STAR Teaching School Alliance
Chemistry (3BF5)

PGCE with QTS full time

Accredited body
The University of Hull
Financial support
Scholarship, bursary or student finance 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.

Course length
1 year
Date you can apply from
8 October 2019
Date course starts
September 2020


About the course

The Secondary PGCE programme concentrates on the teaching of 11 - 16 year olds, but part of it extends your studies/experience to cover preparation for post-16 teaching.

Most of the programme is spent on placements at Tadcaster Grammar School and Sherburn High School, supported by academic input from the University of Hull. It prepares you to confidently and effectively teach across the secondary science curriculum using a variety of strategies which can be applied in different types of schools, taking account of the stages of children’s development.

Science is an exciting, practical subject which includes physics, chemistry and biology. As a teacher you may be required to teach physics, chemistry and biology up to key stage 3, or even key stage 4, teaching your specialist subject at key stage 5.

There is currently much emphasis on developing science courses to ensure the population is science literate before they leave school. These exciting developments enable you to develop innovative methods of teaching science and to focus on a pedagogically sound approach to teaching and learning. Many of the skills that you teach your pupils will be transferable across the sciences.

You will consider how to plan lessons; how to organise safe investigations; how to meet the needs of all pupils; how to manage the learning environment effectively and how to undertake assessment. There are plenty of opportunities to carry out practical work in our spacious school laboratory. Initially, the emphasis of the programme is on science within the National Curriculum, whilst in the later stages you will develop your key stage 5 teaching with specialist tutors to learn how to challenge and motivate the full range of learners staying on in Schools and Colleges.

Trainees in our Alliance have access to whole school staff development, which has an excellent reputation of developing teachers. This staff development is based on sound National and International research, whilst still recognising the needs of the students in our care. The schools also offer bespoke small group ITT training, which is tailored to individual needs and is career stage appropriate.

Sherburn Science are a friendly, forward thinking, hardworking team who achieved their best ever GCSE results in summer 2019. Tadcaster Grammar School Science Faculty is large, successful, friendly, hard-working and dynamic, with a mixture of experienced and more recently qualified staff. Their results speak for themselves. Both schools teach Biology, Chemistry and Physics to A level.

Interview process

On receipt of your application it will be reviewed by a panel of senior school leaders, including subject specialists . Shortlisted applicants will then be invited to an assessment process held at one of the Alliance secondary schools. The purpose of this is twofold:

  1.  Applicants are made aware on the nature and demands of the course. Each receives an outline of the current course, as well as a talk about the nature and demands of the course. Candidates also have the opportunity to ask questions of the tutors and school representatives of the partnership who are attending.
  2.  Applicants are given the opportunity to present themselves as having the potential to become good teachers.

The assessment will begin with a general introduction to the School Direct course, followed by an opportunity to ask questions.

As well as having the opportunity to visit classrooms, the rest of the day comprises three formal activities:

  • A group task where candidates will be asked to lead a session with a small group of children. Specific details of the task will be given in the invite to interview.

  • An interview with School Forum represenatatives

  • An interview panel with Headteachers/Senior Leaders of Alliance schools and Hull University.

How school placements work

All trainees have two school placements and will teach in both Tadcaster Grammar School and Sherburn High School.

The two periods of teaching experience are approximately 12 weeks in length. Each teaching block is preceded by a developmental phase of structured preparation. This involves observing experienced teachers working with individual pupils, working with groups of pupils, team teaching, and eventually taking responsibility for whole lessons.

In their practical teaching, trainees are advised and guided by their subject mentors in schools, including lesson observations some of which may be joint observations with tutors from the Universtiy.

Trainees each have a Journal and Profile Document in which they and their mentors record their development. This document is both formative and summative because you use it throughout your training and it also contains two sections for completion at the end of each major period of teaching.


The course fees for 2020 to 2021 are as follows:
Student type Fees to pay
UK students £9,250
EU students £9,250
International students £12,800

Please contact the Professional Education Team on 01482 465974/466933 for information on Fees for 2018/19

If you are an International student from a non-EU country you will be charged the standard overseas student fee.

Training bursaries are available for some subjects for all UK and EU postgraduate teacher trainees. For information visit the following website for information.

