General Capabilities

The general capabilities encompass the knowledge, skills, behaviours and dispositions that will assist students to live and work successfully in the 21st century. Teachers may find opportunities to incorporate the capabilities into the teaching and learning program for Health and Physical Education. The general capabilities are not assessed unless they are identified within the core content.


The Western Australian Curriculum: Health and Physical Education assists in the development of literacy by introducing specific terminology used in health and physical activity contexts. Students understand the language used to describe health status, products, information and services. They also develop skills that empower them to be critical consumers who are able to access, interpret, analyse, challenge and evaluate the ever-expanding and changing knowledge base and influences in the fields of health and physical education. In physical activity settings, as performers and spectators, students develop an understanding of the language of movement and movement sciences. This is essential in analysing their own and others' movement performances.

Students also learn to comprehend and compose texts related to Health and Physical Education. This includes learning to communicate effectively for a variety of purposes to different audiences; express their own ideas and opinions; evaluate the viewpoints of others; and express their emotions appropriately in a range of social and physical activity contexts.


The Western Australian Curriculum: Health and Physical Education provides students with opportunities to recognise the mathematics that exist in Health and Physical Education learning experiences. As they engage with Health and Physical Education, students see the importance of numeracy; select relevant numeracy knowledge and skills; and apply these skills in a range of contexts. Students use calculation, estimation and measurement to collect and make sense of information related to, for example, nutrition, fitness, or various skill performances. Students interpret and analyse health and physical activity information using statistical reasoning, identifying patterns and relationships in data to consider trends, draw conclusions, make predictions and inform health behaviour and practices.

Information and communication technology (ICT) capability

The Western Australian Curriculum: Health and Physical Education enhances ICT learning by helping students to effectively and safely access online health and physical activity information and services to manage their own health and wellbeing. Students further develop their understanding of the role ICT plays in the lives and relationships of children and young people. They explore the nature of ICT and the implications for establishing and managing relationships in the 21st century. Students develop an understanding of ethical online behaviour, including protocols and practices for using ICT for respectful communication. Students use ICT as key tools for communicating, collaborating, creating content, seeking help, accessing information and analysing performance in the Health and Physical Education field.

Critical and creative thinking

The Western Australian Curriculum: Health and Physical Education develops students' ability to think logically, critically and creatively in response to a range of Health and Physical Education issues, ideas and challenges. Students learn how to critically evaluate evidence related to the learning area and the broad range of associated media messages to creatively generate and explore original alternatives and possibilities. In Health and Physical Education, students' critical and creative thinking skills are developed through learning experiences that encourage them to pose questions and seek solutions to health issues by designing appropriate strategies to promote and advocate personal, social and community health and wellbeing. Students also use critical thinking to challenge societal factors that negatively influence their own and others' health and wellbeing.

Personal and social capability

The Western Australian Curriculum: Health and Physical Education is a key contributor to the development of personal and social capability for all students. Working collaboratively with others in movement and non-movement based activities develops students' personal and social skills, as well as an appreciation of their own strengths and abilities, and those of their peers. They develop a range of interpersonal skills, such as communication, negotiation, teamwork and leadership, and an appreciation of diverse perspectives.

The curriculum provides opportunities for students to explore their own identities and develop an understanding of factors that influence and shape who they are. They learn how to recognise, understand, validate and respond appropriately to their own emotions, strengths and values.

Ethical understanding

The Western Australian Curriculum: Health and Physical Education focuses on the importance of treating others with integrity, fairness and compassion, and valuing and respecting diversity and equality for all.

Students examine ethical principles and codes of practice appropriate to different contexts, such as at school, at home, in the community, in relationships, on the sporting field, in the natural environment and when using digital technologies, such as social media. As students explore concepts and consequences of fair play, equitable participation, empathy and respect in relationships, they develop skills to make ethical decisions and understand the consequences of their actions. They also develop the capacity to apply these skills in everyday situations and movement-based contexts.

Intercultural understanding

The Western Australian Curriculum: Health and Physical Education provides opportunities for students to recognise and respect different ways of thinking about personal, family and social health issues. They also learn about different individual, group and intergroup participation in physical activity and health practices. Students learn to appreciate that differences in beliefs and perspectives may affect how some people make food and health choices, or how they are able to participate in physical activities.

Students recognise occasions when tensions between individuals and groups are based on cultural differences, and learn to act in ways that maintain individual and group integrity and that respect the rights of all. They examine stereotypical representations of various social and cultural groups in relation to community health issues and concepts of participation, success and failure in physical activity. In doing so, students gain an understanding of how culture shapes personal and social perspectives and interactions. They also gain an understanding of what is valued, in terms of health and physical activity, within their families, social groups and institutions, and within other cultures in the broader community.

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