1st4sport Level 3 NVQ Diploma in Sports Development

Qualification code

Vocational qualifications are either work-related qualifications designed to enable students to gain the skills required to perform a particular job, or qualifications that may be taken as part of a wider study programme or an apprenticeship.

Schools and colleges may offer qualifications that are not included in the DfE performance tables, if approved for teaching to 16-19 year olds by the Secretary of State for Education in England under Section 96, where this is in the best interests of individual students.

The qualification is aimed at students who are already employed or in a long term work placement as an Assistant Sports Development Officer, Sports Development Officer, or relevant associated role. They might be new members of staff who require an induction into the job role, or existing members of staff who need further training and development. Students must have the opportunity to demonstrate competence in the workplace over time, therefore it is not suitable for students in full-time education, but may be delivered through a school or college engaging with local employers.


This qualification is awarded on a Pass/Fail basis. All mandatory units and four optional units must be passed for a learner to be awarded the qualification.


This qualification is internally assessed in its entirety. 

Internal quality assurance is required for all centres, and external quality assurance is conducted at regular intervals by subject-specific external quality assurers deployed by 1st4sport Qualifications.

Further information

There are a number of key considerations for HEPs when reviewing vocational qualifications that are not listed on the DfE 16-19 performance tables for England:

  • Some of these qualifications are occupational, and may not be designed specifically for progression to HE.
  • Applicants holding this qualification may be school or college leavers, however, some may be more mature students who are likely to have other relevant experience alongside the qualification.
  • These qualifications may have been taken as part of a wider study programme or an apprenticeship.
  • If they are presented for admission to HE it is likely to be in conjunction with other qualifications.

This qualification would prepare a learner for admission onto a related degree programme in sports development. Students will learn key knowledge and skills to support their development into this industry area. This qualification is normally taken as part of an apprenticeship and has been available for a number of years and universities can expect applicants from 2017.


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