Skip to content


What makes PGCE - Secondary - Religious Education at Worcester special?

Age phase: 11-16 with post-16 enhancement

This is the ideal time to begin a rewarding career in teaching as a confident, effective and reflective RE teacher.

Understanding religion and worldviews is vitally important for young people as they:

  • Are key to the story of how humans have experimented with ways of living, and continue to do so.
  • Aid us to understand culture and politics through exploring underlining beliefs and values.
  • Help individuals to form their own coherent and satisfying perception of reality.

If you have a degree in Religious Studies, Theology, Philosophy, Sociology, Psychology, History, Culture and Media, Education Studies or SENDI or an A Level in Religious Studies/Philosophy, you may be eligible to teach RE.

You may also be eligible to study on an eight-week pre PGCE Subject Knowledge Enhancement Course which attracts a weekly bursary.

Bursaries of up to £10,000 are available for trainee Religious Education (RE) teachers if you’re eligible and starting your course between September 2024 and July 2025. Please see the DfE website for more details.



Training at Worcester

  • Equip young people with the skills and knowledge needed to help them explore life’s deepest questions, as they develop their independence and work out how to live a good life
  • Be taught by an enthusiastic, experienced and inspiring tutor who will individually support each trainee.
  • Work in an excellent RE department supported by teachers passionate about RE and teaching.
  • Experience the collaborative spirit of the course: share your emerging ideas and work together to develop strategies and resources.
  • Work in partnership with schools covering a wide geographical area and place you in the most appropriate school for your training requirements.
  • We have an excellent relationship with the local faith community so work in close partnership with the Mosque, Cathedral, Buddhist temple, Synagogue and more. We visit places of worship to enhance subject knowledge and learn how to organise school visits.
  • You are kept up to date on current issues within religious education via relevant research, pedagogical methods and government policy. Use of social media is encouraged in order to keep abreast of debates within the RE community.
  • As a trainee RE teacher you will be immediately welcomed as a member of the of the Worcestershire RE Hub. This group of RE teachers meets termly to share best practice, receive CPD and discuss current issues affecting classroom teachers.
Ofsted Outstanding logo

Ofsted has rated us as "Outstanding" in training Primary and Secondary Teachers 2023.

The University of Worcester’s education of future primary and secondary teachers has been given the highest possible grade with inspectors stating that, along with its partners, the University creates “a learning community that places children at the heart of everyone’s endeavours”.  

Read our full news story

Subject Knowledge Enhancement

Not sure about your subject knowledge?

Build up or refresh your existing knowledge with a subject knowledge enhancement (SKE) programme before the course.

Subjects offered at the University of Worcester:

English, biology, chemistry†, physics†, design technology (food), religious education.

† The Department for Education is removing the student bursaries for some Subject Knowledge Enhancement courses. As of April 2024 these courses will continue to receive a bursary but this is subject to change in the future.

Find out about the bursary.

Jessica white profile

Jessica White

Jessica originally came to Worcester from Nottingham to study Sociology in 2016, before progressing to train as a teacher at the University with a Secondary PGCE in Religious Education. “I would like to say a massive thank you to everyone I encountered during my four years at the University of Worcester. Particularly, the amazing lecturers who imparted much wisdom whilst offering their support and always encouraging me to reach my full potential.”

“From my first visit at an Open Day, I knew Worcester was where I wanted to go to University. The city is so quaint and beautiful, and the Campus felt so welcoming and supportive. My fondest memories are those shared with new friends. I built lasting relationships with many people on both courses and still value those friendships today.”

From intrepid Fresher to qualified teacher with a new job in an exciting city, Jessica has achieved a lot in the last few years, and all despite the challenges posed by the coronavirus pandemic.



Nicky Hill

I feel the PGCE really helped me become a reflective practitioner. It gave me lots of opportunities to try different pedagogies and reflect on their effectiveness and adapt my teaching as a result.  I also feel like I entered the NQT year equipped with strategies I could use to engage the wide range of learners I would encounter in the classroom.

I think everyone enters the PGCE with strengths and weaknesses within their subject knowledge. But through subject sessions as part of the PGCE I definitely feel I have broadened my knowledge set. Your subject knowledge is something that just continues to develop throughout your teaching career. 

Student Chris Johnson PGCE Worcester

Chris Johnson

The specialist training and advice I received at Worcester was exemplary, allowing me to understand a wide variety of different techniques and schools of thought in teaching. The fantastic staff provide trainees with the research skills to study educationalists who are experts in their specific field; whilst simultaneously receiving advice from accomplished and experienced teachers, both at university level and from school mentors, carefully picked by the university.

This course and university provides an environment that trainees can really thrive in, becoming brilliant teachers, who are very employable and have the tools, knowledge and skills to progress confidently on through the NQT year and beyond throughout one’s entire career. The Religious Education PGCE has really set the foundations for me and provided the support to become the teacher I always wanted to be, and to excel in my field of specialism. Last but not least, you may find yourself smiling a few times along the way!

