Postgraduate Certificate in Education
Secondary Initial Teacher Education History
This course is open for applications.
About this course
Page last updated 3 January 2017
The Secondary Postgraduate Certificate in Education is a one academic year (36 week) course that trains graduates to be secondary school teachers of History.
The PGCE programme has been designed to train teachers to practice as a subject specialist teacher for the secondary age range (11-16). Trainees are assessed against the standards for Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) across the age range. Trainees will also often gain experience of the 16-18 age range, although they will not be formally assessed in this phase.
If you believe that a study of History is central to the broad and balanced education of any young person, a good grounding in the subject and a history degree, if you have a passion for the subject and are not afraid to work hard to share it in a lively and engaging manner then this might be the course for you!
The course is active and practical allowing trainees to develop professional competence through work undertaken in schools and in the University. Trainees work with young people, develop their expertise in their specialist subject area, share and discuss educational issues and study relevant educational research. The course is just the beginning of what we hope will be a process of continual professional development throughout a challenging and rewarding career.
Watch: The learning and teaching experience
The course is part of the Department of Education's programme for Initial Teacher Training. Units studied are:
- Enabling Learning
- Meeting Curriculum Challenges
- Becoming a Teacher
These units are studied in both the school and the University-based parts of the course, the work on each site being complementary.
The University continually enhances our offer by responding to feedback from our students and other stakeholders, ensuring the curriculum is kept up to date and our graduates are equipped with the knowledge and skills they need for the real world. This may result in changes to the course. If changes to your course are approved we will inform you.
Learning and Teaching
We recognise that embarking on a new course of study can sometimes be quite a challenging undertaking. Students have three main sources of support and information from the University during the course: firstly, there is the Group Tutor in their subject area. Secondly, each student is allocated a Personal Tutor, and thirdly, any student can get support on a range of issues from the Department Student Adviser.
The PGCE History is an active and interesting preparation for teaching History in the 11-16 age range with Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) assessment at two key stages. It is based on time in the University and placements across Bristol, South West England and South Wales.
In subject studies sessions, students get the opportunity to:
- Find out about the History curriculum
- Look at planning for stimulating, active learning
- Consider ways to stretch young people's curiosity and interest in history, including using:
- Historical sources
- Role play and drama
- Objects and artefacts
- Fieldwork (including optional residential fieldwork)
The course is taught using a wide range of resources and in partnership with diverse educational settings. Trainees will be prepared to work within the framework of the Key National Strategy, the National Curriculum and history exam specifications; will have opportunities to look at cross-curricular possibilities and will consider the Citizenship curriculum and cross-curricular links and opportunities. There are strong themes of inclusion, multi-cultural histories and teaching for learning running through the course.
Hear what our students think about their time at UWE.
In order to pass the course, trainees are required to pass each unit. You are assessed on a number of written assignments and also on classroom practice against the standards specified by the Secretary of State for the award of QTS.
For more detail see our full glossary of assessment terms.
24 weeks are spent on placement: a total of eight weeks in one placement during the autumn term and either 12 weeks in a second placement with a further four weeks in an alternative setting (museum or heritage site, or archive education department or special school or ICT centre), or 16 weeks in a second placement during the spring and summer.
As well as teaching, the programme includes contact time with a Senior Professional Tutor and a Subject Mentor, directed study time and personal study time.
We think it is important that you work as a close team, that History comes alive for you and the pupils you teach- and so the course has several planned sessions where you get the chance to go 'beyond the classroom'. In the Autumn we have a residential trip to York to consider the use of outdoor heritage sites (Clifford's Tower/the City Walls/the Minster) to think about scaffolding learning in 'the built environment' and in museums, (the Jorvik Centre, the multi-award winning Castle Museum, and the National Railway Museum); as well as occupying young people on 'residential visits' (the Ghost trail and time at the YHA) and risk assessment. We also visit the Empire and Commonwealth Museum and the Bristol City Museum and work with staff there and work with the Holocaust Education team at the Imperial War Museum in London.
During the year we work with local schools on widening participation and enrichment activities - for example supporting Revision Days for Bristol and South Gloucestershire GCSE Students at UWE, running Gifted and talented sessions on 'Hidden Histories' and leading a day at Chepstow Castle with an entire Year 7 from a local school - with some of the trainees in costume and in role!
