Physical Education and Sports Coaching

Study options


BSc (Hons)

Key facts

UCAS code:
Stoke-on-Trent campus
Study option:
3 Years
Start date:
25 September 2023

Hands-on experience

Including placements with schools and sports clubs

Progress onto PE teacher training

We offer early applications for PGCE courses

Practically applied course

Develop your skills from the start and throughout

Whether you aspire to become a PE teacher or a sports coach, we’ve got the connections and expertise to help you achieve your ambitions.

We collaborate with schools, colleges and sports organisations to give our students real-life experience of coaching and PE delivery. Our links with professional clubs, like Stoke City and Port Vale, along with county sports partnerships and other local sports clubs provide a range of opportunities for students to get real world experience.

Our Physical Education and Sports Coaching degree will give you lots of opportunities to develop skills for a range of careers. These include sports development, health and fitness, and coaching at elite sport or grassroots level.

And if you want to work in schools, you’ll be in a prime position to apply for our PGCE in secondary PE and leave Staffordshire University as a qualified teacher.

Through our Sports Academy, you can also volunteer to help run physical activity sessions for international athletes, schoolchildren and the wider sporting community.

In the first year of the course, you’ll explore practical modules that cover coaching across youth, performance and disability sports. You’ll also be introduced to elements of sport science like sport psychology, biomechanics and physiology that support optimising performance.

There will be the chance to pick a sport you’re interested in for your coaching skills. It could be football, rugby, basketball, volleyball, tennis, dance, swimming or another sporting pursuit. You’ll also develop a wider skillset as the degree will prepare you to deliver the full range of the PE national curriculum.

We use digital technology to help improve coaching skills, including using GPS vests, heart rate monitors and performance analysis software. These replicate professional environments to best prepare you for becoming an effective coach and teacher.

You’ll also use our specialist sports laboratories and outdoor sports facilities, including the national football centre at St George’s Park.

And, you will benefit from our links with primary, secondary and special schools across the region. We host their pupils on campus for coaching sessions. You will also go into community settings, work with organisations like Youth Sport Trust and get to do extended placements.

Modules include an industry project, where you could be running a sports event such as women and girls’ sports festivals.

We have innovative assessments throughout the course too, including podcasts and vlogs.

Our staff bring extensive coaching and research expertise to the degree. You’ll have the opportunity to assist with this wider research, as well as produce your own independent research project in your final year. Some students go on to present their research at conferences and win prizes for their work. We also have Visiting Teaching Fellows to support your studies. These are professionals working in PE, elite swimming and footballs club who offer valuable insight of contemporary practices.

On successful completion of study, we will issue the following award: BSc (Hons) Physical Education and Sports Coaching

Work placements

We work with local, regional and national employers – and universities overseas - to offer students placement opportunities. Students themselves select what they want to do.

Many of the placements involve delivering sports activities for young people. It could be in a school or college, an alternative education setting or in a sports venue such as a boxing gym. Some students have also competed performance analysis internships at professional clubs.

Course content

Throughout the course, emphasis will be placed on developing practical skills and theoretical knowledge to advance teaching pedagogy and enhance your coaching practice. Investigating the scientific and social aspects of sport will allow for the creation of your own teaching and coaching philosophy, underpinned by research and theoretical principles.

A wide range of digital and online technologies will be utilised throughout modules to enhance your learning experience and allow you to truly immerse yourself within the course.

The first year of the course will allow you to focus on your personal areas of interests from within the national curriculum, including a range of individual and team sports. Dance, gymnastics and outdoor adventure activities provide an excellent opportunity to refine skills in more diverse areas of the curriculum.

The second year of your studies will focus on underpinning practical skill and knowledge with theoretical understanding. Research will be examined to decipher the current physical education landscape and the role teachers and coaches play in both primary and secondary schools.

One specific module has a placement opportunity to gain experience within a work place (typically school-based environments). This is an ideal opportunity to gain experience towards applying for a Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE), or to help assess what area of the curriculum you may want to teach or coach in. All students will be provided with the opportunity to complete a DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) check; this is compulsory for all work experience opportunities.

Your final year will provide you with the opportunity to develop your own research project in your area of interest, to take part in Continuing Professional Development (CPD) programmes and to investigate innovative and emerging teaching practices. 

Mike Phelan and Sensible Soccer deliver masterclass for our Sports students

Mike Phelan and Sensible Soccer deliver masterclass for our Sports students


Our Physical Education and Sports Coaching students were treated to a masterclass by Mike Phelan and David Horrocks of Sensible Soccer.

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The tables provide an indicative list of the modules that make up the course for the current academic year. Each module is worth a specified number of credits. Our teaching is informed by research, and modules change periodically to reflect developments in the discipline. We aim to ensure that all modules run as scheduled. If for any reason a module cannot be run we will advise you as soon as possible and will provide guidance on selecting an appropriate alternative module.

