Physical Education

Jamie Harrison
Jamie Harrison

WHAT IS PHYSICAL EDUCATION?

Typically, physical education is a practical subject that aims to increase students’ health and fitness and their capacity to perform in sports. At A-level, however, it is a subject that aims to provide students with an understanding of how the body and the mind of athletes work in order to achieve peak performance.

WHY STUDY THIS COURSE?

With the three main disciplines of sports and exercise science being physiology, psychology and biomechanics, A-level study aims to help students understand and be able to apply these principles to athletes that you see every day in the media. As well as developing an outstanding knowledge of PE, you will also gain many skills, such as improving your ability to analyse data and apply your understanding into new contexts.

WHAT CAN YOU EXPECT FROM PHYSICAL EDUCATION?

You can expect to learn at a rapid rate in PE, and therefore you need to be prepared to engage with fast-paced lessons that will be interactive and fun. It is these lessons, alongside your dedication to the set revision tasks, which will allow you to succeed in the subject.

HOW IS THE COURSE ASSESSED?

Assessment is through a combination of written examinations and practical assessments.

WHO IS THE COURSE SUITABLE FOR?

Given its broad range of content, PE is suitable for any student with a desire to progress onto degree level study in the field of sport and exercise, or those who wish to pursue a career in the same industry upon completing the course.

WHAT CAN I DO WITH AN A-LEVEL IN PHYSICAL EDUCATION?

An A-level in PE places you in a great position to progress onto sport-related degrees, such as Sport and Exercise Science, Physiotherapy and Strength and Conditioning. Although these degrees are specifically related to the course, the skills you will learn during the course are beneficial when progressing onto any degree course; with the skills also being highly regarded by many employers, it positions you well for a range of careers.

WHAT WILL I STUDY?

PHYSIOLOGY: In this module, you will take an in-depth look at how the body works during performance and recovery. Topics range from the sliding filament hypothesis of muscle contraction, the different energy systems used to regenerate ATP and how to increase performance levels through specialised training methods; all of these engaging topical areas are those that place you in an excellent position for university study within the field of sport, exercise and health.

PSYCHOLOGY: Why do athletes sometimes perform really badly, even though their physical fitness levels seem optimal for their sport? Questions like this become much easier to answer once you have studied the different theories of arousal (excitement) and confidence, just to name two. We also take a look at whether home-field advantage exists or whether it is just a myth; with statistics worldwide in fact showing that it is real, we study theories that seek to prove why.

EVALUATING CONTEMPORARY ISSUES: With news reports from across the globe unveiling athlete drug-doping scandals on an almost weekly basis, it is no surprise that we study these areas in Evaluating Contemporary Issues. We even debate whether athletes should simply be allowed to take performance enhancing drugs. Is it, as some suggest, something that the media and spectators actually want to see? Other negative items, such as hooliganism, are also studied here; we study reasons for hooliganism and what the police and other authorities can actually do to prevent it.

ADDITIONAL ACTIVITIES WITHIN THIS SUBJECT

Sporting enrichment activities are available for students to participate in with the college participating in the North West College Football League and Netball League. We have two Football teams and one Netball team who train weekly and compete in these leagues.

Entry Requirements

  • 5 GCSE grades at A* - C, or 4 – 9, across four separate subjects, to include GCSE Mathematics and/or English/English Language.