Staffordshire University
Biology (3FCX)

PGCE with QTS full time

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.

Course length
1 year
Date you can apply from
13 October 2020
Date course starts
September 2021
Website
https://www.staffs.ac.uk/courses/subjects/education

Contents

About the course

Our 11-16 PGCE Biology (with post-16 enhancement) takes 36 weeks to complete. This school-led course includes a one-week induction to prepare you for your placement and weekly sessions to develop your knowledge of the curriculum.

We focus on school student learning right from the start of the PGCE and this encourages our trainees to develop very quickly as teachers. You will be well supported by subject experts in both school and University and welcomed into a warm and friendly PGCE team who will challenge you to become the best teacher that you can be. All academic assignments focused around pupil progress and your classroom practice. On successful completion, you will receive 60 Masters level credits with Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), which is governed by DfE regulations.

You will be very well supported during your time on the course and will benefit from a designated subject mentor in school who will hold weekly meetings with you, help you teach and review lessons, develop your subject knowledge and set and monitor agreed targets. In addition, you will have a University Tutor who will oversee your overall development as a teacher. Improvement Planning sessions in the University will take place to support you throughout the year with your University Tutor.

As a trainee, you will be given a phased introduction to teaching that will reflect your personal needs. You will normally begin by observing the regular class teacher, helping with group work and then moving towards sharing classes with the teacher before eventually taking classes yourself. As well as teaching, you will be expected to contribute generally to the life of the school.

The blend of practical experience and University study gained during your course will be assessed through the compilation of portfolios of evidence and the production of short written academic papers. To see posts about activities that we run during the PGCE course and for details of our upcoming events and open days please visit the Staffordshire University website or our PGCE Facebook page.

Interview process

Following an initial screening to ensure your application meets our entry requirements, applications will be submitted to the Subject staff for review. Successful applicants at this stage will be offered an interview.

The main purposes of the interview are to:

  • Allow you to understand as fully as possible the nature of the course, the teaching profession and your commitments to it
  • Begin to explore your subject strengths and areas for development
  • Assess your ability to communicate effectively in spoken and written English
  • Answer any questions you may have

Whilst school experience is not a requirement for being invited to interview, successful candidates will be able to demonstrate during their interview that they have a good understanding of student learning and progress. Applicants may wish to draw upon experiences from their own education or paid or voluntary work in schools or with school-age children to show evidence of their understanding.

Further information about tasks for the interview will be detailed in an interview invitation. Please note that for some activities preparation prior to the interview may be required.

How school placements work

The quality of our relationships with our schools and colleges is extremely high and is based on a shared vision of teaching and a genuine partnership. We know our partnership schools very well and they know us. This means that we can match your development needs with your school placements.

We have a wide outreach into some 50 plus high performing schools within the local area and in Birmingham, the Black Country, Shropshire, Manchester, Derbyshire and beyond. To give you experience in the classroom, you’ll spend at least 120 days working in two local secondary schools focusing on teaching KS3 and KS4 as well as visiting a local primary school and experiencing post 16 education (possibly in one of your secondary placements). Our school led programme provides support at the university whilst also challenging your thinking about learning and teaching.

Each of your two main placement schools will also have a professional mentor who will provide an introduction to the organisation of the school, the school curriculum, pastoral care, personal and social education, active tutorial work, student behaviour and the legal and social framework of the school.

Fees

The course fees for 2021 to 2022 are as follows:
Student type Fees to pay
UK students £9,250
International students £14,000

Financial support

You’ll get a bursary of £7,000 if you have a degree of 2:2 or above in any subject.

You don’t have to apply for a bursary - if you’re eligible, you’ll automatically start receiving it once you begin your course. Find out about eligibility and how you’ll be paid.

You may 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.

Requirements

Qualifications

Degree: 2:2 or above honours degree in an appropriate subject area. If you do not hold a subject-related degree, you can still be considered if you hold a relevant A Level or equivalent. Please contact us prior to submitting your application if you require further guidance.

GCSEs: Grade 4 or grade C at GCSE or equivalent in English Language and Mathematics is essential for all applicants before starting the course. We do not accept Adult Numeracy or Literacy or Key Skills qualifications as GCSE equivalent.

Applicants with international qualifications will be considered if their qualifications are recognised as equivalent.

Personal qualities

We are looking for enthusiastic, professionally restless individuals for whom teaching will always be a voyage of discovery. You should have:

  • The desire and ability to impact on student learning and to see issues from students’ points of view
  • High level communication skills, empathy and persistent optimism
  • Potential for critical reflection, independent learning and taking initiative for personal and professional development
  • The ability to work effectively in a team and to lead
  • Creativity, innovation and understanding of when to take risks
  • Resilience to accept and learn from professional criticism
  • Self-confidence balanced with humility

Other requirements

Whilst school experience is not required for entry, successful applicants will demonstrate a good understanding of student learning and progress.

Successful applicants will also be required to:

  • Complete a Medical Questionnaire, which will be assessed by an Occupational Therapist
  • Provide an Enhanced Disclosure Certificate from the Disclosure and Barring Service (application can be obtained through the University)

About the training provider

The structure of our PGCE courses reflects our vision of excellent teachers as being both excellent thinkers about teaching and outstanding practitioners in the classroom. We believe in developing thoughtful, self-confident teachers who are comfortable questioning everything around them whilst simultaneously having confidence in everything they do. We focus on school student learning right from the start of the PGCE and this encourages our trainees to develop very quickly as teachers. You will be well supported by subject experts in both school and University and welcomed into a warm and friendly PGCE team who will challenge you to become the best teacher that you can be.

In our latest Ofsted Inspection (2017), the inspectors found that we:

  • Are passionate about, and committed to, ensuring that pupils in the local area and beyond are taught by highly skilled and knowledgeable teachers so that pupils’ outcomes improve quickly.
  • Have extremely strong relationships between school mentors, trainees and the University based tutors, which is underpinned by effective communication and ongoing support.
  • Help trainees understand how pupils learn, which has a positive impact on pupil progress over time.

Staffordshire University has been shortlisted for University of the year in the 2020 Times Higher Education Awards. The University received a gold award in the 2019 Teaching Excellence Framework, recognising excellent standards of learning and teaching, and was named winner in the Most Improved Student Experience category in the 2017 Times Higher Education Awards.

Training with disabilities and other needs

Staffordshire University’s AccessAbility Services are a team of Disability Support Coordinators, Disability Administrators and Sessional Assessors. The team support and assist anyone with a disability, including specific learning difficulties, mental health needs and with physical and unseen disabilities. The team can advise on Disabled Student Allowances, accessibility issues and a wide range of support and adjustments to meet the individual needs of students. They can also offer a diagnostic service for students who think they may have a specific learning difficulty. Students who have disclosed a disability will receive a welcome from the team and advice on how to access further support.

The Student Hub in the Science Centre at our Stoke-on-Trent Campus will provide a one-stop location for access to student support and guidance teams.

There are lots of on campus support options including drop-in clinics as well as workshops specifically in relation to mental health and wellbeing.

Contact details

Email
enquiries@staffs.ac.uk
Telephone
01782294400
Website
https://www.staffs.ac.uk/courses/subjects/education
Address
Recruitment and Admissions, E200 Blackstone Building
College Road
Stoke-on-Trent
Staffordshire
ST4 2DE

Apply

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Choose a training location - List of locations, vacancies and codes
Location Vacancies Code
Main Site
College Road, Stoke-on-Trent, ST4 2DE
Yes -

Support and advice

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

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