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PGCE Post-compulsory Education and Training (PCET)

Course overview

Start date

September 2020

Subject area

Teaching and Education




On campus

Course summary

This programme enables you to meet the Professional Standards for the lifelong learning sector. It equips you with the knowledge and practical skills you need to teach a diverse range of learners, including those in the 14-19 age bracket as well as more mature students. In addition to developing your professional skills, you will be able to demonstrate secure subject and/or vocational knowledge in teaching.

Theory and practice are interlinked throughout the course; you will have the opportunity to develop your skills through hands-on teaching practice, while completing written assignments to demonstrate your understanding of the principles of teaching. You will also engage in self-reflection and evaluate the teaching of others to develop and enhance your professional teaching skills and subject knowledge.

Why study post-16 Teacher Training at UEL? 

  • High levels of support - Personalised professional support for every trainee, “ensuring that they develop good practice as a result” (Ofsted, 2012) 
  • Further training and development - Continue your professional development by applying for Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) status.  
  • Diverse learning - You’ll be become part of a richly diverse group of trainee teachers, with “an unwavering commitment to raising standards and aspirations in the communities in which they work” (Ofsted, 2012)

Contact Us

If you have any questions, please contact our Applicant Enquiries team on +44 (0) 20 8223 3333 or email

Get in touch

Professional qualification

This level 6 course provides you with a Professional Teaching Qualification (PGCE) that qualifies you to teach in the lifelong learning / post-compulsory sector.

Teach in a variety of settings

The PGCE: PCET enables you to teach in a wide range of contexts outside of the core primary and secondary school environment, including Further Education Colleges, Adult and Community Learning Centres, Sixth Form Colleges, and Youth/Offender Services.


Upon finishing the course, you'll have the opportunity to gain QTLS (Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills) status.

EnquireVisit UEL

Joe Withey

Post-compulsory Education and Training (PCET), PGCE

The PGCE course allowed me to develop the skills required to perform practically in a further education workplace, and also to understand the theory behind it. Having the placement alongside my learning gave me the ability to contextualise my lessons on a daily basis, which benefited my practice.  The focus on teacher practice was invaluable to my development, as was the feedback given by the tutors and my mentor. The inclusion of the portfolio gave me a clear understanding of how to progress my career and professionalism by gaining QTLS. I now have a management position within the access department at my workplace.

Fees and funding

The Student Money Advice and Rights Team (SMART) are here to help you navigate
your finances while you're a student at the University of East London.

We can give you advice, information and guidance on government and
university funds so that you receive your full funding entitlement.


Phone: 020 8223 4444

Tuition fees
Course fees will be confirmed soon.

£10,280 to fund your Masters Programme under the Postgraduate Loans (PGL) scheme

Postgraduate Loans (PGL)

The Postgraduate Loan (PGL) provide non means-tested loans of up to £10,280 to taught and research masters students.  It will be paid to students as a contribution towards tuition fees, living costs and other course costs.

Applications are made directly through Student Finance England


Whether you qualify depends on:
•    if you’ve studied on a postgraduate course before
•    your course
•    your age
•    your nationality or residency status

Full eligibility can be found here 

Please take a look at the Postgraduate Loans for an overview of the new funding.

Apply for a 50 per cent discount on your tuition fees! You can get a 50 per cent discount on course fees through a UEL Postgraduate Scholarship.

The scholarship is open to full-time and part-time UK and EU students of taught postgraduate courses.

To see our full eligibility criteria and how to apply click here

Terms and conditions apply.

How we can help you

Did you know that with a postgraduate qualification you can expect to earn £200,000 more than someone who only holds an undergraduate degree*?

If you want to build new skills, change career paths, or further your career prospects, a postgraduate degree can help you. Our range of scholarships and bursaries will make financing your education that much easier.

*Sutton Trust Report 2013

Alumni Discount - 15 per cent

Early Payment Discount - 5 per cent

Part-time Postgraduate Fee-waiver - up to £500

Sport Scholarships – Up to £6,000

Terms and conditions apply.

There are a number of ways you can pay your fees to UEL
•    Online payment facilities
•    By telephone
•    In person at our Docklands or Stratford campus
•    Bank transfer Full information on making payments can be found here
If you wish to discuss payments to the University, please contact our Income Team on 020 8223 2030 or you can email

The Student Money Advice and Rights Team (SMART) are here to help you navigate
your finances while you're a student at the University of East London.

We can give you advice, information and guidance on government and
university funds so that you receive your full funding entitlement.


Phone: 020 8223 4444

Tuition fees
Course fees will be confirmed soon.

At UEL, we understand that studying in another country is a big financial commitment. If you apply early for an postgraduate course, you may be entitled to a scholarship of up to £4,000. You can find out more about the international scholarships here. In addition to this, we offer a five per cent early payment discount and 15 per cent alumni discount.

