Salford City College

Working in partnership with Salford City College

1st4sport Qualifications provides award-winning college with a qualification to help its learners stand out from the crowd.

Recognised centre

Salford City College is a further education college that offers a range of vocational, professional and academic courses. Its mission is to ‘inspire and empower people to create and take opportunities to enrich lives through learning’.


Head of Sports Development Phil Arbelo-Dolan was looking for a qualification that he could add to his sports students’ two-year course that would make them more employable and help them stand out more from the competition when applying to universities.

Why 1st4sport Qualifications works for Salford City College

Phil explains why he chose to deliver the 1st4sport Level 1 Award in Coaching Football (QCF): ‘Initially, we found the qualification to be a great addition for just our sports students as it ticked all the boxes we were looking for. The students were completing their Level 3 national diploma, but by adding the Level 1 football award, we were giving them the chance to gain valuable practical experience of coaching, as well as making them more aware of what they needed if they wanted to get into the world of coaching. It then snowballed from there as we found other students wanting to take the qualification because it gave them experience of working with young people. We expanded to offer the qualification to our foundation and childcare groups, and then to students with learning disabilities and difficulties (Ability Counts) who in particular found the qualification beneficial as it really boosted their confidence. We are also putting on girls-only courses as we found a lot of them want to go abroad to America in the summer in-between the two years of their course.’

When it comes to delivering the course, Phil is more than impressed with the supporting materials that help his staff deliver the qualification.

Phil continues: ‘The whole support package you get with the qualification is brilliant. Students often comment on how helpful the portfolio-based format of the Learner Pack is. From a teaching perspective as well, the supporting materials the qualification comes with are very handy as you basically have everything you need to run that course for the rest of the year!’


Since becoming recognised and approved to deliver the 1st4sport Level 1 Award in Coaching Football (QCF), the college, in partnership with Manchester Football Association and Bolton Wanderers FC, has put at least 500 students through the qualification. What’s more, in February 2014, the college won the coveted Association of Colleges (AoC) Beacon Award for Sport in the Curriculum, for being an excellent example of how a college can work with partners to enhance its learners’ employability skills.

‘The 1st4sport Level 1 Award in Coaching Football (QCF) is an excellent addition to any sports-based programme of study as it will give your learners the valuable practical experience they need to get into football coaching. The supporting materials the qualification comes with to help delivery are fantastic! ’

Phil Arbelo-Dolan, Head of Sports Development, Salford City College

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