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BTEC Level 3 Extended Certificate in Sports & Exercise Science

This course equivalent to one A-Level and is ideal if you are interested in undertaking a sport or health related career. You will develop a wide range of skills and abilities that will enable you to either progress onto Higher Education or into employment in sports related industries, especially into those requiring a scientific background. This course will suit you if you have an interest in the physiological and psychological approaches to developing groups and individuals across a wide range of activities from grassroots through to those at the top of the sports performance pyramid.


You will be studying a range of sport and health-related topics whilst developing a strong academic approach to these topics. You will discover how to apply theoretical and practical techniques to analyse and improve the sporting performance of both yourself and others, as well as improve general health and fitness. You will learn the ‘Functional Anatomy’ of the human body, then apply appropriate use of both ‘Specialised Fitness Training’ approaches using our highly equipped sports facilities. You will also learn how to analyse training and coaching systems to compare yourself and others with elite performers in order to fine-tune sports skills and techniques. You will explore psychological approaches appertaining sports performance and discover theories and coping methods to support athletes in periods of weakness to improve mental performances.

Alongside the Sport and Exercise Science Extended Certificate, you will also have the option of continuing to enjoy and study two further A-Levels to develop your depth and breadth of knowledge.

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Start date: 08/09/2022

Course code
Level 3
Penwith College
2 years
Extended Certificate


Equivalent to one A Level

50% exam & 50% coursework

Can lead to a variety of careers

Access to outstanding facilities and staff

You will be taught by staff with extensive personal experience and subject specialism in their field who will advance your knowledge and skills. Alongside the classroom, your learning environment will also include our impressive gym, full-sized astroturf and sports hall.

progression and employability

We will encourage you to research topics, gather and synthesise information and present your findings in a clear, coherent way. You will also be encouraged to evaluate situations and performance, recognise strengths and limitations and then recommend strategies for improvement.

Increase sport knowledge

You will discover how to apply theoretical and practical techniques to analyse and improve the sporting performance of yourself and others, as well as improving general health and fitness.


The course is an academic programme that combines theory and some practical sessions to cover Sport and Exercise Sciences core elements of Anatomy, Physiology, Psychology, and Nutrition. You will also learn the appropriate use of both laboratory and field-based testing and training equipment using our highly equipped sports science laboratory and Gyms.

Your course will be split over two years; the first year will be comprised of Functional Anatomy, an externally assessed module and Specialised Fitness Training, an internally assessed module.

The second-year contains Applied Sport and Exercise Psychology, an externally marked module and Coaching for Performance and Fitness, an internally assessed module.


A natural progression from this course is to move on to Higher Education and develop specialist knowledge in areas such as sports therapy, sports nutrition, and sports psychology and teaching. Alternatively, you may wish to move into employment in areas such as personal training, sports technology development, the sports clothing industry, sports development or the leisure industry.


Your achievement in this subject is dependent upon excellent attendance, punctuality and effort. You will learn in a friendly atmosphere, using a variety of assessment methods including:

  • Formal exams
  • Practical assessments
  • Coursework assessments
  • Presentations
  • Time-constrained assessments
  • Homework tasks
  • Reports

Grading throughout the programme is by a wide range of assessment methods including formal exams, assessments, presentations, essays and time-constrained assignments.


You will need four GCSEs at grade 4 or above. This must include English or Maths and a Science.


Throughout the course, you will be required to complete at least 4 hours of independent study time per week. To support you in this you will have access to lecturers via email and will be able to access support materials and resources via our virtual learning environment, Moodle.

For your first day at college you should bring, your sports kit, a pen and a notepad.

You will be expected to wear an appropriate sports kit (when undertaking practical activities), which can be purchased from the college at an additional cost. Purchase is not compulsory, but we would expect one item of Truro & Penwith College kit to be available to wear when representing the college at external events.

There is also a refundable charge for library resources and locker keys.

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