PGCE English Secondary Education PGCE - University of Sunderland

Course overview

This initial teacher training course equips you to share your passion for English with young people and inspire them to fulfil their potential. English is a core subject in the National Curriculum at Key Stages 3 and 4 so there will always be a need for effective and committed English teachers.

The course prepares you for Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), which is an essential qualification for teaching in state-maintained schools. Financial incentives maybe available for those who train in 2016/17, go to The Department for Education website for more information.

The course has two strands. The first strand is based at the University and provides a solid grounding in theory and practical issues. The second strand is based in partner schools where you will undertake practical teaching experience. A high proportion of our trainees subsequently obtain teaching posts in schools where they have completed successful placements.

This programme is also offered as part of our School Direct route.

The University of Sunderland is one of only 25 'outstanding' teacher-training institutions in the UK, according to Ofsted. So you can be confident that our courses are excellent preparation for a satisfying and rewarding career.

The University of Sunderland has a proven record of “Good” and “Outstanding” Newly Qualified Teachers who remain in teaching creating a passionate and quality workforce.

In addition to Government bursaries, students on this course are also eligible for many of the University of Sunderland scholarships. Full details of the Sunderland scholarships available to you can be found on the entry requirements tab of this course.

A video showing the benefits of becoming a teacher:

Course content

September – January

  • One module covering general teaching/learning issues and subject application. Over seven weeks you will spend two days a week at the University and three days on placement in a school
  • Teaching practice in a secondary school or college for approximately six weeks full-time
  • One module that you choose from the MA suite

January – June

  • One module which builds on previous work on general teaching/learning issues and subject application. This is taught over two days a week
  • A full-time placement of teaching practice for 10 weeks
  • One module that you choose from the MA suite

The MA suite may include the following modules:

Development of Learning: A Case Study (30 Credits)

You will identify an intervention employed in the classroom or in the wider school and explore its use, impact and influence upon the learning of one or more pupils.

Negotiated Individual Study in Education (30 Credits)

You will undertake a piece of action research in school based on an area of interest in a subject or phase.

Advanced Pedagogical Practice (30 Credits)

You will critically examine a subject in which you are a specialist, relating current practice to educational theory and appropriate literature.

Leading Organisational Effectiveness in Education and Training (30 Credits)

You will study topics that include principles of leadership, responsibilities of leadership in an educational establishment, tackling under-performance and auditing performance.

Assessment Theory into Pedagogical Practice (30 Credits)

You will examine educational assessment theory in relation to the current practice in your own educational setting.

Teaching and assessment

We use a variety of teaching and learning methods which include lectures, seminars, tutorials, project work and group work as well as placements and work-based learning.

Assessment methods include written work, evidence profiles and assessment of your teaching practice.

Information about our policies relating to student experience and quality assurance processes can be found on the Academic Services website.

Facilities & location

Course location

The course is based at the Forster Building on City campus and at the Sir Tom Cowie Campus at St Peter’s. Sunderland is a very vibrant and supportive environment with excellent resources for teaching and learning.

Secondary partnership

The University of Sunderland forms part of a secondary partnership that includes more than 230 schools and colleges. This means that there are wide opportunities for placements during the professional year.

Many trainees come from and remain as successful English teachers within the local area; they benefit from the excellent reputation the training programme enjoys in the region.

University Library Services

We’ve got thousands of books and e-books on topics related to English and teaching, 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:

  • Early English Books Online, which provides digital images of virtually every work printed in England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland and British North America during 1473-1800
  • Periodicals Archive Online, which provides digitised literary journals
  • Archival Sound Recordings with over 12,000 hours of recordings
  • JSTOR (short for ‘Journal Storage’), which provides access to important journals across the humanities, social sciences and sciences
  • Professional Development Collection, which features hundreds of education journals and reports
  • 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

Location


Forster Building

City Campsus, Chester Road, Sunderland, SR1 3SD

Entry requirements

We welcome applications from holders of an honours degree (at least a 2:2) in English Literature and/or English Language. We will also consider other equivalent qualifications.

You should have at least grade C in GCSE mathematics and English (or equivalent). We will only accept equivalencies from Equivalency Testing. Completion of the Teaching Agency skills tests prior to the course starting is an additional requirement, please see details below.

All successful applicants will be interviewed.

