Taught course (will run subject to approval)

Secondary Art and Design - PGCE

Birmingham City University · School of Education

Entry requirements

You must have a good degree (minimum 2:2 but 2:1 or 1st preferred) from a UK higher education institution or equivalent. You must also have a GCSE grade C or above (or equivalent) in both English language and mathematics prior to application. If you do not already have GCSEs in English language and mathematics, or their equivalent, and are not registered to take them, you should visit Equivalency Testing. It should be noted that applicants taking the equivalency tests need to have passed prior to making an application. For entry onto a teaching course from September 2014, candidates should have passed the Skills Tests in Literacy and Numeracy. Please visit the DfE website for further information. Pre-interview school experience: for secondary teacher training there is an expectation that applicants should have some general experience of working with secondary age students in a school setting. In preparation for the selection interview stage of the recruitment process candidates should engage in a teaching episode, observed by an experienced qualified teacher. It will support their application to undertake this teaching episode prior to application and in advance of their interview. Selection interview: at interview candidates also need to present a portfolio of personal work which should include a selection of work completed before, during and after their degree. The selection interview will assess their subject knowledge and personal qualities such as the potential to relate well to secondary age students, enthusiasm, sensitivity, communication skills and robustness and resilience for teaching. Students also take a written test to assess their standard of English. In addition applicants must meet The National College for Teaching and Leadership requirements for Initial Teacher Training, which means being medically fit and successfully completing an enhanced disclosure via the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS).

Months of entry


Course content

The PGCE in Secondary Art and Design course at Birmingham City University offers trainees a wide range of experiences that are essential for anyone wishing to teach this exciting subject at secondary school level. The course seeks to develop confident, dynamic and creative teachers who are committed to making art and design accessible for all.

Curriculum workshops are a key element in the course and involve practical work in a range of essential key specialisms such as ceramics, 3D construction, print making, drawing, mixed media and digital media including animation.

We believe art and design education has a significant place in education and we are producing inspirational graduates who are ready to transfer their creative skills into the classroom.

Our facilities are second-to-none. There are fully equipped art studios suitable for 3D construction, printmaking, drawing and mixed media, as well as a dark room for black and white photography. For textile specialists, there are sewing machines and facilities for batik work and a large kiln for pottery and ceramics. The department also has an ICT suite for digital media and a shared ICT suite with animation packages.

All students are guaranteed outstanding support from both their tutors at the University - all of whom have been exceptional classroom teachers themselves - and from the partnership secondary schools, of which there are more than 200 across the Midlands.

Two thirds of the course takes place in school and we ensure that students are offered a number of placements in a wide range of educational establishments - at least two different schools, plus visits to other schools, including a primary school - so valuable experience is gained in a variety of settings.

Students will have both serial and block placements and will be assigned a trained mentor, who will support and guide students' work, as well as provide training and feedback.

Information for international students

Birmingham City University is a vibrant and multicultural university in the heart of a modern and diverse city. We welcome many international students every year – there are currently students from more than 80 countries among our student community.

Prospective students from non-EU countries may enquire via the International Enquiry Form or call +44 (0)121 331 6714.

Fees and funding

UK students
International students

Although this is a postgraduate course, current PGCE students are eligible for the finance support package available to full-time undergraduates.

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
  • Further details of qualification

    This is a professional teacher training course that leads to Qualified Teacher Status. It is available at both Level 6 (H) and Level 7 (M).

Course contact details

Pre-entry Enquiries Team
+44 (0)121 331 5595