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PGCE (Primary)

Course Description

This programme aims to develop all the skills, knowledge and understanding you’ll need to become a responsible and effective teacher in your chosen age phase- http://www.gold.ac.uk/pgce/primary/

This full-time Primary PGCE (QTS) programme is available in conjunction with any of the following age phases:

3-7 year olds (Lower Primary)
5-11 year olds (Upper Primary) or
7-11 year olds (Upper Primary)

Why train with Goldsmiths?

We have a strong and longstanding partnership with a range of schools in London and south-east England and work closely with them to plan and implement our PGCE (Primary) programme.
In 2015 98% of student who were recommended for QTS with Goldsmiths were employed in schools. This figure is higher than the national average. Almost nine out of ten Goldsmiths graduates obtained teaching posts in London schools and about two thirds are employed within partnership schools.
The programme covers all the National Curriculum subjects, and in each curriculum area, you will have the opportunity to develop understanding of the teaching and learning process, and to learn about effective classroom practice
In addition, Core PGCE students will be able to choose from a range of enhancements as part of your training. These have been chosen through discussions with school partners and reflect what they are looking for in prospective NQTs.

These enhancements include:

Children Literature
Maths in Action
Modern Languages
Early years (Chosen at application)

We really care

We offer personalised support and enrichment activities for all of our students, as we recognise that this is a strong factors in helping them achieve their goals. Our students told Ofsted that the response they got from tutors is ‘amazing’, with help always forthcoming.

You will be prepared to enter the world of teaching

A recent Ofsted inspection found that trainee teachers at Goldsmiths were well prepared for the world of teaching, with exceptional subject knowledge across the curriculum.

Additional costs

You will have to cover your travel costs to your school placements. We produce reading packs electronically and in hard copy format. There’s a small charge for the hard copy reading packs. You may also be asked to contribute towards trips and some materials for your modules.

School Direct

It is also possible to study this course via our School Direct programme. Please visit our School Direct page to see which schools offer this subject.

Contact the department

If you have specific questions about the degree, contact Una Coyne.


Our integrated, dual pathway method of teaching means that for 24 weeks of this programme you will be working full-time in a school while being supported professionally by a system of school and personal tutoring.

During the Autumn Term and Spring Term you undertake block placements in a relevant age phase, and then in the Summer Term you will be given responsibility for the whole class. For the 3-7 age range programme, extra sessions relevant to teaching in the Foundation Stage are given.

Two modules are offered at Masters (M) level. These are Studies in Professional Issues and Research in Education (SPIRE) – a classroom-based research project with a pedagogic focus – and Curriculum Studies, which has an integrated focus in which there are a number of options. School Experience is offered at Higher (H) level.

For the award of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), you are also formally assessed on your competence in the classroom and your ability to meet Department for Education Professional Standards including computer-based tests in literacy and numeracy which are now a condition of entry to the programme.


We have been training teachers since 1904, and have established a reputation for excellence in this field

Educational Studies

We see education as a window through which to view the world, and as something with the power to define who we are and how we live

As a department we’re interested in seeing what education can tell us about the social, political and economic forces of our times. And what these forces mean for the everyday lives of individuals and groups.

We place a strong emphasis on active and collaborative learning, and we'll train you to become a reflective and socially conscious teacher.

Teaching placements

We have partnerships with many London schools, offering you the chance to gain teaching practice in socially mixed, multi-ethnic urban classrooms.


We offer a high level of support through a system of school and personal tutoring.


Staff in the department carry out world-leading research – we're ranked 8th in the UK for the quality of this research.**

**Research Excellence Framework 2014, Times Higher Education research intensity subject rankings

It delves into areas including culture and identity, gender, multilingualism, and youth cultures, and why we maintain a commitment to social justice and inclusion.

Learning & Teaching

A range of teaching methods are employed across the PGCE programmes, including:

• Taught subject sessions
• Taught General Professional Study sessions
• Practical workshops
• Core lectures
• Group tutorials/seminars
• Individual tutorials
• Individual and group presentations
• Supported self-study

As with the other PGCE courses, you’ll be given the opportunity to work with children in a wide range of contexts. These might include focused interventions with individuals or groups, or larger scale events for the community.

