Wigan and West Lancashire Catholic School Direct English (2QQF)

PGCE with QTS full time

Accredited body
Liverpool Hope University
Financial support
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.

Age range
11 to 18
Course length
1 year
Date you can apply from
12 October 2021
Date course starts
September 2022


About the course

Our course ensures that you receive as much training as possible in our partner schools. You will be allocated a HOME school placement from the first day of the school year, from September until February half term, and an AWAY school placement from February half term until July. A Key Stage 5 placement of at least two weeks will also be provided during the year. You will attend subject pedagogy at Liverpool Hope University one day per week in your Home placement. Also, each week, one afternoon will be spent receiving Professional Development training with the rest of the WWLCSD cohort, at one of the ten partner schools. 15 Masters level days at Liverpool Hope will take place across the year, and you will also complete two modules of the Catholic Certificate in Religious Studies (CCRS) as part of your training. Training for the CCRS will be delivered at some of the school-run Professional Development sessions. You will be assessed through the completion of two assignments at Masters level by Liverpool Hope University. This will ensure that you are awarded a PGCE, plus you will submit evidence of meeting the Teacher Standards to your placement schools at four review points through the year. To complete the double module of the CCRS, you will be required to submit two 1500 word assignments.

School placements

We are confident that, through our personalised, structured interview process, we get to know our applicants quickly, and strive to place them in the schools and departments within our programme where they would be able to flourish during their training year. Travelling distances from home are taken into consideration, wherever possible. We do not usually place trainees in a school if they used to attend it as a pupil, since we feel it is important for the training year to provide as broad an experience as possible. Trainees can express a preference for a placement at a specific school in the partnership, although we cannot guarantee to meet their request. All schools in the partnership have comprehensive intakes and you will gain experience of working with young people of all abilities across the age range from 11-18. You will be assigned a Professional Mentor and a Subject Mentor in each of your two placement schools. Our mentors are outstanding teachers themselves, and they are all required to undertake a rigorous training programme to develop their mentoring skills. This includes coaching, effective classroom observation and feedback skills.

Entry requirements

Qualifications needed

An undergraduate degree at class 2:1 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.

Personal qualities

We are looking for ambitious trainee teachers who are passionate and enthusiastic about making a difference to the lives of the young people that we serve. We want you to have a desire to share your passion with students of all abilities across the secondary age range. Trainees on our programme do not need to be Catholics themselves, but would be individuals who recognise the intangible extras which working as part of a faith-based community can bring to the lives of both staff and young people.

Other requirements

We do not require you to have done a set amount of classroom observations prior to the application process. However, meaningful experience of working with young people of secondary age in ways such as helping with a sports team, drama or youth group, or simply having spent some time in a secondary school, would demonstrate, at interview, a commitment to the application. All trainees accepted onto the course require DBS clearance before commencing their training.

Fees and financial support

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

UK applicants may receive at least part of the fees payment back in a cash bursary from the University. Discretionary bursaries are available in some instances. All applicants are eligible for student loans to cover fees.

Full details of courses and fees can be found on the Liverpool Hope University website

Financial support from the training provider

We encourage our applicants to investigate possible scholarships which may be offered by appropriate professional bodies. Such scholarships are awarded in place of a bursary.

About the training provider

The Wigan & West Lancashire Catholic School Direct Programme is a fantastic opportunity to work and learn within a partnership of nine Catholic Secondary schools and one Catholic Sixth Form college, all of which share the same outstanding values and ethos:

  • St Edmund Arrowsmith Catholic High School, Ashton-in-Makerfield (Lead School)
  • St Mary’s Catholic High School, Astley
  • St Bede’s Catholic High School, Ormskirk
  • St John Fisher Catholic High School, Wigan
  • Our Lady Queen of Peace Catholic Engineering College, Skelmersdale
  • St Peter’s Catholic High School, Orrell
  • Holy Cross Catholic High School, Chorley
  • St Gregory’s Catholic High School, Warrington
  • St John Rigby Catholic Sixth Form College, Orrell
  • Saints Peter and Paul Catholic College, Widnes

We work closely together, with a commitment to providing first class Initial Teacher Training, that not only equips trainees with the skills and knowledge required to teach their subject, but also appreciates the distinct nature that working as part of a Catholic community can bring. All of our schools are conveniently located, with excellent transport network links. The pupils in our schools are happy, friendly and well behaved, and at the heart of everything we do. Many of our pupils consistently out-perform their national peers and make significantly more progress. Employability rates of our trainees are excellent, with a significant proportion gaining positions within our partner schools. We believe that our staff are our most valuable resource. By training potential new staff ourselves, we ensure we recruit the best.


About the accredited body

We have worked in partnership with Liverpool Hope University for many years now. They provide subject pedagogy support as well as the Masters Level teaching that leads to the award of PGCE.

Interview process

The interview process will involve you spending one day at St Mary’s Catholic High School in Astley, which is where our administrative team is based. You will be asked to deliver a twenty minute task to a group of five Key Stage Three pupils, on a topic which you will have been given to prepare in advance of the day. We will be observing how well you can engage with the pupils, and whether you are able to prepare an appropriate task, and resource it effectively, to ensure that they make some progress. We are not looking for an already competent teacher, we are looking for people who we believe have the necessary qualities to be “trained” to that level. After the teaching task, you will be asked to complete a twenty minute written task, where you will reflect upon the strengths and areas in need of development in your group teaching task, This is intended to assess your ability to evaluate a lesson effectively, and indicates the standard of your written English. After lunch, you will have a formal interview where the panel will be made up of the Director (and/or the Assistant Director) of the course, a Head Teacher and a Professional Mentor from one of our partnership schools. A representative from Liverpool Hope University will also attend some of the Interview Days as a Quality Assurance measure. We will inform you of the outcome of the interview and offer feedback within the next five working days.

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

We are committed to ensuring equality of opportunity for all applicants. It is a personal choice if you wish to inform us of your disability, however we would want to support you, and put reasonable adjustments in place, as much as possible. The Liverpool Hope University Learning Support Team assist us, with Learning Support Plans being used as the main method by which information is communicated to all relevant parties.

For further information:

Contact this training provider

St Edmund Arrowsmith Catholic High School
Rookery Avenue
Ashton in Makerfield

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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