The University of Southampton

What is the PGCE course like?


The PGCE is a 36-week teacher-training course. The course starts in early September and finishes in June, following the second teaching practice. Successful trainees are recommended for qualified teacher status (QTS). The qualification allows you to teach in infant, junior, middle and secondary schools.

The qualification is a requirement in some Sixth Form Colleges; it is also valued in further education establishments.

Whilst on the PGCE course, you will be placed with two separate partnership schools. One during the autumn and then the major placement from January through to the summer. The exact timings vary from year-to-year but the pattern is constant. We only use partnership schools across our area where there is good support through Professional Mentors and Curriculum Mentors. It is your responsibility to arrange travel and make allowance for the time needed and the costs incurred. We have schools in areas within and between Farnborough, Basingstoke, Winchester, Andover, Salisbury, Poole, Bournemouth, Southampton, Fareham, Portsmouth, and on the Isle of Wight.

The number of days you spend engaged with activities set by the university will vary, depending on the route you take through the training. University led (UL) and Southampton University Partnership Association (SUPA) trainees spend slightly more time in university, while school direct (SD) trainees spend more time in schools. The number and distribution of days will vary each year.  Here is an example of a timetable.

An important aspect of the PGCE CS&IT is the submission of three assignments that are assessed at Masters Level. Successful trainees will be awarded a PGCE, QTS recommendation, and the equivalent to one-third the taught element of a Masters degree. The credits awarded at Masters Level are accepted at universities in this country and across the EU. We have a specific programme so that the Masters can be completed later.