Science students examine a model of the human body.

PGCE Secondary Science (Biology) with QTS (11-16)

Discover how to pique the curiosity of secondary school pupils aged 11-16 in the world around them, helping them develop practical and analytical skills in Biology, as you gain recommendation for Qualified Teacher Status.

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      Overview

      Covid-19 - Secondary Science (Biology) with QTS (11-16) Essential Information

      View essential information and videos about the changes to teaching and learning and campus facilities from September 2020

      UCAS Code: C1X1
      Course Length: 1 Year Full-Time
      Start Dates: September 2021, September 2022
      Subjects: Education and Teaching
      Location: Edge Hill University

      Successful completion of the programme leads to recommendation for Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).

      This PGCE will equip you with a range of academic, professional and vocational knowledge, understanding, skills and values necessary to become a high quality and skilled teacher of Biology. You will experience professional training, delivered to the highest standard, immersing you in the latest teaching and learning pedagogies.

      The programme aims to develop reflective and analytical skills as well as equipping you with the skills and knowledge required to become a competent and assured secondary school teacher, with sufficient subject knowledge to not only teach across the science disciplines at Key Stage 3, but also contribute outside your specialist subject at Key Stage 4.

      If you want to help secondary school pupils aged 11 to 16 develop practical and analytical skills and excite their curiosity in the world around them, this is the programme for you.

      Student and Alumni Profiles

      • Christopher Rees

        Christopher Rees

        PGCE Secondary Science (Biology) with QTS (11-16)
        I chose Edge Hill University because I was aware of its excellent reputation for initial teacher training, particularly with respect to the support it provides.
        View Christopher Rees' full profile
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      In Depth

      What will I study?

      You will start with an extensive subject knowledge and understanding audit, to identify your main strengths and weaknesses, and enable your tutor to focus on your individual development needs.

      During a significant period of study on campus, you will develop:

      • Knowledge of essential educational theory;
      • Awareness of appropriate and innovative teaching and assessment methods, including experiments and investigative work, group discussions, role play, project work, presentations and examinations;
      • Knowledge of health and safety requirements and strategies for maintaining a quality laboratory work environment;
      • Understanding of the curriculum;
      • Ability to plan lessons effectively;
      • Excellent working knowledge of the latest ICT tools and software used in schools;
      • Greater subject knowledge and professional and academic skills;
      • Wider awareness of your role within the teaching profession through study of professional values.

      How will I study?

      A combination of academic study, group discussion and reflection, and practical, work-based learning in the classroom will give you all the knowledge and skills you need to become a creative and innovative teacher. The programme aims to develop a reflective and a critically analytical approach to education.

      You will spend up to 26 weeks on placement in schools, colleges and settings, putting your training into practice through assisting in, and taking responsibility for, classes and working alongside mentors and peers to further your professional development. The focus initially is on observation and supporting teaching and learning. Your teaching timetable will increase as your training progresses and you become more confident and competent in the classroom.

      You will also develop your subject knowledge by participating in numerous activities, which have in the past included visits to places of scientific and fieldwork interest, guest speakers and GET SET Challenge days in the North West.

      How will I be assessed?

      A balanced combination of coursework and observed classroom experience will be assessed against academic criteria at Level 7 and the QTS Standards.  Other tasks will enable you to show your competence in ICT and other areas of science.

      Specific assessments include:

      • Developing a portfolio to detail the activities used to build your subject and teaching knowledge;
      • Conducting a small-scale piece of classroom research;
      • Evidencing your assessment practice.

      Before the end of your PGCE you will need to complete a Career Entry and Development Profile (CEDP) which acts as a useful bridge between your initial teacher training programme and your two-year induction as an early career teacher.

      Who will be teaching me?

      You will be taught by a dedicated team of knowledgeable, experienced, friendly and supportive tutors who have the welfare of their trainees as a number one priority.

      A Great Study Environment

      The Faculty of Education has been at the forefront of teacher education for 135 years and today enjoys the enviable position of being one of the country’s leading providers of education, training and research for the children’s workforce.

      Housed in a state-of-the-art £9m building, the Faculty of Education’s facilities include a 300-seat lecture theatre, five well-equipped ICT suites, and 18 teaching rooms complete with the latest technology. The nearby Faculty of Education Piazza building is the base for secondary initial teacher training programmes, offering modern facilities including a lecture theatre and a number of seminar rooms.

