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PGDE (Secondary) Overview

Our Professional Graduate Diploma in Education (PGDE) Secondary course provides the formal teaching qualification for provisional registration with the General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS), preparing you for a career in secondary school teaching.

University-based study focuses on:

  • curriculum
  • methods of teaching and learning
  • assessment
  • theoretical and practical aspects of professional studies in education

Our course is carried out in partnership with schools in which you will spend 18 weeks on placement.

The programme is attuned to all issues and developments influencing Scottish secondary education, including the expectations of the GTCS.

Teaching qualifications are offered in the following areas. Select one or two of the following subjects, depending on qualifications: Art & Design; Biology with Science; Chemistry with Science; English; French; German; Mathematics; Physical Education; Physics with Science; Spanish.

Placement Opportunities

Eighteen weeks are spent on school experience placements in at least two schools; a two week introductory placement followed by five weeks in the same school; then six weeks in a second school and a final five week placement in the second school.

The School of Education

The School of Education at UWS is recognised as one of the most innovative providers of education degrees in the UK. From early years to adult education, students gain rich experience from our innovative courses and graduate with unrivalled career prospects.

Our research informs our teaching courses, influences policy and contributes to wider research networks across the world. Our work into the nature and causes of youth violence, crime and gang culture has had an international impact.

Our students gain vital skills and practical experience through work placements, preparing them for successful careers in pre-school, primary, secondary and community education.

Frequently Asked Questions

We have compilied a set of answers to FAQs relating to PGDE Secondary which you can download now in pdf format.

 

99%

OF UNDERGRADUATE & POSTGRADUATE EDUCATION STUDENTS ARE IN WORK AND/OR FURTHER STUDY 6 MONTHS AFTER GRADUATING

Destination of Leavers from Higher Education (DLHE) Survey 2015/16

UWS & Education: 2018 League tables

  • Education at UWS was ranked 4th in the UK & 1st in Scotland for teaching quality and student experience in the Times Good University Guide 2018*
  • Education at UWS was ranked 4th in the UK & 1st in Scotland for student satisfaction in the Complete University Guide 2018*
  • Education at UWS was ranked 13th in the UK & 1st in Scotland for satisfaction with the course, teaching and assessment & feedback in the Guardian University Guide 2018*

* this ranking was achieved for our undergraduate course in initial teacher training

Entry Requirements

What qualifications do you need?

We welcome Scottish, UK and international students and consider all applicants on an individual basis.

Don’t worry if your qualifications are not listed here, we take a range of factors into account when assessing your application and are happy to consider other alternative combinations of qualifications and experience

If you are applying with an EU or non-EU qualification, please check our Postgraduate Entry Requirements page which gives more information about country-specific entry requirements.

 

Academic Requirements

All applicants should hold a degree validated by a university in the UK or a degree of an equivalent standard from outside the UK plus have an English qualification of at least SCQF Level 6 (e.g. Higher English or ESOL) and Mathematics of at least SCQF Level 5 (e.g. National 5, Intermediate 2 or Standard Grade Credit).

The degree qualification must contain a minimum of 80 credit points relevant to the teaching qualification that an applicant plans to qualify for in Secondary, with at least 40 of the credit points studied at Level 8 or above (i.e. around two years full-time study in Higher Education).

Applicants are strongly advised to visit the Teaching in Scotland website for full information on what is required to become a teacher in Scotland.

An offer of a place on this programme is made on the basis of your application and successful interview.

Protecting Vulnerable Groups scheme (PVG)

Successful applicants who gain a place on this course will need to register on the PVG Scheme, managed and delivered by Disclosure Scotland. An application form will be sent from the University once you have accepted your offer. The fee for joining the scheme is £59.

Visit the Disclosure Scotland website for more information on the PVG scheme.

English Language Requirements

English language requirements for most courses

For applicants whose first language is not English, the University sets a minimum English Language proficiency level. The qualifications below must have been gained within two years of the start of your course.

General English language requirements at UWS: International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic module (not General Training)

  • overall score 6.0
  • no sub-test less than 5.5

Common equivalent English language qualifications

All stated English tests are acceptable for admission for both home/EU and international students for this programme:

  • CAE (Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English): 176 overall; no sub-test less than 169
  • CPE (Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English): 176 overall; no sub-test less than 169
  • Trinity College London Integrated Skills in English: ISEII with the minimum of a Pass in all sub-tests

 

IELTS Score Exceptions (DBA, Certificate of Higher Education, PhD, etc.)

For our research degrees (MRes, MPhil, PhD, DBA, DProf), applicants are required to have an IELTS score as follows:

  • overall score of 6.5
  • no sub-test less than 6.0

For Health, Nursing & Midwifery courses that lead to professional registration with the Nursing & Midwifery Council, applicants are required to have an IELTS score as follows:

  • overall score of 7.0
  • no sub-test less than 7.0

For our Certificate of Higher Education courses, applicants are required to have an IELTS score as follows:

  • overall score of 5.0
  • no sub-test less than 4.5

 

Pre-sessional courses

Applicants who do not meet the minimum English language requirements have the option to study one of our preparatory and pre-sessional English courses. The UWS courses available are:

  • 10 week pre-sessional - entry criteria UKVI IELTS 5.0 with no element below 4.5.
  • 5 week pre-sessional - entry criteria UKVI IELTS 5.5 with no element below 5.5.
  • English Language for University Study - entry criteria UKVI IELTS with score of 4.0 in all elements (10 month course), or 4.5 with no score below 4.0 (7 month course).