Applicants whose first language is not English must achieve a minimum IELTS band score of 6.5, with 6.5 in writing, no sub section below 6.

After 6 April 2015 you must take your IELTS exams at one of the test centres listed on the UKVI website. If you took your IELTS exam before 6 April 2015 this does not apply, and your qualification is still valid regardless of which test centre you used.

Additional requirements:

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL)

If you feel you already know some of the topics covered in this course, either due to previous learning or from experience of work, then you may not need to study the entire course.

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) is the name given to the process of gaining credit towards a qualification because of something you have learnt in the past. If you are eligible for APL you won't have to learn the same topic again, and so you can be exempt from a module, set of modules or year of a course. 

Read more about APL in the Quality Handbook (.pdf). If you think you may be eligible for APL, please contact the course leader.

Fees & finance

2016/17

The annual fee for this course is:

  • £9,000 if you are from the UK / EU
  • £11,000 if you are an International student

If you are not sure whether you qualify as a UK, EU or International student, please see the International section of this website.

Government scholarships

The UK Government is keen to encourage high-quality graduates to train as teachers, and so offers bursaries to attract more people into teaching.

For more information and to check the eligibility criteria, please see Education.gov.uk.

University of Sunderland scholarships

Students on this course may be entitled to a Get There Scholarship. Full details and eligibility criteria can be found on the University of Sunderland Scholarships page.

If you have any questions about your eligibility for any of the above scholarships, please contact:

The Scholarships Team
Tel: 0191 515 2865
Email: scholarships@sunderland.ac.uk

Employment & careers

Everyone who wants to teach in a state-maintained school in England and Wales needs Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). This course leads to QTS and, on successful completion, you will become a Newly Qualified Teacher (NQT).

According to recent research, twice as many teachers find their work extremely enjoyable when compared to professionals with careers in marketing, IT and accountancy. Almost half say they regularly experience a ‘natural high’ at work.

For information regarding the starting salary of a Newly Qualified Teacher (NQT), please visit Education.gov.uk.

University Language Scheme

It is usually possible to take a module from the free University Language Scheme. This can be studied on top of your 120 credits or in some cases, can earn credits towards your degree.

Language skills increase your international mobility and you can choose between French, German, Spanish, Mandarin, Japanese and Arabic at a range of levels. If your first language is not English, please check with your tutor about entry requirements.

Staff and students talk about the benefits of the University Language Scheme:

Our teaching events offer you the chance to speak to teachers and find out how to get into teaching:

Support

Support for your learning

From the start of the course you will be allocated a Personal Tutor who will meet with you at agreed times throughout your course. Personal Tutors encourage your personal development and are a useful point of contact for any queries about your course, extracurricular activities and issues where they can point you towards specialist services at the University. These include student counselling, financial advice and chaplaincy support.

Support for your development

To help ensure the course is meeting aspirations for personal development, we invite students to fill in questionnaires at the end of modules. This provides a structured way for you to keep us up-to-date with your views.

During your course, and particularly towards the end of it, we encourage you to make full use of the resources at our Careers & Employability Service. The Service helps you explore your options, clarify your ideas, develop a career focus and make effective applications.

Extracurricular activities

The University supports student-led initiatives that enhance the extracurricular activities available to you. Some of these are related to particular subjects while others allow you to pursue interests and social activities. It’s all part of the vibrant and life-changing atmosphere at the University of Sunderland.

For more information about all the support services you will have access to as a Sunderland student, please see Student support and guidance.

Apply for this course

Applications for entry must be submitted through UCAS Teacher Training (UTT).

    Next open day

  • For further information on future postgraduate events, please contact the Student Helpline on +44 (0)191 515 3000.

Contact Sunderland

Programme Leader:
Sharon Turnbull
Tel: 0191 515 2790

Contact the recruitment team for further information about studying at the University of Sunderland:

Recruitment Team
Telephone: 0191 515 3000 
Email: student.helpline@sunderland.ac.uk

The details

Course Name PGCE English Secondary Education
UCAS Code
Q3X1
Classification PGCE
Course Mode Full-time
Course Level Postgraduate
Duration 1 year
Study Location On-campus (Sunderland)
Starting 19 September 2016
UK/EU Fee £9,000
Intl Fee £11,000

Entry requirements

Honours degree (2:2 or above) in a relevant subject

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