Skip to main content
Available through Clearing

About the course

Our sport coaching and physical education top-up course is the ideal way to build upon your foundation or HND qualification. You’ll earn a full honours degree in just one year, and be well prepared to move into either a PGCE, Teach First or School Direct programme.

The course combines theory, research and practical skills to ensure graduates adopt innovative approaches to teaching and coaching. You’ll learn to critically analyse current practices and develop an evidence-based approach to workplace tasks.

The course is split into five modules. Core modules include ‘Games Based Coaching’, ‘Teaching Physical Education In Schools’ and a final dissertation project. You’ll also pick two optional modules, refining your knowledge and building specialisms in areas that are best suited to your career ambitions.

You’ll learn contemporary coaching and physical education techniques including physical literacy and games based coaching. This work will then be put into practice outside of the classroom, where you will have the opportunity to deliver PE sessions to local primary school children. Planning, delivering and evaluating these PE lessons form a part of your unit assessment, and provide invaluable experience for your CV.

This course offers additional qualifications for you to obtain with your degree.
Additional qualification
This course has access to Solent's specialist facilities.
Specialist facilities
After successfully completing your studies, there's an opportunity to continue your studies at Solent.
Further studies
If you have an appropriate Level 5 qualification, you can top it up to a degree in just a year.
Top-up option

Plan, deliver and evaluate your own physical education programmes. Improve your employability and earn valuable experience for your CV.

What does this course lead to?

This one-year top-up course is the ideal springboard for careers in teaching and youth sport. Graduates will be well prepared to progress onto a PGCE, School Direct or Teach First programme.

Those who aren’t pursuing a career in teaching can make an impact in a range of other careers. These include sport coaching, leisure management, and graduate level roles across the wider leisure and service industry.

Who is this course for?

Solent’s sport coaching and physical education top-up is open to students with a foundation degree, Higher National Diploma (HND) or equivalent qualification in a sports-related discipline. Applicants will be interviewed to discuss the suitability of their dissertation proposal and research topic.

Facts and figures

Fees icon

Fees and costs

Tuition fees

The tuition fees for the 2021/22 academic year are:
UK, EU and Channel Island full-time fees: £9,250 per year
International full-time fees: £13,800 per year

Following the UK government's confirmation that EU students will no longer be eligible for home fee status benefits, we've made the decision to keep EU tuition fees the same as UK tuition fees for 2021 entry.

For further information, please visit our tuition fees page.

Other costs

While most course costs are covered by your tuition fees, some essential resources and optional extras may need to be paid for separately. These additional costs are listed below. For advice on budgeting and managing your money, please contact

The 2021/22 other costs are not yet available. For guidance, previous other costs have been:

Compulsory costs:

  • Students are required to undertake DBS criminal records checks as part of their enrolment. This is compulsory and is payable by the student at a cost of £55. The DBS check is organised by the University.
  • Students must purchase a Solent sports kit. As a package, this will cost approximately £105. 

Optional costs:
Optional discounted professional body endorsement (NGB): Prices vary, please click here to view our courses.

Bursaries and scholarships

Solent University offers a range of bursaries and scholarships that provide financial assistance or waive fees for tuition or accommodation. Each bursary or scholarship has specific eligibility criteria. Check out our bursaries and scholarships pages to find out more.

Graduation costs

For graduates in 2020, there is no charge to attend graduation, but you will be required to pay for the rental of your academic gown (approximately £45 per graduate, depending on your award). You may also wish to purchase official photography packages, which range in price from £15 to £200+. Graduation is not compulsory, so if you prefer to have your award sent to you, there is no cost. Extra guest tickets will go on sale after results publication and will be sold on a first-come-first-served basis. The cost per ticket was £15 in 2019, but this fee is subject to change for future years. Please note, we do not guarantee there will be any extra tickets available to purchase.
Key entry requirements icon

Key entry requirements

Relevant HND/foundation degree pass with merit overall (55 per cent average)

  • A foundation degree, Higher National Diploma (HND) or equivalent (240 credits) in a sport related subject
  • Grade 4 or above in GCSE English and mathematics or equivalent.
  • Applicants will be interviewed to discuss the suitability of their dissertation proposal and research topic.
  • If you are applying from outside the UK, find information about entry requirements, visas and agents for your country here.
  • For further information about UK, EU and international qualifications, please refer to our course entry requirement statement.

English language requirements

Applicants who do not have English as their first language will be required to demonstrate an approved level of proficiency in the use of the English language. The agreed minimum requirements for this course are:

  • IELTS minimum 6.0 overall with a minimum of 5.5 in each individual component
  • TOEFL IBT minimum 80 with a minimum of 20 in each individual component
  • Duolingo English Language Test - 100 overall with minimum of 90 in each component
  • or equivalent.

