BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma in Sports Coaching & Development

The Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma in Sports Coaching & Development is a 2-year qualification for post-16 learners, equivalent in size to three A levels.

The level 3 qualification is suitable for students who wish to pursue a career working in the sports industry. The qualification will also enable a learner to progress to higher education or to a US scholarship.

What does this qualification cover?

The content of this qualification has been developed in consultation with employers and professional bodies. This ensures that the content is appropriate and consistent with current industry practice, which enables learners to enter employment directly in sports coaching and development roles. Higher-education institutions have been consulted to ensure that the
qualification allows appropriate progression for those aspiring to higher-level study.


Learners taking this qualification will study seven mandatory units:
• Unit A: Careers in the Sport and Active Leisure Industry
• Unit B: Health, Wellbeing and Sport
• Unit C1: Developing Coaching Skills
• Unit D1: Applied Coaching Skills
• Unit E: Research Project in Sport (Pearson-set)
• Unit 1: Sport Development
• Unit 2: Self-Employment in Sport and Physical Activity.

The mandatory content allows learners to develop their technical skills, supported by underpinning knowledge, and gives learners the opportunity to relate the skills and knowledge to the sports coaching industry. This prepares learners to work independently as coaches and gives them
the skills and expertise to coach at all levels of sports ability for both children and adults.

What could this qualification lead to?

The Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma in Sports Coaching and Development focuses primarily on progression to employment as a coach. The extension, breadth and depth of optional units in this qualification give learners employment opportunities for working with participants of all ages, from children in primary and secondary schools, to adults of all ages. Possible job roles include community coach, sport-specific school coach, sport-specific after-school coach and weekend multi-sports holiday coach. Learners will also have the skills and expertise to work with
beginners up to high-level performers. They will be able to work in the role of club sports coach, progressing to working with elite performers and in sport-development programmes in many capacities.


This qualification gives learners the opportunity to progress to further study in higher education. It will attract UCAS Tariff points and is recognised by higher-education providers as meeting entry requirements for many related degree programmes, such as a BA (Hons) in Sports Coaching and Development and a BA (Hons) in Sports Management.

How do these qualifications provide employability skills?

Throughout the course there are a number of opportunities to give learners practice in developing employability skills. We generally refer to skills in the following three main categories:

• Cognitive and problem-solving skills: using critical thinking, approaching non-routine problems applying creative solutions.
• Interpersonal skills: communicating, working collaboratively, negotiating and influencing, self-presentation.
• Intrapersonal skills: self-management, adaptability and resilience, self-monitoring and development.

How does this qualification provide transferable knowledge and skills for higher education?

This qualification provides transferable knowledge and skills that prepare learners for progression to university. The transferable skills that universities value include the ability to learn independently, to research actively and methodically, to give presentations and to be an active group member. BTEC learners can also benefit from opportunities for in-depth holistic study, where they are able to make connections between different areas of learning. BTEC Nationals provide a vocational context in which learners can develop the skills required for particular degree courses, including teamwork, project work, and presentation and analytical skills.

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