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Postgraduate Diploma in Education (PGDE)

Course Description

About the course

Our graduates make great teachers. It’s that simple. The Initial Teacher Education (ITE) course helps you develop an understanding of research, policies and practice relating to education in general and secondary education in particular. You’ll analyse and reflect on what you learn to connect research with the classroom.

We teach an approach to your work that will stay with you throughout your career. Our graduates are dedicated to lifelong learning, developing their professional practice, and using classroom-based research. You’ll learn everything the qualified teacher needs to know about planning, teaching, learning, assessing, policies and processes.

Routes offered

We offer a provider-led route plus School Direct with a choice of four different clusters of schools.

The routes are all quite similar, but the main differences between the provider-led and the School Direct routes are:

You’ll have your two school placements in the schools within the cluster that you are attached to, rather than in any school across the partnership.

The schools in your cluster will have a greater input into the PGDE programme throughout the year.

There will be a strong possibility of securing employment within the cluster of schools that you are attached to, subject to availability and suitability.

Your career

We offer postgraduate courses that will launch your career in education or aid your continuing professional development.

Our graduates work in the UK and overseas in schools, universities, and local and national government. Some are teachers and lecturers. Others use their skills in policy development, education, administration, psychology and social work.

About us

We value creative teaching that challenges inequalities in the education system. We believe in increasing opportunities for education, for everyone. Our research has a direct impact on educational theory, policy and practice. We’re supporting the development of children, families and learning communities through dedicated research centres.

You’ll learn from world-class academics such as Professor Cathy Nutbrown and Professor Dan Goodley. Cathy, who teaches on three of our postgraduate courses, won an Outstanding Impact in Society award in 2013 for her work on literacy. Dan’s work on disability in education has been described as ground breaking.

Our research seminar programme gives you access to the latest findings, often before they’re published. The University’s library has online catalogues and databases, e-books and e-journals.

Structure, teaching and assessment

All MA courses follow a similar pattern with two core modules (1 and 4) and two subject-specific modules (2 and 3).

Teaching and learning takes place via lectures, seminars, tutorials, discussion, active inquiry and investigations. Regular meetings with a personal tutor support and encourage your learning and understanding.

A weekly tutorial and a Study of Education course accompanies the taught modules.

There are no formal written examinations and assessment is by coursework and a 15–20,000-word dissertation.

Subjects covered

English, Geography, History, Mathematics, Languages, Science with Biology, Chemistry or Physics and Physics with Maths.

Age range

Secondary (11–19).


You’ll learn through seminars, group work, tutorials, individual consultations, practical activities. You’ll spend 24 of the 36 weeks in schools.



Masters credits

As well as a PGDE qualification and Qualified Teacher Status, you’ll gain 120 credits at Masters level if you successfully complete the course. You can put these towards study for an MA Applied Professional Studies in Education.

Visit the Postgraduate Diploma in Education (PGDE) page on the University of Sheffield website for more details!

Student Profiles

Postgraduate Scholarship Scheme - No. of awards TBC

The University of Sheffield is offering a number of Postgraduate Taught Scholarships to self funded full and part time students who are liable to pay fees at the home rate and starting their studies in 2014. You do not need to wait for your undergraduate degree classification to apply for a scholarship.This is part of a Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) initiative aimed at removing barriers to postgraduate education for students from under-represented groups such as those from low income backgrounds and who wouldn’t ordinarily consider going onto postgraduate study for reasons such as access to finance, have caring responsibilities or who come from areas where it is not usual to go to university at all. The University welcomes applications from recent graduates and students who graduated several years ago. Each applicant will be considered for all awards that are applicable but will only be eligible to receive one.The Faulty of Social Science has a number of Scholarships available for UK and EU students starting their postgraduate course in 2014. If you’re eligible, you could take your PG course at Sheffield for FREE.The deadline for applications is 6th June 2014.Benefactors Scholarships20 awards each worth £7,500 available to University of Sheffield graduatesIf you’re a current Sheffield student or a graduate of the University, and you received a maintenance grant for your undergraduate degree, you can apply. These scholarships aren’t course-specific. All taught postgraduate courses are eligible. The money can be used towards tuition fees and living costs.

Value of Scholarship(s)



Applicants must meet one or more of the following widening participation criteria: - Entered University from a Care background.
- Carer for an ill or disabled family member.
- Have been in receipt of Disabled Students Allowance.
- Were in receipt of a Maintenance Grant whilst an undergraduate.
- Come from one of the most deprived areas of the country as defined by the government's IMD (Indices of Multiple Deprivation) database. For more information about your postcode IMD NB. this information only covers England and the postcode we will use is that of your home address in your last year of school or college.

Application Procedure

Please visit our website for more details on the application process - http://www.sheffield.ac.uk/ssid/finance/pss_ss

Further Information


Entry Requirements

Relevant A Level, grade B or above. Plus an honours degree (minimum 2:2, or for Maths, Physics and Physics with Maths applicants minimum class 3) in one of our teaching subjects or with a strong element of a teaching subject (see below). You also need grade C in English Language and Mathematics at GCSE, or the equivalent. You need to pass the Professional skills tests before the start of the course. English language requirements: overall IELTS grade of 6.5 with a minimum of 6.0 in each component, or equivalent.

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Recipient: University of Sheffield
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