Primary PGCE Course Information

The depth with which the PCP prepares you to teach is a real strength. The training takes place in the PCP centre at the edge of Southampton and in our partnership schools, located across Hampshire, Wiltshire and the South Coast. You are given the chance to become fully involved in school life very early in the training. This will help you develop outstanding relationships with pupils and staff. You will also have plenty of opportunity to develop your practice and behaviour management in a variety of other primary schools, including city settings.

Trainee Comment

"With the course being so school-centred, it meant that we quickly got to put the theory into practice. Now I've completed my first term in school, I just wanted to say, thanks for all the help and support last year, I felt as prepared as I could have done starting my first job!"

Trainee Comment

"The school-based nature of the course is brilliant - lots of time in schools; the lecturers are all up-to-date and often working in primary schools."

Trainee Comment

"I am so pleased that I applied and was accepted onto this course. It has provided me with an excellent start to teaching and the supportive and caring approach of course leaders and trainees has really helped me to develop."

Trainee Comment

"It was great to be in school in the second week of the course. I have definitely found the career for me."

Key features of the PCP programme:

  • A 40 week course, with the opportunity to learn from outstanding classroom teachers.
  • 25 weeks in school; in addition to your two placement schools, you'll visit plenty of others including those serving diverse city communities.
  • Your tutors will be experts in their field, able to balance theory with practice.
  • You'll be offered regular opportunities to develop your classroom skills and receive formative feedback before your full placements.

School Experience

The PCP programme is designed to meet the national Teachers' Standards (2012) and 25 weeks are spent in schools over three terms.

Before joining the programme, you will complete at least two-weeks' pre-course experience. The emphasis is on observing good teachers at work. Guided activities are used to help focus your observations. Once on the course, you will have two main placements, one in Key Stage 1 and the other in Key Stage 2.

During the first term, we help you to build your confidence and professional expertise through series of visits to schools, including your first placement school. You will observe good teaching and gradually move into taking parts of whole class lessons. Over twenty-five days are spent preparing you in schools during the autumn term before you are finally assessed. This prepares you well for your first block placement early in the spring term, where you concentrate mainly on teaching the core subjects.

The second placement provides you with ten weeks in a contrasting setting in a different key stage. The emphasis this time is on sustained class teaching across the full range of National Curriculum core and foundation subjects, and responsibility for assessing and supporting pupils of different abilities.

Towards the end of the programme, you will have the chance to spend a week in the school where you will be working as a newly-qualified teacher.

Age Phase

The PCP programme trains you for both Primary Key Stages, providing wide opportunities for employment. The age range offered is 5-11 years and you will gain experience of teaching both key stages. The Foundation stage (ages 4-5) is looked at as a starting place for children in the Primary school and a few trainees may be able to have a school experience which includes Reception-aged children. Wherever possible, we try to place trainees in their preferred key stage for their final school experience.

The subjects in the taught course are:

English, Maths, Science (core subjects) and Professional Studies

Computing, RE, including two modules from the CCRS, History, Geography, Art, Music, Design & Technology, PE, Modern Foreign Languages.

A specific focus is given to special educational needs and disability.

You will also have the chance to study for two modules from the MA Education.

At the PCP, groups are smaller and your learning journey will be individual and built around your needs. Training with the PCP will provide you with Qualified Teacher Status and a PGCE from a university. It will also give you:

  • More time in school.
  • A personal development plan with individual support.
  • The chance to learn from expert teachers.
  • Experience of a wide range of schools.

Click here to see an example of the Programme Structure

Catholic Certificate in Religious Studies (CCRS)

All teachers within Catholic schools are expected to have the CCRS. To help you prepare for your placements, you will undertake two modules of the CCRS during the course. This will provide a valuable additional qualification for working in a faith school or becoming an RE subject co-ordinator in any school.

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