The School of Education at the University of Birmingham has a long tradition of delivering PGCE primary courses. Its teaching has been graded as 'outstanding' for the third consecutive time by Ofsted inspectors which reaffirms the University’s status as one of the UK’s leading institutions for excellence in teacher training. The Ofsted report states that “such is the confidence of schools that trainees from the University of Birmingham are of high quality, employment rates for both primary and secondary phases exceed national averages by some margin. Trainees display excellent professional qualities: they are clear that good teaching leads to pupils who are interested in their work, enjoy learning and behave well.”
As well as offering outstanding teacher training courses, we are one of the few universities that awards 120 credits for successful completion of our courses, which we award at Masters level. For those who successfully complete their induction year there is an opportunity to transfer credits to the MA Teaching Studies course, which is awarded on completion of a 60 credit dissertation.
The primary programmes meet all aspects of government requirements for Initial Teacher Training. We are able to offer applicants a choice of two routes, so that you can prepare as a teacher across the full 5–11 age range or specialise instead in early years teaching (3–7 age range). Both programmes last for 38 weeks; the equivalent of 19 of which will be spent in schools.
General Primary programme
Students on the General Primary (5–11 years) programme follow a range of courses that address the statutory curricula for the core and foundation subjects alongside Professional Studies, which considers whole school issues.
Early Years programme
This programme allows you to focus your training on work with children aged from three to seven years of age. You spend time in nursery classes, as well as teaching children of school age in both Reception and Key Stage 1 classes. You follow the same range of courses as those on the General Primary programme, in addition to an advanced study of early years education.
School-based experiences are a central part of these programmes, with an opportunity for you to experience a range of ages within different schools. Both programmes also feature a range of professional courses to help you plan, teach, and develop your classroom skills. The programmes are designed, in conjunction with partnership schools, to meet the Teachers' Standards for the Award of Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). The high quality personalised support, ensures that the majority of our students exceed the teachers's standards at an outstanding level (Ofsted report 2013)
Download a summary of the Postgraduate Diploma Primary Education (PGCE Advanced) General Primary or Early Years course (PDF, 82KB)
If you are interested in teaching young children, but would prefer to train as a mathematics specialist, information may be found on our Primary Education (SSPIP) in Mathematics course page. If you would prefer to teach older pupils, information on our Secondary courses may be found on the Postgraduate Diploma Secondary Education course page.