Taught course

Professional Graduate Certificate in Education (North Essex Teacher Training)

University of Suffolk · University of Suffolk

Entry requirements

Entry requirements as laid down by the Teacher Development Agency are: A UK degree or equivalent in the subject you wish to teach GCSE Maths and English at grade C or above Subject to satisfactory Disclosure and Barring Service Check (previously the Criminal Records Bureau check).

Months of entry


Course content

This Professional Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) programme combines the very best of school and university training. It lasts one year and is full-time. It provides trainees with an intellectually stimulating course that challenges their assumptions, while providing them with an in-depth practical experience of the classroom environment.

The course offers a range of opportunities for study in differing schools. Most importantly, it creates the opportunity to work full-time within a school environment and to be part of a school community.

The major aim of the course is to prepare trainee teachers effectively as specialists in their chosen subject and to produce teachers who are confident and competent in the craft of teaching, as well as being able to contribute within an active school environment.

The course also aims to facilitate trainee teachers in their development of critical inquiry, and to engage trainee teachers in the application of educational theory and current research. These latter elements contribute to the PGCE qualification awarded to trainees along with the QTS Certificate.

Where will my placements be?

The course is based in the largely rural Tendring area of north east Essex which stretches from Colchester to Harwich. The area is pleasant and welcoming with a comprehensive range of social and educational amenities. Educational facilities are extensive, including UCS, the University of Essex and Colchester Institute. The Training Centre is located at Clacton County High School and during teaching practice trainees will travel to two partner schools in Clacton, Harwich, Brightlingsea, Thorpe-le-Soken and Frinton-on-Sea.

How is the course structured?

Programme delivery is strongly influenced by trainee-centred strategies which involve group and individual reflection, negotiation and individual learning audits, and contracts and individual development profiles. During the first term there is an intensive induction programme. Trainees will spend two days a week following both a general educational theory course and a subject specific course. The remainder of the week is spent in the base school, observing experienced teachers and preparing for the first teaching practice. Students will also be expected to complete two assignments.

The second term provides students with five to six weeks of teaching practice in the base school followed by a primary school placement, plus further subject and general theory sessions and preparations for the second teaching practice in a different confederation school. Students will also be expected to complete one assignment and a primary school report.

In the third term, students complete their second teaching practice placement, complete their final theory sessions and prepare for final assessment. They will also be expected to complete a critical review and a career entry profile.

Qualification and course duration


full time
12 months

Course contact details

+44 (0)1473 338833