The Department of Education provides a pleasant environment in which to study. Its modern, purpose-built facilities provide high quality teaching rooms with state-of-the-art technology available. The department has excellent IT facilities and houses an Open Learning Area with the latest equipment including an interactive whiteboard, CD burners, scanners and a range of equipment that can be booked out and borrowed, including digital cameras and laptops, with friendly staff on hand to help when needed.
Find out more about the facilities and resources UWE has to offer.
Careers / Further study
The Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) programmes now include 40 credits of assessment at Master's Level (Level M). For candidates who opt not to attempt the requisite credit at Level M, a Professional Graduate Certificate in Education will be available as an alternative award.
For further information on your career in teaching, including salary scales and case studies of current trainee teachers, visit www.education.gov.uk/get-into-teaching.
Hear from past UWE students about how studying here has enhanced their career prospects and opened up new opportunities.
Our award-winning careers service helps you develop your employment potential through career coaching, a vacancy service for internships, placements, jobs, global opportunities, volunteering and community activity plus support for entrepreneurial activity, and access to employer events.
Full Time Course
|Home/EU-Full Time-Annual (Per Year) Fee||9250|
|Home/EU-Full Time-Module Fee (15 Credit)||1156|
Supplementary fee information
The PGCE is financed as an undergraduate course. More information on fees can be found on our tuition fees pages.
For funding options, please see funding for PGCE students.
You should typically meet the following profile:
- A single honours degree in History (normally 2:1 minimum) or equivalent. Our expectation is that the content will be strongly related to topics taught within English state secondary schools in order to meet our subject knowledge requirements. Exceptional candidates, with other life experience, might have a joint honours degree at 2:2 or better; in recent years 90% of successful candidates have been single honour 2:1 graduates.
- Able to demonstrate recent experience of observing or supporting teaching in your subject area. This must be conducted in a comprehensive school (minimum of 10 working days or two weeks equivalent within the last three years).
- GCSE grade C or above, or grade 4 under newly reformed GCSE grading, in English Language and Mathematics, or equivalent.*
- Strong subject knowledge of History from 1066 to present.
- A commitment to inclusion, raising achievement and widening participation.
*If you do not meet the GCSE entry requirements, we will accept equivalency tests that are of a standard equivalent to GCSE grade C or above.
Please note that this course starts early in September. We are unable to agree any requests for holiday due to the number of days required to fulfil the course.
Please read through the UCAS Teacher Training pages carefully for guidance on how to apply.
Applicants must pass an initial selection process and short-listed candidates will be interviewed at the Department of Education. All offers will be subject to satisfactory health checks.
Disclosure of Criminal Background - Applicants who are offered a place must undergo a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check and will be required to complete a Disclosure Application Form. All information will be treated in confidence and only taken into account when absolutely necessary.
If you would like information regarding issues that could disqualify you from teaching training, please contact us on +44 (0)117 32 83333.
Department for Education Professional Skills Tests
All trainee teachers are required to pass skills tests in numeracy and literacy before they can be recommended for the award of qualified teacher status (QTS) and before starting their course. We recommend that you complete the skills tests in Numeracy and Literacy as soon as possible after you have submitted an application for an Initial Teacher Education programme. If practical, you should take these tests before any interview that you may be invited for, but if this is not possible, you should take them as soon as possible thereafter. If you have not passed the tests at the interview stage, any offer will be conditional until you have passed both tests. You will need to pass both tests by 30th June. Information about the tests can be found at The Department for Education.
Standards and requirements
Following the review of Standards and Requirements for Initial Teacher Training (ITT) by the Secretary of State in 2012 (revised in June 2013), our full-time courses have been designed to be compliant with the latest standards and requirements. For information about the national curriculum and subjects taught in secondary schools, visit the gov.uk website.
The Department of Education is not able to approve deferrals under any circumstances. Applicants unable to start their programme during the year of application will be required to withdraw and reapply the following year.
For further information
- Email: Admissions@uwe.ac.uk
- Telephone: +44(0)117 32 83333