PGDE Primary Education

Key facts

  • Start date: August
  • Accreditation: General Teaching Council for Scotland
  • Study mode and duration: 36 weeks full-time, including 18 weeks of placement experience
  • UCAS Code: 3X56

  • Gaelic Medium UCAS Code: 3X75
    Find out more about studying the medium of Gaelic

Study with us

The Professional Graduate Diploma in Education (PGDE) is the graduate entry route for those who want to become a primary (or secondary) teacher in Scotland. The PGDE is an internationally recognised qualification, newly qualified teachers will be able to apply for qualified teacher status (QTS) or equivalent in their home country.

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Why this course?

Teaching is undoubtedly one of the most rewarding careers you can pursue – you'll shape the minds of tomorrow!

This course will provide the theoretical and practical starting point to your teaching career. You'll acquire the skills, attitudes and competencies to communicate in the classroom.

Worldwide qualification

This course is a professional training course which qualifies you to teach primary education. The qualification is recognised throughout the world and is regulated by the: 

  • General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS)
  • Scottish Government

Guaranteed employment for Scottish & EU students

If you're a Scottish or EU student, you're guaranteed a job for one year in a Scottish school after you graduate. This is part of the General Teaching Council for Scotland's (GTCS) Teacher Induction Scheme. Following graduation you should contact the GTCS for provisional registration. Once you complete your probationary year, you'll be awarded full registration.

As a newly-qualified teacher, you can receive an additional £6,000 under the Preference Waiver Scheme if you agree to work anywhere in Scotland for your induction scheme.

Get into teaching

We're holding a 'Get Into Teaching' event on Monday 9th December!

Our academic teaching staff will be there to answer any questions you may have. We'll also have a number of talks from our PGDE students and the programme leader, Catherine Whitley, who'll help give an insight into the programme and what you can expect before, during and after the PGDE.

What you’ll study

You’ll learn the theories behind teaching practices and explore these throughout the year. You'll gain the skills necessary to become the best teacher you can be.

You'll also see the relevance of everything you're learning come alive while on placement. Classes are here on campus and you'll carry out three placements in two different schools throughout the year.

Each class includes course work that involves group or independent study on specified tasks. This may involve presentations and written reports. Although these are not assessed formally, they are essential learning experiences and are course requirements.

You must keep a portfolio of progress throughout the course. This prepares you for the continuation of professional development during your professional teaching career.

MEd

As part of the course, you’ll have the opportunity to submit two of your assignments at Masters level. If you choose to do this, you’ll be almost halfway towards a Masters in Education (MEd) qualification. If you go on to do the MEd, you'll only require to complete two Masters-level classes, a research class and a dissertation.

You can do this on campus or by distance learning. 

Placement

You'll spend 18 weeks of the course on placement in a school within Scotland. You'll be continually assessed while there to show you meet the requirements for the Standards for Provisional Registration.

You must attend your placement school throughout the full working day. You must also attend school on staff in-service days unless told otherwise by your school.

Placement is your chance to put what you're learning into practice. You'll explore your own teaching style, learn new techniques and develop relationships with your pupils.

Please read our important information about the Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Scheme. This is for all applicants applying for courses which involve placement opportunities (working with children or vulnerable adults).

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Course content

Placement Learning

This class is taught both on campus and in schools. It'll help you become an effective teacher through learning about pedagogical theory, observing experienced teachers and applying your knowledge through teaching experience during the course.

Creative Contexts for Learning

This class will support you as you develop your approaches to curriculum, planning, learning, teaching and assessment, and includes cross-curricular approaches. 

Educational Perspectives & Policies

This class develops your understanding of key educational issues in a broader intellectual context. It 's taught in a cross- sector way, so that primary and secondary students can share opinions and learn from each other. 

Principles & Policy in Practice

This is the companion class to Educational Perspective and Policies. It shares a focus on critical professional engagement informed by educational research and theory. 

Professional Specialisation

This class gives you the opportunity to gain experience and further study in something you're particularly interested in. You can attend classes on campus, or undertake alternative methods of learning/development based on your area of interest. 

