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Please note: we have received large numbers of high-quality applicants who have accepted our offer of a place on our Secondary PE PGCE programme for September 2020. As a result, our Secondary PE PGCE course for September 2020 is now closed for applications. This is to ensure a high-quality experience and school placements for our trainee teachers.

Our Physical Education (PE) PGCE course continues the tradition of producing outstanding practitioners of secondary PE. 

  • Gain Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) and 60 Master’s degree credits
  • Innovative and supportive tutors who lead learning in St Mary’s Olympic standard facilities.
  • Strong focus on subject knowledge development, including exploration of alternative activities and an embedded OAA field trip, alongside innovative curriculum design. Theoretical concepts & pedagogy delivered through practical sports settings to enhance subject knowledge.
  • Opportunity for candidates with relevant qualifications to pursue a ‘PE with eBacc’ course of study, enhancing ongoing career opportunities.
  • Outstanding school collaboration and sharing of good practice – including our community schools’ SEND project – hot seating of good practice – aquatics day - focused school visits.
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Why study Secondary Physical Education (PE)?

You will be assessed on your ability to teach pupils in the 11-16 age range, with opportunities for A level and BTEC teaching also included in the programme as appropriate.

By studying the course you will gain experience across a diverse range of secondary school settings and activity areas throughout the course.

Why St Mary's?

The PE PGCE course covers all aspects of physical education teaching and learning, with an emphasis on creative practice for use in school. There is a strong emphasis on using and developing a range of physical education models, as well as planning for the whole ability range to ensure that all pupils are able to make progress.

The experienced physical education tutors work in close partnership with trainees and the placement schools, developing collaborative practice embedded throughout the course.

If you wish to study for the Catholic Certificate of Religious Studies you will be able to complete several of the modules during your PGCE year. This certificate is often a requirement for teaching in a Catholic school.

Qualified Teacher Status (QTS)

Our PGCE programmes include Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) and 60 Master’s degree credits. 120 days of the programme are spent in two assessed school placements that our School Partnership team will arrange for you, based on your home residential address.

QTS is required to teach in all state-maintained schools in England.

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We are Outstanding!

Following our inspection in 2019, we are delighted to announce that Ofsted have graded St Mary’s University as ‘outstanding’ in all areas of teacher training. Read more...

Entry requirements

2:2 Previous degree

PE PGCE applicants are expected to have achieved a 2:2 in a previous degree.

Additional requirement information

  • Your degree should have a significant proportion of the subject you wish to teach. Subject knowledge enhancement courses may be set as a condition in some cases, particularly when the degree is not clearly ‘in line’ with the subject you are applying to.
  • GCSEs in English Language and Mathematics at level 4 (grade C if taken before 2017) or above or equivalent. GCSE equivalents are offered by St Mary's University.
  • Two appropriate references (from an academic tutor or line manager) supporting your suitability for teaching.
  • Satisfactory Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check.
  • Physical and mental fitness to teach.
School observation

At St Mary's, we would like all applicants to have made a fully informed decision about considering joining the teaching profession. As part of that decision making process, spending some time in school(s) observing what teachers do and beginning to give some consideration to how they manage learning can be really insightful and informative.

Your training is most likely to take place in mixed, state comprehensive school environments. If you are choosing to complete some school observation as part of making an informed decision about teaching then we would encourage you to do so in a similar school setting.

Skills tests

The Department for Education has announced that applicants for initial teacher training (ITT) courses from April 2020 will no longer need to take Skills Tests in numeracy and English. The responsibility for assuring trainee teachers have met an appropriate level of skill in these important areas has been passed to the ITT provider. 

At St  Mary's University we therefore require, that by the end of your teacher training programme, you can demonstrate you are competent in English and mathematics.  For St Mary's to be assured of this, and as part of the recommendation for QTS, you will be able to seek guidance in developing these fundamental skills as required.

Irish applicants

Candidates applying from Northern Ireland and Ireland should check for upcoming events and interview dates that we will be hosting in Ireland.

