The School of Education at the University of Birmingham has a long tradition of delivering teaching training 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.
Before you start the course
At the University of Birmingham, our PGDipEd students undertake some pre-course study in the week before they start their academic sessions here on campus. This is so that students can be prepared for Post-Graduate University teaching and learning and start to engage in, and understand, the wider educational background linked to their chosen subject area. The link for the 2019-2020 RE PGDipED pre-course will show some of the tasks you might be asked to complete if you were accepted onto the PGDipED RE pathway.
At the University of Birmingham we pride ourselves on supporting and nurturing the best RE teachers, to make a real impact and difference to young learners lives. We believe that allowing you some time at the start of the course to complete independent study enables your development as engaged, reflective and driven student teachers.
The Initial Teacher Education course
The PGDipEd course lasts 36 weeks, of which 24 are spent in our partnership schools.
Teaching practice will take several forms: school placements and also team teaching while at the University. You will also get involved in small scale research projects for your assignments so that you can evaluate the theory in practice and integrate this learning into your own teaching.
The course will not pretend that teaching Religious Education is straightforward, because it is not! Our sessions will rarely be of the form of a lecture, instead we use activities and discussion as the main way of working.
We will help you become aware of issues relating to planning lessons, assessment, the difference between telling students information and teaching students, how to provide learning experiences which meet the needs of students with different learning styles, how different approaches to teaching a topic can change the learning experience for students, how choice of teaching methods, resources and technology can change the sort of religious education with which students engage. Along the way we will, of course, also introduce you to the National Framework and local agreed syllabuses for religious education and you will have some opportunities to experience religion at first hand!
You will also get an opportunity to plan, resource and delivering a 6th form conference at the university of Birmingham for over 100 Year 12 and 13 pupils from local schools. This is a unique opportunity and experience and ensures you will leave your training year not only fully equipped to plan, resource and teach A Level but also with the skills of team work, planning for diversity and inclusion and the skills of conference management.
The School of Education collaborates with the University of Birmingham School to offer a number of activities designed to enhance pupil experiences of learning Religious Education and your experience of learning to teach Religious Education. Examples of these activities include field trips, master classes and small group teaching.
Learn more about the A Level Conference in this video.
For further information on the course structure, please view the Learning and Teaching Tab.
Religious Education students who successfully complete their PGDipED year are eligible to apply for the MA in Teaching Studies once they have completed their NQT year of teaching and within 5 years of passing the PGDipED. The MA in Teaching and Learning is part-time and you study for this alongside your teaching role in school.
Those students who qualified through the PgDipEd (QTS) Religious Education programme in University of Birmingham can take advantage of a generous grant scheme run by Culham St Gabriel’s Trust called 3ForRE which enables alumni to undertake the masters qualification in an affordable, manageable way. It is a unique scheme based on a three-way partnership between RE Teachers, schools and Culham St Gabriel’s Trust. Culham St Gabriel’s will currently pay up to £1700 per year of fees for those University of Birmingham PGDipED Religious Education alumni who undertake a dissertation on an RE theme and are accepted onto the MA Teaching Studies programme following a successful NQT year.
The Hockerill Foundation also have a grant scheme and the first deadline is 31st March each year. You can still apply in April and May, and these applications will be considered in June. However, whilst later applications will be considered, only a few applications will be approved at this later stage.
The School of Education is committed to equal opportunities in the access to and provision of education. For more information please see the following documents:
Information on our other PGDipEd (QTS) secondary subjects may be found on the Postgraduate Diploma Secondary Education (QTS) course page.
Find out more about all our teacher training programmes.