Search for courses or information

PGCE Primary with Music

Course overview

Start date

September 2018

Subject area

Cass School of Education and Communities




On campus

Course summary

Our primary teacher education courses are designed for graduates who are committed to becoming primary school teachers. 

All trainees learn how to teach the entire primary curriculum as well as choosing a particular route. The Primary PGCE with Music route gives you additional expertise in supporting the teaching and learning of music. It is not essential to be a musician, but you should feel strongly about the important role of music in primary schools. 

East London offers multicultural, multilingual and particularly vibrant schools in which to train, but your training at UEL will qualify you to teach anywhere in England or Wales.

UEL’s PGCE team is made up of experienced primary practitioners who have worked in a range of primary and Early Years settings across London as classroom teachers, curriculum co-ordinators, advisory teachers and school leaders.

At UEL you will be part of a diverse community of students. Part of our mission is to bring to east London a teacher workforce that reflects the local community and in 2013-14, 24 per cent of our Primary PGCE trainees were male.

Contact us

If you have any questions, talk to a member of our Applicant Enquiries team on +44 (0) 20 8223 3333 or email

Get in touch
Enquire Visit UEL

Entry requirements

Minimum 2:2 Honours

All applicants MUST have GCSE English, Maths and Science grade A*-C.


(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.


The entire interview process lasts about three hours. During the interview you will be asked to talk about a current educational issue.  Please ensure you have done some research into current educational issues in advance of the interview.  You could, for example, read recent editions of the Times Educational Supplement. 

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 Primary PGCE 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.

Applicants must pass a Skills Test in Literacy and Numeracy prior to starting the course.

Please look at for more information.

You will need to demonstrate through the application form and at interview that you:

  • can read effectively and are able to communicate clearly and accurately in standard English
  • possess the appropriate qualities, attitudes and values expected of a teacher
  • have the intellectual and academic capabilities needed to meet the Teachers’ Standards

The process of selection will involve:

  • scrutiny of the GTTR form
  • an English task
  • a mathematics task
  • an assessed collaborative activity

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 PGCE programme, you will be required to have a satisfactory Disclosure & Barring Service Enhanced Disclosure Certificate. You will be contacted directly by the UEL Applicant Checks Officer in the Admissions Office with further details of the process and a disclosure application form.

School Direct Salaried trainees must complete a DBS application with your employing school and also get health clearance from your employing school.

You need to complete this check before you start the programme because you cannot go on any school visit if your form has not been returned.

Trainee teachers can refer to the attached UCET guidance  and the Guide to Disclosure and Health Screening Procedures relating to DBS checks and teacher trainees.

Further details can be obtained by emailing the Applicant Checks Officer at

It is a legal requirement that you are assessed as fit to teach in order to be given an unconditional offer on our programmes. Teaching is a demanding activity and there are fitness requirements set by the Department for Education for applicants to teacher training.  

Maitland Medical undertakes the screening process for physical and mental fitness to teach. An online questionnaire must be completed and a fee of £55.00 must be paid upon submission. You will need to contact Maitland Medical at or phone 0208 295 8250 if you need a paper questionnaire or guidance on the process. Full submission and payment details are included on the questionnaire.

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.

Trainee teachers can refer to the attached UCET guidance  and the Guide to Disclosure and Health Screening Procedures relating to DBS checks and teacher trainees.

Further details can be obtained by emailing the Applicant Checks Officer at

Applicants who have not obtained a GCSE award via a recognised exam board such as AQA, Pearson Edexcel or OCR will need to sit a recognised equivalency test. You will have the option to state if you are applying for an Equivalency Exam on your UCAS application.

UEL equivalency test

Applicants holding an offer at UEL conditional on GCSE English, Maths or Science will have the option of sitting our internal GCSE Equivalency Test. The Equivalency Tests are valid for our institution and PGCE programmes only. Employers may not accept in lieu of a full GCSE qualification award.

Further information (including available dates, cost and how to book) will be sent if we can offer you a place.

A Star Teacher’s Equivalency Exam

A Star Teachers offer a number of equivalency tests – Further information is available at

Non-UK qualifications

GCSE equivalent qualifications taken outside the UK will be assessed in line with NARIC and NCTL guidance.

If you hold a degree or qualifications from a non-UK institution, you 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. Please click here for details.

What you'll learn

You will learn how to be a primary class teacher. By the end of the year, you will understand how to teach the entire primary curriculum to a class of 30 pupils, and be confident and competent in doing so.

You will leave the course with outstanding subject knowledge across the curriculum. You will have an understanding of how to plan and deliver engaging and motivating lessons and how to support your pupils’ progress.

You will learn how to identify the strength and needs of your pupils and make sure that everyone in your class is included and challenged.

You are going to understand how to assess pupils’ learning, how to spot the gaps in their learning and how to plan to fill those gaps. You will be equipped with a range of strategies to keep pupils enthused, engaged and motivated.

Everyone on the Primary PGCE learns how to teach the whole curriculum. We will give you the confidence and skills you need to teach every subject.

You will also have extra sessions that enhance your knowledge and understanding of teaching music in primary schools. 

You will be able to think critically about the role of music in schools. You will learn what resources – the technology, the instruments, the outside agencies – are available to support music teaching, and how to evaluate them. 

You will also develop your own musical skills and learn how to engage pupils in making music.

What you'll study and when

[Foundation courses]

How you'll be assessed

You are assessed against the Teachers’ Standards, leading to recommendation for Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). You also have to complete assignments, contributing to your understanding of teaching and learning and carrying academic credit, leading to the award of a PGCE.  At the end of the course, when you have met the Teachers’ Standards and completed the assignments we will recommend you for Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) and award you the PGCE.

You will complete two Level 7 (Master’s Level) assignments.  Both of these will require you to think about your own practice in the classroom.  You will need to read and understand literature that talks about ‘good practice’ and you will be expected to write about your own practice in the light of this literature.  The 60 Level 7 credits will contribute to the PGCE award.

Your future career

By working alongside schools and local authorities in our region, we are helping to meet the need for teachers in our local area and many of our students are offered posts by our partner schools. Some trainees have been offered jobs at schools where they have spent their placement.

Backed by our good reputation, you will have a head start when it comes to securing a teaching post.

And when you are in a post and decide that you wish to take your academic qualifications further, we can help you to continue your academic and professional development.

Your PGCE will earn you 60 master’s level credits, which can count towards further qualifications on master’s courses at the University of East London.

You may also be interested in

  • Why study at UEL?

  • Open Evenings

  • Accommodation

  • Applying to UEL

  • Your offer

Related courses

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.

Visit Country Pages