UCL, University College London Further education (J641)

PGCE, full time or part time

Financial support
Student finance if you’re eligible

A postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE) is an academic qualification in education.

It’s recognised internationally, though you should always check what qualifications are needed in the country you’d like to teach in.

This course does not lead to qualified teacher status (QTS).

Course length
Up to 2 years
Date you can apply from
11 October 2022
Date course starts
September 2023


Course summary

The PGCE Further Education prepares you to teach one of a wide range of subjects (GCSE/A level subjects, vocational / technical programmes, English (literacy / ESOL) and mathematics) in the further education and skills sector. Our PGCE develops effective, confident teachers whose practice is informed by knowledge of educational theory, and who will continue to develop throughout their careers. The programme is offered both full and part-time.

The further education sector comprises further education colleges, sixth form colleges, adult education, prison education, charity and community organisations, and independent, work-based providers of learning. There are three routes on this programme: a specialist route to teach adult literacy and English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL), a specialist route to teach mathematics and numeracy and a general route that deals with all other subjects. The core elements of the programme will develop teaching skills that are common to all subjects whether you plan to work in arts, humanities, STEM subjects or vocational education.

The programme is taught through a mix of face-to-face and online sessions (including lectures, presentations, discussions and group work). There is also a practical teaching element based in a partner-provider organisation, usually a further education college or adult education centre. Online elements allow partnership working through joint university and partner taught sessions. You will be assessed through a range of written assignments, a reflective portfolio and formal observations of practical teaching skills. Full-time students will undertake three modules in one academic year; two 30-credit modules plus a non-accredited professional practice module that must be completed to a satisfactory standard. The professional practice module will involve the production of a portfolio of your professional development drawing on evidence from your teaching experience. Part-time students will undertake one 30-credit module in each academic year with a non-accredited professional practice module spread across two years.

The programme both meets the content requirements and addresses the professional standards as set out by the Education and Training Foundation. On completion, students can use the PGCE to apply for QTLS.

Please note that only the full-time programme is suitable for international students who require a Student visa. The part-time programme is not suitable for international students who require a Student visa.

Teaching placements

Our further education placement institutions in London are chosen for their quality, excellence in supporting teacher education and to provide comprehensive geographical coverage across a range of institution type, subjects and specialisms. You will normally gain your teaching experience through a main placement in one institution (two for those undertaking Literacy and ESOL) and make visits to other organisations to experience alternative provisions. You will normally spend three days a week in your placement (half of this for those who are part time). Applicants who are already working in the sector may be able to use some of their employment as part of their teaching experience. Each partner has a dedicated placement co-ordinating mentor, with institutions carefully matched to your needs in terms of location and subject, taking any mobility needs into account. Training in London will provide you with an ideal platform to launch and/or develop your career in teaching.

Entry requirements

Qualifications needed

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

We’ll consider candidates with pending GCSEs.

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

Applicants who do not offer a GCSE in English language or mathematics may demonstrate an equivalent standard by completing a test via Equivalency Testing or A Star Equivalency and achieving at least a grade 5. For mathematics, equivalency tests in mathematics foundation or mathematics higher with grade 5 are accepted. We do not accept “”applied”” or “”additional”” GCSE subjects. We do not accept BTEC, functional skills or access qualifications in place of GCSES. UCL does not accept GCSE grade 4 for entry to our PGCE programmes.

We do not accept English taught as a second language or English literature to meet our GCSE English language requirements.

Personal qualities

Great teachers are as diverse as the communities they serve. We look for candidates who have an enthusiasm for engaging with adults and young people, who are as excited about the process of learning as they are about teaching, and who understand that they will learn as much from their students as their students will from them. Sound subject knowledge is important, as well as the ability to break down their knowledge and see it through the eyes of someone for whom it is new. We particularly welcome a commitment to improving the lives of individuals and communities through education.

Other requirements

For information about all UCL’s statutory requirements linked to Teacher Training programmes please visit our website

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 £24,200

About the training provider

IOE, UCL’s Faculty of Education and Society is a global leader in teacher education, ranked number one for education for the last nine years in the QS World University Rankings by Subject. Our PGCE programmes have been recognised by Ofsted as ‘outstanding’ in every category.

When you join IOE, you’ll be joining one of the largest teacher training programmes in the UK. We offer unrivalled expertise in teacher education, a broad and exciting range of placements and personalised care from dedicated tutors, enabling our students to become highly successful teachers.

Our programmes have been carefully designed so that you have the time and space to develop the expertise to manage, guide and inspire the children and young people you teach. You will be taught by experts in your subject and education phase, many of whom are conducting world-leading research in their field.

We are committed to supporting education in London, where schools lead the country in performance and pupil progress. We work with around 500 London schools, colleges and early years settings, including long-term partners who work with us to harness our wider research and expertise. By joining IOE, you will benefit from being part of a lively and diverse community of students and academics and will make a positive difference to the lives of young people in London.

Interview process

Candidates whose applications meet the entry criteria will be invited to an online interview. You will take part in an individual interview with members of the programme team, and will be asked to undertake written and presentation tasks as part of the process. You will have the opportunity to ask any questions.

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

Please visit our Student Support and Wellbeing website for information about the services they offer to incoming students.

Contact this training provider

Contact form
0208 059 0939
University College London
Gower Street
Greater London

Support and advice

For support and advice, you can speak to a teacher training 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 chat online Monday to Friday, 8.30am to 5.30pm (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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