PGCE Secondary Science with Biology - PGCE

Add to my prospectus Why study this course? More about this course Entry requirements Modular structure What our students say Where this course can take you How to apply

Why study this course?

Learn how to teach science and biology to 11 to 16-year-olds and, by arrangement, 16-18-year-olds on our PGCE Secondary Science with Biology course. 

Gain practical hands-on experience at our partnership schools and learn how to improve your pupils’ love of this biology through the latest teaching methods and principles.

Trainees on our PGCE Secondary courses attain high results, with 95% achieving an Ofsted good or outstanding grade by the end of the course.

Department for Education (DfE) bursaries are available for this course.

More about this course

This PGCE Secondary Science with Biology course will help you gain the skills to become a competent teacher of science for students up to 14 years old, biology for 15 to 16-year-olds and achieve Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). On request, you can also have the opportunity to work in the 16 to 18 age range.

In the sessions at London Met you’ll develop your teaching strategies and pedagogical techniques, as well as discovering the fundamentals of how children learn. These sessions include collaborative projects and school-based projects with other trainees, as well as learning the principles of teaching and pupil assessment.

This PGCE course takes advantage of its London location to broaden your understanding of teaching in multicultural and diverse urban environments. Through your two placements at one of our partnership schools, you’ll help develop lesson plans and contribute to the development of pupils’ scientific skills and knowledge. 

Our commitment to high standards lead to praise from Ofsted in our most recent inspection:

"Headteachers are particularly complimentary about the fact that the trainees and Newly Qualified Teachers are well prepared to meet the specific challenges of teaching pupils in the context of London schools."
Ofsted 2015.

Assessment

There are four formal elements:

  • school placement A
  • school placement B, where your teaching ability is assessed in relation to the Standards for Qualified Teacher Status
  • the Educational Research Assignment, which allows you to explore an educational issue
  • the Professional Practice Portfolio, which is compiled throughout the year, detailing personal experiences and reflections on your development as a teacher, largely in relation to your practical teaching experience

There are no examinations.

We place great emphasis on feedback from your peers and colleagues on the placement. You’ll complete a weekly reflection and contribute to discussions online in order to further develop your understanding of the role of a secondary teacher.

Professional accreditation

This course is accredited by the Teaching Regulation Agency (TRA).

Fees and key information

Course type
Postgraduate
UCAS code C1X1
Entry requirements View
Apply now

Entry requirements

You will be required to have:

  • a UK degree, preferably grade 2.2 or equivalent, in Biology or relevant degrees including geology, metallurgy, chemical engineering and forensic science
  • literacy and numeracy tests — these are university-based tests, which you will be asked to undertake at your interview
  • a valid Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) certificate and Confirmation of Fitness to Teach (eg a London Metropolitan University Health Check) - you will be advised to apply for these after an offer is made
  • GCSE English and Mathematics grade C (grade 4 from 2017) or above (or equivalent)*

If you hold a third class degree, you may still be considered, particularly if this qualification is supported by a completed Master's degree or relevant work experience.

We do make conditional offers (with strict deadlines) so it is important that you include all pending qualifications in your UCAS application.

The University will assess any overseas qualifications for equivalence using a number of resources including our own internal guidelines, the UK ENIC and the Overseas Degree Table.

We highly recommend the one-to-one tailored advice on eligibility and equivalency offered by the Department for Education Get Into Teaching service.

*If you need to take an equivalency test for any of the required GCSEs, please sign up for A Star Equivalency or Equivalency Testing. They offer all three GCSE equivalencies. Please be aware that you may need to undertake study towards the exam, either with the equivalency organisation or independently.
Alternatively, you might want to sign up for a college course in the relevant subject, though this is likely to take longer and you may not have the chance for a re-sit, if required, prior to the start of the PGCE course.

Professional requirements

Before you can be permitted to enrol to this course:

  • you must not already hold QTS or be qualified to teach in another EU/EEA country

Prior to the interview for this course, London Met recommends:

  • you have a minimum of 10 working days recent experience in a school
  • you are prepared for your understanding of current teaching practice and issues in schools to be assessed
  • you have an awareness of multiculturalism and other contexts unique to urban schools
  • you're aware you may be invited to interview based on information given in your application

Some offers may recommend further school experience if required.

International students and English language requirements

Due to statutory requirements, we are not able to offer sponsorship under the Student visa route for this course. We will be happy to consider those falling into this category for an alternative suitable course on request. Overseas nationals may be considered for admission who already hold an alternative visa in a suitable category or have been granted permission to remain in the UK indefinitely, but please note that an additional international enhanced police check will be required.

Accreditation of Prior Learning

Any university-level qualifications or relevant experience you gain prior to starting university could count towards your course at London Met. Find out more about applying for Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL).

English language requirements

To study a degree at London Met, you must be able to demonstrate proficiency in the English language. If you require a Student visa you may need to provide the results of a Secure English Language Test (SELT) such as Academic IELTS. For more information about English qualifications please see our English language requirements.

If you need (or wish) to improve your English before starting your degree, the University offers a Pre-sessional Academic English course to help you build your confidence and reach the level of English you require.

Modular structure

The modules listed below are for the academic year 2020/21 and represent the course modules at this time. Modules and module details (including, but not limited to, location and time) are subject to change over time.