Year 3 compulsory modules
Year 3 compulsory modules
There are no compulsory modules for this year.
Show 5 optional modules

Entry requirements

112-120 UCAS Tariff points

  • GCE A Levels - grades BBC or equivalent
  • Pearson BTEC National Extended Diploma - grade DMM
  • Access to HE Diploma - Pass Access with a minimum of 80 UCAS tariff points. Applicants to Staffs who are taking the Access to HE Diploma receive a reduced tariff point offer as part of our access and participation plan activity
  • UAL Level 3 Extended Diploma - grade of Merit overall
  • OCR Cambridge Technical Extended Diploma - grade DMM
  • T Levels - Eligible T Level applications will be asked to achieve a minimum overall grade of P (A*-C) or Higher Pass as a condition of offer

We understand that you might have experienced a challenging run up to higher education and may have not met the entry requirements as listed. If this is the case don’t worry, contact us and our team of expert advisors can guide you through the next stages of application, or help you find the perfect course for your needs.

From Staffs to Spurs - Sports Coaching graduate on his route to becoming a Performance Analyst

From Staffs to Spurs - Sports Coaching graduate on his route to becoming a Performance Analyst


Hear how Liam transitioned from studying to working life, eventually leading to his job at Tottenham Hotspur Football Club as a Performance Analyst.

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For equivalent entry requirements in your home country, please see the information on our country pages.

Choose your country

Check our entry and English language requirements for your country.


Many of our graduates go on to work in youth sport, professional football coaching, athletics development, and the health and fitness field. They also work with organisations such as the Football Association and the English Institute of Sport.

Many of them train to become teachers in schools and colleges. They often take one of our PGCEs at Staffordshire University, which either focus on secondary PE or primary teaching with a PE specialism.

Some graduates also secure specialist roles abroad.

All students have access to Career Connect, our dedicated careers team.

BSc (Hons) Physical Education and Youth Sport Coaching - Aimee Woosnam

BSc (Hons) Physical Education and Youth Sport Coaching - Aimee Woosnam


Aimee talks about why she chose to study at Staffordshire University, and what aspect she enjoys the most.

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Teaching and assessment


You will be taught through a combination of lectures, workshops, small group and practical sessions. Small group sessions enable you to discuss and develop your understanding of topics covered in lectures in smaller groups of around 10-12 students. In addition, you will have timetabled meetings with your personal tutor at least twice a year. You will be taught in first-class learning spaces throughout your course. 


A variety of assessment methods are used throughout the course including coursework, practical coaching, examinations, podcasts and presentations. For further information on yearly breakdown of assessments please see the 'Assessment breakdown' tab. 

Learning support

In addition to the excellent support you will receive from your course teaching team, our central Academic Skills team provides group and one-to-one help to support your learning in a number of areas. These include study skills (including reading, note-taking and presentation skills); written English (including punctuation and grammatical accuracy); academic writing (including how to reference); research skills; critical thinking and understanding arguments; and revision, assessment and examination skills (including time management).

Additional support

Our Student Inclusion Services support students with additional needs such as sensory impairment, or learning difficulties such as dyslexia.


You will normally receive feedback on coursework assessments within 20 working days following the date of submission. Examination feedback may take a variety of formats. However, as a minimum, generic feedback will be made available to all students who take written examinations.

Courtney Pitts - BSc (Hons) Physical Education and Youth Sport Coaching

Courtney Pitts - BSc (Hons) Physical Education and Youth Sport Coaching


BSc (Hons) PE and Youth Sport Coaching student Courtney explains why he chose his course, and how he's been offered a job in his chosen industry before he's even graduated.

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Your study time will consist of class contact hours, self-directed learning, assessment and placements where appropriate. Your actual contact hours will depend on the subject area, on the optional modules you select and professional body requirements. 

Independent learning

When not attending lectures, seminars, laboratory or other timetabled sessions, you will be expected to continue learning independently through self-study. Typically, this will involve utilising a range of digital resources including our virtual learning environment; reading journals, articles and books; working on individual and group projects; undertaking research in the library; preparing coursework assignments and presentations, and preparing for examinations.

Your independent learning will be supported by a range of excellent facilities. These include the library, open access computer facilities, informal learning zones, a range of laboratories and specialist teaching areas.


You will be taught by a teaching team whose expertise and knowledge are closely matched to the content of the modules on the course. The team includes senior academics and professional practitioners with industry experience.

Postgraduate research students who have undertaken teaching training may also contribute to the teaching of seminars under the supervision of the module leader.

Dr Alexander Blackett

Interim Head Of Department - S&E

Researcher in sport coaching, I consult with international sports organisations and national sports governing bodies to improve coach education, learning and development provision. I was awarded The Queen's Award for Voluntary Services in 2017.

