St John Bosco Biology (3439)

PGCE with QTS full time

Accredited body
Liverpool Hope University
Financial support
Bursaries and student finance are available if you’re eligible

A postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE) with qualified teacher status (QTS) will allow you to teach in state schools in England and may allow you to teach in other parts of the UK.

It may also allow you to teach overseas, though you should always check what qualifications are needed in the country you’d like to teach in.

Many PGCE courses include credits that count toward a Master’s degree.

Age range
11 to 16
Course length
1 year
Date you can apply from
12 October 2021
Date course starts
September 2022


About the course


This course aims to produce outstanding teachers whose enthusiasm for Biology inspires pupils in their study of the subject.

There is a demand for Biology teachers in UK secondary schools. St John Bosco Teacher Development Partnership, in collaboration with Liverpool Hope University, offers the support you need as you embark on a rewarding teaching career.

Across your placements, you will work with teachers of Science from all disciplines to develop your subject knowledge and pedagogy across all three sciences for teaching in key stages 3 and 4. At post 16 level you may work within your own Science specialism.

Your school based mentors work alongside University tutors to focus on individual development needs during your school based practice. In addition, all of our Science based students have the opportunity to participate in Science specific Continuous Professional Development programmes for example, the Royal Society of Chemistry and Physics Partners. The purpose of this training opportunity is to up skill all disciplines around aspects of last year’s GCSE examinations which were least well answered by pupils.

School placements will cover the 11-16 age range, along with a KS5 enhancement.

Essential Entry requirements

  • An undergraduate Honours Degree 2:2 or above, incorporating at least 50% in Biology. A subject knowledge enhancement course prior to starting the PGCE may be required (and if you are eligible) in order to ensure you can teach all Sciences.

  • GCSE Grade C/4 or above in English and Mathematics (These can be pending but are required before enrolment).

  • Mainstream secondary school experience is beneficial but not essential. Offers will be subject to a successful interview, as well as a Health Check Statement and an Enhanced Disclosure from the Disclosure and Barring Service (formerly the Criminal Records Bureau CRB)

Degree Requirements: 2:2 or above, or equivalent

GCSE’s: Grade 4 (C) or above in English and Maths, or equivalent qualification

Candidates with pending GCSE’s will be considered

Equivalency tests will be accepted in English or Maths

School placements

Trainees spend three to four days per week in their placement across the first two terms and are there full time in the final term. The rest of the week is comprised of: one day per week at Liverpool Hope University further developing subject knowledge and pedagogy. In addition, there are 12 Masters days across the academic year which are also delivered at Liverpool Hope University.

Initial Professional Development (School) sessions form part of the training delivered at St John Bosco. These sessions are delivered by our wide-ranging specialist practitioners who are experts in their field. As part of the programme, trainees undertake a placement within our network of SEND schools as well as an enrichment week, experiencing other aspects of school life.

Entry requirements

Qualifications needed

An undergraduate degree at class 2:2 or above, or equivalent.

Grade 4 (C) or above in English and maths, or equivalent qualification.

We’ll consider candidates with pending GCSEs.

We’ll consider candidates who need to take a GCSE equivalency test in English or maths.

Candidates to use third party

Personal qualities

Personal Qualities

What are we looking for in a candidate?

We are looking to recruit talented candidates who have the qualities and attributes suited to a career in teaching coupled with the drive and ambition to make it happen.

The sorts of personal qualities we are looking for are:

  • A friendly and approachable nature
  • Good interpersonal skills
  • Organisation and time management
  • Resilience
  • A passion for your subject
  • A positive outlook
  • A creative and innovative approach
  • The ability to reflect on and improve practice
  • Potential leadership capabilities

Other requirements

When attending interview, candidates will be required to bring photo ID along with GCSE certificates (English & Mathematics) and degree certificate if already received. Proof of name change is required if applicable (i.e. if you have married since receiving your certificates). If interviews have to be conducted virtually in response to COVID restrictions, the above will be required as scanned documents or photographs but the actual documents may be required by Liverpool Hope University in order that conditions can be fully met. A condition of any offer requires candidates to undertake a DBS check (formerly CRB) and an Overseas check.

Fees and financial support

The course fees for UK students in 2022 to 2023 are £9,250.

About the training provider

  • Participate in an induction day at the start of the programme, focusing on key elements, aspects of teaching & learning and how to create an effective climate for learning.

  • Assigned a Professional Mentor and school based Subject Mentor who will design a programme to meet your subject training needs.

  • Experience contrasting placements across the academic year. Historically we’ve operated a three placement programme with trainees experiencing two schools. Depending upon potential COVID restrictions, these placements may be adjusted.

  • Undertake a period observing pupils within your “Home” school context. “Orientation” is crucial to long term success allowing you to embed within your school setting and become familiar with rules and routines.

  • Start teaching practice within your department by team teaching, gradually progressing to solo teaching, observed by the class teacher who will provide constructive feedback to aid development. One-to-one tuition and/or small group intervention may feature within your timetable.

  • Move to another school for your contrasting placement between January and April before returning to “Home” school for the summer term. The length of the second placement is dependent on potential COVID restrictions at the time.

  • Be treated as a member of staff and expected to take part in all aspects of school life.

  • Work alongside outstanding practitioners who support professional development.

  • Attend staff meetings.

  • Receive CPD in placement schools that complement your training at University and “on the job”.

  • Experience CPD from Specialist Leaders of Education.

  • Receive opportunities for enhancement throughout the year, including experience in a special school setting.

Interview process

As part of the process, you will be required to:

  • Complete and submit a written task prior to interview

  • Plan, prepare and deliver a short input to a small group of students on a pre-given topic. This may be adapted in light of any COVID restrictions at the time of your interview whereupon you will be expected to either deliver or explain the lesson to the interview panel, outlining what you would expect pupils to achieve as a result of your input

  • Undertake a formal interview with a small panel

  • Complete a timed written task, usually reflecting upon your teaching input or creating a letter to parents on a given issue. Interviews are with a small panel comprising of the Director of Teacher Development Partnership, a subject teacher/Head of Department and a representative from Liverpool Hope University. In some instances, a colleague from one of our Partner schools will attend.

International students

We cannot sponsor visas. You’ll need to get the right visa or status to study in the UK.

You do not need a visa if you already have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme, or if you’re an Irish citizen.

Candidates with qualifications from non-UK institutions may need to provide evidence of comparability by applying for a UK ENIC statement.

Training with disabilities and other needs

St John Bosco is committed to providing an inclusive environment which enables all students to achieve their potential.

If you have a disability, medical condition or specific learning difficulty e.g. dyslexia, you will hopefully indicate this on your UCAS/Application form. This will help us to arrange the most appropriate and suitable support for you in conjunction with Liverpool Hope University.

If you declare a disability on your application form and accept an offer to study with us, we will contact you by email to request more information from you.

Contact this training provider

St John Bosco Arts College
61 Storrington Avenue
L11 9DQ

Support and advice

For support and advice, you can speak to a Get Into Teaching adviser for free. They’re all experienced teachers who can help you to prepare your application, book school experience, and access exclusive teaching events.

You can also call Get Into Teaching free of charge on 0800 389 2500, or speak to an adviser using their online chat service Monday to Friday, 8.30am to 5pm (except public holidays).

Find out about the different ways to train if you do not have a degree, or are already an experienced teacher.

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