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What makes PGCE in Further Education (FE) at Worcester special?

The PGCE in Further Education at Worcester is a teaching qualification. It provides access to excellent learning and training opportunities across the FE sector: further education colleges, work-based learning and adult and community settings. The course is suitable for graduates who want to train to teach in the post 14 sector which is celebrated for the diversity of its learners, learning locations and subjects on offer.

Trainees who complete the course will be eligible to apply for QTLS (Qualified Teacher Training and Skills) with the Society for Education and Training. This is an additional qualification that is undertaken after the PGCE. It is equivalent to QTS and is suitable for those who may consider teaching post-14 learners in the schools sector. Please note that to apply for QTLS through SET (Society for Education and Training) you would need a recognised Level 3 or above qualification in the subject area you are teaching.

The course is designed to provide generic core content on teaching, learning and assessment. This is complemented by subject specialism training and development days which are delivered in smaller subject groups.

Collaborative working features across all aspects of course teaching and teaching practice; this approach is key to making the course successful, stimulating and enjoyable.

You may be eligible for a government bursary of £15,000 for the Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) specialist subject or £15,000 for the English specialist subject. Please see the government website for full details. Bursaries are awarded on a first-come, first-served basis



Key Features

  • Teaching placements in relevant settings to support effective subject specialism development
  • Focus on current National Occupational Standard Teacher Learning and Skills throughout the programme
  • Possible progression route to Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) - equivalent to Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). Please note that to apply for QTLS through SET (Society for Education and Training) you would need a recognised Level 3 or above qualification in the subject area you are teaching
  • Highly skilled and experienced tutors
  • A cohesive programme that successfully links theory and practice through carefully chosen teaching, learning and assessment activities
  • Collaborative, research-informed learning tasks
  • The course offers the following subject specialisms: Sports PE and related subjects; Special Educational Needs and Disabilities; Art and Design; English and ESOL; Performing Arts and Health and Social Care
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Ofsted has rated us as "Good" in PGCE - Further Education in 2023.


The course is mapped to the National Occupational Standard Teacher Learning and Skills which are sector standards promoted by the Education and Training Foundation (ETF)

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

Academic requirements

  • Honours degree normally (2:2) or higher from a United Kingdom higher education institution or equivalent qualification, in a relevant subject area. Applicants with a 3rd class degree will be considered on an individual basis.
  • All entrants have achieved a standard equivalent to a grade 4 (formerly grade C) in the GCSE examinations in English Language or English Literature and Mathematics (applicants must have these qualifications by the start of the course). Alternatively, we offer an equivalency test if you don’t have the required GCSE grade to apply for our courses. Trainees who begin courses before providing evidence of the required GCSE standard (or equivalent) will not be eligible for financial incentives, such as bursaries or grants until they achieve the required standard.

Qualifications not listed? Contact the Admissions Office for advice by email: 

Additional requirements

  • An Enhanced DBS check. You will be sent details of how to apply for your DBS in the summer term. You will need to pay for this.  You may already be part of the DBS update service. Find out about the update service here. As part of the DBS process you will be checked against the Children’s Barred List.
  • A check against the Prohibition List.
  • If you have lived, studied or worked overseas for three months or more in the last five years a Certificate of Good Conduct from the country of residence will be required. Further information and guidance associated with additional costs are available from the Home Office.
  • An online occupational health check. All those on a teacher training programme must be certified as meeting national requirements for physical and mental fitness to teach, as set by the Department for Education.
  • For International students: IELTS 6.5 or equivalent

Other information

To help you prepare for your interview you can expect questions covering the following:

  • subject knowledge for teaching the subject curriculum in an FE setting 
  • your ability to critically reflect on prior experiences in relation to professional development
  • your understanding of the nature of the FE sector in the UK and the role of a teacher
  • examples of how you have overcome challenges and shown resilience
  • how you plan to meet the demands of the course/teaching.

In addition, we are looking for enthusiasm, commitment, and potential. Clear verbal and written communication skills are integral to this which you will have an opportunity to demonstrate throughout the interview.

