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PGCE Secondary Education Science: Physics

Course Description

Are you passionate about helping young people to explore the fascinating world of physics? Do you want to be key in enabling them to understand how physics is fundamental to everyday life and isn’t as hard to understand as its reputation might lead them to believe? If so, our PGCE Secondary Physics is for you.

What's covered in the course?

Our aim is to help you become a committed, confident and creative teacher so we’ll train you in the essential tools you need to kick-start your career in education. You’ll look at strategies and techniques to make the subject accessible, whether you’re leading practical experiments in electricity or introducing topics like astrophysics and nuclear physics.

As you progress, you’ll increase your ability to handle the ever-evolving teaching environment, and by the time your course is complete, you’ll be in a position to continue developing your understanding, knowledge and skills throughout your professional life.

After interview you may be advised you need to take a funded Subject Knowledge Enhancement (SKE) course, which we offer over 16 weeks, before you start your PGCE.

Assignments and school-centred activities are structured around the development of your School Experience Progress Journal (SEPJ) which demonstrates your progress against the nationally agreed competences (the Teachers’ Standards), which all teachers must meet throughout their career. A system of continuous review and assessment of progress in the SEPJ will support your growing ability to take responsibility for your own development.

Why Choose Us?

  • At least 120 days across a minimum of two placements, in line with the National College for Teaching and Learning (NCTL) requirements, supported by a subject mentor in your school and a personal development tutor at the University.
  • If you have a minimum of a 2:2 in your undergraduate degree, or a Master's or PhD, in a relevant subject, you may be eligible for a bursary from the NCTLFor 2017 entry this bursary is £25,000 if you have a 2:2 or 2:1, or a Master’s. A higher level bursary of £30,000 may be available if you have a First or PhD, or as a scholarship from the Institute of Physics (IOP) (subject to ability and meeting application deadlines).
  • We’re proud of our high employability rates, with 100 per cent of students in employment or further study six months after completing this course (latest DLHE survey report 2015/16).
  • If you accept an offer from us you’ll be able to take part in our free Skills Test ‘bootcamps’ to make sure you’re ready to start your PGCE in September.
  • You'll gain Master's level credits gained as part of this course that you can then use towards a full Master's degree, such as our Master’s in Teaching and Learning or Educational Leadership.

Entry requirements

You must have a good degree (minimum 2:2 but 2:1 or 1st preferred) from a UK higher education institution or equivalent, with a significant physics or physics-related content, for example from engineering disciplines or materials science. You must have a GCSE grade C or above (or equivalent) in both English language and mathematics prior to application and if you are offered an interview you will take a written test to assess your standard of English.

For entry onto a teaching course you will also be required to pass the Skills Tests in Literacy and Numeracy.

There is an expectation that you will have had some general experience of working with secondary age students in a school setting. In preparation for the selection interview stage of the recruitment process you are required to engage in a teaching episode, observed by an experienced qualified teacher.

As part of the selection procedure, the interview panel will expect you to demonstrate your knowledge of physical sciences and will assess personal qualities such as the potential to relate well to secondary age students, enthusiasm, sensitivity, communication skills and robustness and resilience for teaching.

Applicants must also meet The National College for Teaching and Leadership requirements for initial teacher training, which means being medically fit and successfully completing an enhanced disclosure via the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).

How to apply

All applications need to be made via the UCAS Teacher Training website.

Course code: 32XR

Visit the PGCE Secondary Education Science: Physics page on the Birmingham City University website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Andy Carter

2127.jpg I chose Birmingham City University to study my PGCE in Secondary Science because it is very highly regarded for its teacher training courses and the campus is very friendly. It is also well located for transport links both into the city centre and further afield, and it has a very good connection with local schools. After meeting several faculty members on open days and during my interview I felt sure the University was going to be an excellent place for me to complete my teaching qualification.

The lecturers are fantastic and gave me lots of guidance about the course based on their own practical experiences of teaching. This experience is often drawn upon in lectures and helps to deliver engaging lessons in a whole variety of subjects. The University’s education building also has several fully equipped classrooms so students can learn in an environment similar to what they will be teaching in.

Throughout the course students take part in a number of school placements and they are a really important aspect of the course. The University has many connections to local schools as well as those further afield, and when students are on a placement the faculty are in close contact with both the student and the placement staff to ensure it is all going smoothly.

Birmingham is a great place to live, there’s a thriving music scene with an array of different genres available, lots of restaurants and bars in the centre and on the outskirts, as well as some great galleries and museums for those rainy days. Birmingham has excellent transport links with the rest of the country as it has three train stations, meaning you're only a couple of hours from lots of other big cities like London or Manchester and get can to most of the major cities directly. I love Birmingham and hope to be employed here after I graduate.


Entry Requirements

You must have a good degree, minimum 2.2 but 2.1 or 1st preferred, from a UK higher education institution or equivalent, with a significant physics or physics-related content.

Last Updated

18 August 2017

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