Secondary Mathematics - PGCE

Course Code:
G1X1
Attendance:
Full Time
Starting:
September 2017

Do you want a career that enables you to help pupils master skills that are vital to their success, not just during their education, but for life? If so training to teach maths on our PGCE in Secondary Mathematics is course for you.

What's covered in the course?

You’ll learn techniques to inspire students around maths, making it enjoyable and ensuring they’re equipped with skills they’ll need for in the future. You’ll teach across a range of ages and abilities on daily basis so we’ll train you to be handle changing effortlessly between number patterns and sequences to calculus depending on who you’re teaching.

After interview you may be advised you need to take a funded Subject Knowledge Enhancement (SKE) course, which we offer in mathematics on 24- and 16-week routes before you start your PGCE (shorter courses of between two and 12 weeks may be available according how much enhancement of your knowledge is needed).

Our aim is to help you become a committed, confident and creative teacher so we’ll train you in the essential tools you need to kick-start your career in education. As you progress, you’ll increase your ability to handle the ever-evolving teaching environment, and by the time your course is complete, you’ll be in a position to continue developing your understanding, knowledge and skills throughout your professional life.

Assignments and school-centred activities are structured around the development of your School Experience Progress Journal (SEPJ) which demonstrates your progress against the nationally agreed competences (the Teachers’ Standards), which all teachers must meet throughout their career. A system of continuous review and assessment of progress in the SEPJ will support your growing ability to take responsibility for your own development. 

Why Choose Us?

  • At least 120 days across a minimum of two placements, in line with the National College for Teaching and Learning (NCTL) requirements, supported by a subject mentor in your school and a personal development tutor at the University

  • If you have a minimum of a 2:2 in your undergraduate degree, a Master's or a PhD, in a subject area relevant for teaching mathematics, you may be eligible for a bursary from the National College for Teaching and Learning (NCTL). For 2017 entry this bursary is £25,000. A higher level scholarship of £27,500 may be available from the Institute of Mathematics and its Application (IMA) subject to application and deadlines.

  • We’re proud of our high employability rates, with 100 per cent of students in employment or further study six months after completing this course (latest DLHE survey 2015/16)

  • 100 per cent of our 2016 graduates said we prepared them ‘very well’ for employment (latest DLHE survey 2015/16)

  • If you accept an offer from us you’ll be able to take part in our free Skills Test ‘bootcamps’ to make sure you’re ready to start your PGCE in September.

  • You'll gain Master's level credits gained as part of this course that you can then use towards a full Master's degree, such as our Master’s in Teaching and Learning or Educational Leadership.

This course is open to International students

 

Applicants must meet The National College for Teaching and Leadership requirements for Initial Teacher Training, which means being medically fit and successfully completing an enhanced disclosure via the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS). Learn more about completing your DBS

Where our students go

Our students have gone on to work with companies such as:

  • Heartlands Academy
  • Fairfax School
  • Bordesley Green Girls School

And in jobs such as:

  • Head of Mathematics
  • Head Teacher & Deputy Head Teacher
  • Mathematics Specilaist Leader in Education

Find out more 

Entry Requirements

UK students

Please note: If you are a graduate and wish to train as a mathematics teacher but your degree did not provide enough mathematics content for you to gain automatic entry onto a PGCE course, we offer a 16 week pre-initial teacher training Subject Knowledge Enhancement (SKE) course in mathematics beginning in April.

Essential

You must have a good degree (minimum 2:2) from a UK higher education institution or equivalent, at least 50 per cent of which is in mathematics or a mathematics-related subject area.

You must also have a GCSE grade C or above (or equivalent) in both English language and mathematics prior to enrolment.

If you do not already have GCSEs in English language and mathematics, or their equivalent, and are not registered to take them, you should visit Equivalency Testing.

It should be noted that applicants taking the equivalency tests need to have passed prior to enrolment.

