The PGCE Post Compulsory Education and Training (PCET) is a professional teacher education course that will qualify you to teach in the post-compulsory education and training sector.
This PGCE PCET course is designed for graduates with degrees from a wide range of subjects, including those not widely taught in secondary schools (such as sports science, health and social care, and dance). It will equip you with the necessary tools to teach adults and young people and allow you to share your knowledge in a way that helps others fulfil their potential.
You will be assessed on your potential to learn and not your experience.
Contact time for the PGCE PCET is eight hours per week in an encouraging and productive learning environment. The course provides trainee teachers with opportunities, time, and space to develop their theory knowledge. Trainee teachers refine their teaching practice throughout the year alongside highly experienced and research-active practitioners.
We use a wide variety of teaching and learning methods including interactive teaching, lectures, seminars, practical teaching workshops, tutorials, directed learning, and group work.
You will also be expected to successfully complete a minimum of 100 hours of teaching practice and eight observations during the course.
Assessment methods include assignments, seminars, presentations, and formative and summative observations of teaching practice.
This course is for people who don’t have previous experience of teaching.
Explore the roles and responsibilities of being a practitioner in the further education sector. Identify appropriate teaching and learning approaches in your subject specialist area and learn the basics of delivering inclusive and motivating sessions. Focus on reflection, planning, curriculum intent, curriculum sequencing and assessment theory.
Develop your ability to reflect upon and evaluate your own teaching and gain an introduction to the key principles that impact on how we teach and assess learners. Demonstrate effective planning and management of learning through a series of professional observations and work with experienced subject specialist mentors to refine your craft. Learn to justify and demonstrate your ability to develop, improve and sequence the lessons you deliver in practice.
Explore the wider context of curriculum design, including intent, implementation, and impact. Evaluate models of inclusive curriculum development, as well as the policy initiatives and key theories that have significantly influenced post compulsory education and training. Investigate strategies for developing and promoting an inclusive curriculum and design materials that will support you in applying models of inclusive and innovative practice in your subject specialist area.
Critically evaluate and justify your approaches to teaching, learning and assessment in your subject specialist area. Reflect on your journey as a student teacher and set targets that will prepare you for your professional formation year. Demonstrate your ability to develop, improve and sequence your lessons and refine your knowledge and awareness of the wider curriculum as it applies to your subject specialism and professional practice.
Continue to develop your knowledge of teaching, learning and assessment. Gain a sound understanding of the principles related to Assessment for Learning and explore a range of strategies that you can use to support your learners’ progress. Explore classroom and behaviour management strategies in depth and refine your ability to creative inclusive learning environments. Critically interrogate key texts to enhance your subject knowledge, pedagogy, and awareness of your subject curriculum.
Explore classroom and behaviour management strategies in depth and refine your ability to create inclusive learning environments. Critically interrogate key texts to enhance your subject knowledge, pedagogy, and awareness of your subject curriculum. Discuss different levels of literacy and how these relate to the speaking, listening, reading, and writing skills of your own learners. Explore the theories and principles that relate to language acquisition and learning, as well as the ways in which we can examine written and spoken language.
Develop an understanding of key issues relating to Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND). Investigate relevant legislation and inclusive policies, and how these impact practice. Explore the meaning of terms such as ‘inclusion’ and ‘participation’ and examine key policy documents such as the SEND Code of Practice (2015) and the Equality Act (2010). Gain a robust comprehension of the theories, concepts, and frameworks around SEND, including different perceptions and how these can be described, analysed and accurately referenced. Examine critical elements of the teaching and learning cycle and demonstrate how you can apply these within your SEND specialism.
Explore the factors that influence the development and progression of numeracy learners. Examine the use of assessment approaches to meet the needs of numeracy-based learners and use maths teaching approaches and resources to meet the needs of individuals. Promote learning and learner support within numeracy-related teaching and learning. Understand how to liaise with others to promote the inclusion of numeracy and wider maths related skills in learning programmes. Explore the fundamental attributes of maths/numeracy and examine how learning theories and the origins of maths impact on numeracy teaching.
Gain an understanding of key issues relating to teaching computing and technology-related subjects. Explore the key factors that influence delivery and learning through technology. Develop or consolidate the use of technology within your teaching and learning practice. Improve your general and specialist digital skills vital for learning, life, and work in an increasingly digitalised world. Learn to effectively use technology in your teaching, learning and assessment activities.
