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Secondary (School Direct) with Qualified Teacher Status PGCE

Our School Direct route provides the ideal combination of highly regarded qualifications and hands-on experience, giving you a strong career advantage.

Fully prepared for a teaching role
School Direct courses have high levels of employment and student satisfaction. You will be recruited as a trainee and based mainly in one of our partner school alliances, so you will become a valuable part of a school team from the start.

With intensive support in the classroom and the guidance of University experts, you will be fully prepared for the practical demands of secondary teaching. This includes teaching your chosen subject.

As part of the course, you will undertake two main teaching placements, supported throughout by our trained school mentors and link tutors.

You will also spend time at the University to help put your school experience in the context of educational policy and theory.

An inspiring learning experience
With a rich heritage in teacher training dating back over 150 years, we have a strong reputation for nurturing successful, confident and forward-thinking teachers.

In a 2015 Ofsted inspection, inspectors said our students show excellent professional conduct and are highly regarded in the schools in which they train.

The power of partnerships
As one of the major Initial Teacher Education providers in the East Midlands, we have longstanding partnerships with more than 300 schools across the region, including rural, multi-cultural and inner city schools.

For the School Direct course, we have joined forces with partner schools who are committed to providing you with a high-quality, challenging and exciting training experience.

Broaden your perspectives
Alongside your two main teaching placements, you will have the chance to visit other schools and to work with children from different backgrounds. This includes the opportunity to gain experience in a special school.

You will also focus on your subject specialism to improve your practice and will study school-related issues at masters level.

Relevant, up to date and challenging
At a time when rapid policy shifts are transforming the educational landscape, we will help you to meet the challenge of change in the modern classroom. Ours is an intellectually stimulating course which will keep you up to date with all the latest developments.

You will be taught by a highly competent and qualified team of tutors, including published authors and influential researchers whose work is helping to shape the future of the profession.

Entry requirements

You will need an undergraduate honours degree (preferably 2:1) or equivalent, plus GCSE grade C or above in English Language and Maths. You'll also be expected to have several weeks of recent experience in UK secondary schools. You must be able to demonstrate an appropriate level of subject knowledge in your chosen subject curriculum specialism.

Additionally, you will be required to have successfully completed the National College for Teaching and Leadership’s Skills Tests in literacy and numeracy in order to secure a place on the course. We offer Skills Test preparation days to help you to gain the knowledge to successfully complete the tests.

A Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check is required at the point of accepting a place at the University. The Disclosure and Barring Service was established when the Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) and Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) merged in 2012 and will now provide the criminal records checking service for this course.

Course modules

You’ll study modules such as:

  • An Introduction to Reflective Teaching
  • Understanding the School as a Learning Community
  • Reflective Practice in Action
  • Understanding the Pupil as a Learner: Theories and Models of Learning and Teaching for Professional Practice
  • Specialist Subject Enhancement
  • Effective Subject Learning and Teaching

Assessment methods

All assessments relate to your school placements; you will complete two assessed teaching placements and additional enhanced school opportunities, which will provide you with the challenging and exciting experience you need. There will be in-depth project-based reports on school based issues. You will also have the opportunity to reflect and discuss your developing knowledge of teaching your subject.

Sponsorship information

We offer a 10% discount on postgraduate course fees for all Derby alumni.


Qualification Study mode Start month Fee Fee locale Course duration
PGCE Full-time £ 9,250 (Whole course) Home/EU 1 Years

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