PGCE Primary with English
Cass School of Education and Communities
This primary teacher education course is designed for graduates who are committed to becoming primary school teachers. It trains you to teach children in the five-to-11 age range.
As a trainee, you will learn how to teach the entire primary curriculum as well as choosing a particular route. The English route will give you the extra skills, knowledge and confidence to take on a leadership role in the subject in the future.
East London offers multicultural, multilingual and vibrant schools in which to learn, but your training at UEL will qualify you to teach anywhere in England or Wales.
Our PGCE team is made up of experienced practitioners who have worked in a range of primary and early years settings across London as classroom teachers, curriculum coordinators, advisory teachers and school leaders.
You will be part of a diverse community of students at UEL. We want 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 men.
Primary PGCE student, 2014-2015
Studying at UEL has given me the opportunity to encourage, develop and support moments of creativity in children that I know I will remember throughout my career. Their approach in guiding their students is what has helped and inspired me throughout this year – something that I am eternally grateful for.
All applicants MUST have GCSE English, Maths and Science grade A*-C.
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.
Everyone on the Primary PGCE learns how to teach the whole curriculum. You will also have extra sessions designed to help you teach English.
You will learn about creativity and innovation in engaging children in meaningful writing and reading for pleasure and you will learn to think critically about the role of English in the curriculum.
“You grow to expect the unexpected in east London. When the unexpected confronts you in your teaching career, you’ll be ready,” says Andrew Read, Head of Primary Initial Teacher Education.
“You get a rich experience in east London, in particular working with pupils from minority ethnic backgrounds and pupils for whom English is an additional language.”
What you'll study
- Learning and teaching across the curriculum and effective pedagogy (core)
- Developing and extending understanding of a specific area/subject (English) (core)
- Professional practice: inclusive practice in multicultural urban settings(core)
- Developing Understanding and Skills in English and Mathematics (core)
- Managing Professional Change and Development : active inquiry leading to classroom intervention (option)
- Critical Incidents in Teaching (core)
- Technology-enhanced Learning (core)
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 that contribute to your understanding of teaching and learning and carry academic credit, leading to the award of a PGCE.
You will complete two Level 7 (master’s level) assignments. For both of these you will need to read and understand literature about good practice and then think and write about your own practice. The 60 Level 7 credits will contribute to the PGCE award.Course specification
How you'll learn
There will be one keynote lecture per week, with follow-up seminars in which you will discuss aspects of teaching, such as behaviour management and pupil progress, with your fellow trainees.
During this initial period, Mondays will be spent in schools observing. Here, you will develop your understanding of learning and teaching by watching examples of good or outstanding practice.
For the English route, there are also taught sessions, self-study tasks and observations in school in addition to your PGCE tasks.
You will work on group presentations and come up with a rationale for a book to be included in our London Picture Books Collection.
You can also join a shared wiki space, where members of the group will be able to keep in touch, upload tasks and share resources.
There are three blocks of full-time school-based training on the course, each eight weeks long. Your first teaching placement will usually start in the middle of October.
Your tutors will decide where you go on placement and arrange for it to be as convenient as possible for you. You will be teaching, not helping, on the placement. You will start off working with groups of pupils but your role is not to help the teacher – it is to support and increase the pupils’ learning.
You will have a school-based mentor (a teacher employed by the school) as well as a professional tutor from UEL, who will visit you during each placement. This is partly to moderate and assess the quality of your work, but also to give you support, guidance and feedback.
In principle, your three placements will be in different schools. However, schools sometimes ask for trainees to return for a second placement.
Your future career
Schools and local authorities have told us that they think our trainees are of a high standard. OFSTED’s 2012 inspection report quotes one school as saying, “They arrive in schools ready to start teaching and are well prepared for the rigours of the classroom.”
Backed by UEL’s excellent reputation, you will have a head start when it comes to securing a teaching post.
You will not leave this course ready to apply for a job as a Literacy Coordinator in school but it should inspire you to pursue this role in the future.
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 UEL.
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