Qualifications are checked before enrolment, and international students must bring their original certificates or certified copies when coming to study at the University.

Pre-Sessional English programme

The University also offers a pre-sessional English programme for international students who wish to improve their level of English before starting a degree course.

Got a question about this course?

Contact our Solent team:

If you are a UK, EU or EEA applicant please contact 023 8201 5066 If you are an international applicant please contact 023 8201 5066

How to apply

Any student applying for the first year of a full-time/sandwich undergraduate course must apply through UCAS (University and Colleges Admissions Service). This includes mature, overseas and EU students.

Nearly all schools and colleges offer their students the facility of applying electronically through the UCAS website using 'Apply'; it may also be used by those applying independently in the UK and overseas. This facility and all course information can be found on the UCAS website:

Your application should reach UCAS by 15 January if you hope to enter a course the following autumn. Early application is advised for the most popular subject areas. Late applications may be made until the end of June. The UCAS Code for the University is S30, code name SOLNT.

Please click the links below to apply through UCAS:

Mode of study
Full-time 1 year Apply
How to apply

What you'll study

Year one

Core modules
  • Games Based Coaching
    This module aims to introduce the concepts and ideas around the contemporary practice of games based coaching and equips you with a broad basis of theoretical knowledge and practical understanding needed within the modern coaching landscape.
  • Teaching Physical Education in Schools
    This module discusses key issues in teaching physical education including the core values and the place of Physical education in the curriculum. The module will also support you to apply theory in the understanding, critical analysis and evaluation of professional practice.
  • Dissertation
    Through this module you will synthesise knowledge from other modules to support the development of a research project that is relevant to your degree programme.


Students select two of the following:

  • Global Sport Issues
    This module is designed to enhance and develop understanding of the socio-cultural significance of sport through the concept of Globalisation.
  • Outdoor Adventurous Activities
    This module aims to provide you with knowledge and understanding of outdoor adventurous activities from an educationalist perspective. You will consider the foundations and philosophy of adventure education and its impact on adventure education provision today.
  • Physical Literacy
    This module will build on your existing knowledge and further develop your knowledge and understanding of physical literacy. It also addresses the developmental need in expertise to facilitate the philosophy of physical literacy and allow for the recognition of physical movement patterns across the life course.

Please note: Not all optional modules are guaranteed to run each year.


Web-based learning

Solent's virtual learning environment provides quick online access to assignments, lecture notes, suggested reading and other course information.

The Student Hub

The Student Hub is a central space where you can access all of the information and support you need during your time at University.

Professional and experienced staff can help resolve any query, and if they cannot answer the question themselves they will find the person who can.

Career support

Meet the course team

Dr Philippa Velija academic profile Philippa Velija Programme Group Leader View profile
Dominic Cunliffe academic profile Dominic Cunliffe Course Leader View profile
Dr Catherine Phipps academic profile Catherine Phipps Course Leader View profile
Lisa Binney academic profile Lisa Binney Senior Lecturer View profile
Matthew Fleet academic profile Matthew Fleet Senior Lecturer View profile
William Lawless academic profile William Lawless Lecturer View profile
William Zoppellini academic profile William Zoppellini Lecturer View profile

The university cannot guarantee any particular members of staff will teach specific aspects of the course in the future, but will endeavour to ensure the teaching team maintains their balance of experience and qualifications.


Solent University is home to a range of sporting facilities and gyms. Students on this course will use the Solent Sports Complex to plan, deliver and evaluate their coaching and PE work.

You will also have access to our 24-hour library, comfortable study spaces, large computer resource centres and a comprehensive suite of academic and personal support services.

Learn from academics and practitioners who hold a wide range of experience in education, coaching and sport development.

Your future

This one-year top-up course is the ideal springboard for careers in teaching and youth sport. Graduates will be well prepared to progress onto a PGCE, School Direct or Teach First programme:

  • Sport development
  • Teaching
  • Sports coaching
  • Sports administration
  • Sports centre management
  • Leisure management
  • Entrepreneurship within the sports and education sector

Industry links

The course has been designed following close consultation with representatives from both the sports industry and the education sector, ensuring it remains current and relevant in contemporary sport and physical education.

Other relevant partnerships include our network of local schools (who provide coaching and physical education opportunities) and EduMove, a local business who provides physical education support to schools and colleges.

Get ready to find your place

You can still experience life at Solent at a virtual open day! Hear from course tutors, take virtual campus and accommodation tours, and chat to us live.

Register for a virtual open day