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Course content

The Primary PGCE course provides a popular route for high quality graduates wishing to achieve Qualified Teacher Status. This is an intense, stimulating and challenging course, designed to develop and extend professional skills and understanding. Delivered in a creative mix of university and school based modules, students gain a deep and broad knowledge of learning and teaching across the primary age range.

The South West Wales Centre of Teacher Education has excellent graduate employment rates with 99% of graduates going into employment or further study (DLHE 14/15).

Course Overview

Thank you for your interest in this programme. We are proud of our long tradition of training students to become high quality practitioners, and we seek to recruit high quality, committed students who are keen to make a positive difference to the educational experiences of primary school children.The South West Wales Centre of Teacher Education (SWWCTE) is part of the University of Wales Trinity Saint David.

The Primary PGCE programmes (General Primary (Lower) and General Primary (Upper)) are designed to prepare students for a career in teaching.

The PGCE is a full-time, intensive vocational programme, suitable for those wishing to train to teach, inspire and enthuse primary aged children, helping them to make excellent progress in learning. The course offers rich opportunities for personal development, as students embark upon the first stages of a career which is challenging, fulfilling and rewarding.

The sessions both in school and at the University are intended to involve students in a range of experiences, which are carefully planned to increase understanding of learning and teaching across the Primary curriculum. There is a focus on developing personal reflective skills, and in engaging with current educational research in order to develop students as knowledgeable and effective practitioners.

The university element adopts a modular structure and teaching takes a blended learning approach including lead lectures, group seminars, tutorials, independent study and directed activities using the virtual learning environment (moodle).

Professional Teaching Experiences take place in a variety of educational contexts. Students build confidence and expertise, culminating in taking responsibility for planning, teaching and assessing a class of children in their chosen phase for a sustained period of time.

In our most recent inspection, Estyn (the Welsh educational inspectorate) praised the Centre’s innovative use of teaching approaches such as Problem-based learning, which forms a core element of the professional studies module.

Key Features

The primary PGCE programme at Swansea sets high expectations of its students and is run jointly between the University and partnership schools across the South Wales region. Programme tutors are knowledgeable and skilful qualified teachers. They possess a wide range of experience and expertise in key curriculum areas and other fields such as literacy, numeracy, ICT, inclusion, Welsh medium studies, humanities, early years, performing arts, bilingualism, PE, RE, thinking skills and more!

Tutors provide excellent pastoral and academic support to ensure that students receive the individual guidance and challenge required to make excellent progress.

During the Programme students study a breadth of subjects, areas of learning and professional matters.


In order to complete the programme successfully and meet national standards, students must pass both the practical teaching and written elements of the programme. Practical teaching competence will be assessed by teachers in schools, in conjunction with the university tutor.

University assessments currently include essays, portfolio tasks, presentations and research reports. The programme currently offers 40 level 7 credits at Masters level.

We seek to recruit students who are committed to developing their personal skills and knowledge throughout their studies. Students’ personal literacy and numeracy skills will be regularly audited and monitored throughout the programme. It is a requirement of Welsh Government that literacy skills are measured on exit and judged to be proficient for professional practice. Students complete an exit audit and submit a portfolio of evidence to meet this requirement. A pass grade is mandatory.

This programme is subject to change in response to Government policy.

Career Opportunities

The South West Wales Centre of Teacher Education has excellent graduate employment rates with 99% of graduates going into employment or further study (DLHE 14/15).

Many school and college departments, both locally and nationally, are staffed with several of our teachers and many of our trainees have gone on to forge successful teaching careers at strategic, professional and management levels at home and abroad.

Our PGCE graduates usually remain in close touch with us as they make their careers in the teaching profession and they often become Subject Mentors on the programme. This creates a very strong, sustainable professional network of teachers which is a rich source of continuing professional development.

Recently our PGCE Design and Technology graduates have gone on to work as Secondary teachers in many independent and state schools in Wales, England and abroad including (but not limited) to:

Bynea County Primary School (Llanelli), Neath Port Talbot County Council, Ysgol y Felin (Llanelli), St. Dogmaels School (Pembrokeshire), Ysgol Gynradd Gymraeg Caerffili, Abersychan Brynteg Nursery School (Pontypool), St. Micahael's Church of England Primary School (Highgate), Pembrokeshire County Council, Cardiff Council, Saint Josephs Junior School (Port Talbot), Shropshire Council, Easton Church of England Academy (Bristol), Wilnecote High School (Tamworth), Maes Yr Haul Primary School (Cardiff), Llwyswen School (Brecon), Dunvant Primary School (Swansea).

Visit the PGCE Primary with QTS - PGCE page on the University of Wales, Trinity Saint David website for more details!




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