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Professional Certificate in Education (PCET) - Pre-Service Certificate

Course content

Want to share your knowledge and experience by teaching young people and adults? This part-time course will provide you with the necessary qualifications to teach in the post-compulsory education and training sector.

Course overview

This PCET course is popular with graduates whose degree subjects are not widely taught in secondary school, such as sports science, health and social care, psychology and dance.

The part-time pre-service PCET is designed for professionals who want to share their knowledge and help others fulfil their potential, while combining study with work and family commitments.

Benefit from a minimum of 50 hours teaching practice per year in the learning and skills sector. This is a valuable opportunity to design, deliver, assess and evaluate teaching and learning, under the guidance of a mentor in your specialist subject area. Please note you will be expected to pay travel and subsistence costs relating to placements.

According to the 2015 Ofsted inspection, “the training of good-quality further education and skills teachers enables them to make a valued contribution to the colleges and settings in which they work”.

The course is directly informed by the national and international research of the teaching team and benefits from its direct link to SUNCETT, our Centre for Excellence in Teacher Training.

This pre-service course is for graduates who don’t have previous experience of teaching. If you are already employed in the PCET sector, we also offer an in-service part-time PCET course.

Course content

This course provides taught elements to guide and develop your practical teaching and make progress with your professional development. Modules on this course include:
Theory-based modules
-Preparing to Teach in the Lifelong Learning Sector (20 Credits)
-Developing Theories of Teaching, Learning and Assessment in Post-Compulsory Education and Training (20 Credits)
-Contextualising Policy and Curriculum in Post-Compulsory Education and Training (20 Credits)
-Enhancing Subject Specialist Learning through Innovation and Change in Post-Compulsory Education and Training (20 Credits)

Practice-based modules
-Practical Teaching and Professional Development (20 Credits)
-Advanced Subject Specialist Teaching and Professional Development (20 Credits)

Teaching and assessment

Contact time is four hours per week in an encouraging and productive learning environment.

A team of highly experienced and research-active teachers and teacher-educators will help you develop your knowledge and refine your teacher practice. According to the Ofsted 2015 report “trainees benefit from highly qualified research leaders in further education who enable trainees to focus on academic rigour to improve the practice of teaching.”

We use a wide variety of teaching and learning methods which include interactive teaching, classroom seminars, tutorials, directed learning and group work and practical teaching workshops. Assessment methods include assignments, seminars, presentations and formative and summatively assessed observations of teaching.

Facilities & location

Sunderland has excellent facilities that have been boosted by multi-million pound redevelopments.

Course location
The course is based at the Forster Building on City Campus, just a few minutes from the main Murray Library and close to Sunderland city centre. Sunderland is a very vibrant and supportive environment with excellent resources for teaching and learning.

University Library Services
We’ve got thousands of books and e-books related to social studies, with many more titles available through the inter-library loan service. We also subscribe to a comprehensive range of print and electronic journals so you can access the most reliable and up-to-date academic and industry articles.

Some of the most important sources for your course include:
-Project Muse, which provides over 180 full-text humanities and social sciences journals
-JSTOR (short for ‘Journal Storage’), which provides access to important journals in the humanities, social sciences and sciences
-Lexis, which provides access to legal information as well as full-text newspaper articles
-Professional Development Collection, which features hundreds of education journals and reports
-Psychology and Behavioural Sciences Database, which includes full-text journal articles on topics spanning emotional and behavioural sciences, psychiatry and psychology
-Community Care Inform, which helps professionals who work with children and young people to make, and evidence, their decisions
-EBSCO Professional Development Collection, which is a specialised collection of over 500 education journals

IT provision
When it comes to IT provision you can take your pick from hundreds of PCs as well as Apple Macs in the David Goldman Informatics Centre and St Peter’s Library. There are also free WiFi zones throughout the campus. If you have any problems, just ask the friendly helpdesk team.

Employment & careers

This course is a route into teaching, which can be a rewarding career with excellent job security. According to the University and College Union (UCU), typical salary at advanced teacher and training level is £40,000.

Your new qualification can open prospects throughout the post-compulsory sector and many institutions provide full-time employment to students after completing their teaching practice.

Eight of the top ten occupations are related to education, including teachers and teaching assistants (HECA 2014). Graduates of this course have been employed in the following areas:
-Adult and compulsory education centres
-Sixth Form colleges
-General or specialist college of further education
-Prison and youth offender organisations
-Commercial and voluntary sector training

This course is also excellent preparation for continuing your studies via our Education MA.

Visit the Professional Certificate in Education (PCET) - Pre-Service Certificate page on the University of Sunderland website for more details!

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