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This course is a linear A Level. If you have a keen interest in both theoretical and practical physical activity and would like to learn more about the sports science that underpins it all, then you will enjoy this course.

Specification: AQA

Paper 1 -  Factors Affecting Performance in Physical Activity and Sport

Section A (35 marks); Applied Anatomy and Physiology

  • Cardio-respiratory system 
  • Neuromuscular system
  • Musculo-skeletal system 
  • Energy systems
  • Section B (35 marks); Skill Acquisition
  • Skills, continuums and transfer of skills 
  • Impact of skill classification 
  • Theories of learning
  • Guidance and feedback
  • Memory models - information processing
  • Section C (35 marks); Sport and Society
  • Pre-industrial sports
  • Industrial and post-industrial sports
  • Post World War II
  • Impact of sport on society and society on sport
  • This is worth 35% of the A Level.

Paper 2 - Factors Affecting Optimal Performance in Physical Activity and Sport

Section A (35 marks); Exercise Physiology and Biomechanics

  • Diet and nutrition
  • Training methods
  • Injury Prevention
  • Biomechanical principles
  • Levers, motion
  • Section B (35 marks); Sport Psychology
  • Personality and attitudes
  • Arousal, anxiety, aggression
  • Motivation
  • Social facilitation
  • Group dynamics
  • Goal setting
  • Attribution theory
  • Confidence
  • Leadership
  • Stress Management

Section C (35 marks); Sport and Society and Technology in Sport

  • Physical activity and sport
  • Elite performers
  • Ethics in sport (Violence in sport, drugs, the law)
  • Commercialisation
  • The role of technology

This is worth 35% of the A Level.

Non-exam Assessment; Practical Performance in Physical Activity and Sport

Component 4 - Performance within Physical Education

Learners will be required to undertake two parts within this component.

Performance/coaching in the full sided version of one sport or activity from the approved list (45 marks).

The evaluation and analysis of performance for improvement of a performer in a sport from the approved list (45 marks)

This is worth 30% of the A Level.

Both parts will be assessed internally, with students providing extensive video footage of their performance/sessions and externally moderated.

This is worth 30% of the A Level


A GCSE in PE is not a pre-requisite for the course.  However, if you did take it, then a minimum of a grade 5 would normally be expected. Without a GCSE PE students would require a minimum grade 5 in science. Participating in one sport at a competitive level is essential.


You are expected to participate in your sporting activity at school, district, county or club level to help with improving your skill level, understanding and performance.

For further details, please contact Mr Flannigan, Head of Physical Education

All current plans for sixth form programmes of study at Bishop Stopford School are provisional, dependent on student numbers and government policy.