  • Interviews will be conducted online. Applicants will be contacted directly with more details.

All applications for PGCE should be made via the Government's Find Postgraduate Teacher Training website.

Additional useful information is available on the Government's Get Into Teaching website.

Course content

Course content

You will complete core studies which covers an introduction to Further Education, learner characteristics, the curriculum and planning teaching and assessment. You will extend your knowledge and understanding through the study of research informed practice and subject pedagogy in the second module.

Semester 1

Mandatory module

  • Learning Teaching and Assessment in FE and Skills

Semester 2

Mandatory module

  • Curriculum, research-informed practice and professionalism in FE and Skills

Across semesters

Mandatory module

  • Teaching practice module

Subject Knowledge

You will:

  • Explore subject knowledge from  learning and teaching perspectives
  • Build knowledge and expertise in working effectively and confidently with learners in your subject

Specialist Subject Opportunities

You will:

  • Support to become an active member of your subject community
  • Guidance to create a personal subject specialism knowledge and skills framework
  • Experience 7 days of subject specialist development and training


The FE and Skills sector offers a huge range of teaching subjects, levels, course designs and qualifications. To support your development as a subject expert we offer subject cluster training days which are tailored to individual aspirations and sector demands. Specialist pedagogy within your subject will be explored and examined in depth. You will also use and develop your subject specialism teaching skills in your teaching placement alongside your subject mentor and others. 

The course offers the following subject specialisms: Sports PE and related subjects; Special Educational Needs and Disabilities; Art and Design; English and ESOL; Performing Arts; and Health and Social Care.

Professional Studies

You will:

  • Develop adaptive teaching strategies to respond to the unique needs in a range of contexts, leveraging the diversity inherent in colleges and other providers.
  • Be informed by the research and evidence about effective teaching at a general level before applying this knowledge to subject-specific approaches
  • Learn the expectations, standards and behaviours which are appropriate to the profession and the wider responsibilities of a teacher.

Teaching Experience

  • You will undertake at least 150 hours of practice in a Post 16 setting and Teaching Practice, this will take place in one setting
  • You are also expected to show evidence of 100 hours of non-teaching experience (for example, training, mentoring, educational visits, marking, course development)
  • Be supported and challenged by our blend of Mentors and Personal Academic Tutors

Your career

Your course will support you to:

  • Become a reflective self-evaluating practitioner   
  • Enjoy great employment prospects; our support takes you from trainee to qualified teacher with possible opportunities to progress to Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) via the Society for Education and Training
  • Prepare for progress with your Masters with 60 credits at Level 7 and experience of a research-active culture
Teaching and assessment

Teaching and assessment

The PGCE in Further Education Programme enables you to become a research-informed, reflective and professionally confident practitioner. The course is designed to support trainees of varying experiences, needs and backgrounds.  Teaching brings together the different strands of collaborative learning with peers, mentors and university tutors to support learning and development in professional studies and subject specialist contexts.

You are supported to reflect on your learning within theoretical frameworks and develop assignments and an electronic portfolio of evidence for assessment. This model enables you to effectively acquire the knowledge and skills needed to teach within your subject specialism and meet the National Occupational Standard Teacher Learning and Skills.

Approaches to learning are reflective, experiential and participatory. They include teaching and tutorial sessions, work-based learning including mentoring and observation. 


University taught sessions include interactive workshops, seminars and lectures.

Seminars enable discussion and development of understanding of topics covered in lectures. Interactive workshops take a variety of formats and are intended to enable the application of learning through discussion and activities.

Teaching practice includes contact with a named Subject Specialist Mentor and includes one to one discussion and action planning with a focus on subject specialism pedagogy. Observations include formal and informal opportunities for feedback and dialogue to support professional development. As a result of observation processes, targets (mapped to the National Occupational Standard Teacher Learning and Skills) are set and monitored. This supports your development of practice.

Throughout the course, the university’s virtual learning environment (VLE), Blackboard, and e-portfolio system, Pebblepad, are used to provide the following: access to tasks and resources; support teaching practice; progress tracking; personal critical reflection and facilitate peer discussion throughout the course.

