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Primary Education (3-7) PGCE QTS

Course Description

This programme will develop you into a highly committed, creative and reflective teacher with Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). You will be training to teach children within Key Stage 1 and Early Years Foundation Stage (3-7). On successful completion, you will have achieved 60 credits at Masters’ Level (PGCE) and be recommended for and awarded Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).

The programme will develop your skills, knowledge and understanding such that you can demonstrate the professional standards for teaching required by the Department for Education and exceed the minimum expectations for each Standard.

You will spend a substantial part of the programme in school-based Placements in our Partnership schools, which will enable you to develop high levels of competence in practical teaching in a range of educational contexts. There are three assessed school-based Placements where you will be assessed against the Teachers’ Standards and submit a Record of Professional Evidence. You will also have the opportunity for self-organising a Placement in an alternative setting including a special school. You will have a trained mentor in each school-based Placement and a Personal Academic Tutor at the University to support your professional development.

Course content

The programme is structured to promote academic rigour, skilled practice, independence and flexibility. The emphasis in the programme reflects the KS1 national curiculum, Early Years Foundation Stage and national priorities. The programme develops your subject knowledge, pedagogical knowledge and leadership skills so that you can apply this through teaching in KS1 and EYFS classrooms. We work in partnership with schools across Northamptonshire and its neighbouring counties. This enables you to learn in a diverse range of schools. There are also opportunities for placements in Special Educational Needs (SEN) settings.

University Learning Events and three school placements. There are two compulsory modules at Level 7 which are worth 60 credits and can be used to contribute to a full MA in the future. The modules are Teaching, Learning and Assessment and Professional Studies.

Course modules (16/17)

-Professional Studies
-Placement 1, 2 and 3 Primary Education 3-7
-Teaching, Learning and Assessment

Methods of Learning

You are expected to engage with Learning Events through the active use of technological tools in the pre and post face to face sessions and online learning activities. You will be taught how to use technological tools to enhance your learning which you can then use in the classroom. You will be given time for independent and peer assisted learning. You will have a tutor for different subjects and professional studies.


Learning Events comprise of pre and post face to face sessions with tutors for groups or whole cohorts. During the University based days, you are expected to be available between 9-5pm. During School based days, you are expected to be in school between 8.20am and 4pm.


Assessment is continuous. You will engage in four assignments which will contribute towards your M Level Modules. Your teaching, including planning and assessment, is also assessed against the Teachers’ Standards. Partner schools share the responsibility for assessment during the practical teaching.

Facilities and Special Features

You will have access to the School Experience Library. This is an established and extensive set of resources specific for trainee teachers to support your placements and includes activities, big books and planning materials. “The quality of training is enhanced by the excellent resources at the University” (Ofsted 2014).


You will be recommended for Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) which is nationally recognised as the professional qualification for teachers. You will be assessed in teaching the 3-7 age range, thus giving you access to a teaching career in Key Stage 1 or EYFS.

Work Experience - We work in partnership with schools across Northamptonshire, its neighbouring counties and many schools across the country. This enables you to learn in range of schools. There are also opportunities for placements in Special Educational Needs (SEN) settings.

Other admission requirements

You will need to have a minimum of 5 GCSE passes at grade C or above and these must include Mathematics, English Language and Science. You must have these before applying. You must be interviewed and we will explore your suitability for teaching including undertaking DBS and Disqualification by Association.

Visit the Primary Education (3-7) PGCE QTS page on the University of Northampton website for more details!

Entry Requirements

You must hold an honours degree from a UK University (or equivalent) and whenever possible the classification should be a 2:1 or First. You will need to provide evidence, usually a school headed letter, of a minimum 10 days experience in a school/setting (within the last 2 years) in a mainstream school in KS1 or EYFS, which follows the National Curriculum, prior to application. We recommend gaining experience across both key stages. See course description for further admission details.

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