 

It gives you the opportunity to gain experience
Adam Black in a classroom writing on a smartboard
My course prepared me for the working world by providing a realistic view of what teaching was going to be like. The late nights at uni weren’t just for uni - they're a standard weekday for teachers.
Adam Black

Learning & teaching

The course encourages active and participative styles of learning in order to meet your professional needs and to promote a commitment to continuing professional development.

The hours for the full-time course are 9am to 5pm. You’re expected to be working on course-related activity during those hours.

Assessment

To be awarded the Professional Graduate Diploma in Education, you must pass all course modules.

Course work

Each class includes course work that involves group or independent study on specified tasks. This may involve presentations and written reports. Although these are not assessed formally they are essential learning experiences and are course requirements.

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We're a 5-star
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Entry requirements

Academic requirements/experience

You should hold a degree validated by a higher education institution in the UK, or a degree of an equivalent standard from an institution from outside the UK. You also require:

  • Higher (SCQF Level 6) English Grade C or above*
  • National 5 (SCQF Level 5) Mathematics Grade C or above**

As well as academic qualifications, you need to have:

  • evidence that you have experience of working with children in a primary school setting or related context
  • an understanding of modern primary education
  • an ability to relate to people

These are some of the criteria that will be taken into consideration when selecting candidates for the interview stage.

*Acceptable alternative qualifications in English
  • Communications 4 and Literature 1
  • GCSE English Language and GCSE English Literature at Grade C or above
  • Irish Leaving Certificate Higher English at Grade C3 or above
  • (SCQF Level 6) English Access Course offered by the University of Aberdeen
  • A Level English Literature or English Language Grade C or above
**Acceptable alternative qualifications in Mathematics
  • Standard Grade 1 or 2 Credit Mathematics
  • Intermediate Level 2 Mathematics at Grade C or above
  • GCSE Mathematics at Grade C or above
  • Irish Leaving Certificate Ordinary Mathematics at Grade B3 or above
  • Irish Leaving Certificate Higher Mathematics at Grade C3 or above
  • National 5 Lifeskills/Applications Mathematics at Grade C or above
  • (SCQF Level 5) Mathematics Access Course offered by the University of Aberdeen
  • A Level Mathematics Grade C or above
  • Discovering Mathematics M123 Open University
English language requirements

You're required to have a suitable minimum level of competency in the English language if your first language is not English or if you have not been educated wholly or mainly in the medium of English.

For postgraduate studies, the University of Strathclyde requires a minimum overall score of IELTS 6.5 (no individual test score below 5.5) or equivalent. Tests are valid for two years.

Pre-sessional courses in English are available.

If you’re a national of an English speaking country recognised by UK Visas and Immigration (please check most up-to-date list on the Home Office website) or you have successfully completed an academic qualification (at least equivalent to a UK bachelor's degree) in any of these countries, then you do not need to present any additional evidence.

If you are from a country not recognised as an English speaking country by the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI), please check our English requirements before making your application.

PVG and overseas police check requirements

All applicants who have been offered a place on the PGDE course will be required to complete an application to Join PVG Scheme or an application for Existing PVG Scheme Member prior to starting the course. Students will be required to pay between £18 to £59 depending on the related work they apply to.

If applicable, applicants who have been given an offer will also be required to obtain the relevant oversea(s) certificate(s) of good conduct.

Interviews

If your application passes the initial selection process, you’ll be invited for interview. The interviewers will be interested in:

  • your personality
  • your ability to communicate
  • your commitment to and perception of the role of the teacher
  • your hobbies and interests
  • any previous experience you have of working with children in a primary school or related setting

The aims of the interview are to give you more information about the course and to determine if you are suited to teaching. Interviews are normally held at the beginning of March.

Pre-Masters preparation course

The Pre-Masters Programme is a preparation course held at the University of Strathclyde International Study Centre, for international students (non EU/UK) who do not meet the academic entry requirements for a Masters degree at University of Strathclyde. The Pre-Masters programme provides progression to a number of degree options.

Upon successful completion, you will be able to progress to this degree course at the University of Strathclyde.

International students

We've a thriving international community with students coming here to study from over 100 countries across the world. Find out all you need to know about studying in Glasgow at Strathclyde and hear from students about their experiences.

Visit our international students' section

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Fees & funding

2020/21

All fees quoted are for full-time courses and per academic year unless stated otherwise.

