Lifelong Learning Professional Graduate Certificate in Education In-Service (PGCE)

This is an in-service course which leads to a level 6 professional qualification for those who are already teaching in further education colleges, adult education, higher education and a wide range of other training and education settings outside the schools sector. It provides support towards subsequent achievement of Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) status, if you are appropriately employed in the learning and skills sector. This course helps you to develop your teaching skills, reflect on current ideas about education and training, and to creatively explore the professional opportunities open to you.

What will I study?

The content is organised over four modules that incorporate both academic content and professional practice. The first two modules are delivered in year 1 of the programme with the following two modules delivered in year 2 of the programme.

Research Informed Teaching Learning and Assessment – This module aims to develop your understanding of how people learn in the Lifelong Learning Sector and of the role of assessment in enabling learning and achievement. It introduces theories and principles of learning and assessment and develops your ability to apply research evidence in designing effective learning and assessment strategies and materials. It seeks to develop positive approaches to the management of group and individual behaviours and promotes an inclusive approach to teaching, learning and assessment. It introduces the role of key transferable skills and the ways in which people learn English, Maths and digital skills. The module is assessed by means of a practical micro-teaching assignment and the design of an intervention, strategy, activity or resource, underpinned by an understanding of key principles of teaching, learning and assessment.

Becoming a Subject Specialist Teacher – The module reviews your practice as a trainee teacher. It explores your teaching values, knowledge of your subject specialism, and your knowledge and understanding of how you're learning to teach. You'll have the opportunity to learn how to identify and respond to students’ needs, and how to use suitable teaching, learning and assessment strategies to develop inclusive teaching and learning environments. You'll have the chance to evaluate your teaching effectiveness and develop as a reflective practitioner as well as engage in personal and professional development planning, against the appropriate Professional Standards, to recognise and develop relevant subject specialist knowledge, behaviours and skills. This will include further development of English, Maths and digital skills for you and your students.

Being a Subject Specialist Teacher – This module builds on previous generic and subject specialist development in two ways. Firstly, it contributes to your development of more advanced strategies and methods for promoting learning and, secondly, it involves a focus on specific specialist areas and the critical analysis of subject specialist pedagogy. The module seeks to enhance your ability to reflect critically on, and to evaluate, teaching and learning; by recognising particular curriculum and professional challenges; and by developing your ability to respond to these concerns in sophisticated, innovative and creative ways. Key learning activities of the module are practical teaching experience and the engagement with other specialists through collaborative practice. The module is assessed through a Teaching Portfolio and a Conference Paper dealing with teaching and learning in the specialist subject.

Policy and Professional Issues – The module will develop your understanding of policy and issues relating to professionalism in Lifelong Learning. You'll have the opportunity to explore the impact of policy on professional practice and curriculum developments, drawing on appropriate evidence to evaluate professional practice and discuss possible improvements. You'll also discuss key issues of professionalism in Lifelong Learning, including debates on reflective practice and a discussion of your own educational values and the extent to which these promote social justice.

How will I be assessed?

Much of the course is focused on practical teaching. You gain experience of teaching and learning alongside other professionals, with support from tutors, as a vehicle for your development. Practical experience allows you to gain competence in planning for teaching and learning, and in working with learners both in formal classrooms and in student-centred learning situations.

During the course you undertake project work, such as developing new course materials. Academic work includes critically examining creativity in teaching, subject specialist related studies, quality assurance and professional issues.
Modules also allow you to explore particular areas of interest.

Assessment is varied and creative, and enables students to develop both academic rigour and professional confidence which means offering an assessment strategy that does not over privilege a single mode of communication. Students are formally assessed through writing, presentations, posters, micro-teaching, video essay, blogging, lesson observations, assignments and whatever new modes of demonstrating knowledge and skill emerge as appropriate. The assessment regime requires this degree of flexibility to allow us to respond to unanticipated changes in our working environment, ensuring that trainees are equipped to manage these.

For more information about assessment, including guidance on marking, feedback and plagiarism, please refer the HE Assessment Policy and the programme spec for course-specific information.

How will the course be delivered?

The pedagogic approach assumed by this programme is one that requires trainees to develop both academic rigour and professional competence. The purpose of academic content is to promote a teaching practice underpinned by theories, concepts and empiricism. Trainees will explore the broadest possibilities of post-16 professionalism and its social, political, and cultural implications that may enhance their future employment opportunities. Students on this programme are working in the field of learning support and the flexibility of blended learning allows them to successfully combine study with work. It also gives them the opportunity to share practice amongst others in the same field and thus develop new ways of examining their own practice. Assessments require them to formulate their arguments in appropriate styles and formats, thus improving their opportunities for future successful study. A key feature of this programme is that the Certificate in Education, Professional Graduate Certificate in Education, Post Graduate Certificate in Education and the Post Graduate Diploma in Education are taught alongside each other as one cohort. The design of the programme is constrained by the need to ensure that trainees are able to meet the ETF professional standards. The professional standards are embedded within the programme learning outcomes while others are incorporated as outcomes within the Professional Practice Teaching File.

All programmes are led and taught by experienced teaching staff who are vocational specialists.  They are qualified, and often have extensive experience within the industry or the sector being studied. All teaching staff meet or exceed the requirements set by the awarding institute or body.  

Entry requirements

UK first degree or equivalent related to your specialist area

Relevant work experience in some specialist subject areas

In addition you must also:

Provide confirmation of Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check

Provide one satisfactory reference

Complete a satisfactory interview

Identify a work-based mentor who can support you in your subject specialism

You should normally be in employment as a teacher or trainer at a recognised training or educational establishment for a minimum of 100 hours (at least 50 hours in any one year).

Voluntary teaching/training may be acceptable in some circumstances).

If your first language is not English, you will need to meet the minimum requirements of an English Language qualification. The minimum for IELTS is 6.0 overall with no element lower than 5.5, or equivalent will be considered acceptable

What next?

Teaching – though this may be undertaken in several different contexts associated with post-16 education from FE colleges, to prisons and including voluntary sector community organisations.

QTLS can be achieved through the Society for Education and Training.

Opportunity for further study on the Masters in Education (MA)

Additional information

 

Validated by the University of Huddersfield