Some modules have prerequisites. Read more about what this means in our Help and Advice article.
Our typical offer is:
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If you already hold a postgraduate qualification, please see our Applying for additional postgraduate degrees Help and Advice article.
If you don't meet our standard entry requirements, you can take one of the foundation pathways at our partners ONCAMPUS Sunderland. Find out more information and whether your course is eligible on our ONCAMPUS page.
If your qualification is not listed above, please contact the Student Administration team at firstname.lastname@example.org for further advice.
You will usually need a 2:2 (or above) honours degree from a UK Higher Education institution or an equivalent qualification and be deemed suitable to train to teach by the School of Education at the University of Sunderland.
You must also have:
If you are invited for an interview, you will be asked to complete a pre-interview written task, participate in a group activity, and complete a short in-house literacy and numeracy assessment.
If English is not your first language, you will also need International English Language Testing System (IELTS) at a score of 6.5, with at least 6.5 in writing, and no section below 6.0. If English is not your first language, please see our English language requirements.
Applicants with a foundation degree will need to supplement this qualification with at least 60 credits at level 6 (HE level 3) in order to attain an equivalent single qualification.
Technical requirements for studying this course
There may be times when physical face-to-face classes are unable to be held. There is also the potential for remote or online classes to be held in the future. We suggest the following to make the most of your PGCE PCET learning experience:
This course is subject to revalidation to meet the requirements for Initial Teacher Training from 2024.
*European Union (EU), EEA (European Economic Area), and Swiss nationals who do not qualify for the EU Settlement Scheme are classed as international, however, for 23/24 admission you will receive a European student fee scholarship and will pay the home tuition fee rate for the duration of your studies. The discounted fee will be reflected in your offer letter. Learn more in our Help and Advice article.
Take a look at the Your Finances section to find out about the scholarships and bursaries that may be available to you.
A limited number of Teacher Training Subject Specialist support bursaries awarded by the Department for Education (DfE) may be available for those studying Computing, Maths, SEND, and English ranging from £15,000 to £29,000. Your eligibility for these bursaries will be discussed with you in your interview. Terms and conditions apply.
This information was correct at the time of publication.
When you complete the PCET course, you will have a PGCE in Post Compulsory Education and Training that will qualify you to teach in the PCET sector.
Previous graduates of this course have gone on to employment within Further Education colleges, sixth form colleges, training organisations, charities, universities, prison education, and community and adult organisations.
After completing this ITE course, you can progress towards Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) status which is recommended for teaching in the Further Education and Skills sector. QTLS has legal equivalence to QTS and is recognised by some head teachers in schools. This qualification is completed through the Society for Education and Training (SET). Visit the SET website for further information on QTLS and to check your eligibility.
Teaching placements are an essential part of the PGCE PCET degree. We will help to arrange a minimum of 100 hours of teaching practice placement in the further education and skills sector over the one-year course. Your teaching practice placement will provide you with valuable opportunities to work alongside experienced teachers and to learn how to design, deliver, assess, and evaluate teaching and learning in the sector. You will be supported and guided by a subject specialist mentor who will be allocated to you through the University of Sunderland’s Placement Office. Please note that you will be expected to pay for your own travel to and from placement. When you’re ready to start searching for a teaching job, you will already have a wide network of professional contacts who can help you find the right opportunities.
The Enhanced Mentoring pathway is a bespoke Initial Teacher Training option accredited by the University of Sunderland. Training as part of this pathway gives you the opportunity to learn on the job from the very beginning. You will benefit from working and learning every day in a further education environment, gaining immediate insight into what teaching involves. The Enhanced Mentoring option as part of the PGCE PCET is a fee-paying route into teaching, delivered in-house at Durham Sixth Form or Hartlepool Sixth Form College, accredited by and in collaboration with the PCET team at the University of Sunderland.
This pathway option is delivered by qualified in-house staff who possess a high level of expertise. It allows you as a trainee teacher to immerse yourself in post-16 education. You will benefit from this vast knowledge and experience, demonstrated through the academic programme that has been devised to cover a broad range of training areas. These areas include an introduction to teaching and learning, embedding effective assessment, enrichment, and developing action research skills.
Teaching will be supported by contemporary academic writing and educational research to ensure you are provided with a thorough knowledge of current educational policy and practice.