Year 1 modules include:

  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start)

    To support the trainee to:
    • Develop a deep understanding of the curriculum they will be required to teach on school experience, and an ability to interpret this to plan engaging lessons which promote pupil progression.
    • Develop their own subject knowledge to ensure they are confident to teach on school experience, through a combination of personal evaluation, target setting, personal study and engagement with university teaching and learning sessions.
    • Develop a critical appreciation of the relevant traditions in pedagogy, assessment and children’s rights related to the areas they will be required to teach, and to use this knowledge to make decisions about planning, teaching and assessment which promote pupil progression.

    Read full details
  • This module currently runs:
    • all year (September start)

    To support the trainee to:
    • Critically engage with the debate about teacher professionalism in the context of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child.
    • Understand how teachers can use / undertake research to critically engage with complex educational issues.

    Read full details
  • This module currently runs:
    • autumn semester

    To support the trainee to:
    • Make progress towards meeting the minimum requirements of the Teachers’ Standards for Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) or Early Years Teachers Standards for Early Years Teacher Status (EYTS)
    • To become a critically reflective practitioner inside and outside the classroom.
    • To acquire the necessary skills, experience and understanding required to plan, deliver and evaluate the appropriate areas of the curriculum (for their route) by the end of the module.

    Read full details
  • This module currently runs:
    • spring semester

    To support the trainee to:
    Achieve the professional Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) or Early Years Teachers Standards for Early Years Teacher Status (EYTS)
    • To become a critically reflective practitioner inside and outside the classroom.
    • To acquire the necessary skills, experience and understanding required to plan, deliver and evaluate the appropriate areas of the national curriculum (for their route) by the end of the module.

    Read full details

What our students say

“I get so much support from my tutor, colleagues and the London Met team. The University itself has a great vibe, is highly social and very welcoming. I’m grateful to everyone at the University for all their help.”
Zeinab Al-Ali, PGCE Secondary Science with Biology trainee

Where this course can take you

This intensive PGCE leads to Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), which enables you to teach biology to 11 to 16-year-olds. Our trainees have gone on to secure secondary teacher roles at schools including Ark Academy, Harris Girls Academy and more. You’ll have the same opportunities for employment upon successful completion of the course.

Funding

Funding is available for many postgraduate courses leading to Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). Depending on your teaching subject and degree classification, you may be eligible for a bursary or scholarship of up to £30,000 through the teacher training bursary.

The Department for Education (DfE) has confirmed that EU students who have settled or pre-settled status will still be eligible for Student Finance and Initial Teacher Training bursaries in 2021/22.

If you're an EU applicant living in the UK or entering the UK before 31 December 2020, it is therefore advised that you apply to the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) as soon as possible. Read more guidance for EU students studying in the UK.

Additional costs

Please note, in addition to the tuition fee there may be additional costs for things like equipment, materials, printing, textbooks, trips or professional body fees.

Additionally, there may be other activities that are not formally part of your course and not required to complete your course, but which you may find helpful (for example, optional field trips). The costs of these are additional to your tuition fee and the fees set out above and will be notified when the activity is being arranged.

Top tips for applications

  • Ask somebody you trust to check your personal statement, both for accuracy of writing and for focused, relevant content.
  • Ensure that your personal statement addresses your reasons for choosing the exact course, phase or subject specialism. Make sure that all potentially relevant experience is referred to in your statement – if you don’t tell us, we won’t know!
  • Don’t wait until you have passed all relevant qualifications before applying (but make sure you tell us about them – otherwise, again, we won’t know).
  • If your qualifications are from another country, you will have to get an ENIC statement of equivalence.
  • Make sure you have read all the relevant course documentation and requirements before applying.
  • If in doubt, ask!

How to apply

All teacher training courses, apart from the assessment only route, are searchable on the Department for Education’s “Find postgraduate teacher training” site.

Applications must be made through UCAS Teacher Training (UTT).

You can apply to London Met or one of our partner schools. To apply to London Met, please enter:

  • Institution code: L68
  • Training programme code: C1X1

To apply through one of our partner schools, please enter the following provider and training programme codes:

  • Angel Islington Teaching School Alliance: 2BZ (provider code) / 39NT (training programme code)

Please note, whether you select London Met or one of our partner schools as the provider, your training will still take place at the University. Depending on availability, for your placement, you may be assigned to a school that is different to the one you entered the provider code for.



When to apply

Please apply as early as possible to maximise your chances of securing a place. The application window opens in early October for courses starting the following September.

Do not wait until you’ve met all the criteria before applying.

If you’re not sure whether you meet the criteria, please do one of the following:

  • Contact us to enquire about the eligibility of your qualifications and experience. We’ll be able to let you know whether the Level 2 Maths certificate that you have is accepted for teacher training, or whether your degree is considered relevant to the secondary course you’re applying for.
  • Apply early through UCAS and in your personal statement make it clear what steps you propose to take to get the relevant qualifications or experience.

Places are limited by the Teaching Regulation Agency and are offered on a first come, first served basis. We also operate waiting lists for these courses.

To find out when teaching for this degree will begin, as well as welcome week and any induction activities, view our academic term dates.

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