Physical Education

The Physical Education Faculty delivers a programme of study in agreement with the National Curriculum. Within this framework, the faculty aims to develop the students physically, intellectually and socially. Lessons and extra-curricular activities provide students with the opportunity of participating in, and understanding, a variety of physical activities.

The faculty also aims to promote a positive attitude towards exercise and to provide students with the knowledge required to allow them to make the decisions which will lead to a full and healthy lif

Through physical education, students experience how to:

  • Solve problems and make decisions
  • Exchange and develop ideas
  • Develop inventive and creative thought
  • Work in different sized groups
  • Compromise and co-operate
  • Help those who require it and be sensitive towards others’ abilities
  • Have a healthy competitive attitude, but not at the expense of ’fair play’ and ‘good sportsmanship’
  • Win and lose, and how to deal with each

It also provides students with the opportunity to:

  • Develop a variety of physical skills
  • Learn how to enjoy sporting activities
  • Develop good self-discipline and a sense of pride and self-confidence in themselves and their work
  • Develop an understanding of the benefits of exercise and the importance of physical fitness in the maintenance of good health

It is important that students have a sense of enjoyment and achievement in this subject and can see a place for it in their future lifestyles.

Key Stage 3

The Key Stage 3 curriculum provides a range of challenging and meaningful opportunities for students of all abilities. Students will be encouraged to achieve their potential in a caring and supportive environment.

It covers six areas:

  1. Outwitting opponents; for example in games activities.
  2. Accurate replication of actions, phrases and sequences; for example in gymnastic activities.
  3. Exploring and communicating ideas, concepts and emotions; for example in dance activities.
  4. Performing at maximum levels in relation to speed, height, distance, strength or accuracy; for example in athletic activities.
  5. Identifying and solving problems to overcome challenges of an adventurous nature; for example in lifesaving and personal survival, in swimming and in outdoor activities.
  6. Exercising safely and effectively to improve health and well-being; for example in fitness and health activities.

Opportunities are provided for an individual to fill the roles of performer, observer and official.

Key Stage 4

The new GCSE Physical Education qualification has been designed as a two year course and has new and contemporary topics that will help students of all abilities to develop a well-rounded skill set and prepare them for progression to further studies. Students who wish to take GCSE PE will have six lessons a fortnight with four of these lessons being theoretical and two of these lessons being practical. Students are encouraged to take part in sports outside of school and for extra-curricular.

What topics will be in this exam? How is it assessed?
Paper 1: The human body
and movement in physical
activity and sport
  • Applied anatomy and physiology 
  • Movement analysis
  • Physical training 
  • Use of data
• Written exam: 1 hour 15 minutes
• 78 marks 
• 30% of GCSE
Paper 2: Socio-cultural 
influences and well-being
in physical activity and sport
  • Sports psychology 
  • Socio-cultural influences 
  • Health, fitness and well-being 
  • Use of data
• Written exam: 1 hour 15 minutes
• 78 marks 
• 30% of GCSE
Non-exam assessment: 
Practical performance
in physical activity and sport
  • Practical performance in three
    different physical activities in
    the role of player/performer
    (one in a team activity, one in
    an individual activity and a third
    in either a team or in an
    individual activity).
  • Analysis and evaluation of
    performance to bring about
    improvement in one activity.
• Assessed by teachers
• Moderated by AQA
• 100 marks
• 40% of GCSE

For more information on the topics taught and the sports that students can be assessed in, please visit the AQA specification

Key Stage 5


  • Coursework based qualifications over two years.
  • 1 Level 3 Diploma 120 credits 720 hrs – two years
  • Two A levels
  • 2 Level 3 Extended Diploma 180 credits 1080 hrs – two years
  • Three A Levels

Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma in sport

Unit 1 – Principles of Anatomy and Physiology in Sport. (5 credits)
Unit 2 – The physiology of Fitness. (5 credits) 
Unit 3 – Assessing risk in sport. (10 credits) 

Mandatory specialist units
Unit 7 - Fitness testing for sport and Exercise (10 credits) 

Optional units
Unit 4 – Fitness testing and programming (10 credits) 
Unit 6 – Sport development (10 credits)
Unit 12 – Current issues in sport (10 credits) 
Unit 13 – Leadership in Sport (10 credits) 

Level 3 Diploma

Unit 1 – Principles of Anatomy and Physiology in Sport. (5 credits)
Unit 2 – The physiology of Fitness. (5 credits)
Unit 3 – Assessing risk in sport. (10 credits)
Unit 4 – Fitness training and programming (10 credits)
Unit 5 – Sports Coaching (10 marks)
Unit 6 – Sports development (10 credits)
Unit 7 - Fitness testing for sort and Exercise (10 credits)
Unit 8 – Practical team sports (10 credits)
Unit 9 – Practical individual sports (10 credits)
Unit 10 – Outdoor adventurous activities (10 credits)

Optional units
Unit 12 – Current issues in Sport (10 credits)
Unit 13 – Leadership in Sport (10 credits)
Unit 14 – Exercise health and lifestyle (10 credits)
Unit 22 – Rules, regulations and officiating (10 credits)

A Level

Examination based qualification over two years.

Component 01: Physical factors affecting performance

Students gain a deeper understanding of key systems in the body and how they react to changes in diet and exercise. They also study the effects of force and motion on the body and how they can be used to our advantage.

There are three topics:

  • Applied anatomy and physiology
  • Exercise physiology
  • Biomechanics.

Component 02: Psychological factors affecting performance

Students study the models and theories that affect learning and performance in physical activities, how different methods of training and feedback work and why their effectiveness differs from person to person. They also explore the psychological factors that affect group dynamics and the effects of leadership and stress.

There are two topics:

  • Skill acquisition
  • Sports psychology.

Component 03: Socio-cultural issues in physical activity and sport

This component focuses on the social and cultural factors that have shaped sports over time, and their influences on physical activity. Students consider the impact of hosting a global sporting event such as the Olympic Games, and the influence of modern technology on both the performer and the spectator of contemporary sport.

There are two topics:

  • Sport and society
  • Contemporary issues in physical activity and sport.

Component 04: Performance in physical education

Students are assessed in the role of either performer or coach in one practical activity. They are required to demonstrate effective performance, the use of tactics or techniques and the ability to observe the rules and conventions under applied conditions.

Students are also assessed in the Evaluation and Analysis of Performance for Improvement (EAPI). They observe a live or recorded performance by a peer and provide an oral analysis and critical evaluation of their peer’s performance.