Financial support

You could be eligible for either:

  • a scholarship of £28,000
  • a bursary of £26,000

With a scholarship or bursary, you’ll also get early career payments of £2,000 in your second, third and fourth years of teaching (£3,000 in some areas of England).

To qualify for a scholarship you’ll need a degree of 2:1 or above in Chemistry or a related subject. For a bursary you’ll need a 2:2 or above in any subject.

You can’t claim both a bursary and a scholarship - you can only claim one.

Find out how to apply for a scholarship. You don’t need to apply for a bursary - if you’re eligible, you’ll automatically start receiving it once you begin your course. Find out how you’ll be paid.

You may also be eligible for a loan while you study – note that you’ll have to apply for undergraduate student finance.

Find out about financial support if you’re from outside the UK.



Entry requirements:

Applicants must

  • possess GCSE at grade C/4 or above in English Language and Maths;

  • have a degree of a British university, or equivalent;

  • and have appropriate subject knowledge.

The University states that prospective applicants require a degree 2:2 or better to be able to progress on to the PGCE Secondary programme.

Since science is such a broad subject area, and we are flexible in our degree subject entry requirements, we suggest you speak to the subject method tutors, Michelle Wormald , Michelle Wormald at of Janet Gibbs at

Personal qualities

As an Alliance we look for the very best of candidates.

We look for a good reference and a strong commitment to secondary education:

  • Well qualified in your subject and able to talk about it with understanding and enthusiasm.

  • Able motivate and inspire young people of all abilities and have good interaction across the ages

  • Energy and enthusiasm

  • Able to work under pressure

  • Perseverance and flexibility

  • Oral and written communication skills

  • Independent & co-operative working

  • Aware of current educational issues

  • Reflection, self-evaluation and a willingness to learn

Other requirements

We take good quality applicants for the Secondary PGCE course who have studied biology, chemistry or physics as well as other degree subjects which contain significant amounts of these as part of their undergraduate course.

However we are also looking for trainees who have developed transferable skills and qualities. They will of course need to be committed enough to undertake substantial background reading or a subject-bridging course to prepare for the PGCE. To this end, an early application is advisable.

It is also desirable if you have spent some time observing science lessons in secondary schools to support your application.

About the training provider

STAR Teaching School Alliance’s aim is to raise outcomes for children whilst providing sustainability in our schools, all within a small geographic area based around Sherburn-in-Elmet and Tadcaster in North Yorkshire. We have a mix of partner schools that offer placements - large/small; faith/non-faith; Local Authority/Academy, so we aim to offer our trainees a breadth of experience to support them in future job applications.

Professional learning, including initial teacher training, is at the centre of all we do. Teacher training is recognised as a mutual learning experience and helps our schools to maintain energy, enthusiasm and innovation. We have a track record of effectively supporting trainee teachers, a number of whom continue to develop their careers in our schools.

As a STAR trainee, you will experience the full school year from start to end, gaining valuable first hand experience to prepare you for life as a teacher. The majority of your time will be in the classroom, working with a successful, highly skilled, but also caring and supportive team.

We are committed to delivering outstanding education and training that is both current and relevant, and providing excellent opportunities to develop knowledge and understanding. We aspire to ensure trainees are equipped to be outstanding teachers and future leaders.

About the accredited body

Academic aspects are delivered by Hull University (an experienced provider of initial teacher education including School Direct programmes). They place great emphasis upon professionalism and your development as a reflective practitioner who is committed to producing the best possible outcomes for every pupil. Teaching on the course is of a high standard and past trainees comment very favourably on the levels of interest and enthusiasm engendered by tutors. A virtual learning environment enables you to communicate with tutors, partnership staff and with each other, as well as giving access to a wide range of resources.

Training with disabilities and other needs

We are an inclusive teaching School Alliance and believe that there should be no barriers to qualified people pursuing a teaching career in teaching.

To this end, please contact the Alliance (using contact details below) to talk to us about any specific needs are and we will seek to accommodate them within our placement schools.

Additionally, you can contact the university Disability Services (tel: 01482 462020 or e-mail to find out about what Hull University are able to provide to support your academic studies and your time on campus with them.

Contact details

01977 682388
STAR Teaching School Alliance
Monk Fryston CE Primary School
Chestnut Green
North Yorkshire
LS25 5PN


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Support and advice

For questions about this course you should contact the training provider using the contact details above.

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