Important

If you’re applying for the first time since applications opened in October 2020

It’s no longer possible to apply for teacher training starting in the 2021 to 2022 academic year.

You can start or continue your application to get it ready for courses starting in the 2022 to 2023 academic year.

You’ll be able to find courses from 9am on 5 October 2021 and submit your application from 9am on 12 October 2021.

If your application did not lead to a place and you’re applying again

You can continue to view and apply for courses starting in the 2021 to 2022 academic year until 6pm on 21 September 2021.

West London Teaching School Alliance (Secondary) Biology (2XVC)

PGCE with QTS full time

Accredited body
St Mary’s University, Twickenham
Financial support
Bursaries and student finance are available if you’re eligible
Qualification
PGCE with QTS

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
13 October 2020
Date course starts
September 2021
Website
http://www.wltsa.org.uk/initial-teacher-training/secondary-courses/

Contents

About the course

QUALIFICATION OUTCOME

This course 2XVC leads to PGCE (M) QTS. The significance of different teacher training qualifications can be found here.

SPECIAL FEATURES This course is run by the West London Teaching School Alliance (WLTSA) in partnership with (and accredited by) St Mary’s University, Twickenham.

WLTSA enables you to choose your host school. Later, if there is a teaching vacancy and they want to retain you, you can be employed fairly seamlessly for the following year without the post being advertised. By becoming a WLTSA trainee, all our other secondary schools could also employ you this way and we operate a pool.

Our aim is to produce exceptional teachers who can then remain in alliance schools, continuing to further their career with the benefit of our on-going CPD.

THE TRAINING

Most schools need you to be able to teach at least one of the three sciences to A-Level, and to be willing and able to teach all three Sciences at Key Stage 3 and ideally to GCSE. We can help you learn to do so.

You would enrol at the university and attend all the same university sessions with those who had applied through the university; have full access to university facilities and mentors; and the university still awards your PGCE. WLTSA selects a second contrasting school for your ‘away’ placement.

As a guide: Typical timetable

Lectures would include teaching, assessing, classroom management and child protection. Subject seminars are led by your university tutor.

At school, through an initial programme of observations, you will become familiar with the workings of the school and department (pupil groups, pastoral systems, staffing, curriculum, resources, facilities, methods of teaching, lesson planning, and assessment).

You will be treated like a member of teaching staff and with your school mentors, you will feel supported as you become ready to teach. Our mentors are excellent experienced teachers who undertake rigorous training to develop their mentoring skills.

Throughout your time in both schools, your university tutor visits you to monitor your progress and discuss your development with you and your school mentors.

As a trainee Biology teacher, you will have the opportunity to teach across KS3/4 covering key areas of Biology/Chemistry/Physics. You will also have the opportunity to support KS5.

Year 7 -10 teaching will include aspects of nutrition and digestion, atoms, elements and chemical reactions, energy and forces.

School placements

With WLTSA you select the main host school at application. We then later arrange your second placement at another contrasting WLTSA school to provide greater depth to your training experience.

CHOOSING YOUR HOST SCHOOL

The characters and location of our schools are varied. When deciding on your preferred host school, we need you to consider where you might eventually like to work and how accessible it is to where you live.

The schools seeking trainees on this particular course are listed below.

  • Chelsea Academy SW10
  • Drayton Manor High School, W7
  • Fulham Cross Academy, SW6
  • Fulham Cross Girls’ School, SW6
  • Gumley House School TW7
  • Hammersmith Academy W6
  • Lady Margaret School SW6
  • St Benedict’s School, W5
  • St Marks Catholic School, TW3
  • St Richard Reynolds TW1

Please read descriptions of these schools in our overall WLTSA Secondary School Summary Descriptions. Our Map of WLTSA Schools may also be helpful.

Please be aware that we have other WLTSA secondary courses at other schools including a separate Biology unsalaried course at a special needs school (Course VM7T) and a Biology salaried option (Course 36B5). You can make three choices overall when you apply.

THE TECHNICAL BIT!

You don’t have to restrict yourself to one school within a course, but each school would count as one application and you get three choices overall in Round 1. Please also be aware that we have so many partner schools that we have been forced to split artificially on UCAS into three provider names. See How to apply & how to choose more than one school on a course.

If you email us confirming your first choice, we can try to ensure a sensible interview order.

BE STRATEGIC WHEN YOU APPLY

You can always contact us up to ask how many applications (if any) are being considered by different schools at the point that you are about to apply. We also keep our website up to date so that you can see which schools have already shortlisted and are interviewing.

We commonly interview individually whenever a good application is received.

Locations

You can select one of the following locations when you apply.

List of locations and vacancies
Location Vacancies
Chelsea Academy SW10 0AB
Lots Road, Chelsea, London, SW10 0AB
No
Drayton Manor High School, W7 1EU
Drayton Bridge Road, London, W7 1EU
No
Fulham Cross Academy SW6 6SN
Kingswood Road, London, SW6 6SN
No
Fulham Cross Girls’ School, SW6 6BP
Munster Road, Fulham, SW6 6BP
No
Gumley House Convent School, TW7 6XF
Gumley House Convent School, St John’s Road, Isleworth, London, TW7 6XF
No
Hammersmith Academy W12 9JD
25 Cathnor Road, Hammersmith, London, W12 9JD
No
Lady Margaret School SW6 4UN
Parsons Green, London, SW6 4UN
No
St Benedict’s School, W5 2ES
54 Eaton Rise, Ealing, London, W5 2ES
No
St Mark’s Roman Catholic School, TW3 3EJ
106 Bath Road, Hounslow, TW3 3EJ
No
St Richard Reynolds Catholic College, TW1
Clifden Road, Twickenham, London, TW1 4LT
No

Entry requirements

Qualifications needed

  • Scientific honours degree (2.2 or above). We may consider alternatively well-qualified mature candidates or those whose studies indicate some breadth of scientific knowledge as a basis for further study before and during the course.

