This course prepares graduates to teach in secondary schools. As well as gaining a PGCE, students are assessed against the national standards in order to be recommended for the award of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).
Physical Education covers the six National Curriculum study areas of athletic activities, dance, games, gymnastic activities, outdoor and adventure activities, and swimming. The course also includes health-related exercise and the teaching of accredited courses in physical education which both constitute part of the repertoire of skills that the contemporary physical education teacher must possess.
The opportunity to undertake masters level study within the course facilitates progression to an MA Education award after completion of the PGCE.
The course comprises four strands: subject study/subject education, education studies, placements and professional development The subject study/subject education strand builds upon existing subject expertise and provides students with the opportunity to develop skills, knowledge and understanding of the specialist subject in the secondary school context, allowing them to formulate their own rationale for teaching. Students consider pedagogical issues within curriculum development, and the learning and teaching strategies pertinent to the specialist subject, regularly reflecting upon, analysing, recording and evaluating their own learning experience. Students have the opportunity to develop a creative and constructively critical approach towards innovation within their specialism, and the capacity to improve practice. The Education Studies strand is common to all subject routes of the course and takes place both at the university and while on placement as a means of enabling students to develop practical competences supported by relevant, analytical skills. Teaching under supervision, on placement, occupies approximately two-thirds of the course. The university works in partnership with schools and colleges to provide a high quality programme of support ensuring a sound relationship between theory and practice. There are two placements in two different schools/colleges with the opportunity to visit further schools/colleges as part of the 'Peer Observation' programme.
Professional Development is linked explicitly to all strands of the course and is designed to enable students to evaluate critically and reflect upon their learning in order to make improvements. Students are expected to gather and justify evidence of their achievements on a regular basis and, in the light of this, develop and implement improvement plans. Career prospects are excellent: most gain their first teaching posts in secondary schools as soon as they qualify.
On this course you have the opportunity to take part in a number of activities to help in your development as a Physical Education teacher. This reflects the nature of the role of the contemporary teacher of physical education and prepares you to teach a more reflective curriculum based on individual needs and pupil activity choices in schools. These activities include:
Inclusive festivals: As part of your induction programme you prepare a series of activities for pupils with moderate, profound and multiple learning difficulties. Activities will include Boccia, New Age Kurling, Goalball, Parachute games and dance. Gifted and talented days: You will organise gifted and talented days for school pupils. You help pupils to identify and solve problems to overcome challenges of an adventurous nature. This includes activities in which success is judged on how efficiently and safely challenges are overcome.
Outdoor adventure days: You will facilitate a day of onsite outdoor and adventurous activities for pupils. You learn how to teach realistic and achievable onsite outdoor and adventurous activities to secondary school pupils without the need to take pupils offsite or use specialist equipment and facilities.
Active student volunteer programmes: With the Active Student volunteer programme you provide out-of-school-hours activities for local primary school pupils. The activities include swimming, lifestyle activities, trampolining and gymnastics.
Orienteering festivals As part of the Outdoor Education module you will arrange and manage an orienteering festival for pupils in a local park. You learn how to facilitate and manage a large sporting event whilst at the same time gaining important professional experience of teaching orienteering skills and techniques to pupils.
Team building days: You will organise team building days for school pupils. Pupils will take part in a series of physical challenges and activities that promote communication skills, problem-solving and decision-making through trust games, orienteering, and team building.
Alternative activities: On alternative activities days you teach secondary school pupils a variety of alternative activities including Kinball, Street Surfing, Rockitball, Goalball, and teaching and learning using the Nintendo Wii.
Physical Education interview days Potential students who would like to teach Physical Education in Secondary Schools will be invited for an interview before an offer is made. The interview will have both a practical and formal element.