For entry onto a teaching course you will also be required to pass the Skills Tests in Literacy and Numeracy. You will be not be able to enrol onto your course until you have passed these tests.

Pre-Interview School Experience

For secondary teacher training there is an expectation that you will have had some general experience of working with secondary age students in a school setting.

In preparation for the selection interview stage of the recruitment process you are required to engage in a teaching episode, observed by an experienced qualified teacher.

It will support your application to undertake this teaching episode prior to enrolment and in advance of your interview.

Please read our guidance document before downloading the Pre-Interview School Experience Report which you will need the qualified teacher observing you to complete.

Selection Interview

The selection interview will assess your subject knowledge and personal qualities such as the potential to relate well to secondary age students, enthusiasm, sensitivity, communication skills and robustness and resilience for teaching.

You will also take a written test to assess your standard of English.

Applicants must meet The National College for Teaching and Leadership requirements for Initial Teacher Training, which means being medically fit and successfully completing an enhanced disclosure via the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).

Completion of the SKE course might be made a condition of an offer onto a secondary mathematics teacher training course.

International Students

Entry requirements here

Skills Tests in Literacy and Numeracy

All trainee teachers MUST pass their skills tests prior to the start of their course. We’ve got tips on how to book them and getting practice in. And if you accept your offer of a place with us, you’ll even get to come to a free skills test bootcamp (subject to availability).

What are skills tests?

UK or EU students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
PGCE Sep 2017 FT 1 year £9,250 Apply online now

International Students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
PGCE Sep 2017 FT 1 year £12,000 Apply online now

The University reserves the right to increase fees broadly in line with increases in inflation, or to reflect changes in government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament.

Course code: G1X1

All applications for 2017 entry need to be made via the UCAS Teacher Training website. For more information on how to apply for a teacher training course please visit the UCAS how-it-all-works information page. The UCAS Teacher Training helpline number is 0871 468 0 469.

We also offer this programme through School Direct with the following schools:

Visit the UCAS Teacher Training website for details on how to apply.

Skills Tests

We encourage you to take your skills tests as early as possible to ensure you have passed before you start the course.

How to book a skills test

Portfolio Guidance

You will compile a School Experience Progress Journal during your school placements to evidence your progress towards the achievement of the Teacher Standards. Evidence within your School Experience Progress Journal will come from a range of sources including lesson observation feedback, lesson planning, units of work, examples of learners’ work, resources, etc.

Personal statement

UK / EU students are required to submit a personal statement as part of their application for this course.*

Your postgraduate personal statement is going to shine a light on your personal experience, academic success, personal skills and any other factors that will support your application for further study.

Here are the key areas you’ll need to address:

Your passion and motivations

Studying a postgraduate course usually means you want to specialise in something. So what’s driving you?

Why this course?

Show that you’ve researched the course offering. What is it about this particular course that appeals to you? Is it the lecturers? The modules? Etc.

What makes you a good postgraduate candidate?

Tutors want to know that you can handle postgraduate study, so show them how your undergraduate experiences or work life has equipped you for a more advanced level of study. Key areas to address are research and group work but this can vary depending on your chosen course.

Relevant academic or work experience

Add anything relevant that relates back to your chosen course and shows how your skills will contribute towards your learning. What extra-curricular activities have you taken part in? What awards have you won? What employment or voluntary experience do you have that has helped you develop transferable skills? How do these specifically relate to the course you are applying for?

You should also mention your future plans and how a postgraduate qualification fits in. Try to look beyond your postgraduate study – do you plan to jump straight into a specific career or follow your studies with a research degree? Lastly, use plain, professional English and, where possible, utilise the language of your chosen industry.

Get more information on writing personal statements

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*Non-EU students are not required to submit a personal statement when applying for this course.

Additional costs

We offer a wide range of professionally accredited and vocational courses that require the purchase of, among other things, uniforms, equipment, subscriptions, professional body memberships and DBS checks, and may require you to pay to attend conferences or participate in placements.

