Physical Education A Level

Course Description

Are you fascinated by the human body? Have you ever wondered why some people can run faster than others or how drugs enhance performance in sport? Are you interested in what gives Olympic champions the psychological edge over their competitors or how technology can advance sports performance? If so, then studying Physical Education is for you.

Entry Requirements

Students studying three A Levels will be expected to have a minimum of two GCSEs at grade 6 and three other GCSEs at grade 4 or above including English Language and Mathematics at grade 4. GCSE grade 6 in Science is desirable.

Course Content

The A Level PE course follows the AQA examining board specification and is focused on relating theory to sport and its impact on performance.

Year 1: Applied Anatomy and Physiology, Skill Acquisition, and Sport and Society.
Year 2: Exercise Physiology, Bio-mechanics, Sports Psychology, Sport and Society, and Technology in Sport.


These topics are assessed through two written exams at the end of the 2 years. The written exam accounts for 70% of your final grade. The practical element of the course accounts for 15% of your final grade and you are assessed as a player or coach in a full sided, competitive version of your chosen sport. The final 15% is assessed through written/verbal analysis and evaluation of your performance in your chosen sport.

Enrichment and Work Experience

A Level students are required to complete a one week work experience placement. Work experience is a vital part of a young person’s learning experience. It supports the academic skills you develop during your time at The Sixth Form and allows you to acquire skills that cannot be taught in the classroom. Responsibility for obtaining this placement lies ultimately with you as the student, although there is a vast amount of support and guidance available to assist you through the work experience officer, careers guidance team, curriculum teachers and your personal tutor.

You will have the opportunity to take part in a wide range of sports related enrichment and we encourage our students to do so. These include: Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Scheme, First Aid, Voluntary Service Award, Cricket, Football, Basketball, Rugby, Netball and Athletics.

Additional Information

To study A level PE you must play sport at a competitive level in order to be assessed on the practical element. You should be playing regularly for a team inside or outside of The Sixth Form. As part of this course you will have the opportunity to undertake the Level 2 Gym Instructor course run by Focus Training. We are able to offer this at a significantly reduced cost. The course is aimed at those wishing to pursue a career within the health and fitness industry, equipping you with the skills, knowledge and understanding to work with gym users and help them to reach their health and fitness goals. The qualification is nationally accredited and recognised throughout the UK and overseas.

Links with other subjects:
Physical Education links well with a number of other A Level subjects including Biology, Physics, Business, Psychology, Sociology and Sport and Exercise Science.

Future Career Opportunities

The Physical Education course is designed to educate and equip you with the knowledge and skills necessary for a range of different careers including teaching, coaching, sports and leisure management, physiotherapy and sports science. The course also allows you to enhance your practical skills for involvement at university, progression onto a scholarship programme or simply participation in later life. Our students have progressed onto many career paths including Physiotherapy and PE teaching and we are proud to count a number of international athletes as past students.

Why study at The Sixth Form Bolton?

If you enjoy taking part in sport and have an interest in all aspects surrounding and supporting sport and performance then this is the course for you. You will enhance your knowledge of sport and the wider issues surrounding it including the science of movement, current issues in sport, the workings of the mind and how sport has developed through time. Alongside this, you will also develop your practical ability in your chosen sport.