Contact time

Contact time is based on the Education and Training Foundation guidance. This guideline is followed by all HEI providers offering this course.

During the 25-week placement, you will spend 3 days a week in a teaching setting. University learning time is front-loaded to 4 days at the beginning of the course with 1 day a week at university and 1 day a week of study time during the placement block.

Independent self-study

In addition to contact time, you are expected to undertake around 8 hours of personal self-study per week. Typically, this will involve completing online activities, reading journal articles and books, working on teaching preparation, evaluation of teaching practice, undertaking research in the library and online, preparing coursework assignments, presentations and collaborative tasks.


1 year full time – on average 2 days at university/self-study and 3 days on placement.


Timetables are normally available one month before registration. Please note that whilst we try to be as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day of the week; and some classes can be scheduled in the evenings.

Teaching staff

You will be taught by a teaching team who have expertise and knowledge of teaching and learning in the Lifelong Learning Sector. All tutors are experienced teachers and many have worked in research and management roles within the sector and hold Fellowship of the HEA. The expertise of university tutors is extensive, and informed by recent and relevant pedagogical research. Many tutors have academic writing profiles having engaged in published research. You can learn more about the staff by visiting our staff profiles.


The course provides opportunities to test understanding and learning informally through the completion of formative tasks. Formative tasks will generate content that can be used in formal, end of module assessment.

Assessment methods include presentations, observation and critically reflective writing tasks which reference reading. 

Formal course assessment comprises 2 assignments and a professional portfolio 

The programme aims to train you to meet the National Occupational Standard Teacher Learning and Skills. Two assignments provide the opportunity to gain 60 credits at Master’s level. The course is an holistic model with frequent re-visiting of themes, topics and skills. 

The modules are: 

Module 1: Learning Teaching and Assessment in Further Education and Skills 

This module covers taught sessions in Semester 1 and culminates in Assignment 1 which is submitted towards the end of Semester 1 and is assessed at Master’s Level 

Module 2: Curriculum, research-informed practice and professionalism in FE and Skills 

This module focuses on practice, research and professional experience in the later part of the course and develops skills you will need to be a research- informed practitioner. The module culminates in the submission of Assignment 2 which is submitted in the later part of Semester 2 and is assessed at Master’s level.

Professional and Personal Development Portfolio

This portfolio focuses on evidence of your teaching practice. Assessed evidence for this e-portfolio includes:

  • 10 teaching observations
  • 3 professional reports
  • A log of 150 teaching hours (minimum) and 100 non-teaching hours (minimum)
  • An assessed professional discussion titled Career Action Plan (A professional discussion is also known as a viva voce (a spoken assessment))

The course is assessed as pass or fail and you need to pass all three components to successfully complete the course. 

Programme specification

For comprehensive details on the aims and intended learning outcomes of the course, and the means by which these are achieved through learning, teaching and assessment, please download the latest programme specification document.

Lucie Clewer

Lucie Clewer

Lucie has a degree in outdoor education and environmental studies. She is also a highly trained and experienced Duke of Edinburgh expedition leader and has a range of work experience in sports and public services.

“The course works well because there are strong links between theory and practice – I was able to apply class-based learning on placement and learn from placement experience too. The subject specialism sessions gave me a good grounding in  Sport curriculum, practice, and research. The biggest impact of the course has been the confidence I have gained – I know I am a great teacher and I can’t wait to start my career.”

Lucie is starting a full-time permanent post at her placement college in September. Her goal is to teach and continue to develop her leadership experience.

Gemma Wilkes

Gemma Wilkes

Gemma has a degree and work experience in marketing and decided to make a change and train to teach learners with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND).

Gemma applied to Worcester because it offers SEND as a subject specialism. Gemma was able to develop both teaching and academic knowledge and skills whilst on the course, “The course provided the support and challenge I wanted to progress my career – to start with I was out of my comfort zone with academic work but with feedback and support I have done well. The placement provides an extended period of practice and I felt part of a team. My biggest achievement was teaching my learners online – it was essential to keep learners engaged and active and I developed some great strategies to support this.”