The link below provides our estimate of the possible costs associated with key activities on specific courses. Please bear in mind that these are only estimates of costs based on past student experience and feedback. The actual costs to you could vary considerably (either greater or lower than these estimates) depending on your choices as you progress through the course. We set out where we can, based on experience, where these indicative costs are for activities that are optional or compulsory.

All our students are provided with 100 free pages of printing each year to a maximum total value of £15.

Find additional costs for your course

Financial support

You may be able to obtain financial support to help you during your studies. For more information visit the Department for Education's Get Into Teaching website.

Sorry, this course is not available part-time

Got any questions?

Search our Frequently Asked Questions for a range of information about our courses and studying here.

Financial Support

Although this is a postgraduate course, current PGCE students are eligible for the finance support package available to full-time undergraduates. You may also receive a Teacher Training Bursary of up to £30,000 per year, subject specific.

Find out more

Modules

Professional Studies

Professional Studies, provides opportunities for you as a trainee teacher to explore and understand in practical terms the meaning of professionalism in the context of education and being a teacher.  Education is an ever-changing environment and the desire for improvement is strong from all stakeholders.  This module helps you to understand that the best teachers are those who continue to learn themselves and that your continual development can positively impact the learning experience of your students.  You will understand the holistic and positive role of a teacher and the practices and policies of the education framework in which you operate. 

Subject Pedagogy

Subject Pedagogy, provides opportunities for you as a trainee teacher to explore the nature of English in the context of learning and teaching in the secondary school.

This module provides a strong philosophical underpinning to your awareness of the importance of your specialist subject in the secondary school curriculum.  By undertaking this module you will be shaping your own rationale for your approach to the teaching of English, and to meeting the needs of the learners as they move through the secondary school phase.

Professional Enquiry

Professional Enquiry, forms an introduction to active examination of professional practice in the workplace and a reflective approach to personal development.  It provides a foundation for future study modules and enables you to develop practice-based enquiry skills.

This module provides opportunities for you as a trainee teacher to conduct a structured enquiry into an area of professional practice that is of direct significance to your current and future professional practice.  As well as developing the skills required to undertake this enquiry, in reflecting and disseminating your findings, the intention is that your findings will impact your own and your colleagues’ understanding and practice.

Course structure

We believe mathematics is an exciting subject and the PGCE Secondary Mathematics course at Birmingham City University enables you to develop the skills and knowledge necessary to teach successfully, as well as explore the knowledge, skills and understanding young people need as part of their mathematics education.

The course features a range of modules and the opportunity to get plenty of hands-on practice in local schools with support from colleagues in the school partnership and experienced University tutors.

Number of hours in the classroom per week 

Two thirds of your course will take place in schools with the other third in a University setting. 

Teaching breakdown

A third of your time spend on the course will be spent attending University-based sessions and two-thirds will be spent out in a school on a school experience placement.

Accreditation or professional associations 

As a provider of Initial Teacher Education, you can be reassured that we are regularly inspected by the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills (Ofsted).

Ofsted reports directly to Parliament and is independent and impartial. It inspects and regulates services which care for children and young people, and those providing education and skills for learners of all ages.

Ofsted inspections of ITE providers provide an expert and independent assessment of how well a university is performing and the quality of teacher training offered. Information in the inspection report can help you to decide which university best suits your career needs.

In the latest Ofsted Inspection (March 2014) Birmingham City University was awarded a grade 2 rating “Good” for its primary and early years, secondary and post-compulsory education and training provision.

Further Study

You can complement your studies by going on to take a Subject Knowledge Enhancement course which will boost your mathematics knowledge, ensure you are up-to-date with curriculum changes, and support teaching and learning in the classroom.

Our MA Education (MEd) and Masters in Teaching and Learning (MTL) courses meet the continuing professional development needs of teachers. Birmingham City University trained teachers with PGCE credits at Level 7 benefit from advanced standing on these courses due to the M Level credits that can be taken into them from the PGCE.