The Student Money Advice and Rights Team (SMART) also run an Emergency International Fund to assist international students in hardship.

You can contact our SMART team on 02082234444 or

As part of the Tier 4 student visa requirements, UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) estimate that you will need £1265* per month to cover your living costs. It includes expenses for accommodation, food and drink, travel within London, text books, entertainment, clothing, toiletries and laundry. Most Tier 4 students are required to show they have sufficient funds to cover the first nine months of the course before they start- a total of £11385- in addition to the tuition fees. You can find more information about the specific requirements of the Tier 4 student visa here. The amount that you will spend can vary depending on your lifestyle. The UKCISA International Student Calculator can help you plan and manage your money.

* Please note the Immigration Rules are subject to change and this figure is likely to be increased by UKVI year on year. Please therefore check our ISA pages ( for more information at the time of preparing your visa application.

Deposits and paying by instalments

International students are required to pay a deposit prior to being issued a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS).

Your remaining balance will be paid in five monthly instalments over your first term. The first of these instalments must be paid when completing your enrolment on arrival at UEL. Please follow the payment instructions here.

After the required payment has been made, you will be asked to complete the online International Student Reply Form to confirm your acceptance of our offer and of our terms of admittance and fees policy.

Our International team at UEL are available for advice and guidance on studying in London, fees, scholarships and visa requirements.


Tuition fees
Course fees will be confirmed soon.

Entry requirements

Minimum UK Degree at 2.2 in a subject the applicant wishes to teach or overseas qualification of an equivalent standard
Secured teaching placement

All applicants must have GCSE English and Maths grade A*-C or equivalent.


(Including European Union)

We accept a range of qualifications from across the world. Please see our country pages for information on specific entry requirements for your country.

If you don’t quite meet the academic requirements for this course, you can apply with an additional foundation year. Read more about the International Foundation Programme.


Applicants are required to complete an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check for Regulated Activity.

As you will have close contact with children and/or vulnerable adults on the this course, you will be required to have a satisfactory Disclosure & Barring Service Enhanced Disclosure certificate.

You need to complete this process prior to starting the course. Failure to complete this process will impact you going on placement as part of the course.

Further information is available here


Overall IELTS 6.0 with a minimum of 6.0 in Writing, Speaking, Reading and Listening (or recognised equivalent).

If you do not meet the academic English language requirements for your course, you may be eligible to enrol onto a pre-sessional English programme. The length of the course will depend on your current level of English and the requirements for your degree programme. We offer a 5-week and an 11-week pre-sessional course. Find out more here.

Previous teaching experience is not required but any experience of an educational setting, particularly in a post-16 setting, is useful.

The entire interview process lasts for up to 3 hours. During the interview, you will be asked to complete some literacy tasks, which include summarising an article and producing a piece of free writing, and an error correction exercise.  You will do a short 5-minute microteach on a subject of your choice and have a one-to-one interview with a member of the academic team.

Our aim is to find out as much as we can about your attributes, skills, knowledge and understanding in order to shape training opportunities for you, should you be offered a place on the programme. 

Your responses to these tasks and activities will be considered alongside all the other evidence to assess your suitability for the PGCE PCET programme.

During the individual interview, you will be given the chance to talk with a tutor about the programme and any other issues that are relevant.

Please note: Interviews will take place at the Cass School of Education and Communities, Water Lane, Stratford, London, E15 4LZ. Applicants must bring along original qualification certificates and their passport (or other photo ID).

There is no requirement to complete Professional Skills tests.

Teaching is a demanding activity and we highly recommend that you complete a screening process for physical and mental fitness to teach. You can contact Maitland Medical and complete an online questionnaire; a fee of £55.00 must be paid upon submission. They can be contacted by email at or by phone on 0208 295 8250 in order to apply.

Maitland Medical will notify UEL when an assessment has been made so that we can update our records. These records will be checked prior to your placements to ensure that you are fully cleared to attend.

Trainee teachers with special needs and/or disabilities are very successful on our programmes particularly when they disclose their needs before registration. If you do have a particular need or disability, we strongly encourage you to disclose this as soon as possible so that we can assess the level of support you may need and to which you are entitled.
Applicants who hold a degree or qualifications from a non-UK institution, must verify their equivalence through the National Recognition Information Centre for the UK (NARIC). Please go to for information on their services.
You can speak to a member of our Applicant Enquiries team on +44 (0)20 8223 3333, Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm. Alternatively, you can visit our Information, Advice and Guidance centre.

What you'll learn

The programme is structured around six theory modules that provide you with a comprehensive understanding of key topics in teacher training. You'll learn about fundamental skills such as lesson preparation, learner support and assessment, as well engaging in the wider socio/economic context of education, and understanding how to critically reflect on your practice.