Gemma is starting a tutoring role with a Birmingham FE College with a focus on working with the engagement of young learners. She has also applied for a Master’s course at Worcester.

Sian Hutchings

Sian Hutchings

Sian has a strong academic background in Art and Design to Master’s level and a passion for sharing her subject with communities, young learners, and undergraduate students.

Sian applied to Worcester as the course design and Worcester’s location appealed to her. Sian has enjoyed the collaborative style of the taught and practice aspects of the course, “ The collaborative learning opportunities have been great – with peers, placement colleagues, and course tutors; my mentor was a fantastic support and went the extra mile to support me. The connection to reflective learning has been an important part of my learning too; it made such a difference to the quality of my learning at University and at placement.”

Sian is starting a part-time teaching role in her placement college in September and has a goal to develop a career teaching in FE.


Devan Crawford

Devan Crawford

Devan has a degree in Outdoor Education and Leadership. He has experience of teaching learners in SEND settings and this fuelled his interest in the course. Devan applied for the course so that he could progress in his ambition to embed outdoor education approaches in SEND.

The course provided a supportive and safe space for Devan to develop teaching skills and to further develop outdoor education philosophy and practice in SEND.

“ In a nutshell, the course transformed my perception of learners in SEND provision and allowed me to develop my practice staying true to my vision of outdoor education in SEND.”

Devan has secured a learning support tutor post at a local Specialist Sports College which has SEND provision.

Meet the team

You will be taught by a teaching team whose expertise and knowledge are closely matched to the content of the modules on the course.

You can learn more about the staff by visiting our staff profiles.

Jane Sisk smiling at camera

Jane Sisk

Jane is a Senior Lecturer in Education with a focus on Post Compulsory Education. Most recently she has worked in a large FE college in the role of Teaching and Learning Coordinator with a focus on the development and delivery of the new Diploma in Education and Training (DET) qualifications, delivering CPD and coaching programmes and coordinating the Colleges VLE development.

Prior to this Jane led an FE/HE consortium project after a successful bid for funding through the JISC Exchange for Learning Programme (2002- 2006). The project resulted in the digital learning content in a range of curriculum areas which are available to the FE/HE community on the Jorum website.

She was the winner of the 2003 TES sponsored BECTa ICT in Practice Post 16 Teaching Award.

Most recently, Jane focused on development of e-portfolios for trainee teachers in the Post-compulsory sector.

Mike Tyler

Mike Tyler

Mike is Course Coordinator for the Diploma in Education and Training taught at Halesowen College and a Course Tutor on the Further Education PGCE.

Mike qualified as a teacher in 2006 and has worked in both Secondary and Further Education. He was an FE Sport Lecturer in the West Midlands for 12 years (from 2010) where he taught Sport at Levels 1 through to 5, as well as having a host of other CPD roles. He has been a Learning Technology Champion, a Professional Development Manager, and a Quality Development Manager, working with teaching staff to improve their practice.

Simon Huson

Simon Huson

Simon is the subject lead for the Secondary PGCE Art and Design; he also has responsibility for the Art and Design component of the Further Education PGCE programme. Prior to joining the University as a Senior Lecturer in 2021, Simon was Head of Art at Monmouth School for Girls.

Simon contributes over 25 years of teaching and middle management experience across all phases of education, including as a secondary Head of Art and Design, and 13 years as a Senior Lecturer on the PGCE Art and Design programme at UWE Bristol.

As well as teaching, Simon has his own art practice involving painting, illustration, ceramics, and stained glass.


Kim Hibbert-Mayne

Twitter: @UW_PGCE_PE

Kim is the coordinator of the PGCE secondary professional studies programme and a member of the PGCE secondary physical education tutor team. She has worked in education for the last 14 years as a physical education teacher in secondary schools before embarking on a career in teacher education in 2015.

