Loughborough University Physical Education (X9C6)

Postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE) with qualified teacher status (QTS)

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 - secondary
Course length
1 year - full time
Date you can apply from
11 October 2022
Date course starts
September 2023


Course summary

Loughborough University has a strong tradition of teacher education and a history of successfully producing outstanding teachers.

The Physical Education PGCE programme at Loughborough University prepares you to teach the secondary age range and is offered as a full-time, one-year programme. Rated outstanding by Ofsted, it provides practical professional preparation for teaching in secondary schools and is designed and delivered by staff in the School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences in partnership with schools in up to ten local authorities. The Loughborough PGCE is an 11-16 QTS (Qualified Teacher Status) course with post-16 enhancement. This means that you will experience teaching the 11-16 age range as well as post-16, and upon successful completion of the course you will be able to teach children across the full secondary age range in schools.

At the heart of the PGCE is the development of your teaching competences. The course lasts 36 weeks and two thirds of it will be spent gaining teaching experience in two different secondary schools where you will be supported by experienced teachers. For the rest of the time, you will work at Loughborough with tutors and teachers who will prepare you for your school experience and guide you in making the important links between the theoretical and practical components of the course.

The school-based part of the Course provides a programme of teaching and related activities to develop your competences in planning for, teaching, and assessing pupils, and undertaking whole school responsibilities.

The University-based part of the Course provides a framework and wider context for understanding teaching and learning, and opportunities for you to share and reflect upon your own and others’ experiences.

At the University you will study a generic General Professional Studies module and two subject-specific Physical Education modules.

The programme also contributes towards half of a master’s degree (90 credits) and provides an optional pathway to complete a full MSc. Individuals wanting to complete the full degree can do so on a part-time basis during their early teaching career

School placements

School experience is the heart of the course and during the year you will spend a minimum of 120 days in schools. This will include two extended placements in different partner secondary schools, plus time in other contexts such as a Special Educational Needs school.

In your first extended placement, you will initially undertake a planned programme of observing and assisting experienced teachers designed to develop your confidence in working with pupils before gradually increasing the amount of teaching you do as your skills and confidence grow.

In your second extended placement, you will follow a similar pattern and planned programme during the early weeks and will gradually progress to experience the full responsibilities of a teacher.

Throughout your placements you will be supported by school-based subject and teacher training specialists and university-based visiting tutors with extensive knowledge and experience of both physical education and initial teacher training.

Entry requirements

Qualifications needed

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

An undergraduate degree at class 2:1 or above, or an equivalent qualification. The degree should be one in which at least 50% of the content is Physical Education/Sports Science, and awarded by a UK higher education institution or a recognised equivalent provider. A 2:2 will be considered with extensive school experience.

Your degree subject should be in physical education or a similar subject. Otherwise you’ll need to prove your subject knowledge in some other way.

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

We will not consider candidates with pending GCSEs.

We will not consider candidates who need to take a GCSE equivalency test.

Personal qualities

You should also:

  • demonstrate a strong commitment to teaching Physical Education and an enthusiasm for working with young people
  • have relevant and recent experience of Physical Education in a secondary school and of working with young people.
  • demonstrate the following personal qualities: awareness of, and sensitivity to others; a sense of responsibility; a balanced and positive outlook; open mindedness; enthusiasm and resilience, plus be hard working; well organised and adaptable.

Other requirements

You are required to satisfy this University that you are physically and mentally ‘fit to teach’ before embarking on the course.

You are required to undergo an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check to verify your suitability for working with young people.

Fees and financial support

The course fees for 2023 to 2024 are as follows:
Student type Fees to pay
UK students £9,250
International students £18,500

The majority of partnership schools are normally within 40 miles (one way) from the University. Due to the distance of many of our schools from Loughborough, we are reliant on student teachers travelling to schools using public transport or their own cars to transport themselves (and others) to school.

We ask that car owners also transport peers who are placed in the same school, and that passengers make a contribution to the travel cost.

Financial support from the training provider

PGCE students permanently resident in the United Kingdom (this excludes Wales, the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands) who are from households with an annual income of between £18,001 and £30,000 (including training bursary and income declared to Student Finance England) are eligible for a Travel Bursary from Loughborough University.

PGCE students permanently resident in the United Kingdom (this excludes the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands) who are from households with an annual income of £18,000 or less (including training bursary and income declared to Student Finance England) are eligible for a Travel and Living Costs Bursary from Loughborough University. Income declared to Student Finance England - generally described as ‘household income’ can be based on various figures depending on the student teacher’s situation.

About the training provider

Loughborough University has a strong tradition of teacher education and a history of successfully producing teachers who are in great demand by schools and colleges in the UK and overseas.

Our courses have been highly rated in Ofsted inspections and Loughborough has been assessed as a category ‘A’ provider, representing ‘outstanding’ provision, three consecutive times since 2005. Loughborough University is ranked 2nd in the top ten of higher education institutions in the ‘Good Teacher Training Guide 2017’ and has been ranked Top 10 for the past five years

The Loughborough Post-Graduate Certificate in Education course contributes towards half of a masters degree. Individuals wanting to complete the masters degree can do so on a part-time basis during their early teaching career.

If you are interested in training to teach Physical Education or Mathematics in secondary schools, you will find the information you need to get started on this site.

Interview process

You will have an interview for the Provider led PGCE route, the purpose of which is to determine your suitability to teaching. The interview will focus on your: specific qualifications; subject knowledge, skills and abilities; experiences and personal qualities; commitment to teaching; sense of responsibility; ability to relate well to young people; as well as your ability to reflect on your own knowledge and experiences.

Further details will be sent to applicants who are invited to interview.

International candidates

You’ll need the right to study in the UK. You already have this if, for example, you:

  • are an Irish citizen
  • have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme (you may still be able to apply)
  • have indefinite leave to remain in the UK

If you do not already have the right to study in the UK, you may need to apply for a visa. The main visa for fee-paying courses (those that you have to pay for) is the Student visa.

To apply for a Student visa, you’ll need to be sponsored by your training provider.

Sponsorship is not available for this course.

If you need a visa, filter your course search to find courses with visa sponsorship.

Alternatively, check if you’re eligible for a different type of visa, such as a Graduate or Family visa, that allows you to train to be a teacher without being sponsored.

Find out more about training to teach in England.

International qualifications

If your qualifications come from a non-UK institution, we may want to see a ‘statement of comparability’ from UK ENIC. This will show us how they compare to UK qualifications.

You can call Get Into Teaching on 0800 389 2500 for:

  • guidance on the UK equivalents of your qualifications
  • a free statement of comparability once you’ve submitted your application (if we ask you for this)

Training with disabilities and other needs

The University encourages the development of an environment in which diversity is valued. An important part of putting this into practice is a commitment to prohibit discrimination on the grounds of disability in all employment matters, to increase employment opportunities for people who have a disability and to ensure that its recruitment and selection processes are fully accessible.

Contact this training provider

Loughborough University
LE11 3TU

Support and advice

You can speak to a teacher training adviser for free, dedicated advice. They are all experienced teachers who can give you one-to-one support with your application. They can also help you get school experience, and find events where you can speak to training providers and teachers.

Call Get Into Teaching free of charge on 0800 389 2500, or chat online Monday to Friday, 8.30am to 5.30pm (except public holidays).

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