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Course Content

Course content

The Secondary Postgraduate Certificate in Education is a one academic year (36 week) course that trains graduates to be secondary school teachers of Mathematics.

The PGCE programme has been designed to train teachers to practice as a subject specialist teacher for the secondary age range (11-16). Trainees are assessed against the standards for Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) across the age range. Trainees will also often gain experience of the 16-18 age range, although they will not be formally assessed in this phase.

Course detail

The course is active and practical allowing trainees to develop professional competence through work undertaken in schools and in the University. Trainees work with young people, develop their expertise in their specialist subject area, share and discuss educational issues and study relevant educational research. The course is just the beginning of what we hope will be a process of continual professional development throughout a challenging and rewarding career.

This is a recently added PGCE Secondary strand at UWE, run from September 2008. Teachers completing this route will be in a very strong position to gain employment. In the current climate of under-recruitment to mathematics teaching this course will enable participants to train to teach this shortage subject as well as being able to draw upon their knowledge of a Business/Economic/Finance degree.


The course is part of the Department of Education's programme for Initial Teacher Training. Units studied are:

• Enabling Learning
• Meeting Curriculum Challenges
• Becoming a Teacher

These units are studied in both the school and the University-based parts of the course, the work on each site being complementary.

This course will prepare you for teaching mathematics across the 11-16 age range, at Key Stages 3 and 4/GCSE. It will also prepare you to teach Business Education in school to young people in the 14-19 age range, including at GCSE and A level.

Throughout the course you will need to work at developing your personal subject knowledge in mathematics, business and ICT. Trainees will also learn about how best to teach, explain, demonstrate, connect, and bring to life these subjects for pupils. During subject sessions at UWE, you will be introduced to ideas and resources for teaching, see a variety of teaching approaches and learning activities, observe and evaluate videos of lessons, be introduced to how to plan for effective learning, and spend time discussing the many issues relating to learning. You will also gain experience of the real-life community and business contexts where these subjects are applied.


We recognise that embarking on a new course of study can sometimes be quite a challenging undertaking. Students have three main sources of support and information from the University during the course: firstly there is the Group Tutor in their subject area, secondly each student is allocated a Personal Tutor and thirdly any student can get support on a range of issues from the Department Student Adviser.


A substantial proportion of the PGCE course is spent in school, learning about the school environment, observing and teaching. You will gain teaching experience in two complementary school/college placements. You will be supported by a Subject Mentor and a Senior Professional Tutor.

These staff and other teachers and colleagues within the school will support you in your learning to teach, assess, and manage classes. You will have the opportunity to enhance your experiences of working with young people further during the PGCE year in UWE and through your school placements, for example by taking part in master-classes and other activities with pupils from Partnership schools, by attending educational visits, working with young people in out-of-school contexts, or by participating in cross-curricular and extra-curricular activities.


In order to pass the course, trainees are required to pass each unit. They are assessed on a number of written assignments and also on classroom practice against the standards specified by the Secretary of State for the award of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).

Careers / Further study

The Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) programmes now include 40 credits of assessment at Master's Level (Level M). For candidates who opt not to attempt the requisite credit at Level M, a Professional Graduate Certificate in Education will be available as an alternative award.

How to apply

Information on applications can be found at the following link: http://www1.uwe.ac.uk/study/applyingtouwebristol/postgraduateapplications.aspx


- New Postgraduate Master's loans for 2016/17 academic year –

The government are introducing a master’s loan scheme, whereby master’s students under 60 can access a loan of up to £10,000 as a contribution towards the cost of their study. This is part of the government’s long-term commitment to enhance support for postgraduate study.

Scholarships and other sources of funding are also available.

More information can be found here: http://www1.uwe.ac.uk/students/feesandfunding/fundingandscholarships/postgraduatefunding.aspx

Visit the PGCE Secondary Education, Mathematics with Business Education page on the University of the West of England, Bristol website for more details!





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