Kim has experience teaching on the PGCE primary route, has been the subject lead for Secondary PE and is now a sport-specialist for the PGCE in Further Education. Her studies towards an MA in Education and other research projects have predominantly focused on areas of social psychology. Kim is particularly interested in how an individual's identity affects their experiences within the teaching profession. She is a fellow of the HEA and an external examiner at the University of Chichester.


Julie Prentice

Julie Prentice

Julie joined the University of Worcester in Spring 2021. She teaches across a range of University of Worcester programmes including the BA Special Educational Needs, Disability and Inclusion, BA Education Studies, MA Education and the recently developed Higher Education Short Courses. Her teaching and course development contributions are mostly focussed on autism, SEND and Inclusion, and research methods. Julie has recently completed a PhD, which was focussed on education and autism. Her thesis has explored how children and young people with autism are told about and supported to understand an autism diagnosis.

Julie has a background in teaching in both mainstream and special school settings and has also been a SEND coordinator. Julie has taught children across the primary age range within mainstream and special education settings. She has also taught within secondary and post-16 education. Within special education, Julie has taught children with a range of complex and additional educational needs including children with speech, language and social communication needs, physical and sensory needs, autism and social, emotional and mental health needs.

She has also worked in a specialist advisory capacity within 3 different local authorities. While working as an advisory teacher, Julie provided specialist advice related to the provision, teaching, and learning needs of children and young people with autism. She also delivered training programmes for parents of children with autism and provided professional development training for schoolteachers and other local authority staff.



Career planning is a key focus of the course and is supported through tutorial activity, individual career planning, networking events and generic career sessions.

Course qualifications provide opportunities to gain teaching employment in a wide variety of settings, depending on your teaching subject and level. Additionally, you will be able to apply for Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills status through the Education and Training Foundation’s Society for Education and Training. Please note that to apply for QTLS through SET (Society for Education and Training) you would need a recognised Level 3 or above qualification in the subject area you are teaching.

You will be able to progress to further Level 7 qualifications depending on your aspirations. Our PGCE Further Education Course has achieved an employment rate of 100% (2020/21)

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Careers and Employability

Our Graduates pursue exciting and diverse careers in a wide variety of employment sectors.

Find out how we can support you to achieve your potential
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PGCE Alumni Scholarship

If you are a University of Worcester graduate starting a full-time PGCE in September 2024 then you may be eligible for a £500 Cash Scholarship.

See our scholarships page for more details.

Fees and funding

Full-time tuition fees

UK and EU students

The standard tuition fee for full-time UK and EU students enrolling on a PGCE in the academic year 2024/25 will be £9,250 per year.*

* Please note that for EU students training as Physics or Languages teachers and in receipt of a UK government bursary/scholarship package the fee is £17,400 per year.

For more details, please visit our course fees page.

International students

The standard tuition fee for full-time international students enrolling on a PGCE in the academic year 2024/25 will be £17,400 per year.

For more details, please visit our course fees page.

Additional costs

Every course has day-to-day costs for essential books, stationery, printing and photocopying.

Travel costs for placements vary depending on the location of placements and your mode of transport, sometimes these may be reclaimed depending on your individual circumstances.

We organise occasional visits to increase subject knowledge. Travel costs are at your own expense but we do encourage car sharing. In addition there is sometimes a fee but this is not normally more than £20 in total.

You will also need to pay for an enhanced DBS check.


Finding the right accommodation is paramount to your university experience. Our halls of residence are home to friendly student communities, making them great places to live and study.

We have over 1,000 rooms across our range of student halls. With rooms to suit every budget and need, from our 'Chestnut Halls' at £131 per week to 'Oak Halls' at £221 per week (2024/25 prices).

For full details visit our accommodation page.

Teacher Training Funding

You may be able to get help with the costs of teacher training. A student finance package will include a Tuition Fee Loan and a Maintenance Loan. You may also be eligible for extra help if you have children or are disabled.


You may be eligible for a government bursary of £15,000 for the Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) specialist subject or £15,000 for the English specialist subject.

Please see the government website for full details.

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