PGCE Primary

The PGCE Primary Programme is a one year course that prepares students to teach the 5-11 age range (all primary school subjects). The course is offered at Masters level and successful students will be awarded 60 Masters level credits as well as recommended for Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).

The PGCE Primary course is approximately 39 weeks long with 24 of these weeks spent in schools. Students who train for the 5-11 age range will undertake a school placement in two age ranges, i.e. Key Stage 1 and lower Key Stage 2, or upper and lower Key Stage 2.

The PGCE course is taught in partnership with local schools and students will be taught and supported by a team of experienced tutors from the University and teachers in partnership schools. The course has been designed with teachers and students working together to meet the demands that primary teachers face today.

The PGCE course has received outstanding Ofsted results and has been well evaluated by students over the years. Employment rates are high with many trainees gaining employment in local partner schools.

PGCE Primary: Indicative Course Content

Professional Studies

This module aims to develop student teachers’ critical and rigorous understanding of the principles which underpin primary education. It will develop student teachers’ knowledge and understanding of the nature of the primary curriculum and children’s developmental needs.  It will introduce and critique educational research methodology, analysis and ethics. It will advance their abilities to critically apply such knowledge and understanding in a professional context through lesson planning, teaching, assessment and behaviour management and critical reflection on these.

A particular focus will be on issues of inclusion, equality and diversity and the module will develop student teachers’ abilities to be able to apply their knowledge and understanding of such issues in the classroom. The module aims to enable student teachers to begin to develop their own personal educational philosophies, so that they can apply these in the classroom and articulate them to other professionals.

Core Curriculum Studies

The Core Curriculum module develops student teachers’ enthusiasm for and enjoyment of English, Mathematics and Science. Through separate subject strands this course will develop student teacher subject, curriculum and pedagogical knowledge in each subject. It will equip student teachers to take a critical and reflective view of each subject’s curriculum and associated learning and teaching methodologies. Student teachers will begin to develop a critical understanding of the distinctive features of each subject area and the research concerning children’s learning in that subject. By linking their learning to their school experience, it aims to promote the necessary competencies and understanding student teachers need to plan, teach and assess the core curriculum well.

Foundation Curriculum Studies (e.g. History, PE, ICT, MFL etc.)

This module aims to develop student teachers’ critical understanding of and enthusiasm for the primary curriculum and associated pedagogies. Students will develop a systematic knowledge and understanding of key curriculum and framework documents and a critical awareness of current issues and debates surrounding the primary curriculum.
The module will support students in analysing and reflecting critically on their previous experience, attitudes and assumptions about the curriculum. It will consider the distinctive challenges, concerns or pedagogy associated with particular curriculum subjects and also common issues, e.g. the development of creativity. It will prepare students to plan, teach and assess effectively the foundation subjects and to develop cross-curricular approaches to teaching and learning.

School Experience

A typical pattern of school experience might be:

  • Autumn term - Eight week paired school experience (School A)
  • Spring term – Enhanced placements. Three two-week placements focusing on the teaching of maths, English or teaching pupils with  Special Educational Needs. These are group placements in schools with particular strengths in these areas.
  • Summer term - Ten week school experience (School B).

Why this Course?

  • Extensive practical teaching experience
  • Valuable support from experienced mentor teachers and link tutors
  • Varied and effective models of teaching and learning, working both on an individual basis and in small groups
  • Acquisition of a range of communication, interpersonal and problem-solving skills that will be invaluable in a teaching career and beyond

For entry requirements and information about applications please see ‘How to apply’ page.