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Course content

Sunderland has offered teacher training since 1908.

Course overview

This course is for people who need to improve their science subject understanding before starting a one-year Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) course.

The structure of the course will vary according to whether you want to teach chemistry, physics or another science. You should have at least an A Level in the science subject that you intend to teach, and, you should have already received a conditional offer for initial teacher training (ITT). You will complete this preparatory course ready for starting ITT in September.

When you successfully complete your ITT, your career prospects will be very good. There is a national shortage of science teachers, particularly in physics and chemistry. So there are excellent job opportunities both in the North East and throughout the country.

Sunderland has a heritage of teacher training which dates back to 1908. What’s more, we’re one of only a small number of teacher-training institutions in the UK offering a broad range of science.

There is no tuition fee for this course, and you will be paid a bursary while you are studying.

Course content

This course enhances your skills and knowledge in science education, preparing you for teacher training.

You will complete a series of units which will equip you with essential subject knowledge, ahead of a one-year initial teacher training (ITT) course. This course runs for up to 36 weeks and will complete in time to ensure that you are ready to start your ITT in September.

Teaching and assessment

We use a wide variety of teaching and learning methods that include lectures, independent work, distance learning, directed tasks, written assignments and presentations. We encourage you to undertake voluntary work experience in a school.

Facilities & location

The University of Sunderland has excellent facilities that help you realise your full potential.

Course location
The course is a blend of on campus and distance learning. When on Campus you will be based in Forster Building on City Campus, just a few minutes from the main Murray Library and close to Sunderland city centre. It’s 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 on education topics, with many more titles available through the inter-library loan service. We also subscribe to a comprehensive range of print and electronic journals. Resources include the EBSCO Professional Development Collection, which is a specialised collection of over 500 education journals.

Learning Environment
Sunderland has a rich heritage in scientific studies. We are fully plugged into relevant industry bodies, with strong links and an exchange of ideas and people. Our vibrant learning environment helps ensure a steady stream of scientists who are well-trained and ready to contribute in a variety of fields.

Employment & careers

There is currently a shortage of science teachers, and so there are excellent career opportunities both in the North East and nationwide, once you have Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).

This course enhances your subject knowledge, making it easier to complete a PGCE and achieve QTS. The starting salary of an NQT is over £22,000, with extra if you work in London. Teachers see their salaries rise by an average of 30 per cent after their first four years in the job.

Visit the Science Education (Chemistry, Physics, other science) - SKE page on the University of Sunderland website for more details!




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