University of Cumbria
Primary (5 - 11) (X100)

PGCE with QTS full time

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.

Course length
1 year
Date you can apply from
13 October 2020
Date course starts
September 2021


About the course

Welcome to our excellent PGCE primary programme with Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).

During this course you will undertake two masters level modules to gain your PGCE. These are titled ‘Building Professional Understanding’ and ‘Enhancing Professional Practice’. As well as gaining you 60 masters’ level credits, the learning you will gain on these modules will also help you develop in your skills, knowledge and understanding as a teacher.

You will undertake modules to support your teaching in school more explicitly: ‘Learning, teaching and subject pedagogy ’ introduces you to all primary subjects and also looks at general teaching skills such as planning, managing behaviour, assessment and working with children with Special Needs and Disability. ‘Cumbria Teacher of Reading’ helps develop your understanding of teaching systematic synthetic phonics and early reading. ‘Being a Teacher’ helps you explore wider issues around the professional role of the teacher and other skills such as working with other adults to support learning. Another module ‘Subject knowledge and pedagogy’ is student led and tutor facilitated assisting students developing their knowledge of subject and curriculum areas they may have less confidence in. As well as general primary you can also do pathways in lower primary and a range of specialist routes, currently Inclusion, Maths and PE, but these may change.

School-based learning is woven into the programme throughout the year to allow students to grow and develop their skills as they learn and develop their understanding in university-based sessions. This may be experiential or assessed. The assessed placements are in three full time blocks, spread out over the academic year.

Our most recent internal exit data has shown student satisfaction increasing year on year with 96% of students reporting the course to be good or very good.

The University of Cumbria PGCE primary team are very proud of the way they look after students, through the COVID19 pandemic and through ever changing times and uncertainty. Our most recent internal retention data shows 98% of students who began the programme completed it, due in part to the care and support received from the tutor team. Amy, a student from our Lancaster campus PGCE cohort wrote “I thoroughly enjoyed my time at Cumbria University. I was provided with great opportunities and would recommend the course to future teachers. I was continuously supplied with support and was able to form great relationships with all of my tutors.”

For further information: (

Interview process

You may be invited to attend an interview for this programme and these will take place with our course team. If you are selected for an interview, you will receive full information about the day in advance so that you can prepare.

Due to Covid-19 interviews are currently taking place virtually via Microsoft Teams. This is subject to change as the situation with the pandemic changes.

How school placements work

The University of Cumbria works in partnership with over 700 schools based across a wide geographical area including Cumbria, North Lancashire and London.

As the University is multi-site the schools used for placement depend on the campus a student is based at (i.e. Students based on the London campus attend placement in London).

Schools are selected based on their current OFSTED grading and their understanding of the University’s programmes and grading criteria. Schools provide a trained professional mentor who is supported by a dedicated university based academic tutor (Partnership Tutor).

Students will undertake three assessed placements that increase in length as they progress through the course experiencing over 120 days in a school setting. Students will experience all primary age ranges depending on the programme selected. From student feedback the average travel time to placement is as follows; less than 30 minutes - 53%, 31 to 60 minutes - 40%, 61 to 90 minutes - 7%. The University places a limit of 90 minutes travel time to placement.

Further information about placements can be found at (


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

Stated fees are subject to approval of the University’s Access and Participation Plan by the Office for Students. This is expected shortly.

Financial support

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.



  • Normally a first degree, or its equivalent with a minimum of 2:2 honours.

  • GCSE English Language, mathematics and science (including biology, chemistry or physics) at minimum grade C/ 4 or above.

Personal qualities

  • The ability to discriminate key ideas and express arguments.

Other requirements

  • A satisfactory academic (university) reference if less than 3 years since academic study.

    • A satisfactory professional reference if more than 3 years since academic study.
    • Satisfactory Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) checks.
    • Satisfactory occupational health medical clearance.

About the training provider

We are the University of Cumbria, where people are at the heart of all we do. We inspire, engage and add value to people’s lives: we know the things we teach will be the things that change lives.

This year, the university has been ranked 28th out of 131 higher education institutions in the student-informed survey ‘WhatUni’; the university has increased its standing annually since 2015 with an increase of 7 places this year. Our focus on providing our students with the skills and real-life work experience means nine out of ten of all of our graduates are employed or in further study within six months of graduation, and of those, 82% are in graduate-level jobs or study. These accolades make us one of the fastest improving universities in the UK.

Our lecturers have a wealth of school experience, many still practising in school, and lead internationally significant research, which means our students get to explore the very latest thinking in their subject. As one of the leading providers of education courses and School Direct partnerships in England, we are at the leading edge of teacher education, working with more than 20 school alliances to give our students the option to spend the majority of their teacher training in a real school setting.

Here at the University of Cumbria, lives are enriched so individuals can become the world changers of tomorrow; a place where you can find your calling, your career and find your place.

Find out more (www.

Training with disabilities and other needs

We will ensure you have everything you need to succeed, supporting you to be your best. We are open and believe that everyone has the right to learn.

We are committed to widening participation and provide a range of services to enable those with disability or specific learning difficulty (SpLD) to access their chosen course, including adjustments to formal timed examinations, digital recorders, assistance in the library and an individualised disability/SpLD action plan. Access to a range of non-medical help services such as practical support, note taking, specialist mentoring and study skills is also offered.

Counselling and therapy can give you time to explore what is going on in your life in a safe setting. Our Psychological Wellbeing Service incorporates counselling, therapy and mental health mentoring. Our psychological therapists offer confidential support and advice on a wide range of issues including how to access services provided by the NHS and Social Services, as well as support for disabled students.

All of our campuses have accessible learning and teaching spaces and adapted residential accommodation. The university provides a variety of assistive software and has collated more than 100 free accessibility apps for general use, and provides specialist hardware such as larger keyboards and mice, and adjustable height desks.

We provide a supportive and nurturing environment where we know you as an individual, not a number, ensuring you are treated equally, fairly and with respect, whatever your needs.

Contact details

0845 606 1144
Admissions Office
(Lancaster Carlisle London)
Fusehill Street, Carlisle


Apply for this course

Choose a training location

You’ll also need to choose a training location – select the relevant location name on the application form.

Choose a training location - List of locations, vacancies and codes
Location Vacancies Code
Carlisle - Fusehill Street
Fusehill Street, Carlisle, Cumbria, CA1 2HH
Yes F
Bowerham Road, Lancaster, LA1 3JD
Yes L
London - Tower Hamlets
University of Cumbria, 56/58 East India Dock Road, London, E14 6JE
Yes T

Support and advice

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

Get support and advice about teaching

Register with Get Into Teaching, the Department for Education’s free support and advice service, for personalised guidance from teaching experts. They can help you to prepare your application, book school experience, and access exclusive teaching events. You can also call them free of charge on 0800 389 2500, or speak to an adviser using their online chat service, from 8am to 8pm, Monday to Friday.

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