Student standing on level 6 of curran building

Jamie Howard 

PGDE Secondary Education - Psychology


What made you decide to train as a teacher?

I was at a loss of what to do after graduating and the government’s advert drew me in. I got the idea in my head and thought about it for a long time before applying. I’ve always loved sharing knowledge and am passionate about ‘proper’ psychology and critical thinking so wanted to pass this on to the next generation.

Why did you choose to study at Strathclyde?

Since I was a wee boy I’ve had a deep affection for Scotland, and fell in love when I came. I decided to move here in late 2014, and since my first steps in Glasgow I’ve loved the city as well. I wanted to study at Strathclyde because of its proud history and heritage, to take my place in the history of both the city and the institution. It might seem a cop-out to say Strathclyde is the only place which offers a PGDE in psychology, however I think that it’s vital for a psychology teacher to specialise and have a background in psychology as it’s a subject under constant scrutiny who needs strong defenders.

What advice would you give to a prospective student coming to study your course?

Get some experience and make sure that this is what you want to do, and you know what it entails.

What’s the best thing about studying PGDE at Strathclyde?

The quality of lecturer is superb; you notice a real difference from undergrad. Whereas in school you have teachers with degrees, and in university you have masters/doctors, here we have lecturers who have all that as well as years of experience in many different areas of education.

How is your course helping to prepare you for your future career?

Being taught by former teachers is a great way to transition from a student to a teacher. You get the opportunity to ask many questions and get a feel even before you’ve gone onto your placement.  You also get a great all-round feel for education and your subject, so if you want to branch out into educational psychology, leadership, further studies like the Med or even a PHd you get a chance to lay the groundwork and come back to it later.

What are your ambitions for the future and how do you think your time at Strathclyde will help you achieve your goals?

I’d love to teach in a Gaelic school, however I don’t speak Gaelic! When I get a moment I’ll do some studying and hopefully in the future I can head in that direction. I’d also like to get on board with psychology course policy making and shaping what our young people learn about psychology, and how. As I mentioned, psychology is my great passion in life and I think it’s important to give young people the right impression of it early on.