      This programme is also delivered in the Biosciences building where you will explore a wide range of experimental and investigative strategies and activities. The Biosciences building incorporates impressive, modern laboratories, offering exciting and highly relevant practical experience in some of the best equipped facilities in the country.

      The Faculty has a strong commitment to practice-based learning and has developed partnerships with over 2,000 schools and colleges, local authorities and professional associations.

      Modules

      Expand All

      SSC4000The Expert Science Teacher: Subject Knowledge as the Foundation of Expertise (20 credits)

      The Expert Science Teacher: Subject Knowledge as the Foundation of Expertise focuses on subject and curriculum knowledge in secondary science education. Adopting a joint academic and professional focus, the module includes various strands of development that will enhance your subject knowledge in science, including Key Stage 2 transition and post-16 education, while also exploring the science curriculum, subject pedagogy and application to practice. You will critically reflect on the curriculum experiences of different types of learners, contribute to improvements in teaching science in your placement settings, and develop the desire to continually improve your subject knowledge and pedagogy throughout your teaching career.


      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      SSC4001The Effective Science Teacher: Explorations in Method, Policy and Theory (20 credits)

      The Effective Science Teacher: Explorations in Method, Policy and Theory equips you with a deep and broad understanding of contemporary secondary education. You will receive an insight into the ways in which the secondary education system in England has been moulded and shaped by evolving beliefs around pedagogy, education theory and policy, as well as examining the evolution of methods used for the delivery and assessment of educational content. You will develop a critical awareness of, and engagement with, current challenges in secondary education and gain the ability to advocate for robust and convincing solutions. An understanding of the policies, approaches and theories which shape current beliefs around best practice in teaching will ensure you are well equipped to anticipate the future trajectory of secondary education and help influence and respond to this process of continual change.


      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      SSC4003The Professional Science Teacher at Work: Combining Knowledge, Theory and Method (20 credits)

      The Professional Science Teacher at Work: Combining Knowledge, Theory and Method  enables you to demonstrate the wide range of techniques used to plan and deliver effective learning experiences in secondary education. You will benefit from comprehensive preparation for undertaking professional practice, be supported through your time on placements in secondary settings, and receive guidance on interpreting, reflecting upon and critiquing what you experience and learn. The module provides the conceptual, theoretical and practical links between your work on campus and time in schools. You will develop the complex inter-related skills of teaching, such as the application of subject knowledge, planning for learning, classroom management, teaching methodology, and assessment and evaluation in science. You will also hone your knowledge, understanding and practice in relation to the variety of professional attributes and skills which underpin the role of the secondary science teacher. Engaging with strategies such as behaviour management and special educational needs and disabilities, you will be encouraged to apply theory to practice in ways which both challenge and extend your insight and expertise.


      Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

      You will also undertake the following non-modular activities:

      SRP4011PGCE Secondary Professional Practice 1 (0 credits)

      PGCE Secondary Professional Practice 1 sits outside the credit-bearing structure of the PGCE. It houses the first period of professional practice that will typically be undertaken between the end of October and February. This professional practice will be in a secondary school setting and focused on Years 7-11 classes. Lasting approximately 60 days, the placement will be divided into an initial phase and developmental phase. The initial phase will involve mostly observing experienced teachers at work before the developmental phase where you will begin to teach parts of lessons. Your teaching time will gradually increase until you are teaching approximately 50% of a standard teacher’s timetable by the end of the placement.


      Assessment: Practical(s): 100%.

      SRP4012PGCE Secondary Professional Practice 2 (0 credits)

      PGCE Secondary Professional Practice 2 sits outside the credit-bearing structure of the PGCE. It houses the second period of professional practice that will typically be undertaken between March and June. This professional practice will be in a different secondary school setting to your first period of professional practice and provide vital additional experience of teaching Years 7-11 classes. Lasting approximately 60 days, the placement will consolidate your academic and practical learning and involve you undertaking the bulk of a regular teacher’s work. The initial phase of the placement will be in the form of an induction where you will work closely with your host teachers before progressing quite quickly to teach around 70% of a standard teacher’s timetable.


      Assessment: Practical(s): 100%.

      Timetables

      Timetables for your induction week are normally available in August, prior to enrolment. You can expect to receive your timetable for the rest of the academic year during your induction week. While we make every effort to ensure that timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week.

      Disclaimer

      Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of our published course information, however our programmes are subject to ongoing review and development. Changing circumstances may necessitate alteration to, or the cancellation of, courses.