  • We normally expect two Sciences at A-Level .

  • GCSEs at least at Grade C (or 4) or the equivalent, in English Language and Mathematics.

Where appropriate, please read our important guidance Overseas Qualifications & GCSE Equivalency Tests

By the end of the course you need to demonstrate proficiency in functional English/numeracy.

Personal qualities

We want you to have passion and enthusiasm. We need trainees who can engage and inspire students to a love of learning, who are:

  • committed to championing their students;
  • open to learn about children’s physical/social/emotional/cognitive needs and how these can affect behaviour;
  • in good health with the ability to cope with stress. Teaching is incredibly rewarding, but it also requires an element of resilience!
  • professional and committed to equal opportunities;
  • able to communicate well in written/spoken English, with at least basic computer skills and commitment to developing these.
  • have a sense of humour and an ability to laugh at yourself.

Other requirements

A realistic understanding of the role of a teacher and an awareness of some current issues facing the profession is also important. We recognise that it may not be possible to spend a couple of days observing relevant lessons in a state secondary school while schools are maintaining discrete separation of their pupils in relation to Covid. Top tips for getting some observational experience.

Offers are conditional on satisfactory outcome of a DBS check (approx. £52) and an occupational health check (approx. £20) both administered through the university after an offer is accepted.

Fees and financial support

The course fees for UK students in 2021 to 2022 are £9,250.

Financial support from the training provider

Full details of DfE bursaries and Student Finance England loans as referred to above can be found on Funding My Training - A page on the DfE’s ‘Get into Teaching’ website

As a guide:

  • Bursary eligibility simply depends on your residency status and whether you have a degree of at least a 2.2

  • Depending on your residency status, you can take out a student loan. You can do this even if you already have an undergraduate loan. Loans for tuition fees are not means tested (whereas loans for maintenance are means tested) but you should confirm this using the link above.

While not provided directly by WLTSA, please be aware that as a full time student you would be eligible for cheaper travel in London using a student oyster card and in many boroughs you can get a reduction on your council tax payments.

About the training provider

WHO ARE WE?

We are a large alliance of 60 schools spread across West London. We have formal partnership arrangements with three universities.

The designation of ‘Teaching School’ is being withdrawn by DfE in Sept 2021 for all Teaching Schools across the country. Our operational delivery will continue as before, simply with a new name the West London Teacher Training Partnership.

OUR APPROACH TO TRAINEE RECRUITMENT

We pride ourselves in the support that we provide potential applicants and in the speed of our shortlisting. We have a detailed website which is a good place to start but we also run fortnightly information plus Q&A sessions. These explain the different qualifications; different routes into teaching; finance; and how it all works!

Currently these sessions are online due to Covid restrictions. This may change over the course of the academic year. See how you can join one of these sessions here: ‘WLTSA Information Sessions and Q&A

‘That’s the first time that I have ever properly understood it all. Brilliant!’

Our office is staffed full time with experts to talk to on the phone.

You choose schools when you apply. If you perform well but fail to get a place at your preferred school, we continue to work with you, recommending you to other schools of your choice rather than rejecting you.

We place significant emphasis on getting a good fit between trainee and school because we are all keenly focused on recruitment for qualified teachers in our alliance schools the following year.

Interview process

COVID

The interview process for this course may change as the year progresses depending on the Covid situation.

Prior to Covid, we had a two-stage process with one initial interview at the university, and then an interview at your chosen host school a couple of days later. The school interview included an opportunity for you to join a class to either assist or to teach something for a short time.

We have now moved to a system where both interviews are online. We anticipate that this new system will persist certainly throughout the autumn term, and possibly for the remainder of the year.

ONLINE INTERVIEWS

Those shortlisted by WLTSA will be emailed by the university to ask you to upload scans of various documents to their portal. This will include identification documents and relevant qualification certificates and transcripts if you already have them (see course requirements below).

They may also ask you to complete a brief subject audit questionnaire. This will help them to establish the range of your subject knowledge and whether or not a subject knowledge enhancement course may be needed as a condition, if an offer is made. This can all be discussed at interview.

If you don’t have access to original certificates of exams already taken in time for the university interview, please be assured that we can still make an offer to you but it would be subject to later verification of your qualifications and certified copies can take a couple of months to arrive.

Training with disabilities and other needs

WLTSA and all our partner universities are committed to supporting students with disabilities. Please contact us as early as possible in your application process so that your needs are met and support can be arranged.

You can also find support and information from the university accrediting the course that you hope to apply for:

ST MARY’S UNIVERSITY offers advice and support to their students who have requirements as a result of a disability, specific learning difficulty (e.g. dyslexia), medical condition or temporary disability, such as injury. St Mary’s Dyslexia and Disability Co-ordinator (DDC) works closely with the other members of the Student Services team, supporting students in their time at university assisting them to be proactive in their studies as an independent learner. http://www.smuc.ac.uk/student-support/dyslexia-and-disability/

UNIVERSITY OF ROEHAMPTON: http://www.roehampton.ac.uk/Disabilities/Support/

UCL: School Direct students can access the services provided by UCL’s Student Support and Wellbeing team. See the following web page for full details:- https://www.ucl.ac.uk/students/student-support-and-wellbeing

Contact this training provider

Email
adijkhuis@sacredh.lbhf.sch.uk
Telephone
0208 748 7600 x290
Website
http://www.wltsa.org.uk/initial-teacher-training/secondary-courses/
Address
WLTSA Teaching School c/o Sacred Heart High School
212 Hammersmith Road
Hammersmith
London
W6 7DG

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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