Postgraduate Diploma Secondary Education (QTS) - Science: Physics

Start date
September
Duration
36 weeks
UCAS code
F3X1
Course Type
Postgraduate, Taught

Our Postgraduate Diploma in Education (Science: Physics) leads to Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) and offers 120 credits towards our MA Teaching Studies. Our programme, which offers high quality training and support, will prepare you to teach in the 11-18 age range and is run in close partnership with schools.

The School of Education at the University of Birmingham has a long tradition of delivering teacher training courses. Its teaching has been graded as 'outstanding' three times by Ofsted inspectors which affirms the University’s status as one of the UK’s leading institutions for excellence in teacher training. 

On the Science (Physics) Postgraduate Diploma Secondary Education programme you will benefit from our unique collaboration with University of Birmingham School as well as a wide range of partners, including mixed comprehensive, single sex, religious and selective schools and sixth form colleges. The diverse communities we serve will enrich your experience.

On our programme you will be challenged to develop informed and justified decisions about how you approach your teaching, in order to enable you to continue to develop over your career.

On successful completion of your Physics PGDipEd and your NQT year, you may return to study with us on a part-time basis to complete your Masters in Teaching Studies.

You may be eligible for bursaries of up to £26,000 (depending on qualifications)  in line with the government’s priority to attract more well qualified Physics teachers or a scholarships of £28,000 in lieu of a bursary from the Institute of Physics. You could also benefit from additional early career payments of up to £6,000.

Equal Opportunities

The School of Education and University of Birmingham is committed to equal opportunities in the access to and provision of education. For more information please see the following documents:

You may also be interested in our other two PGDipEd science courses:

Download our Teacher Education brochure (PDF)

Dubai Campus

Study for a PGCE at the University of Birmingham Dubai campus

Our programmes have been approved by the KHDA and follow teaching standards within the U.A.E

FIND OUT MORE ABOUT OUR COURSES IN DUBAI

 

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.

The 2013 Ofsted report

Fees

Fees for 2020-2021 are:

£9,250 (UK/EU full-time), £18,450 (overseas full-time).

When you apply for this course, it is important that you also take into account living costs and should ensure that you will have sufficient funds to finance the full duration of your studies. Our PGDipEd programmes include a significant amount of time spent on placements in a variety of schools at different locations, and so when budgeting to study you should also allow for travel to and from placements, as well as textbooks, printing, photocopying and stationery that you may need.

This course attracts tax-free bursaries of up to £26,000 (depending on qualifications) in line with the government’s priorities to increase the number of Physics teachers.

Scholarships 

The Institute of Physics are awarding Teacher Training Scholarships to the most outstanding individuals, worth £28,000. If you're eligible for a scholarship, you could also receive early-career payments totalling £6,000.

Tuition Fee Loan and Maintenance Loan

With or without a bursary, you can also access a  Tuition Fee Loan to cover your tuition fees and a Maintenance Loan for your living costs. The available loans are:

  • a Tuition Fee Loan of up to £9,250 to cover your fees
  • a Maintenance Loan of up to £11,672 to support your living costs

Additional financial support

If you have children or a disability, extra funding is available. For instance, you could get:

Find out more information on the  extra financial support available

For further information contact the School directly or visit the Funding, Graduation & Awards Office via online enquiries. 


For students applying for the 2020/21 academic year

The UK Government has confirmed that EU students will continue to be eligible for 'home fee status' for entry in September 2020, and will continue to have access to eligible financial support for the duration of their course. For more information visit the gov.uk website.

You can also visit our EU Referendum information page for more information and updates.

How To Apply

Apply online through the UCAS Teacher Training Portal An early application gives more time for remediation if there are concerns about the quality of your application. 

UCAS code: F3X1

The Interview process 

Selection is rigorous and designed to identify candidates with the strongest aptitude. Candidates selected for interview will be invited to the School of Education to:

  • meet course tutors
  • find out more about the course
  • complete a written task
  • have a one to one interview
  • show GCSE and Degree certificates (where these are available).

We work closely with partner schools to select candidates and applicants will often have the opportunity to meet senior colleagues from partner schools when they join us for interview day.    

Our Standard Requirements

All applicants to the Secondary PGDipEd(QTS) Science: Physics course must hold a degree from a UK Higher Education Institution or an equivalent qualification in a relevant subject. Your degree should normally have at least 50% Physics content which is relevant to the National Curriculum. Graduates with degrees in Engineering are also invited to apply.

You also need two science A Levels (or equivalent) as well as a GCSE in Mathematics (Grade 4 or above*) or an equivalent qualification which must be attained before you make an application. A GCSE English (Grade 4 or above) or equivalent qualifications will be a condition of any offer, if not already achieved.

You must also:

  • complete an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check before taking up a place.
  • complete relevant checks to ensure you have the health and physical capacity to teach.
  • agree to abide by the University of Birmingham Code of Professional Conduct and Fitness to Practise.

*New GCSE grades

International Requirements


The Science (Physics) Postgraduate Diploma Secondary Education programme runs from early September to late June. You will undertake two substantial placements in schools – one in term one and one in terms two and three. Approximately two thirds of the year will be spent in school and one third in University. You will complete six modules, five of which require a written assignment. For the final module, University tutors and school-based mentors will share the assessment against the Teachers’ Standards for the award of QTS.

The programme will include the study of subject-based teaching methods as well as the study of broader whole school issues.  A variety of teaching styles and approaches to learning will be used in the presentation of the themes. These will include University-based lectures, small group seminars and workshops, school-based work with pupils and teachers, and work undertaken individually or with other groups of students.

Our whole-school issues course will provide you with breadth and depth of insight across a number of themes, including safeguarding, mental health, relationships and sex education, pastoral care and inclusion. An additional PSHE award is also available.

As science teachers are required to teach across the sciences at Key Stage 3 there is a 'science' component in addition to your subject specialism. Teaching the science content to PGDipEd students is not the primary aim of the course although the generic and specific requirements are addressed through various scientific phenomena.

You will have a personal academic tutor to guide and support you, as well as a dedicated subject mentor in both your placement schools.You will benefit from a specialist programme, working with a subject tutor and peers, developing a professional network which will sustain you into your career. 

There is currently high demand for Physics teachers. Employment rates are consistently high and strong links with partnership schools mean that many students go into employment in the region. Many of our ex-students have been promoted to positions of responsibility, including Advanced Skills Teachers within the first 2 or 3 years.

Comments from former students

Billy

"In a constantly changing educational environment, my PGDipEd course has proved invaluable. In addition to enabling me to teach lessons to engage a wide range of students, I also completed the course with a solid foundation of pedagogy which enables me to adapt to the rapidly evolving educational landscape. The opportunity to explore wider educational issues with trainees and teachers from a broad background has also developed my interest and understanding of many of the issues within education. A strong esprit de corps along with personalised and accessible support made a tough and rigorous training year enjoyable. I strongly recommend the MEd too!"

Ethan

"I thought we were assessed very well, our school mentors were dedicated and were able to comment on us holistically - where colleagues from other universities had to spend half their time in paperwork."

Mario

"With almost complete certainty, I would have struggled immeasurably without my undergraduate degree; the vast workload taught me to prioritise and trial different coping strategies in order to meet deadlines – my postgraduate course then tailored this to teaching." Read his full profile