      Changes may be necessary to comply with the requirements of accrediting bodies, revisions to subject benchmarks statements, to keep courses updated and contemporary, or as a result of student feedback. We reserve the right to make variations if we consider such action to be necessary or in the best interests of students.

      Entry Criteria

      Entry Requirements

      To join this PGCE, you will be expected to have:

      • A degree equivalent to UK first-class or second-class honours (2:2 or above) in a relevant subject. Other subjects may be considered if you have an A Level (or equivalent qualification) in Biology and a willingness to engage in subject knowledge enhancement;
      • GCSE English Language and GCSE Mathematics at Grade C or Grade 4 or above (or equivalent qualification);
      • Satisfactory levels of Information and Communications Technology competence;
      • A commitment to, and understanding of, secondary education, demonstrating the personal attributes, values and motivation required to train as a teacher.

      For the purposes of initial teacher training, level 2 literacy and numeracy qualifications are not considered as equivalent to GCSE Grade C or Grade 4 in English Language and Mathematics.

      EU students can get country-specific information about the University’s entry requirements and equivalent national qualifications at www.edgehill.ac.uk/eu.

      If you accept a formal offer from Edge Hill University you will be required to meet the Department for Education’s standards for physical and mental fitness to teach and clearance to work with children. Further information, including a Declaration of Health questionnaire and details of how to apply for a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) Enhanced Disclosure will be sent to you after you have firmly accepted an offer.

      English Language Requirements

      International students require IELTS 6.5, with a score no lower than 6.0 in each individual component, or an equivalent English language qualification.

      If your current level of English is half a band lower, either overall or in one or two elements, you may want to consider our Pre-Sessional English course.

      Are there any alternative ways to meet the entry requirements?

      If you want to teach Biology but have an insufficient level of the subject in your degree to access the course, then our subject knowledge enhancement course in Biology could help prepare you to train to teach the subject effectively.

      Some offers will be conditional upon completing a subject knowledge enhancement course but the enhancement programme does not necessarily qualify you for a place on the PGCE Secondary Science (Biology) (Age Phase 11-16) with QTS unless this is made clear at the time the offer is made. This will be discussed with you if you are called for an interview.

      An early application to join this PGCE is advised if you wish to have the option of completing a subject knowledge enhancement course.

      Recognition of Prior Learning

      Edge Hill University recognises learning gained elsewhere, whether through academic credit and qualifications acquired from other relevant courses of study or through recognition of an individual’s professional and employment experience (also referred to as ‘experiential learning’). This may include credit or learning undertaken at another university.

      Previous learning that is recognised in this way may be used towards meeting the entry requirements for a programme and/or for exemption from part of a programme. It is your responsibility to make a claim for recognition of prior learning. For guidance, please consult the University’s academic regulations (sections C7 and F3.1) or contact the faculty in which you are interested in studying.

      Career Prospects

      What are my career prospects?

      This PGCE is accredited by the Department for Education. Successful completion of the programme will enable you to gain recommendation for Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). You will be well placed to progress into employment as a newly qualified teacher at secondary school level in science, specialising in Biology.

      Our proactive careers service can help you to find job vacancies and offers in-depth advice on teacher job applications and interviews, to help you secure work. Teaching is a rewarding job and there are many ways in which you could progress in your career, either in the classroom or in a leadership role. For more information, see www.education.gov.uk.

      Finance

      Tuition Fees

      If you are a prospective UK student who will be joining this PGCE in academic year 2021/22, the tuition fee will be £9,250. Tuition fees for international students enrolling on the programme in academic year 2021/22 are £13,500. Exemptions apply for EU/EEA and Swiss students who have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme, as well as Irish nationals, who may be eligible for the UK tuition fee rate.

      Financial Support

      Subject to eligibility, UK students joining this PGCE can apply for a Tuition Fee Loan from the Government to cover the full cost of tuition fees. UK students enrolling on the programme may also be eligible to apply for additional funding to help with living costs.

      If you are a UK student who will be joining this PGCE in academic year 2021/22, you may be eligible to receive a Department for Education bursary worth £7,000 if you have a first class, 2:1 or 2:2 honours degree or have successfully completed a PhD or Masters award.

      For comprehensive information about the financial support available to eligible UK students joining this programme in academic year 2021/22, together with details of how to apply for potential funding, please view our Money Matters 2021/22 guide at www.edgehill.ac.uk/pgcefinance2021.

      EU/EEA and Swiss students who have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme may be eligible to apply for financial support. Irish nationals should ordinarily apply to Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI). Please see www.edgehill.ac.uk/eufinance for further details.