Scotland/EU

TBC

Rest of UK

TBC

(2019/20: £9,250)

International

£15,300

Available scholarships

Take a look at our scholarships search for funding opportunities.

Please note: the fees shown are annual and may be subject to an increase each year. Find out more about fees.

How can I fund my course?

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Scottish & EU students

Scottish and EU students can apply to have the cost of their tuition fees paid for by the Scottish Government. Applications should be made online through the Students Award Agency Scotland (SAAS) website, the PGDE course falls under undergraduate study.

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Students coming from England

Students ordinarily resident in England may be to apply for postgraduate support from Student Finance England. The support is a loan of up to £10,280 which can be used for both tuition fees and living costs. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

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Students coming from Wales

Students ordinarily resident in Wales may be to apply for postgraduate support from Student Finance Wales. The support is a loan of up to £10,280 which can be used for both tuition fees and living costs. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

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Students coming from Northern Ireland

Postgraduate students who are ordinarily resident in Northern Ireland may be able to apply for support from Student Finance Northern Ireland. The support is a tuition fee loan of up to £5,500. Find out more about the support and how to apply.

Don’t forget to check our scholarship search for more help with fees and funding.

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Professional Graduate Diploma in Education (PGDE) International Scholarship

The University of Strathclyde is delighted to offer international applicants the opportunity to receive a partial scholarship of between £2,000 and £3,000 towards the tuition fees for the Professional Graduate Diploma in Education (PGDE) for our Primary and Secondary programmes.

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Scholarship search

Check our Scholarship Search for more help with fees and funding.

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Careers

The PGDE qualification is required for employment as a teacher in a primary school. It qualifies you to teach in locations world-wide. Following the probationary period, it can provide a starting point for a clearly defined career structure within primary education. The promoted posts in primary schools are principal teacher, depute head teacher and head teacher.

Work anywhere in Scotland

As a newly qualified teacher, you can receive an additional £6,000 under the Preference Waiver Scheme if you agree to work anywhere in Scotland for your induction scheme.

Glasgow is Scotland's biggest & most cosmopolitan city

Our campus is based in the very heart of Glasgow, Scotland's largest city. National Geographic named Glasgow as one of its 'Best of the World' destinations, while Rough Guide readers have voted Glasgow the world’s friendliest city! And Time Out named Glasgow in the top ten best cities in the world - we couldn't agree more!

We're in the city centre, next to the Merchant City, both of which are great locations for sightseeing, shopping and socialising alongside your studies.

Find out what some of our students think about studying in Glasgow!

Find out all about life in Glasgow
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Apply

Scotland/EU/Rest of UK

Please ensure that all parts of the application are completed including details of qualifications which meet the minimum entry requirements. We may be unable to consider incomplete applications. In order for your application to be fully considered, you will be required to send the following supporting documents within 21 days of submitting your application. Please email these documents to hass-pgde-docsupport@strath.ac.uk.

  • Your degree certificate
  • Your academic transcript listing all the modules you have completed
  • Evidence of Higher English (or equivalent) with a grade between A-C
  • Evidence of National 5 Maths (or equivalent) with a grade between A-C

Primary Education

Qualification: PGDE
Start Date: Aug 2020
Mode of Delivery: full-time

Primary Education (Gaelic medium)

Qualification: PGDE
Start Date: Aug 2020
Mode of Delivery: full-time

International students

International applicants should apply via the University’s online application system by following the button below. We accept applications from international applicants right up until the course start date in August but would encourage you to apply in advance of this.

In order for your application to be fully considered, you will be required to upload the following supporting documents within 21 days of submitting your application.

  • Your degree certificate
  • Your academic transcript listing all the modules you have completed
  • Evidence of Higher English (or equivalent) with a grade between A-C
  • Evidence of National 5 Maths (or equivalent) with a grade between A-C

Primary Education

Qualification: PGDE
Start Date: Aug 2020
Mode of Delivery: full-time

Primary Education (Gaelic medium)

Qualification: PGDE
Start Date: Aug 2020
Mode of Delivery: full-time

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Contact us

Postgraduate Enquiries

Telephone: +44 (0)141 444 8600

Email: hass-pg-enquiries@strath.ac.uk