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Physical Education degrees in the UK

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Physical Education and School Sport BSc (Hons)

Hartpury University United Kingdom

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Physical Education with Foundation Year BA (Hons)

Liverpool John Moores University (LJMU) United Kingdom

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Sport Psychology, Coaching and Physical Education BSc (Hons)

London Metropolitan University United Kingdom

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Physical Education and Sports Coaching BSc (Hons)

Leeds Trinity University United Kingdom

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Physical Education BA (Hons)

UCFB College of Football Business United Kingdom

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Sport & Physical Education* BA

Liverpool Hope University United Kingdom

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Physical Education BA (Hons)

University of Brighton United Kingdom

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Sport Coaching and Physical Education BA (Hons)

Plymouth Marjon University (St Mark & St John) United Kingdom

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Physical Education BA

University of Wales Trinity Saint David United Kingdom

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Sport, Physical Education and Health BSc (Hons)

Cardiff Metropolitan University United Kingdom

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Physical Education and Sports Coaching BA

York St John University United Kingdom

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Sport Coaching and Physical Education BSc (Hons)

Anglia Ruskin University ARU United Kingdom

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Physical Education with Outdoor Education BA (Hons)

Leeds Beckett University United Kingdom

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Sport and Physical Education BA (Hons)

University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) United Kingdom

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All Bachelors Degrees in Physical Education

Looking for graduate level options? See Masters degrees in Physical Education in the UK

Study a Physical Education degree in the UK in 2024

Physical education is a discipline that covers the teaching and provision of sports and exercise in schools and other education settings. A cross-discipline subject, physical education studies will develop your knowledge and skills in both teaching and education, and sports and coaching. These skills will mean that you are able to pursue a career of your choice, either within education or outside education.

Undergraduate

An undergraduate level degree in physical education will provide you with a foundation of knowledge in the area. You might study modules on the fundamentals of sport coaching, teaching physical education, sport and exercise science, the growth and development of children and adolescents, and physical activity and health.

Your degree will be delivered through a mixture of modes. These will include lectures and seminars, as well as incorporating practical sessions. Depending on your course, you may be presented with the opportunity to take part in a placement year or module. This will give you the chance to apply and develop your skills in a real teaching environment.

Postgraduate

A postgraduate degree in physical education will allow you to build on the knowledge you gained at undergraduate level. You will also be able to further develop your practical skills. Your modules will cover more complex and specialist areas of sport and physical education. These may include the psychology of physical education, contemporary issues in physical education, diversity and social justice within sports, and acquiring movement skills.

Your degree will be delivered through lectures and seminars, as well as practical sessions. It is likely that you will have the chance to take part in a placement, allowing you to gain more advanced and hands-on work experience.

Depending on where you choose to study, you may be able to specialise towards the end of your degree. This specialisation can influence the area in which you choose to work after you have graduated. It can also help you to decide which area you wish to write your research project or dissertation on. Common specialisations include:

  • Physical Education in Secondary Schools
  • Physical Education in Primary Schools
  • Applied Pedagogy
  • Outdoor Adventure Activities
  • Sport, Deviancy and the Law
  • Racism in Sport
  • Sport for International Development and Peace

The accreditation of your degree programme will depend on where you choose to study. It will also be influenced by your level of study. At undergraduate level, you can expect to be awarded a Bachelor of Science (BSc), a Bachelor of Arts (BA), or a Bachelor of Education (BEd). At postgraduate level, you can expect to be awarded a Master of Science (MSc), a Master of Arts (MA), a Master of Education (MEd), or a PGCE (postgraduate certificate in education), or the international equivalent. If you choose to take a postgraduate research degree, you will be awarded a Master of Research (MRes), a Master of Philosophy (MPhil), or a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD).

Depending on your institution, your course may also be accredited by a professional or academic body. For example, if you are awarded a PGCE or QTS, you will graduate as a qualified teacher. Other courses may be accredited by bodies such as the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity (CIMSPA), as well as others.

Generally, an undergraduate degree will take three to four years to complete. Foundation degrees, diplomas and certificates can last up to two years, when studied full-time. A postgraduate degree will normally take one to two years. If your course includes a placement year, this will normally add another year onto your studies.

Some institutions might offer part-time study options. Studying a degree part-time normally means that your course will last anywhere between three and eight years, with some universities offering more flexible study options.

Graduates of a physical education degree will find that there are a wide range of career opportunities available to them. If you choose to work in a role directly related to your degree, jobs could include physical education teacher (primary, secondary, or higher education), physical fitness coach, sports tutor, or talent development officer. If you choose to work in a role not directly related to your degree, jobs could include performance analyst, nutritionist, or sports coach.

An undergraduate level degree in physical education will provide you with a foundation of knowledge in the area. You might study modules on the fundamentals of sport coaching, teaching physical education, sport and exercise science, the growth and development of children and adolescents, and physical activity and health.

Your degree will be delivered through a mixture of modes. These will include lectures and seminars, as well as incorporating practical sessions. Depending on your course, you may be presented with the opportunity to take part in a placement year or module. This will give you the chance to apply and develop your skills in a real teaching environment.

Study in the UK

The UK is a popular destination for international students who want to study abroad. With a wide range of universities offering a variety of courses, there are so many opportunities that students might not be able to find elsewhere. Each university will pride itself on offering high quality education from leading teaching professionals. A qualification gained in the UK will be well regarded across the globe, making an education in the UK a great investment in your future. As well as this, there are many highly ranked universities in the UK, around 17 of which are consistently appearing in the top 100 of the QS World University Rankings.

See our detailed guide to studying in the UK for international students.

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