Plymouth Marjon University Religious Education (2W4H)

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


Course summary

The PGCE Secondary Course focuses clearly on student teachers’ and individual needs. A subject knowledge audit at interview leads to the setting of individualised pre-course tasks. Student teachers are able therefore to work towards targets before the course starts. This profiling and tracking of student teachers’ individual needs continues throughout the training programme in both University and Schools. This has been praised by the 2014 Ofsted inspection as a strength of the Partnership ‘the quality of the assessment arrangements and how well the training is matched to individual trainees’ developmental needs, ensuring that trainees make progress against challenging individual expectations’. A key strength of the Partnership is ‘how well the partnership prepares trainees to make them employable, leading to all securing, and remaining in, teaching posts’ Ofsted 2014

The PGCE Secondary Course at the Plymouth Marjon University is for those who meet our Partnership expectations of: The University of St Mark & St John Teacher Education Partnership develops highly reflective and professional teachers and expects that: All trainees will achieve good or outstanding outcomes; all trainees will have enhanced employability skills; all stakeholders will engage in high quality support and training to meet the individual needs of all trainees; and all stakeholders will understand their responsibility to impact upon pupil progress.

Throughout the course you study 5 modules, 4 that build Masters credits and one that recognises qualified teacher status, each are applied in nature and assessed in a variety of different ways Learning Behaviours in Context (essay); Becoming a Teacher: a reflective journey (Journal & presentation);Understanding the Learner: Assessment and progress (presentation); Inclusion in the Secondary Classroom: Maximising Achievement (portfolio); Professional Practice in Schools (QTS portfolio).

School placements

If you are successful in being offered a place with us, you will be based in two complementary schools across the year, but also working virtually with them in our increasingly digital age. The Partnership works across 6 counties, in the SW and London and includes a number of Co-operative Trusts, free schools, Academies, Federations and Alliances.

For school-based training, we place you in schools decided by an audit of need and experience, to best meet your training needs from the range of partner schools wishing to train in your subject. The aim is to expose you to different policies, practices and values of schools which will prepare to you gain employment in a range of different types of school. In addition to your specialist subject trainees have the opportunity to gain an enhancement in a second subject or other area e.g. SEND or PSHE.

Throughout placements you will be supported by a trained mentor to develop to your knowledge, skills, understanding and competence. Your progress will be assessed using an electronic document that allows mentor and trainees to track their progress and training and to set realistic and achievable targets throughout their training year. It is used at key review points during mentor meetings and allows trainees to focus on their progress linked clearly to the Curriculum. It is a formative document that allows both the trainee and mentor to track training and progress towards the award of QTS.

The mentoring model used by Marjon recognises as need for flexibility in approach. Mentors are aware that each trainee progresses at different speeds, so critical element to our model is the mentor’s ability to provide the appropriate support to address the trainee’s competence and confidence levels at a point in time. You become more autonomous as you progress and are empowered to take responsibility for your own learning. Trainees are more likely to reach their full potential on courses that encourage them to develop as independent learners and the best teaching supports this process. All placements are flexible and adapt according to Department for Education guidance.

Entry requirements

Qualifications needed

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

‘Applicants must have a degree in the subject they wish to train to teach or a degree that’s related to the subject or an unrelated degree but relevant professional knowledge in the subject’

Your degree subject should be in religious 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’ll consider candidates with pending GCSEs.

We’ll consider candidates who need to take a GCSE equivalency test in English or maths.

Personal qualities

  • Personal Qualities of Confidence/enthusiasm/sensitivity/ maturity/potential to be a positive role model
  • Resilience through Commitment/perseverance/versatility/tenacity/stamina
  • The desire to work collaboratively with Teacher Education Partnership
  • The willingness to listen to and respond to feedback from Teacher Education Partnership
  • The ability to demonstrate a culture of high expectations for themselves and their pupils.
  • The desire to strive to plan, teach and assess in ways that enable pupils to make good or better progress in their lessons

Other requirements

Prior experience in a school is not required. However, where candidates have been able to gain experience in schools, providers might find reports from those schools helpful. A satisfactory DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service check). We have a responsibility to ensure that trainees have the health and physical capacity to train to teach and will not put children and young people at risk of harm . Candidates must Meet the Secretary of State’s requirements for physical and mental fitness to teach by completing an on-line medical questionnaire.

