Primary and Early Years Education with QTS - PGCE

Course Code:
3-7 age phase: X110 (FT) 5-11 age phase: 338B (FT)
Attendance:
Full Time
Starting:
September 2018
Campus:

Do you have a passion for educating children, supporting their academic and personal growth at a key stage in their development? Is your aim to become a reflective, critical and enquiring primary school teacher? Then our PGCE Primary and Early Years course is for you.

What's covered in the course?

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. 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.

Why Choose Us?

  • Consistently high employability rates, with 98.8 per cent of 2016 graduates in employment or further study six months after completing this course (latest DLHE survey results 2015/16).

  • Over 70 per cent of our 2015 graduates gained employment in West Midlands’ primary schools.

  • We support you with the job application process as part of your course.

  • 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 Educational Leadership or Teaching and Learning.

  • We have strong relationships with hundreds of primary schools in the region. Schools are committed to the quality of experience they offer our trainees.

  • Our team of experienced teachers, who have held senior positions in schools, are there to support and guide your progress.

Students outside Millennium Point

Open Days

Our next Open Day for this course will take place on Saturday 30 June 2018. Book your place to see our facilities and speak to our staff and students.

Book your place

This course is open to International students

Speak to an expert

If you’ve got any questions about the course, we’d love to hear from you. Please email the Course Director: Paul Purser.

Email Course Director

Alternatively, you can register for our next postgraduate open day.

Where our students go

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

  • St Martins Church of England
  • Summerville School

And in jobs such as:

  • Reception Teacher
  • Teacher

Postgraduate lunch drop in

Teacher training drop in event

Drop in to our event - our staff will be on hand to answer all your questions.

Book now: 18 July 4-7pm

Entry Requirements

UK students
Essential

We normally require a Bachelor's Honours degree at 2:1 level or above from a UK higher education institution or a recognised equivalent in a subject that provides the necessary foundation for work as a primary teacher although we will consider applications from those with a 2:2 degree.

Trainees expecting to take a specialist module in a core subject, Special Educational Needs or Early Years must have an appropriate degree or be able to demonstrate equivalent understanding and experience.

GCSE at grade C or above (or its equivalent) in English, mathematics and a science subject is also necessary at the point of enrolment.

Download the GCSE equivalencies for this course  

For entry onto a teaching course you'll also be required to pass Skills Tests in Literacy and Numeracy. Please visit the DfE website for more information. You will not be allowed to enrol on your course until you have passed these tests.

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).

Other requirements

You may wish to gain some experience in Primary School before attending an interview.

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 2018 FT 1 year £9,250 Apply via UCAS

International Students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
PGCE Sep 2018 FT 1 year £12,000 Apply online now

The University reserves the right to increase fees in line with inflation based on the Retail Prices Index or to reflect changes in Government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament up to a maximum of five per cent.

Course codes:

3-7 age phase: X110 (FT)

5-11 age phase: 338B (FT)

All applications 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

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

Accommodation and living costs

The cost of accommodation and other living costs are not included within your course fees. More information on the cost of accommodation can be found in our accommodation pages.

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

Core Curriculum
20 credits

This module looks at teaching the core subjects of maths, English and science, planning lessons and carrying out assessments. You’ll look in depth at pedagogy and apply this to the subjects you consider on the course.

Foundation Curriculum
20 credits

This module concentrates on foundation subjects, such as history and geography. It is intended to develop your confidence in teaching foundation subjects, and you’ll have some choice areas you wish to develop further.

Professional Studies and Leadership
20 credits

Will equip you with the essential knowledge that every teacher needs to know, including the safeguarding of young people, and how to work successfully with parents, agencies and governors.

Course structure

This is a one-year postgraduate course.

It offers you an academic qualification, the Primary and Early Years Education PGCE, but you will spend two-thirds of your time – 120 days – working in schools and gaining valuable real-life experience.  

You’ll also learn by attending workshops and group discussions, but this course is mainly practical and very hands-on.

You can choose to focus on:

  • Learning to teach young people between the ages of three and seven,
    or
  • Learning to teach young people between the ages of five and 11.

All trainees learn to teach across the range of subjects in the Primary National Curriculum, but there is a strong focus on English and mathematics.

Whichever route you choose,, you’ll also be able to take a specialist module in either a National Curriculum Core area, foreign languages, computing or special needs, depending upon demand.

Students looking to teach children aged three to seven years old can also opt to take a specialist module in Early Years. This combined pathway of study leads to the PGCE Early Years qualification.

Assessment methods

There are assessments on course work, teaching practice and the achievement of The Department for Education for the award of QTS. You will also undertake written assessments and some presentations derived from both faculty-based modules and school experiences. Academic work will need to be of the high standard required of postgraduate level 7 study.

Standards for the award of QTS are assessed in a number of ways, including course work, school experience assessments and evidence portfolios.

Student stories

Megan Evans

Birmingham City University was my first choice for the PGCE Primary course because, of all of the local institutions, this was the best. The course was more focused on practical teaching skills and offered more flexibility when it came to modules than other universities.