Dan Tipton PGCE Smiling

Dan Tipton

I found several aspects of the PGCE course at Worcester exceptional. The support I received from my subject tutor was phenomenal and the subject specific lessons at university helped me adapt my pedagogy, shaping me into a reflective practitioner. The essays were thoroughly scaffolded, giving  learners who had been outside academia for a period enough support to complete these at the necessary level.

I decided against teaching in a secondary school and am currently employed as a sociology lecturer in an FE college. My training allowed me the freedom to train in different levels of education, selecting which one would suit my style and long term career goals. Without this freedom to complete additional placements I would have struggled to access the FE sector. After a successful PGCE course I will be applying to complete my master’s in education at Worcester University, furthering my chances of becoming a PGCE Tutor in the future. In addition to this I have taken on positions of responsibility within my current role and I am delivering seminar sessions on the PGCE course at Manchester University.

Sarah Gilbert

Sarah Gilbert

I chose to do my PGCE at Worcester because it has such a fantastic reputation for teacher training. It was a fantastic coincidence that the year I decided to change my career saw Worcester offering a PGCE in RE for the first time - it just had to be fate! In the first few weeks the university has lived up to its reputation offering fantastic advice, support, workshops and training. I can't wait to get into schools and begin to put it all into practice.

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

Entry requirements

Please consult individual subject specialism pages for full details of entry requirements, but most specialisms ask for:

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. 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.
  • International students: IELTS 6.5 or equivalent

Other information

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

  • the subject knowledge required for teaching the subject curriculum in school
  • your ability to critically reflect on your prior experiences in relation to your future development as a teacher
  • your understanding of the UK education system and the wider role of a teacher
  • how you have overcome challenges in your life and shown resilience
  • how you plan to meet the academic and teaching demands of the course.

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.

  • School experience is desirable, but not essential.
  • Interviews will be conducted online. Applicants will be contacted directly with more details.

All applications for PGCE Secondary 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

Subject Knowledge with a Deep Understanding

  • Regular subject knowledge enhancement sessions on religious belief and teachings throughout the course which include plenty of practical ideas of how you can teach the topics in the classroom.
  • Inclusion of up to date research in religious education and in educational theory in subject sessions which form the basis of debate, critical reflection and assignments.

Specialist Subject Opportunities

  • Draw on the experience of RE specialists from all phases of education. Become familiar with religious communities, professional bodies and experts in the field.
  • Begin networking and start the publishing side of your career.
  • Present to peers within and beyond the University.
  • Links to subject associations.


  • Understand and apply theory and research on how children learn and develop.
  • Explore a range of teaching styles and ways to organise a classroom.
  • Discover how to promote progress through observing, planning, teaching and assessing learning.

Professional Studies

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

Enhancement activities

  • Gain expertise through one of our unique Enhancement Activities: PSHE and Citizenship, Careers Education, Education in Climate Emergency, Teenage Mental Health, Special Educational Needs and Disabilities or Technology Enhanced Learning.  In addition, we also offer an Aspiring Leaders programme.

Your career

  • Become a reflective self-evaluating practitioner.
  • Enjoy great employment prospects; our support takes you from trainee to ECT (Early Career Teacher) and beyond
  • Prepare for leadership and your Masters with 60 credits and a strong research foundation.


  • 120 days teaching in schools plus additional days which allow opportunities to prepare and rehearse key teaching skills, covering three foundational teaching skills; explanations and modelling, talk for learning, and assessment for impact. These additional days will explore practical strategies for the classroom, with opportunities to practice, rehearse and implement in school.

Register your interest

Enter your details below and we will keep you up to date with useful information about studying at the University of Worcester.

Teaching and assessment

Teaching and assessment

Secondary school children in classroom

Teaching approach

  • School experience in a range of settings.
  • Professional Studies sessions in school and at University.
  • University-led workshops, lectures, seminars, fieldwork and guest lectures.
  • Study of key texts and supplementary reading.
  • Participation in high level professional discussion, peer presentations and debate.
  • Directed studies, case studies and problem solving tasks; development of practice-based competence and skills of critical reflection through guided individual mentoring during placements.
  • One-to-one academic and personal tutorial support including access to our first class Firstpoint services
Group of PGCE RE trainees smiling at camera


  • Assignments are carefully designed to develop your skills as a teacher.
  • Assessments that move from highly structured to more open briefs as you develop your professional skills.
  • The opportunity to develop skills as a research informed practitioner.

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.

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.



PGCE student on placement
  • Great employment prospects
  • Prepare for leadership and your Masters with 60 credits and a strong research foundation
  • Many University of Worcester trainees gain promotion within the first few years of teaching
Two students are walking next to each other and smiling

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
A female teacher training student in a classroom working on placement as part of her degree to get into teaching.

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.

Teacher training funding

You can 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 have a disability.

Some courses are also eligible for a tax-free bursary or scholarship depending on your subject, degree classification or highest academic qualification.

Additional costs

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

Travel costs for placements vary depending on the location of schools 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.

In addition, we encourage you to join subject specific associations. The cost is typically between £25 to £50 for which you benefit from their support, guidance and resources.

The DfE requires all trainee teachers to obtain an Enhanced Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) check, which you will need to pay for.


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.

How to apply