      Financial support information for international students can be found at www.edgehill.ac.uk/international/fees.

      Scholarships

      Ten scholarship winners sitting together in a lecture theatre at the Scholarship Awards Evening.Edge Hill University offers a range of scholarships with a competitive application process for prospective full-time PGCE students.

      These scholarships are not linked to academic success and celebrate determination, talent and achievement beyond your coursework, for instance in creativity, enterprise, ICT, performance, sport or volunteering.

      To find out more about scholarships, to assess your eligibility, and to meet some of our dedicated scholarship winners, visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/scholarships.

      Apply

      How to Apply

      Apply online through UCAS Teacher Training at www.ucas.com/apply/teacher-training.

      Visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/applyucasteachertraining to find out more about the application process.

      Further information for international students about how to apply is available at www.edgehill.ac.uk/applyinternational.

      Should you accept an offer of a place to study with us and formally enrol as a student, you will be subject to the provisions of the regulations, rules, codes, conditions and policies which apply to our students. These are available at www.edgehill.ac.uk/studentterms.

      Visit Us

      If you are considering applying to study at Edge Hill University, the best way to gain an insight into student life is to discover our stunning campus for yourself by attending an open day. You can view dates and book your place at www.edgehill.ac.uk/opendays.

      Alternatively, if you are unable to attend an open day, you can find out more about our full range of events for prospective students, including campus tours and virtual activities, at www.edgehill.ac.uk/visitus.

      Request a Prospectus

      If you would like to explore our full range of PGCEs before you apply, you can order a PGCE prospectus at www.edgehill.ac.uk/pgceprospectus.

      Get in Touch

      If you have any questions about this programme or what it’s like to study at Edge Hill University, please contact:

      If you would like to talk to the programme leader about the course in more detail, please contact:

      International students should visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/international or email international@edgehill.ac.uk with any queries about overseas study.

      Course Changes

      Expand All This page outlines any material changes to course content, programme structure, assessment methods, entry criteria, and modes of study or delivery, implemented in the past two years.

      15th December 2020 - Change of Modules

      SSC4000 The Expert Science Teacher: Subject Knowledge as the Foundation of Expertise (20 credits), SSC4001 The Effective Science Teacher: Explorations in Method, Policy and Theory (20 credits) and SSC4003 The Professional Science Teacher at Work: Combining Knowledge, Theory and Method (20 credits) replace SSC4010 Developing Subject Knowledge and Pedagogy in Science (Specialism) (30 credits), SSC4011 Planning for Effective Teaching and Learning in Science (Specialism) (30 credits), SSC4012 Research and Practice in Science Education (Biology, Chemistry or Physics) (30 credits), SRP4001 Reflective Professional Practice (30 credits), SRP4002 Professional Practice 1 (30 credits) and SRP4003 Professional Practice 2 (30 credits) as compulsory modules.

      The revised programme structure also includes non-modular activity, SRP4011 PGCE Secondary Professional Practice 1 (0 credits) and SRP4012 PGCE Secondary Professional Practice 2 (0 credits).

      27th October 2020 - Change of Programme Title

      The title of this programme has changed from PGCE Secondary Science (Biology) (Age Phase 11-16) with QTS to PGCE Secondary Science (Biology) with QTS (11-16).

      2nd October 2019 - Change to Entry Requirements

      The wording around degree requirements has been updated to:

      A first or second class Honours degree in a relevant subject from a UK university (or equivalent qualification). Non-relevant degree subjects may be considered if you have an A Level (or equivalent qualification) in Biology and a willingness to engage in subject knowledge enhancement;

      18th July 2019 - Change to Entry Requirements

      Professional Skills Tests have been removed from the entry criteria for September 2020 entry onwards. Details of the replacement for the tests are still to be announced, however they will be benchmarked against a defined set of English and Mathematics skills that students will be expected to have by the end of the course (rather than at the point of entry).

      The Professional Skills Tests remain part of the entry requirements for September 2019 entry in line with Government policy.

      Covid-19 - Secondary Science (Biology) with QTS (11-16) Essential Information

      Teaching and Learning at Edge Hill University in 2020

      In this video Pro Vice-Chancellor, Lynda Brady, answers your questions and explains how teaching will work when you join us at Edge Hill University in September.


      Campus Facilities at Edge Hill University in 2020

      In this video Pro Vice-Chancellor, Lynda Brady, explains how we’re preparing the campus for your arrival in September and the facilities that will be available.