How to apply

You apply for this PGCE through the UCAS Teacher Training website. Our institution code is G56 GOLD.

Please take a look at the information on applying, including the specific qualifications or experience you need for this course.

There's no closing date for primary or secondary applications, but we advise you to apply early to avoid disappointment.


Please visit http://www.gold.ac.uk/pg/fees-funding/ for details.

Visit the PGCE (Primary) page on the Goldsmiths, University of London website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Choe Jones

125.gif Before embarking on my PGCE, I was told by my friends and colleagues that it would be the hardest thing that I would ever do – and they were not wrong! However, as well as being one of the hardest things I have ever done, it has also been one of the most life expanding and rewarding. It is amazing to look back now to the beginning of the course and see how far I have come in terms of my teaching knowledge and skills, and most importantly in terms of my own confidence in standing in front of a class of up to 30 children to teach them about the world. I have always believed in education as a fundamental right for all and this is a philosophy that is strongly upheld by Goldsmiths and one of the main reasons why I decided to train here. The values of equality and inclusion are implicit in all of the teaching on the course and I have especially benefited from the interesting and thought-provoking political debates encouraged by Goldsmiths on the British educational system and current educational philosophies. My decision to train as a teacher came after working for many years with both adults and young people in the field of Psychology. Directly prior to applying for my PGCE, I spent six months teaching English in a social project and primary school in Brazil with no official teacher training. It was this experience that made me decide to apply for the PGCE. I have always loved languages and was impressed by the opportunity offered by Goldsmiths to spend one month training abroad. I went to Foix in France and this has to be the main highlight of the course for me, not only did my language skills improve massively but I made real friends and developed my cultural awareness of an entirely different educational system.

I am now in my final placement, coming to the end of the course and really looking forward to embarking on my new career as a teacher and having my own class in September. I am well aware that this is only the beginning for me and can’t wait to take advantage of the opportunities that being a fully qualified teacher will bring in terms of employment, travel and most importantly in making a positive contribution and supporting others to achieve their full potential.


Banco Santander Scholarships - 7 Awards

In partnership with Banco Santander, Goldsmiths will be awarding seven scholarships to outstanding candidates from within the Santander Universidades network. Each scholarship provides a £5,000 fee waiver and is tenable for one year only.

Value of Scholarship(s)



Scholarships will be open to students applying to study a taught masters degree (excludes MRes and Masters by Research) in any discipline starting in September 2016. The countries targeted (although not exclusively, should exceptional candidates apply from other eligible countries*) will be:Mexico
* The Santander Universidades scheme covers institutions in Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Chile, China, Colombia, Germany, Ghana, Mexico, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Russia, Singapore, South Korea, Spain, United Arab Emirates, UK, Uruguay and USA.

Application Procedure

Your scholarship application should be completed online through your myGoldsmiths account. This is the online account that you created in order to apply for a course at Goldsmiths.As part of the application, you'll be asked to answer three questions relevant to the award that you are applying for.For more information, please see the Banco Santander Scholarships page.

Further Information



Goldsmiths Masters Scholarships - 20+ Awards

Please note that scholarship schemes and awards are subject to the availability of funds, and the details given here are subject to change at any time. we therefore encourage you to check this information regularly.

Value of Scholarship(s)



Home and EU students (full-time and part-time).

Application Procedure

Applications for 2015 entry are now closed.

Further Information


Entry Requirements

You should have an undergraduate honours degree eg. BA (Hons) or BSc (Hons), usually a 2:1 or above, from a university in the United Kingdom. You will have GCSE Grade C or above (or recognised equivalents) in English Language, Mathematics, and a science subject (including Combined Science). Please note that English Language proficiency exams such as TOEFL, IELTS or the Cambridge First or Advanced Certificates are not acceptable. Ideally, your degree is related to primary education – for example, English, Mathematics, Science, Art, Design and Technology, Geography, History, Music, PE, Child Development, Educational Studies or Early Childhood Education.

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