International requirements

International students should check our country-specific pages for equivalents. If English is not your first language you will need to achieve an IELTS score of 6.5 overall with no less than 6.0 in any section (or equivalent).

We now accept IELTS Indicator test results as proof of your English language level.

The gov.uk website has a 'Get into teaching' guide for overseas students.

Further information

For more information about entry requirements please email apply@stmarys.ac.uk.

Course content

Modules

  • General Professional Studies Core
  • Physical Education: Subject Specialism Core
  • School Experience One (Foundation) Core
  • School Experience Two (Development) Core
  • School Experience Three (Consolidation) Core
  • Reflective Overview Core
  • Effective Teaching and Learning Core
  • Investigating Teaching and Learning Core
  • Supporting Learning Core

Please note: it is possible that a module listed on the website will not be able to run due to reasons beyond our control. For more information please refer to our course information disclaimer.

Career opportunities

The quality of the provision at St Mary’s is valued by our trainees and schools, resulting in high levels (over 70%) of NQT employment in our partnership schools. Employment rates following the PGCE course are consistently over 90% in teaching roles.

On the programme you will study two Master's' modules leading to 60 credits at postgraduate level. You will have the opportunity to further your postgraduate studies in your career as these credits are transferable.

At the end of the PGCE course, you will have the opportunity to complete a three-week placement in a special education setting. This is highly valued by trainee teachers to broaden their understanding of specific learning needs for some learners.

How the degree is taught

Teaching methods

You'll be taught on our beautiful and historic campus located in Twickenham, London.

The course tutors use a variety of teaching and learning approaches, including lectures, workshop sessions, collaborative and small-group work, paired work, practical activities, with positive use of technology, individual and group student presentations and some self-supported study.

A number of external cross-curricular visits - such as field trips and visits to museums - also take place.

This range of strategies both caters for a range of preferred learning styles and provides good teaching role models for trainees.

Assessment methods

Trainees are recommended for Qualified Teacher Status by successfully meeting the Teachers’ Standards (DfE). Continuous assessment throughout the programme will determine success.

Master's level assignments complement the work in schools and assist in meeting the Teachers’ Standards. These assignments aim to encourage you to be thoughtful and reflective, but also reinforce the evidence-based nature of the course assessment.

Self-assessment is also recognised as a valuable perspective in the evaluation of both school and university-based work.

Other assessments are used to ensure students understand and can apply the knowledge.  This is done through a range of methods:

  • Self-assessment
  • Presentations
  • Micro-teaching
  • Essays
  • Practical sessions
  • Lesson observations

Assessment is on-going and against the Teachers’ Standards. High standards of attendance, punctuality and participation are requirements of all course elements.

School placements

You are prepared for teaching in partnership with schools that are formally linked to St Mary's, providing an excellent framework to develop teaching skills.

During your studies you'll be allocated two school placements during the 36-week course. In total, 24 weeks is spent in school to ensure close links between theory and practice throughout.

Our partnership schools offer a rich and diverse training programme for our trainees. We work with partner schools throughout the London area. During your placements, you will be guided from working with small groups of pupils alongside a subject teacher towards taking responsibility for whole classes.

Fees and funding

2020/21 fees

  • Home/EU: £9,250
  • International: £12,730
Please note: These fees are annual and may increase in line with inflation each year subject to the Governments review of Higher Education Funding.

The UK Government has confirmed that EU applicants starting in 2020 remain eligible for 'home fee status' and can access financial support.

Funding

If you are a UK or EU student joining the PGCE programme you may be eligible for a Government training bursary. The bursary amount is based on the highest previous qualification that you have attained to date.

Information about financing your studies can be found within the Fees & Funding section.

Alumni discount

A 10% tuition fee discount is available for our undergraduate and postgraduate alumni planning to study a PGCE.

Additional costs

Your tuition fees will cover the cost of all mandatory elements of your programme.

Additional costs could be incurred depending on optional modules chosen and other projects undertaken For further information about additional costs please contact pgcesecondary@stmarys.ac.uk.

Facilities

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Further information