Mr Gavin Ward

Senior Lecturer in Physical Education

Email address: Phone number: 01902 321156 Location: Walsall Faculty: Faculty of Education Health and Wellbeing School/Institute: Institute of Sport & Human Sciences Areas of expertise: Physical Education


Gavin Ward is a Senior Lecturer in Physical Education at the University of Wolverhampton. His research interests lie in Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, particularly within Primary Education.  Prior becoming a University lecturer in 2010, Gavin taught Physical Education across Key Stages 1 to 4 and 6th form for fourteen years at a range of educational institutions, serving contrasting communities both in the UK and abroad. Immediately prior to joining the University of Wolverhampton, Gavin worked as a Partnership Development Manager, based at Idsall School and Sports College in Shifnal, Shropshire. In this post he commenced the strategic and operational creation of the East Shropshire School Sport Partnership and the implementation of the PESSCL and later PESSYP strategies.  Gavin’s initial academic education began with a BA (Hons) in Human Movement Studies at the University of Wales Institute Cardiff. Following this he studied for an MSc. in Adapted Physical Activity through University of Northumbria. This involved studying and researching in Newcastle, Belgium and Berlin. On successful completion of his MSc., Gavin undertook a Post Graduate Certificate in Education in Secondary Physical Education and Humanities through St. Luke’s School of Education, University of Exeter. He commenced his teaching career in Peterborough in 1994.

Research interests

  • Physical Education, particularly at the primary level – In service training
  • Visual methodologies in Research

Membership of professional bodies

Fellow Higher Education Academy

British Educational Research Association

Association for Physical Education

General Teaching Council


PhD by Publication
University of Wolverhampton June 2016

University of Northumbria

MSc. Adapted Physical Activity

University of Wales Institute Cardiff

BA (Hons) Sport and Human Movement Studies Class II Division I


Ward, G. and Quennerstedt, M. (2015) Transactions in Primary Physical Education in the UK: A smorgasbord of looks-like-sport, PhysicalEducation and Sport Pedagogy, i-first article, available at:

Ward, G. and Quennerstedt, M. (2014) Knowing in Primary Physical Education in the UK: Negotiating Movement Culture, Sport Education and Society, i-first article, available at:

Ward, G. (2014) Learning movement culture: mapping the landscape between physical education and school sport, Sport Education and Society, (19) 5, 569-604. doi/abs/10.1080/13573322.2012.690342#.VFef-IF_uSo

Ward, G. (2012) Examining Primary School Physical Education Coordinators' Pedagogical Content Knowledge of Games: Simply Playing At This? Education 3-13, 41(6), 562-585. doi/abs/10.1080/03004279.2011.595424#.VFecdIF_uSo

Ward, G. and Griggs, G. (2011) Principles of Play: a proposed framework towards a holistic overview of games in primary Physical Education, Education 3-13, 39 (5), 499-516. doi/pdf/10.1080/03004279.2010.480945

Griggs, G. and Ward, G. (2012) Physical Education in the UK: disconnections and connections, Curriculum Journal, 23(2), 207-229. doi/abs/10.1080/09585176.2012.678500#.VFedn4F_uSp

Professional Practice Articles

Ward, G. (2011) Using what we’ve got: Teaching games through core tasks and the national attainment for Physical Education, Primary Physical Education Matters, 6(1), iv-v.

Ward, G. (2009) Teaching Invasion Games: A proposal for consistency in the exploration of principles, tactical problems and skills, Physical Education Matters, 4(4), 24-27.

Griggs, G. and Ward, G. (2010) Cogs in the machine: Unheard voices of Primary Link Teachers, Primary Physical Education Matters, 5(1), iii-iv.

Book Chapters

Ward, G. (2012) They can’t catch so what’s the point in teaching them to play a game?  Teaching Games in the Primary School, in Griggs, G. (ed.) Physical Education in the Primary School, London: Routledge

Previous professional experience

Partnership Development Manager, Idsall School and Specialist Sports College, Head Teacher: Mr. P. Bourton Tel.  - 2003 - 2008

Head of Physical Education (CPS+2), Queen Eleanor Community School,   2002 - 2003

Head of Physical Education (CPS+2), King Richard School (Service Children’s Education),  - 1999 2002

Teacher of Physical Education (CPS), Bushfield Community College, - 1995 1999

Extensive experience and a proven track record of successful curriculum leadership at Key Stages 3 and 4.

Strategic local responsibility for a national government strategy; Physical Education, School Sport and Young People (PESSYP).

Operational and financial responsibility for DfES, DCMS and BIG Lottery Funding; £145, 000 per annum.

Extensive experience of team leadership – curriculum teaching teams, School Sport Partnership team, Primary Link Teachers/Physical Education Coordinators.

Further information

Vice chair school governors at Radbrook Primary School, Shrewsbury.