?

An A Level in this subject is acknowledged by academics as a highly valued and respected entrance qualification into university. Not so long ago, a general feeling was that an A Level in this subject was under-valued. How times change and how attitudes change! The courses being advertised these days in universities are numerous: sports coaching, teaching, leisure and tourism, physiotherapy, sports development, sports management, sports psychology, sports studies, sports science, sports medicine etc… Moreover, many universities offer combination courses where a sports discipline is combined with another subject area; ie sport and law. Have a look at the various prospectuses/websites: you will be amazed!

How will an A Level in Sport and Physical Education help me in my future life and career?

Graduate career opportunities are expanding and more and more QEGS pupils are considering leisure, tourism and sports related vocations. Coaching, teaching, leisure management, physiotherapy, sports development, sports event management, sports psychology, sports medicine are all obvious possibilities. Decide which area is your forte and investigate it: the potential career pathways are endless! If you are still unsure, speak to PE colleagues in the department or Mr Northin.


AS/A2 Level Sport and Physical Education is an interesting and exciting subject but the shift in emphasis from a practically orientated GCSE course to academic focus is considerable. This is not a ‘soft option’ and if you consider it be so, you will be in for a rude awakening! If you are thinking that it is simply an extension of the practical activities undertaken at GCSE, think again! The very nature of the course is that it is essentially theoretical which in turn, makes it highly challenging. Assignments require you to take full responsibility and ownership of your own learning as you prepare for the next step up the academic ladder to University.

However, if you have an active interest in the study of sport and sports-related issues, plus an enjoyment of participating in and analysing sporting performances, then this course may be for you. You can be assured that whilst the expectations for achieving AS/A2 Level are high, you will find the course rewarding, stimulating and most importantly enjoyable. Support structures are in place and the teaching is of the highest order. Good luck!