These courses encourage practice-based enquiry which generates accurate real-time findings about the quality of learning and teaching in schools. The highly flexible MEd and MTL courses help to develop your expertise to meet performance management targets and further the strategic priorities of your school or workplace.

Enhanced Employability Skills

Ofsted inspections have confirmed that our trainees “leave their courses with a wide range of knowledge and skills that make them highly employable.” And that “Their career progression is swift and they make a real difference to the quality of teaching and learning in their schools.” (Ofsted 2014)

We believe that this is due to the strong sense of belonging to a genuine learning community, which results in the development of professional confidence. This is enhanced with our excellent school partnership.

Placements

Two-thirds of your course takes place in school and we ensure that you are offered a number of placements in a wide range of educational establishments.

You will do work placements in at least two different schools and also visit others – including a primary school and or a post-16 setting where appropriate.  This all helps you to see how teachers are working in practice and gives you a wealth of experience.

You will have subject and professional mentors in school who will guide and support your studies and provide you with feedback.

More about our placement opportunities...

OpportUNIty

OpportUNIty Student Ambassador

OpportUNIty: Student Jobs on Campus ensures that our students are given a first opportunity to fill many part-time temporary positions within the University. This allows you to work while you study with us, fitting the job around your course commitments. By taking part in the scheme, you will gain valuable experiences and employability skills, enhancing your prospects in the job market.

It will also allow you to become more involved in University life by delivering, leading and supporting many aspects of the learning experience, from administration to research and mentoring roles.

Postgraduate Jobs

All PGCE Mathematics trainees find employment as teachers in a variety of school settings.

Birmingham City University is a vibrant and multicultural university in the heart of a modern and diverse city. We welcome many international students every year – there are currently students from more than 80 countries among our student community.

The University is conveniently placed, with Birmingham International Airport nearby and first-rate transport connections to London and the rest of the UK.

Our international pages contain a wealth of information for international students who are considering applying to study here, including:

Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC)

International students who have a serious interest in studying with us but who perhaps cannot meet the direct entry requirements, academic or English, or who have been out of education for some time, can enter Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC) and begin their degree studies.

BCUIC

BCUIC is part of the global Navitas Group, an internationally recognised education provider, and the partnership allows students to access the University’s facilities and services and move seamlessly through to achieving a Bachelor’s degree from Birmingham City University.

Learn more about BCUIC

Our Facilities

We are constantly investing in our estate and are currently in the process of spending £260 million on new learning facilities.

A fly through of the £41 million expansion of our City South Campus. It will provide specialist laboratories and teaching spaces for the new life sciences courses and a new home for the School of Education.

 
Science education facilities

Our laboratory and Science Education Learning Room have been newly built for the start of the 2015/16 academic year. The Science Education Lab will enable trainees to encounter and explore the latest Science Education pedagogies, and together with the Science Learning Room will facilitate trainees’ transition from “subject expert” to “expert subject teacher”. Trainees will work in a fully hands-on way with the core science education materials to develop excellent subject and pedagogic knowledge - the twin attributes of the outstanding teacher.

Campus

City North is a big, bustling campus, three miles north of Birmingham city centre. It's easy to get to and offers on-site parking. Located 5 minutes from Perry Barr train station, City North Campus is also ideally positioned along major bus routes.

The School of Education will be moving to City South Campus in Edgbaston during the 2017/18 academic year.

City south 1

New developments

Our new development at City South Campus will ensure students have access to the best facilities, including our specially developed replica classrooms with interactive whiteboards, enabling you to experience the classroom environment.

Departments

All our departmental facilities replicate the school learning environment.

  • Art and Design
  • Design and Technology
  • History
  • English
  • Mathematics
  • Religious Education
  • Music
  • Drama

IT Support

Each student has a personal computer user name and server space Specific software for use by teachers and for use in classrooms.

