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Primary and Early Years (Physical Education) with QTS - PGCE

  • Level: Postgraduate Taught
  • Starting: September 2021
  • Study mode: Full Time
  • Location: City South

Studying with us in 2021/22

It is possible that the 2021/22 academic year may be affected by the ongoing disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Any arrangements put in place by the University for the 2021/22 academic year will be in accordance with the latest government public health advice, pandemic-related/health and safety legislation, and the terms and conditions of the student contract.

Do you have a passion for educating children, and the value and role Physical Education can play in their development? If your aim is to become a reflective, critical and enquiring primary school teacher then our PGCE Primary Education with Specialism in Physical Education with QTS is the course for you. 

Our PGCE Primary Education with Specialism in Physical Education with QTS puts the holistic development of children at the heart of what you will learn. You will develop your knowledge and practice of Physical Education and its educative purpose in a range of settings. We will provide you with the skills and understanding that you will need to engage and inspire every child in your primary school classroom, to prepare you for your NQT year and beyond. 

What's covered in the course?

You’ll discover that the way we teach you and the time you spend in schools in Birmingham and the wider West Midlands area will give you a broad experience of working with children who come from a wide range of different social, economic and cultural backgrounds, so you’ll be confident, committed and creative teacher ready for your NQT year.

DBS

Applicants must meet requirements of being medically fit and successfully completing an enhanced disclosure via the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS). Learn more.

Why Choose Us?

  • Consistently high employability rates, with over 98% of our 2017 PGCE Primary graduates in employment or further study six months after their course (latest DLHE survey results 2016/17)

  • 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

  • We meet the Department for Education's (DfE) Criteria for Initial Teacher Training and successful candidates on our Initial Teacher Training courses will be recommended to the DfE for Qualified Teacher Status

This course is open to International students

Apply for teacher training 

The route into postgraduate teacher training is changing. As an early adopter, we’re committed to improving your journey into teacher training. 

Apply here

Entry Requirements

UK students
Essential

We normally require a Bachelor's Honours degree at 2:2 level or above from a UK higher education institution, or a recognised equivalent. You should have a passion for Physical Education. 

GCSE at grade 4 (formerly 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  

Applicants must meet Department for Education requirements for Initial Teacher Training, which means being medically fit (physically and mentally) and successfully completing an enhanced disclosure via the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).

International Students

Entry requirements here

International Students

Don't meet our entry requirements? You could apply for courses at our International College.

Apply now

  • UK students
  • International students

Award: PGCE

Starting: Sep 2021

  • Mode
  • Duration
  • Fees
  • Full Time
  • 1 year
  • £9,250 per year

Award: PGCE

Starting: Sep 2021

  • Mode
  • Duration
  • Fees
  • Full Time
  • 1 year
  • £13,200 per year

Access to computer equipment

You will require use of a laptop, and most students do prefer to have their own. However, you can borrow a laptop from the university or use one of our shared computer rooms.

Printing

You will receive £5 print credit in each year of your course, available after enrolment.

Field trips

All essential field trips and associated travel costs will be included in your course fees.

Access to Microsoft Office 365

Every student at the University can download a free copy of Microsoft Office 365 to use whilst at university and for 18 months after graduation.

Key Software

You will be able to download SPSS and Nvivo to your home computer to support with your studies and research.

Key subscriptions

Subscriptions to key journals and websites are available through our library.

Free access to Rosetta Stone

All students can sign up to the online learning language platform for free through the Graduate+ scheme.

LinkedIn Learning

Free access to LinkedIn Learning, which offers over 5,000 in-depth and bite-sized courses.

DBS check

You will require a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check for this course. Your first DBS check is included in your fees.

Project materials (mandatory)

This course includes project work that requires you to develop and produce a portfolio or collection. You'll be expected to provide the materials for use in your individual major projects; costs will vary depending on the materials selected.

Placement expenses (mandatory)

Placements are a compulsory element of teacher training courses. You'll need to budget for any travel costs you may incur whilst undertaking your placement.

Excess printing (optional)

Once you have spent your £5 credit, additional printing on campus costs from 5p per sheet.

Books (optional)

All module key texts will be in the University library, but in limited numbers. You may choose to purchase a copy.

Field trips (optional)

This course includes the option of additional trips that may enhance your experience, at extra cost.

Subscriptions (optional)

You may wish to purchase subscriptions to additional journals and websites.

Memberships (optional)

You may wish to join a union or professional body related to this 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.

Applications for this course are now closed. Some spaces may still be available for the School Direct training route. Please follow the links below for further information.

The way you apply for teacher training is changing. The Department for Education (DfE) has developed a GOV.UK application service for postgraduate teacher training called ‘Apply for teacher training’.

This means there are two ways to apply to our ITT courses.

 1. The Department for Education

Use the red 'Apply' link above to access the Department for Education website. For more information on how to apply for a teacher training course please visit Apply for Teacher Training. 

2. UCAS Teacher Training

You can also choose to apply 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.

Use Apply for teacher training if:
  • all the providers on your shortlist are signed up to Apply for teacher training
  • you want to try a new process with extra guidance on tricky areas such as personal statements
Use UCAS if:
  • you are already doing an application through UCAS
  • some of your choice(s) of training provider are not signed up to Apply for teacher training and you’d rather not apply through two different systems

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

Personal statement

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.

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.

