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A-Level Physical Education

Awarding Body

Course Code

Head of Department


AQA 7582

Kat McGonigle


Why study this course?

A-Level PE is an all-encompassing subject that links together many areas of study whilst focusing on sport. It has biology, physics, psychology and sociology all embedded within the course making it an rounded subject. All these areas are linked to sport - how our body functions in relation to sport and physical activity, which enables students to really understand how and why our body does what it does in everyday life.

This is perfect for those who really engage with physical activity because they learn and understand better as they can really relate what they are learning to their sports and also just basic everyday tasks.

A-Level PE is so broad in its topics that it can lead to many career options. Although those most notably related to PE would be: Physio, Sports Therapist, PE Teacher, Sports Scientist, Sports Medicine, Sports Technology, Material Sciences, Sports Marketing, Sports Business Management and much more.

Please note A Level PE is now widely regarded as a science at the vast majority of universities. 

What level of prior knowledge, attainment and skills are required?

We are looking for students who have ideally done GCSE PE but it is not a necessity as all students will have done sciences at GCSE. As a minimum we ask for a Grade 4/5 in a Science, and a Level 5 in GCSE PE if it has been taken. Students also need to have a main sport that they play outside of school time and compete regularly in.

A-Level PE would suit aspiring sports students and scientists. It would combine well with Psychology, Sociology, Biology, Physics, Maths – however it can work well with any combination of subjects.

What does the course cover and how is it structured?

The course runs across two years and covers the topics of:

  • Biomechanics
  • Exercise Physiology
  • Sociology of Sport
  • Sport Psychology
  • Applied Anatomy and Physiology
  • Information Processing
  • Technology in sport
  • Skill Acquisition

All these areas are studied and then examined in two papers at the end of year 2 making up 70% of the final grade. There is also a practical element and coursework element, which makes up 30% of the final grade.

How is the course assessed?

Two 2 hour papers worth 35% each

Coursework and practical worth 30%

Practical is one sport all shown in video evidence

Coursework is analysis of your sport – analysing weaknesses in depth and improving them

How can families help?

Filming practical footage and assisting with compiling that evidence

Read through coursework

Generally encourage consolidation of knowledge continually – very important with a two year course

There some excellent bodyworks exhibitions that run in London – we try to take students on a school trip, if it fits in school time.