Level 3 BTEC National Extended Certificate in Sports Coaching (with Football at MGFA Academy)

Course Assessment Method

This programme contains substantial practical elements supported by more theoretic units which allow reflection and application of experience. Seminars, practical sessions and research sessions will develop autonomy and encourage ownership of personal development. You will eventually lead groups both, within the college and externally, in preparation for employment or further training.

Internally assessed units will use formative and summative methods including written reports, presentations, posters/leaflets, video production and practical assessments. Much of the unit content will be delivered in practical sessions using Eastbourne Sports Complex.

Entry Requirements

Applicants must hold 5 GCSE’s between grades 4-9. You must have passed GCSE English or maths at grade 4 to be enrolled on the course. It is advantageous to have passed English and maths.

You will be required to attend an interview for all college courses and we will request a report from your previous school, college and/or employer. Prior experience of coaching or playing in sports teams will be beneficial but not essential as full training and opportunities will be available to all.

What does it Cost?

This course is free if you are 16-18 years of age on August 31 of the calendar year in which you begin your studies. If you are 19+ years of age fees may apply. However help may be available. To see if you can receive any funding call our Student Services Team on 01325 503030.

Course fees are payable to Darlington College. Registration and membership fees may be payable. All course fees are per year.

What if I Need Support

Here at the college we have outstanding support. Our support staff are dedicated to providing you with all the help and guidance you may need throughout your college journey.

You might need help and advice on a wide range of issues such as childcare, counselling and additional learning support. For more information on any aspect of student support contact the Course and Information Team, who will direct your call to the appropriate member of the college support team, call: 01325 503030.

What's Involved

This dynamic study programme provides students with the opportunity to acquire substantial knowledge and vocational expertise for the coaching industry. It is composed of a main qualification: Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Sports Coaching. The main qualification will include the following mandatory units: Careers in the Sport and Active Leisure Industry; Health, Wellbeing and Sport and Developing Coaching Skills. These units are delivered alongside a range of industry-recognised awards and coaching qualifications from the National Governing Bodies (NGB’s) pertinent to the profession. These could include FA Referee Course, FA Level 1 and Level 2 in Coaching Football.

Practical units will assess the traits required for coaching and leadership across a range of sports. You will also be coached by FA and UEFA qualified coaches giving you the best chance to advance your skills in football. Theoretical units will provide the scientific and technical knowledge required to succeed in coaching and leadership, whilst enabling students to progress to Higher Education or Industry.

The Sport Coaching and Development Industry can be an extremely rewarding environment to work in. Career opportunities are diverse; ranging from working in sport coaching clubs, sporting academies and fitness centres. Some careers will require further study at Higher Education level, for example teaching or centre management. Hence, this programme offers UCAS points which enables progression to Higher Education.

This programme does not require students to be experienced in Sport coaching and development activities upon entry. Full coaching and training will be provided throughout the course. The course does not require you to have played football at a high level but does require you to want to further your skills in this area. A college football policy must be followed and adhered to by each student.

The Martin Gray Football Academy requires the purchase of essential training and matchday sports kit. The cost will be £110 in total and this includes a training bundle and match day uniform. The training bundle consists of shorts, socks, t-shirt and a 3/4 training top. The match day sports kit comes with shorts, socks and a shirt with the student's name and number on the back. Other items are also available to purchase which include a travel tracksuit. These items will be issued on the commencement of the course. For those who qualify there are bursaries available to help pay for the essential training and matchday sports kit. Please contact Darlington College for details


NOTE: Some National Governing Body registration and course fees are not included in the programme, and membership of NGB’s will be mandatory in some instances. This will be encouraged as part of professional practice in the industry. These may vary. See contact below for further information.

Goalkeeper information

As part of the level 2 and 3 sport courses with Football option at MGFA, students can access bespoke goalkeeper coaching. Students will be able train alongside the infield players but then break in to separate goalkeeper specific coaching sessions. This will cover the technical and strategic elements of goalkeeping. Students will have the opportunity to have focussed training which will support them develop their skills and fitness specific to being a goalkeeper.

What's Next

The study programme comprises a substantial degree of practical vocational experience through internal training, external partnerships and work-experience. Students have the opportunity to access a broad range of National Governing Body Qualifications (some at their own cost) throughout the programme. Links with employers and training providers will guide this. As a consequence, many past students have progressed in the industry working with professional bodies such as Middlesbrough Football Club, Darlington College or Further Education and Martin Gray Football Academy.

This course is equivalent in size to one A Level and enables the learner to progress to either the BTEC Level 3 National Diploma in Sports Coaching and Development (equivalent to 2 A-Levels) or the BTEC Level 3 National Extended Diploma in Sports Coaching and Development (equivalent to 3 A-Levels).

Course Information
Qualification Type: BTEC National Extended Certificate in Sports Coaching and Development
Level: Level 3
Awarding Body: BTEC exam entries
Academic Year: 21/22
Start Date: September 2021

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