Work Experience

It is not a requirement to obtain work experience in a school or education setting before applying for a teacher training course, so if you are unable to obtain work experience, this will not affect your application. If you would like to gain some experience to help prepare you for your course, there are other options available. The UCAS website details a range of alternative activities that you might want to consider.

UCAS

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 for most Secondary teacher training courses and Primary Mathematics.

Find out more

Year One

In order to complete this course a student must successfully complete all the following CORE modules (totalling 40 credits)

20 credits

The PGCE Primary and Early Years programme provides high quality initial teacher training for those wishing to teach in primary schools and early years settings. This module provides opportunities for trainee teachers to explore the nature of the core subjects (Mathematics, English and Science) and prime and specific areas of the EYFS in the context of learning and teaching in the primary school and early years settings. The module provides substantial support for trainees’ professional practice in such settings, assessed through the School Experience modules. This module provides a strong philosophical underpinning to the importance of trainees’ subject knowledge in the primary school and EYFS curricula. By undertaking this module trainees will be shaping their own rationale for their approach to the teaching of the above subjects/areas and to meet the needs of all learners.

20 credits

The PGCE Primary and Early Years programme provides high quality initial teacher training for those wishing to teach in primary schools and early years settings. This module provides opportunities for trainee teachers to explore the nature of the foundation subjects for key stages 1 & 2 (History, Geography, Art, Music, Computing, Design & Technology, Physical Education, Foreign Languages and Religious Education) and certain prime and specific areas of the EYFS including Physical Development, Understanding the world (not ‘science’ elements) and Expressive Arts and Design. The module provides substantial support for trainees’ professional practice in such settings, assessed through the School Experience modules. This module provides a strong philosophical underpinning to the importance of trainees’ subject knowledge in the primary school and EYFS curricula. By undertaking this module trainees will be shaping their own rationale for their approach to the teaching of the above subjects/areas and to meet the needs of all learners. Trainees will develop an understanding of cross-curricular approaches and how they support the development of knowledge, understanding and skills in the foundation subjects /areas of learning.

0 credits

This module belongs to the School Based Training strand of the programme. Working in partnership with schools over a sustained period of time in school, this module, School Based Training 1, provides opportunities for you as a trainee teacher to meet the professional standards and expectations of teaching through practical experience. You will have the opportunity to work alongside experienced teachers and other education professionals to develop your knowledge, understanding and skill in the classroom and the wider school environment. Schools will undertake to provide trainees with a variety of opportunities to observe best practice which addresses the trainees’ development needs. You will be able to implement theory and evidence-based understanding on an on-going and development basis into your teaching into the classroom.

0 credits

Working in partnership with schools over a sustained period of time in school, this module, School Based Training 2, enables you to build on and demonstrate your mastery and achievement of the professional standards and expectations of teaching through practical, school-based experience. You will have the opportunity to work alongside experienced teachers and other education professionals to develop your knowledge, understanding and skill in the classroom and the wider school environment. You will be able to implement theory and evidence-based understanding into your teaching into the classroom and within a professional, safe and supportive community of practice become a confident, creative and committed teacher demonstrating a working understanding of and progress towards, the professional standards that underpin learning and teaching in a primary or early years settings. You will be assessed against the current professional competences for teaching through a learning, teaching and assessment strategy that describes the stages of development as emerging, establishing, embedding, and enhancing.

 
Professional Studies and Leadership - PE Specialism
20 credits

Course structure

This is a one-year course, based at the University’s School of Education and Social Work at our City South Campus in Edgbaston.

Although the PGCE offers you a valuable academic qualification, one of its major attractions is the fact that you will spend two-thirds of your time –120 days – working in schools and gaining valuable real-life experience.

You’ll work towards your qualification by attending workshops and group discussions, but this course is essentially very practical and hands-on.

This is a full-time, one-year course, which will train you 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 mathematics and English.

School Based Activities

Approximately two thirds of this well-structured and supervised programme includes blocked time in schools/settings where trainees will gain direct teaching experience and work with experienced practitioners in the classroom. School based sessions are undertaken predominately in West Midland primary schools. 

Teaching is graded as pass or fail and by the end of the second practice trainees will have gained experience of teaching approximately 80 per cent of the timetable in a supportive and guided context.

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.

Further study

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

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

Trips and Visits

You may go on a variety of different visits, 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.

Enhance Employability Skills

Our commitment to developing graduates with the skills and experience employers need means that within six months of graduating, over 98 per cent of PGCE Primary and Early Years students are in employment or further study (DLHE Survey 2015/16).

Whatever subjects you choose, we focus on giving up-to-date knowledge. Making use of your strong knowledge of physical education, along with the real-life experience you gain from going on placements, should 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. You’ll go on block placements to at least two different schools which are relevant to the age group you want to teach.

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

This qualification will highlight your strength in physical education and your ability to take a lead in this area throughout your professional career.

The 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 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 £340 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.

Angela Whitehouse

Angela Whitehouse

Senior Lecturer in Primary Physical Education

Angela’s career in teaching began after graduating with a B.Ed (hons) degree from Nene College, Northampton in 1992. Angela was a primary class teacher for 20 years, working in a diverse range of schools across the Birmingham area, teaching in Key stage 1 and Key Stage 2. During this time Angela held many different additional roles and responsibilities including; Subject Leader for Physical Education, mathematics and ICT, Key Stage Two Phase Leader, and School Based Mentor for the University of Central England (now BCU).

Read Angela's full profile