Sport Baccalaureate BTEC
Plymouth College


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Last updated: 18.03.24

Sport Baccalaureate BTEC

This is a complete two year course built around a central qualification of the Pearson BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in Sport and Outdoor Activities (1080) RQF. The BTEC Extended Diploma is a long-standing British qualification and is the equivalent of three full A levels. The Sports Baccalaureate is both a practical and academic qualification with assessment by way of a portfolio, assignment and presentation rather than through examinations. Students should ideally have 5 GCSE passes at C grade or above, including English and Maths but those who do not quite meet this level may still be accepted. During the two years, pupils will cover topics such as:

  • Anatomy and Physiology
  • Fitness Training
  • Personal Skills Development in Outdoor Activities
  • Sporting Injuries
  • Careers in the Sport & Active Leisure Industry
  • Sports Nutrition
  • Applied Leadership & Instructing in Outdoor Activities

There are 15 units of varying size, spread out across the two years.  Each unit will be assessed by 2 to 4 assignments allowing you to pace your workload throughout the two years. Grading is at Pass, Merit or Distinction (equivalent to grades E, C and A at A-level).  However, the BTEC is only the start of the programme, during the two years you could also be undertaking some additional useful qualifications such as the full First Aid at Work Award or Outdoor Activity proficiency awards such as Mountain Bike Leader Award, Climbing Wall Assistant and Paddle Sport Instructor, as well as having the opportunity to complete the Gold Duke of Edinburgh Award.

Upon completion of the course, you will have the same options for further study as traditional A-Level students.  Over 95% of Universities accept UCAS points from BTEC programmes and in fact many universities prefer those who have studied a BTEC, as you are already an independent learner.  Studying the Sports Baccalaureate course does not limit students to a sport-based university course.  We have had past students go on to study areas such as Business and Management, Policing or Advertising, as well as Sports Journalism, Sports Science and Outdoor Leadership.

Plymouth College students who have completed the Sports Baccalaureate have gone on to study at many prestigious universities including those in the Russell Group. The pass rate of the Sports Baccalaureate course has consistently been 100%, with many pupils achieving triple distinction star (D*D*D* - the equivalent of 3 x grade A at A level).  Our outstanding results in 2021 saw 100% of our students passing with 45% achieving the highest possible grade of D*D*D*, and 72% achieving DDD or higher.

University Destinations
Sports RehabilitationUniversity of the West of England
Psychology with CriminologyLoughborough
Physical Activity and HealthBath University
Sports PerformanceBath University
PolicingDe Montfort University
Sports JournalismFalmouth University
Equine StudiesHartpury College
Strength and ConditioningHartpury College 
Business ManagementUniversity of Stirling
Navigation & Maritime SciencePlymouth University
Sport & Exercise ScienceSwansea University
Sports rehabilitationUWE, Bristol