Alexander's profile

Jack Bullock


Jack is a Lecturer in Sport Coaching and Physical Education as well as an active researcher across the education sector. His main areas of interest are student experiences and teaching and learning pedagogy.

Jack's profile


For the course starting on 25 September 2023 the tuition fees are:

Tuition fees for BSc (Hons)-Full-time
Study option UK / Channel Islands International
Full-time £9,250 per year of study £16,750 per year of study

UK and Channel Island students: This tuition fee is agreed subject to UK government policy and parliamentary regulation. If the UK government passes appropriate legislation, the fee for subsequent years of study may increase in each academic year. But this increase will not exceed the rate of inflation as measured by RPIX**. Any change in fees will apply to both new and continuing students. The University will notify students of any change as early as possible. Further information about fee changes would be posted on the University’s website once this becomes available.

**RPIX is a measure of inflation equivalent to all the items in the Retail Price Index (RPI) excluding mortgage interest payments.

International students: Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of your course, as long as you complete it in the normal time-frame (i.e. no repeat years or breaks in study).

Annabel Ratcliffe - BSc (Hons) Physical Education and Youth Sport Coaching

Annabel Ratcliffe - BSc (Hons) Physical Education and Youth Sport Coaching


Annabel discusses why she chose to do her final dissertation of a subject which was close to her heart - the barriers of exercise for over 18 women, including body image.

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Included in tuition fees
Included in the fees:
  • DBS checks where required for assessed modules. 
  • Loan of subject-related equipment where required for modules.
Not included in tuition fees
Not included in the fees:
  • Text books are available from the library, but some students chose to purchase their own copies.
  • Printing.
  • Travel costs to and from placements. We will have available placements within travel distance from the campus, or within proximity of your address.
  • Clothing suitable for placements and facilities.
  • Any optional field trips.
Accommodation and living costs
Accommodation and living costs

Accommodation and living costs are not included in our fees. 

For more information on accommodation and living costs, please see: Accommodation

Sources of financial support

If you receive funding from Student Finance you may be eligible to apply for additional benefits. Details can be obtained by visiting:

Scholarships and additional funding

If you are talented athlete, coach or official you could qualify for one of our sport scholarship or development schemes through our High Performance Academy.

You may also be eligible for other scholarships and bursaries. You can visit our funding page to find out more and check your eligibility.

Our students

I chose the course because it allows you to go down two different paths – coaching and PE teaching, and when I first started I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do so it was perfect.

The best thing about the course is the variety. It’s not just writing and essays, you actually do a lot of practicals, like swimming and football coaching sessions on the astroturf.

Lauren Morris-Bannister

BSc (Hons) Physical Education and Youth Sport Coaching

The best thing about the course is the experience you get, especially at level 5. You go out and deliver into the schools but you do a lot of other subjects as well such as Psychology. I never thought I’d enjoy it or thought it’d link in, but it helps, especially when you’re delivering because it can help you to get an understanding of how students are feeling and it can help you deliver better. 

Ben Dytiche

BSc (Hons) Physical Education and Youth Sport Coaching

After being inspired by my daughter, who graduated in July 2019, I thought “I can do this, I can fulfil my dream” so I spoke to the University and made the leap.

My goal in life was to become a PE teacher. Not only do I want to inspire children through physical activity, but I also want to help them grow and develop as an individual, and to hopefully have an impact on their life that they can take through to adulthood.

The lecturers have always been there if I needed to ask a question, and the support is second to none. They have made my university experience so much more than I could have imagined and have also given me the confidence in myself that I can achieve my dream.

Wendy Ollier

BSc (Hons) Physical Education and Youth Sport Coaching

To anyone considering the course, I’d really recommend it. I was really specialised in PE and I knew I wanted to do that so it seemed the perfect degree for me – but even if you want to do coaching, there’s plenty of CPD opportunities and other external things that you can do. 

Mackenzie Faulkner

BSc (Hons) Physical Education and Youth Sport Coaching

I would 100% recommend this degree – it's completely tailored to being a PE teacher and if you know that’s what you want to do, I’d do it because it’ll give you all the professional development you need – all the coaching stuff you need and the teaching side of it.  

Emily James

BSc (Hons) Physical Education and Youth Sport Coaching


Location Award Study option Start date Apply Link
Stoke-on-Trent campus BSc (Hons) Full-time 25 September 2023 Apply now

Rules and regulations

If you are offered a place at Staffordshire University, your offer will be subject to our rules, regulations and enrolment conditions, which may vary from time to time.

Students of Staffordshire University enter into a contract with us and are bound by these rules and regulations, which are subject to change. For more information, please see: University Policies and Regulations.

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