Review of GCSE, AS and A level physical education activity lists

Following a review of the activities that can count towards a GCSE or A-level in PE, the government has published an updated list.

Ten sports have been added whilst some sports have had some additional disciplines included such as cross country running and BMX racing.

The extended list of activities in which students can be assessed as part of their GCSE or A-level PE qualifications is available here.

Matt Rhodes, AoC Sport Policy Manager said: “It’s really positive that the extended list will open up PE qualifications to more young people whose sport may not have previously been recognised on the list.

“In the next 12 months it is crucial that awarding bodies work with colleges to make sure sport staff are supported to ensure valid and reliable assessment in some of the more niche activities. Colleges may also need additional funding to ensure they can provide equal access to assessment in all the activities, especially those that require specialist equipment or facilities such as ice hockey or sailing.”

The list of activities, which will be included in all awarding body specifications for teaching in September 2020, was published in response to public consultation in December 2018.

AoC Sport consulted with member colleges who identified cross country, futsal, figure skating and martial arts as priority activities to add. Unfortunately, martial arts is not recognised as it does not meet criterion five which states it must be possible for the level of performance in activities to be realistically assessed by PE practitioners.

It goes on to say that martial art activities were found to have too many variations which would make it too difficult for teachers and moderators to reliably assess

Students can now take team sports including acrobatic gymnastics, futsal, ice hockey, inline roller hockey, sailing, sculling and water polo. Individual activities can now involve windsurfing, sailing, BMX racing, cross country and long distance running and figure skating, whilst at A level, students can also compete in a triathlon.

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