Primary Education at Winchester provides students with the opportunity to gain a degree and recommendation of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) at the same time. The programme is constantly reviewed to ensure students are equipped with the most up-to-date developments in primary education. The University has a strong reputation for teacher training. In 2010, Ofsted judged the provision as 'Outstanding', stating that students “display impressive levels of confidence and understanding about how to be effective teachers”.
Programme Content MEd (Hons) Primary Education aims to produce critically reflective practitioners able to understand the complexities and tensions in providing education for the twenty-first century, whilst ensuring compliance with the latest requirements of the Department for Education.
The breadth of the programme covering the core curriculum subjects, full range of foundation subjects and specialist subject study ensures that the programme is demanding but thorough and meets the needs of primary schools.
In Year 2, Semester 2, students have the opportunity to select a three- or four-year route. They will be supported in their decisions at this stage. This allows students time to experience both the taught programme and teaching in schools before selection, and addresses personal preferences for both academic and professional development opportunities.
The four-year route is also available to students who wish to enhance and enrich their professional practice and achieve QTS in Year 4. The fourth year is an opportunity to gain up to 120 Level 7 Masters Credits, which, if achieved, qualifies students for the award of MEd before taking up employment in a first teaching post. If students select the four-year route, the Honours classification of their award will be determined by their achievements in the final two years.
The programme aims are addressed through three key interdisciplinary themes, chosen for their relevance to the graduate primary teacher: - Identity - Perspectives - Relationships
The three interrelated themes provide a unifying structure, to a professional educational programme, which combines the development of effective and skilled practice with analytical awareness. The programme's approach is underpinned by consideration of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. Students are nurtured to reflect on their educational values as they develop into enthusiastic, creative and respectful educators, equipped to engage with wider aspects of schooling such as citizenship and sustainability.
Students are prepared to teach primary school children. They follow a core programme that includes both theoretical and practical issues relating to teaching in primary schools.
- Professional Studies encourages students to consider theoretical underpinnings of education and how they impact on children's learning and teachers' practice.
- Curriculum Studies explores the range of subjects taught in primary schools and the discrete and interrelated aspects of a broad and balanced curriculum.
- School-based Experiences include a variety of placements organised by the University which are supported through University and school-based staff to ensure the growth and development of skilled practitioners. The University has an ever-widening partnership of schools, which give students excellent opportunities to undertake school experiences within and beyond the region. Placements are developmental and progressive ranging from short visits to sustained placements in educational settings. Students are also encouraged to arrange additional self-directed placements in settings such as museums, galleries and residential centres to augment their range of experience - overseas placements are possible. This ability to personalise a professional portfolio in both breadth and depth enables students to meet their own needs and follow areas of particular interest.
- Specialist Subject Studies Specialist Subjects allow study of a chosen area in greater depth and enable future contributions to the development of the subject either as a member of teaching staff or as a subject leader within an early years setting or primary school. This programme offers a wide choice of specialisms, the indicative range includes Art, Early Years, English, French, Geography, History, ICT, Mathematics, Music, Physical Education, Religious Education, Science and Special Educational Needs. Students who follow the Early Years specialism engage in modules that explore the development of young children (3-7 years).
See the website http://www.winchester.ac.uk/Studyhere/Pages/med-hons-primary-education-with-recommendation-for-qualified-teacher-status-4-years.aspx
Learning and Teaching The MEd course has both academic and professional requirements. Although the majority of placement hours are reflected in the block placement modules, every module has applied hours that enable students to relate theory to practice. These applied hours are allocated to each module as placement related activity to reinforce the links between theory and practice; in some cases they are not additional placements, while in some others they are direct experiences in school, for example, to enhance specific curriculum areas. Generally, students are timetabled for most days of the week, although not always for the whole day. During school placements, students are required to match the class teacher hours, being at the school for up to nine hours per day and doing further follow up work prior to the next day. MEd students are required to complete additional self-directed placements outside of normal University terms or during their non-timetabled periods
The University aims to shape 'confident learners' by enabling students to develop the skills to excel in their studies here and be transferable to further studies or the employment market. Staff and students form a community of learners who, together and independently, seek to generate and exchange knowledge. Over the duration of the course, students develop independent and critical learning, building confidence and expertise progressively through independent and collaborative research, problem solving, and analysis with the support of staff. Students take responsibility for their own learning and are encouraged to make use of the wide range of available learning resources available.
In addition to the formally scheduled contact time (i.e. lectures, seminars etc), students are encouraged to access academic support from staff within the course team, personal tutors and the wide range of services to students within the University.
A key feature of the student experience is the close relationship between University based and school based learning. Ofsted commend this coherence and consider “the overall effectiveness of the provider is outstanding because the training, assessment and quality of the provision across the partnership are of the highest quality, enabling trainees on all programmes to make excellent progress and to achieve consistently good or outstanding results.”
Assessment At the University of Winchester validated programmes may adopt a range of means of assessing your learning. An indicative, and not necessarily comprehensive, list of assessment types you might encounter includes essays, portfolios, supervised independent work, presentations, written exams, or practical performances. The University is committed to ensuring that all students have an equal opportunity to achieve module learning outcomes. As such, where appropriate and necessary, students with recognised disabilities may have alternative assignments set that continue to test how successfully they have met the module's learning outcomes. Further details on assessment types used in the programme you are interested in can be found on the course page, by attending an Open Day/Evening, or contacting our teaching staff.
Careers Winchester Initial Teacher Education graduates have a high employment rate and are well respected in the region and beyond. A programme of preparation for applying for teaching posts is held annually for students in their final year. Most students take up a position in teaching, although some pursue other careers using the range of transferable skills gained during study.
At the University of Winchester, we are committed to ensuring all our students gain employability skills to enable you to enter graduate level jobs and pursue the profession of your choice.
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