Physical Education – National 5

National 5 Course Overview 

The National 5 Physical Education course enables candidates to develop the skills, knowledge and understanding required to perform effectively in a range of physical activities and enhance their physical wellbeing. PE experiences encourage candidates to develop an understanding of the benefits of participation in physical activities to their mental, emotional, social, and physical wellbeing

Course Aims

  • Develop the ability to safely perform a comprehensive range of movement and performance skills
  • Understand factors that impact on personal performance in physical activities
  • Build capacity to perform effectively 
  • Develop approaches to enhance personal performance
  • Monitor, record and evaluate performance development


The PE National 5 course is assessed through two components; performance and portfolio. 

Performance (60 marks)

Pupils choose two activities to be assessed in. Both ‘one-off performance’ assessments are marked out of 30. The performance aspect of the course assesses the candidate’s ability to demonstrate:

  • A repertoire of skills — including complex skills
  • Control and fluency 
  • Effective decision-making
  • Using and applying straightforward composition, tactics or roles safely and effectively 
  • Conforming to rules, regulations and etiquette 
  • Controlling emotions 

Portfolio (60 marks)

The portfolio is the written element of the course and accounts for half of the overall mark. This work focuses primarily on the factors that impact on performance – physical, mental, emotional and social. The portfolio covers:

  • Processes of carrying out data collection methods
  • Evaluating information 
  • Developing performance through training approaches, target-setting, decision-making and adapting and modifying training processes
  • Monitoring performance development
  • Evaluating the effectiveness of training
  • Reviewing programs 
  • Planning ahead/future development

Pupil Choice 

Where possible, pupils are provided with personalisation and choice. Pupils can choose from a wide variety of activities for performance assessment and will work through training blocks in five of the following activities: badminton, basketball, dance, football, gymnastics, handball, netball, rugby, swimming and volleyball.