Course details

Teaching qualifications are offered in the following areas*. You will select one or two of the following subjects, depending on qualifications:

  • Art & Design
  • Biology with Science
  • Chemistry with Science
  • English
  • French
  • German
  • Mathematics
  • Physical Education
  • Physics with Science
  • Spanish

 

Our course currently consists of three compulsory modules, one of which is taught in conjunction with PGDE (Primary) and is offered at both SCQF levels 10 and 11, giving the option of 40 credits of internationally-recognised Master's level study. You will develop an understanding of the curriculum and a range of approaches to teaching, learning and assessment in your chosen subject discipline(s).

You can also undertake an additional 20-credit module at Master's level.

* The University reserves the right to withdraw certain subjects, depending on the quotas set by the Scottish Funding Council.

 

Teaching & Assessment

Each module incorporates a variety of teaching and learning methods. You will be taught through a combination of

  • lectures
  • tutorials
  • workshops

 

Our Secondary Education course is mainly assessed using a variety of assessment methods including:

  • written assignments
  • coursework
  • practical assessment

Course Structure

Find out more about the structure, learning outcomes, compulsory and optional modules in this course.

Course Structure (17/18)

Learn a Language (optional)

This course also gives you the option of taking a language module, which can count towards your degree. These modules cover ten languages and range from absolute beginner to near-native speaker level.

PGDE Tuition Fees

Scottish campuses non-lab-based 2017/18

Scottish & EU

£1,820 per year of study

English, Northern Irish & Welsh

£9,250 per year of study

Channel Islands & Isle of Man

£9,250 per year of study

International (Non-EU)

£12,300 per year of study

More on current & future tuition fees

Additional Costs & Sources of Funding

The cost of attending university is an investment in your future career.

PGDE courses are funded in the same way as undergraduate courses. You can apply to SAAS to have tuition fees paid. Eligibility conditions apply; check SAAS for details.

In addition to tuition fees and living expenses, some courses involve extra costs like study materials, field trips, equipment and uniforms.

Fortunately, there is a great deal of financial support available to help students meet the cost of their study. This ranges from:

  • statutory government loans to pay for tuition fees
  • scholarships for Scottish, EU and International (non-EU) students
  • bursaries to help towards living expenses

The sections below provide details of additional costs that your course may involve along with any financial support that may be available.

You can also find additional information in our Undergraduate Money, Fees & Funding section.

 

Students on certain degrees will incur some additional costs not covered by their tuition fees. These could be for things like specialist equipment, study materials, work placements, graduation, membership of relevant organisations or costs related to carrying out fieldwork.

For students on course with an element of fieldwork, there may also be extra costs for travel and accommodation.

Please contact the course leader for details of the additional costs associated with this course.

Tuition Fees & Additional Costs

Tuition fees are calculated based on where you are from and what you are studying. Some courses also involve additional costs, such as mandatory field trips, equipment or studying abroad.

Find out how much it will cost you to study at UWS as an undergraduate student.

Funding for Scottish Students

Scottish students studying at undergraduate level at UWS are entitled to various funds and support towards tuition fees and living costs.

Find out more.

Funding for English, Welsh & Northern Irish Students

English, Welsh and Northern Irish students studying at undergraduate level at UWS are entitled to various funds and support towards tuition fees and living costs.

Find out more.

Funding for EU Students

EU students studying at undergraduate level of UWS may be eligible for SAAS funding, as well as support to meet the costs of childcare and various sources of additional funding.

Find our more.

Funding for International Students

There are several scholarship and incentive schemes available to international students studying at undergraduate level at UWS, as well as support to meet the costs of childcare and various sources of additional funding.

Find out more.

Discretionary & Childcare Funds

UWS administer a range of discretionary and childcare funds. These are designed to support students who are experiencing financial difficulty or struggling to meet the costs of childcare.

Find out more.

Benefits & Tax Credits

Becoming a student can have an impact on your entitlement to certain benefits. It may mean you are no longer eligible to claim a benefit you have been receiving, or your new income from student funding may affect the amount you are able to receive.

Find out more.

Additional Financial Support

If there isn’t a statutory source of funding for you or your course, or you are in need of additional financial support, you may wish to consider more alternative sources of funding such as trust funds and scholarships.

Find out more.

Money & Debt Advice

Choosing to become a student can have a big impact on your budget and you may need to reassess your spending to account for a reduced income. We’ve put together some guidance to help you manage your money and make the right financial choices for you and your family.

Find out more.

How to apply

All UK and EU applicants, not applying through an agent or partner, must apply through UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admissions Service).

UCAS codes for UWS

  • Institution name: UWS
  • Institution code: U40

GO TO UCAS


If you are applying from a non-EU/EEA country for entry to one of our degree courses, and have not applied already via UCAS, or have not applied to another UK university, then you may apply via our dedicated online application system.


An ATAS certificate is not required for overseas students applying for this course.

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Course Leader

Elaine McCulloch

Education

Research at UWS

With cutting edge facilities, specialist knowledge and world-leading and internationally excellent expertise, we aim to develop research outputs that have a tangible, early and positive impact on society across the globe.

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We will always try to make sure that we publish accurate course information but we do not accept responsibility for any mistakes or omissions. We will also try to make sure that we deliver our courses in line with our published information. However, we may not always be able to do so and you can find further information about this in our enrolment terms and conditions.