Other items available include:

  • Training and training notes
  • Students can borrow cameras, LCD projector
  • Specialist technician support
  • Dedicated research base for postgraduate research students

Art and Design Department

There are fully equipped art studios suitable for 3D construction, printmaking, drawing and mixed-media. For textile and ceramics specialists, there are sewing machines and facilities for batik work and a large kiln for firing ceramics. The department has an ICT Suite for digital media that includes both Mac and PC computers. There is also access to a bank of Apple iPads for on and off-site digital working including the use of social media.

Design and Technology Department

The department has access to specialist facilities, including a dedicated teaching suite for food and textiles. The textiles area has 10 sewing machines, an overlocker, CAD/CAM embroidery machines, dye sublimation equipment, a felting machine and an electronic microscope that links to the interactive whiteboard. It is also well resourced with surface decoration and construction equipment.

The food area has five electric cookers, combination microwave/ovens, an extensive range of industrial and domestic equipment, eg industrial ice cream makers and electric pasta makers, bench top printer and a CAD/CAM icing printer. The specialist tutor is a Speed Step and basic food hygiene trainer.

There is a specialist room for design and technology teaching and independent work, as well as a well-stocked reference library that contains a wide range of resources that are relevant for undergraduate and postgraduate students.

Other features include a recycling materials area, specialist work benches and a bank of computers linked directly to CAD/CAM equipment.

History Department

There are plenty of replica artefacts in the department and other superb facilities, including a huge library of dedicated subject books and an interactive whiteboard. We also inspire our trainee teachers to bring history to life by offering them opportunities to travel to historic sites.

English Department

The School of Education has two dedicated English teaching rooms that contain a substantial children's collection of works including fiction, non-fiction, poetry, picture books and multicultural text. There is also a selection of phonics teaching materials, puppets and story bags that are used in teaching sessions.

You can explore the links between ICT and literacy through the department's Digital Blue cameras and electronic photo albums.

Mathematics Department

There are two dedicated teaching rooms for mathematics. The rooms make use of Promethean and Smart interactive white boards. Both rooms contain a library of recent and relevant publications as well as a wide range of resources for use while on teaching practice.

Trainees are supplied with the use of a laptop for the duration of the course. The laptops come with Autograph and Geometers Sketchpad software. There are a class set of iPads available for the teaching sessions.

Religious Education Department

This teaching room attempts to bring sacredness in its vicinities and a visitor will find precious collections of artefacts and devotional utilities, audio-visual resources, books, sacred texts and children's books from a range of religious traditions to support learning and teaching.

Early Years Department

As well as enjoying very strong links with local schools and specialist nurseries, we have a specialist teaching room that has a range of story sacks and puppets, an extensive selection of planning resources, copies of key texts, and toys and equipment that are relevant for foundation stage.

Music Department

The music department has two dedicated classrooms and seven practice rooms, five of which contain dedicated computer-based recording/sequencing equipment. There is also a fully equipped sound recording studio and Apple Mac computers for sound manipulation.

Drama Department

There is a fully equipped drama studio with stage lighting.

Staff Introduction

With a vast amount of experience in a variety of school settings, our university Mathematics tutors, Don, Shane and Helen, offer exceptional education and training. Their shared ethos and rationale for Mathematics in schools is evident in all they do as they encourage trainee Mathematics teachers to develop their own practice, pedagogy and beliefs.

Don Newton

Senior Lecturer Mathematics Education

Having graduated from Reading University I took up my first teaching post at an innovative community school in Telford, Madeley Court, where I worked as head of department.

From there as a deputy headteacher at another community school in Nottingham, eventually taking up a headteacher post at a large secondary school near Birmingham.

After 10 years as a headteacher I took up my post at Birmingham City University as Senior Lecturer in Mathematics Education.

UK prospective students:

UK enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5595

EU / International prospective students:

International enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5389

Already applied?

Email the applications team

+44 (0)121 331 6295