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PGCE English with Drama

Course Description

The English with Drama PGCE introduces students to the broad scope of English and Drama as curriculum subjects across the 11–16 age range. Along with practical knowledge, it offers perspectives on the role of language in learning, the teaching of literacies and literature, the principles of syllabus design and evaluation, and assessment and recording.

Degree information

You will develop an understanding of classroom practice and the theories underpinning teaching and learning in English, media and drama. You will work with others to produce assessed theatre in education (TiE) presentations for children in partnership schools. This will develop your understanding of how drama and theatre can be applied to teaching and learning.

Students undertake two level 7 (Master’s-level) modules of 30 credits each, totaling 60 credits. These can be carried forward onto full Master’s programmes at the IOE.

The Secondary PGCE consists of three core modules: two Master’s-level (level 7) modules, which are assessed through written assignments, and the Professional Practice module, which is assessed by the observation of practical teaching in placement schools.

Completion of the Professional Practice module and the two level 7 (Master’s level) modules (60 credits) will result in the award of a Postgraduate Certificate of Education (PGCE). Completion of the Professional Practice module and one or two level 6 (undergraduate/Bachelor’s level) modules, will lead to the Professional Graduate Certificate of Education (PgCE). There are no optional modules for this programme.

Core modules
-Language, Culture and Learning (30 Master's-level credits)
-Theatre in Education (30 Master's-level credits)
-Professional Practice

You will spend most of your time (120 days) in schools, working with English and drama mentors who support you through your two school placements. We are fortunate to have a good choice of schools with whom we work, with some outstanding mentors and strong English and drama departments. The Professional Practice module is assessed through these placements, associated tasks and a portfolio.

Teaching and learning
The programme is delivered via keynote lectures, subject lectures, seminars, workshops, tutorials and directed study days at the IOE, as well as time spent in placements. Assessment is by practical teaching, assignments and portfolio tasks.

Students will also record their progress in a Career Entry and Development Profile statement. This will form part of an ongoing portfolio charting the student's continuing professional development.


Graduates of this programme are currently working across a broad range of areas. Some are working as English and/or Drama teachers and heads of English or Drama departments and faculties in schools, while others have jobs as mentors of English with Drama PGCE students. Graduates in this area can also be found working as senior leaders in schools.

Top career destinations for this degree:
-English and Drama Teacher, Unspecified Academy
-English and Drama Teacher, Unspecified Grammar School
-English Teacher, Unspecified Polytechnic School
-English Teacher, Unspecified Secondary School
-Drama Teacher, Unspecified Secondary School

A PGCE from the IOE carries considerable currency in schools which, alongside the quality of training you receive, puts you in a strong position in the employment market. Last year, all those students who sought employment in a school were successful. We expect 100% success rate in gaining a post in a school by the end of the year.

Why study this degree at UCL?

The UCL Institute of Education's (IOE) partnership with over 200 secondary schools and colleges in Greater London and beyond enables each of our students to become a skilled and confident teacher in their chosen subject specialism.

Students will be joining the largest English PGCE programme in the country, allowing them to benefit from a team of tutors with unparalleled expertise in the subject. Students will also be able to develop supportive peer networks, sharing ideas and resources.

Sessions at the IOE are interactive and practical, and students will participate in a range of group and individual activities, some of which involve collaboration with schools and other organisations including Shakespeare’s Globe and the British Film Institute. The PGCE year ends with a Theatre in Education project that involves a tour to partnership schools.

Visit the PGCE English with Drama page on the University College London website for more details!

Entry Requirements

Lower second-class UK Bachelor’s degree or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard in an English-related subject, including Drama. Prospective students must complete a minimum of five days of school experience. This may involve observations, work experience (e.g. as a teaching assistant or cover supervisor), or voluntary work. Applicants must ensure that their school experience is relevant in helping them to prepare for the Secondary PGCE, during which Student Teachers are placed in a wide range of schools across London and the South East. You must successfully complete the Occupational Health and Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) Enhanced Disclosure checks.

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Recipient: University College London
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