Julie Nash

Having visited the University and explored its facilities, I could clearly see how well-resourced it is, from classrooms that are reminiscent of school with bright displays and a wealth of educational resources, to the library that provides a broad range of literature.

Further study

While studying for your PGCE, you’ll be made fully aware of opportunities to study with us in the future.

If you are ambitious to gain a Masters Degree, successful completion of the PGCE will give you 60 credits towards this. Specific courses include the Masters in Teaching and Learning (MTL) and the Masters in Educational Leadership (MEL).

Student stories Kate McInernery

Postgraduate Student of the Year

She was praised for the wide range of involvement she has had with University activities and the support she has given to her fellow students, all while achieving excellent results on her course.

Despite the demands of her course, Kate volunteered to represent the University at the televised Educate and Celebrate Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) History month event at the new Library of Birmingham.

Kate has also worked with local children on a new body of work on promoting equality through children's literature. In addition to this, Katie has provided a presentation for the National Association for the Teaching of English, an international conference for some of the world's leading academics.

Trips and Visits

You may go on a variety of different visits depending upon your module choices, which will give you ideas and inspiration for projects you can use in the classroom.

Examples include tours of Warwick Castle or a visit to Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, which will give you an opportunity to find out about ways in which you can bring subjects, such as history and art, to life for your pupils.

You’ll also consider how you might plan a trip including appropriate safety and risk assessment.

Employment opportunities

Our commitment to developing graduates with the skills and experience employers need means that within six months of graduating, 98.8 per cent of our PGCE Primary and Early Years graduates are in employment or further study. (DLHE Survey 2015/16).

Whatever subjects you choose, we focus on giving up-to-date knowledge. The real-life experience you gain on placements can also give you a real head start in the career stakes.

Placements

We work hard to maintain strong relationships with more than 900 primary schools in the region. All have signed a Partnership Agreement pledging their commitment to offering our trainees a high-quality experience.

Find out what it's really like on school placement by reading the blog of PGCE Primary and Early Years trainee Dan MacKintosh. Dan's blog provides a week by week account of his first placement at a primary school in Birmingham.

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.

Graduate Jobs

Our graduates are highly successful in finding teaching posts and many take jobs in the area.

Your course, with its high level of practical content, plus the fact that in your second placement you’ll be teaching 80 per cent of the time, means you are well-placed to go after job opportunities as they arise.

The amount of time spent gaining real classroom experience means you could end up working in one of the schools that you visit.

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.

As part of these plans, the University's Education provision will join the rest of the Faculty of Health, Education and Life Sciences at our City South Campus in Edgbaston during 2018.

This is the third phase of the University's project to move all teaching and learning to two campuses, City Centre and City South. By moving our Education provision, we are creating a hub for the provision of public service contracts and professional development at City South Campus and improving the student experience with a stronger sense of community and more consistent support services and facilities.

Campus

In addition to classrooms, a lecture theatre, social learning spaces, an open access IT suite and cafe facilities, the new £41 million extension to our City South Campus offers a range of specialist teaching and learning facilities for specific subjects including science, design and technology, drama and physical education.  

Departments

All our departmental facilities replicate the school learning environment.

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

Not only are we investing £41 million in a new building to house the laboratories and teaching spaces needed, but we also plan to open up these facilities to benefit all students and the wider community. This will complement our existing sports facilities, which already provide a base for students to compete in activities ranging from rugby to.

Mary Seacole Library

The Seacole library, based at City South Campus, is one of the UK's largest specialist health education libraries. The facility offers an extensive range of range of information and reference materials set out in a relaxing environment, conducive to studying. There are comfortable seating areas, group study areas, a silent study area and private study rooms.

Computer Facilities

The Seacole building houses a large open access IT Suite which comprises of 96 PCs, printers, photocopiers and scanners. Our PCs utilise the latest Intel i5 core technology, all with:

  • Fast (unrestricted) internet connectivity
  • Ability to save files to USB, DVD & CD
  • Microsoft Office software
  • Research and statistical software
  • Storage space which can be accessed from any PC across the University and from home

Our PCs are also designed to support students who may have difficulties with reading and writing, featuring specialised software with zooming/magnification and screen reading capabilities, which may also be customised for individual student needs.

The IT Suite offers extended opening hours and is supported by a specialist Open Access Assistant during term time. In addition to the open access PCs within the IT Suite, there are 12 networked student PCs available within Seacole library.

Paul Purser

PGCE Primary and Early Years Education Course Director

Having completed a Science degree, Paul undertook a PGCE and qualified in 1990. He has always led Science within school in addition to his teaching and leadership commitments. Alongside this he developed his skills in whole school leadership, leading year groups and phases within school.

This range of experience enabled Paul to become deputy head of a large three form entry primary school and children's centre. He gained the NPQH while deputy head teacher.

Paul's last post was as a head teacher in Walsall, before joining the the Science team at Birmingham City University in September 2012.

UK prospective students:

UK enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 6295

EU / International prospective students:

International enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5389

Already applied?

Contact the admissions team

+44 (0)121 331 6295