  1. Preparing to teach in the lifelong learning sector (Reflective practice, classroom craft and planning)
    This module provides an introduction to teaching, learning and assessment to equip you with the skills, knowledge and ability to plan, prepare and deliver lessons. There will also be an opportunity to explore resources, including using ICT in your specialist area. The taught sessions are designed to provide you with a toolkit of skills and underpinning knowledge to encourage and enhance your self confidence at an early stage.

  2. Learner support in the lifelong learning sector: professional values and sector context
    In the lifelong learning sector student retention, achievement and progression are crucial issues for funding and quality assurance. The monitoring, tracking and recording of individual learner’s progress is essential. The successful support of individual learners through recruitment, selection and induction, onto the programme of study and progression to the next, is a core concern of institutions and individual teachers. In this module you will learn about these important institutional processes and develop the skills to support individual learners.

  3. Learning from policy context and practice
    PCET (or the learning and skills sector as it is often called) is undergoing an unprecedented period of change. An essential part of your professional knowledge as a new teacher is about the current debates, issues and policies which impact on the sector and your own practice. These debates encompass the values and interests of many diverse stakeholders. You will be encouraged to identify and critically review these debates. Issues related to social, linguistic and cultural diversity and the socio/economic factors which impact on learning will also be explored.

  4. Assessment and feedback in learning and teaching The post 16 curriculum and qualifications framework has significantly changed in the last few years, both for 16-19 year olds and for adult learners returning to study in Colleges or in the workplace. The module will also address assessment issues in detail, to enable you to critically review the purposes and fairness of assessment in your own teaching area. It will also consider the importance and methods of delivering quality feedback to learners in order to progress learning.  

  5. Active inquiry
    Reflective practitioners who take a critical professional approach to their teaching and learning, have the ability and willingness to engage in experimentation and reflection, and use the learning that ensues to develop excellence in practice. This module provides you with the opportunity to put your theoretical understanding into practice by devising and carrying out a small scale piece of action research, to delve deeper into an area of teaching and learning and in the process develop further strategies for professional learning and development.

  6. Portfolio of practice and professional learning
    Much is written about the need of teachers to be critically reflective practitioners. Learning to reflect honestly and effectively on our teaching is one of the hardest aspects of professional development. Reflective teaching means learning from our experiences, learning to question, challenge and change our practices in the light of that experience, and in the light of theory. You will learn how to evaluate your own lessons and how to set yourself targets for development and improvement.

What you'll study and when

We consistently review and develop our courses and modules to ensure they are up-to-date with sector and industry graduate skills demands. Course structure, modules and options are subject to change.

  • Preparing to teach in the lifelong learning sector (Reflective practice, classroom craft and planning) (core)
  • Learner support in the lifelong learning sector: professional values and sector context (core)
  • Learning from policy context and practice (core)
  • Assessment and feedback in learning and teaching (core)
  • Active inquiry (core)
  • Portfolio of practice and professional learning (core)

How you'll be assessed

There are two components of assessment: theory and practice.


Coursework in:

  1. Preparing to teach in the lifelong learning sector (Reflective practice, classroom craft and planning)
  2. Learner support in the lifelong learning sector: professional values and sector context
  3. Learning from policy context and practice
  4. Assessment and feedback in learning and teaching
  5. Active inquiry
  6. Portfolio of practice and professional learning

Teaching Practice:

You must teach for at least 100 hours across the programme and successfully pass 8 teaching observations.

There is no final exam; applicants build up a portfolio of professional practice that demonstrates evidence of their progress against the Professional Standards for Further Education teachers as they move through the programme.

Course specification

Your future career

This course gives you a practical qualification that ensures you meet the Professional Standard to teach lifelong and post-compulsory learners in a variety of contexts.

Many people continue to seek education after leaving school, whether they are adult learners looking for additional skills and qualifications, or younger students at a further education college - with this qualification you will be trained to teach across a variety of contexts, and will be equipped to find work in settings including:

  • Colleges of Further Education
  • Adult Learning Colleges/Centres
  • Community Learning Colleges/Centres
  • Prisons and Youth Offending Services
  • Sixth Form Colleges
  • Sixth Form Centres
  • Libraries

Your career opportunities will be diverse thanks to the wide applicability of the training and it can also be a steeping stone into other youth work, coaching and mentoring roles in different sectors.

Explore the different career options you can pursue with this degree and see the median salaries of the sector on our Career Coach portal

You may also be interested in

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Meet us in your country

Our international team travel overseas regularly to meet prospective students and attend recruitment fairs. Our academics also give regular lectures overseas and are happy to speak to prospective students. In addition, we have a large worldwide network of advisors who can provide guidance and support with applying to study at the University of East London.

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