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 £13,000

EU fees for 2023/24 are £13,000

About the training provider

Plymouth Marjon University is celebrating 180 years of teacher training and is still dedicated to preparing the next generation of teachers for the best profession in the world.

Our University led and school led programmes are designed to train trainee teachers to become highly reflective teachers. The Guardian ranks us 6th best university in the UK for education courses, out of 80 universities, and 1st in Devon and Cornwall. At Plymouth Marjon learning and teaching is underpinned by research, policy and practice. The Complete University Guide 2021 No. 1 in England for student satisfaction. and the National student survey 2021 ranks us as number 1 in England for Learning Community

Vision of Excellence: We will build on a unique and long standing heritage through the development of a values-based collaborative partnership that ensures excellent outcomes for pupils, trainees and teachers.

Plymouth Marjon is a small university with a green and spacious campus, and world-class facilities in a spectacular part of the world. With strong support and an ambitious community, its students achieve more than they ever thought possible.

Complete University guide 2019 stated ‘Plymouth Marjon University has long-established expertise in teacher training reflected in the numbers of postgraduate students choosing to study at the university.’

The University’s aim is to support you during your NQT period and beyond. Leo Data 2018 shows Marjon teachers are 6th highest earners in England and Wales 5 years after qualifying, showing they are not just job ready but also promotion ready.

Interview process

Plymouth Marjon University works in partnership with schools to recruit teachers with a passion for seeing your people grow and develop into confident young adults. The recruitment process short lists applications , if you are invited for interview you will receive full details of what will be expected of you and a link to the website for the agenda and interview tasks. The Interview process includes a subject specific presentation, learning plan activity, campus tour and formal interview. You will be asked to prepare for the interview in advance, come prepared to talk about your passion for your subject and experiences you have had through study, work, volunteering or other activities that have built skills and attributes that you might be able to apply to a career in teaching.

To prepare research key issues and developments in secondary schools - especially those in your subject area. It will help you to read the educational press and to talk to teachers and those currently undertaking teacher training. The interview process will explore knowledge and understanding of the role of a teacher in order to ensure that applicants have a real feel for what teaching life is like in a secondary school, and whether it is the right career for them.

Judgements 4 criteria for the interview a) Appropriate qualities, attitudes, ethics & values; b) Subject Knowledge and Understanding; c) Intellectual & Academic Capabilities; d) Suitability for the course

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 for the duration of this course, you may need to apply for a Student visa.

To do this, you’ll need to be sponsored by your training provider.

Before you apply for this course, contact us to check Student visa sponsorship is available. If it is, and you get a place on this course, we’ll help you apply for your visa.

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 has an experienced team providing information, guidance and support to prospective and current students, relating to all forms of disability and medical conditions and specific learning difficulties, including dyslexia. The Disability Team is able to advise you prior to applying and through the application process. Prospective students are encouraged to make early contact with the Disability Team and also to disclose their disability at the application stage. Disability & Inclusion Advice Service provides appropriate information, advice, guidance and support relating to inclusion issues including a wide range of disabilities, medical and mental health conditions and formally diagnosed specific learning difficulties (SPLD’s) such as dyslexia and dyspraxia.

We are available to talk or meet with prospective students (see contact details below).

All Marjon students who are eligible can apply for appropriate support from DIAS

Pre-entry information, advice and guidance For eligible students, guidance in applying for DSA’s (Disabled Students Allowances) Appropriate liaison with Academic Departments relating to on course support Wider liaison where appropriate with other areas of Marjon We offer:

A confidential service Appointments to meet individual support needs Arrangement of one to one support where funding permits specialist study tuition (for students with SpLDs and/or other communication disorders), non-medical assistance and specialist mentoring. Contact the DIAS team, find out if your are entitled to any one to one support.

If you have other needs re placements e.g you have dependents and need to be in a specific area we encourage you to apply early in the cycle.

Contact this training provider

01752 636 890
Derriford Road

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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