West Thornton Primary Academy
Primary (389F)

PGCE with QTS full time

Accredited body
University of East London
Financial support
Student finance if you’re eligible

A postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE) with qualified teacher status (QTS) allows you to teach in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. It’s also recognised internationally.

Many PGCE courses include credits that count toward a Master’s degree.

Course length
1 year
Date you can apply from
9 October 2018
Date course starts
September 2019

About the course

By joining us on one of our training programmes you will be receiving exceptional training, leadership and support from outstanding professionals. Within school you will have a class mentor (class teacher) who will support you daily with your training, a UEL tutor who will oversee your training provision and a WTTA link tutor who will quality assure the delivery of the program. You will be based in school four days a week and attend training at UEL a day per week. As a trainee you will be treated like a member of staff and will be introduced as a teacher to the children. The school will expect you to commit yourself fully and to immerse yourself in the life of the school by attending meetings, training events and becoming a member of the team.

During your training year you will need to evidence the Teachers’ Standards. Your link tutors will give you regular feedback about the quality of your evidence, as will your class mentor. Each week, at your mentor tutorial meeting, trainees will be asked to show evidence that demonstrates the impact of their teaching on pupil progress.

During weekly face to face training sessions, you will experience a blend of subject knowledge development training and training showing you the different teaching styles and approaches (pedagogies) that you will need to be an effective teacher. We will cover all elements of the National Curriculum and Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum.

You will attend parents evenings, help to write reports, help to plan and lead a school trip, attend pupil progress meetings and see the children in your class develop, flourish and grow under your direction – it is an amazing feeling!

In the first term, you will be based in your ‘main’ class where you will work with your mentor until Christmas. You will start off by teaching small groups, which will then lead to the whole class. You will be supported every step of the way and given expert guidance. After Christmas, you will go on your second school placement, where you will go to a school which is contrasting to yours, for 4- 6 weeks. Following this you will return to your 'main' class.

You will be observed teaching by your mentor and you will have a weekly mentor tutorial meeting, so you will have feedback and support, knowing exactly how to become an outstanding teacher!

Interview process

Applications will be screened against entry requirements and suitable candidates will be shortlisted to attend an interview. We will provide you with full information regarding the interview process if your application is successful. All interviews will be held in a school and you will be expected to teach a group of children, complete a maths task, writing task and group presentation.

The interview panel consists of senior staff and a UEL representative. If you are successful at the first stage of interview you will go on to be invited to a needs analysis interview (at UEL, Stratford campus) where targets will be set for the trainee to prepare themselves for the upcoming training year.

How school placements work

As a School Direct trainee, all your school-based learning will take place with either that school or other schools in that partnership. School Direct Primary Trainees will undertake a main placement and a second contrasting placement in an alternative key stage during their teacher training year. The first block of your main placement will take place during the first term, and your second placement (usually 6 weeks) will ideally take place during the start of the second term. The second part of your main placement takes place after the second placement.

Schools vary enormously in their size, type, intake, ethos, and physical and social environment. You are required to train in a minimum of two schools. In each school, a senior member of staff (the ITT Co-ordinator or the Professional Co-ordinating Mentor) has the overall responsibility for the training programme. You will also be allocated a mentor within your phase.


The course fees for 2019/2020 are as follows:
Student type Fees to pay
UK students £9,250
EU students £9,250

Financial support

You may be eligible for a loan while you study.

Financial support if you’re from outside the UK.



All trainee teachers must have a UK university degree – 2:2 or above

To train as a teacher on any programme you must achieve a minimum grade C in GCSE English, mathematics and science.

NB. Applicants must have been awarded these qualifications prior to application to be considered for a School Direct place.

To qualify for the salaried route you must have full time work experience (min 30hrs p/wk), preferably with children.

All entrants beginning teacher training on or after 1 August 2013 MUST have passed the professional skills tests prior to entry.

Other requirements

We are looking for reflective practitioners who are aspirational for the children they work with and are creative, imaginative and forward thinking.

We are a school that has been on a long journey that has helped us develop approaches and methods that we can see provide the best learning opportunities for the children in our care.

Our philosophies have been shaped by the work of Carol Dweck, Guy Claxton and Sugata Mitra, amongst others. Candidates to our course will benefit from having made themselves aware of some of their work prior to application.

About the training provider

West Thornton Primary Academy is an outstanding setting in which to take your first steps into your teaching career. We are a forward thinking, dynamic environment where we encourage all learners to aspire. Our vision is one of opportunity for all in an environment which embraces learning and equips children with the skills to succeed at life in the 21st century.

West Thornton became a designated National Teaching School in 2014 and as such leads the West Thornton Teaching Alliance.

Our partnership of schools currently participating in the School Direct programme, is made up of a range of urban schools accommodating children from ages 3-11. We provide an opportunity to experience the diverse contrasting range of teaching and training experiences.

In 2012 Ofsted judged WTPA to be outstanding in all areas. In recent years ALL of our School Direct trainees who completed their training have been offered posts within our partnership schools. All of the trainees at West Thornton Teaching Alliance have finished the course classed as 'good' or 'outstanding'. If you train with us you will have amazing opportunities to network, share ideas and collaborate with some of the world's most innovative, forward thinking educational organisations. We are unique to other local providers as we organise a special school experience for our trainees, as we believe that all trainees need a well-rounded and real experience of how to support children with additional needs.

For more information please visit our website where you can learn all about us.



Training with disabilities and other needs

Our sites are wheelchair accessible. Reasonable adjustments can be made to accommodate individual needs as per our access policy. Training materials are available in dyslexia-friendly font and presentation materials can be made available prior to training by request. Extensions to assignment deadlines may also be requested.

All employees are given a medical screening and support is put in place to meet individual needs.

Contact details

West Thornton Primary Academy
Rosecourt Road


Apply on the UCAS website. You’ll need to register with UCAS before you can apply.

Visit Get into Teaching for guidance on applying for teacher training.

When you apply you’ll need these codes for the Choices section of your application form:

  • Training provider code: 16A
  • Training programme code: 389F

Choose a training location

You’ll also need to choose a training location – select the relevant location name on the application form.

Name Address Code
Main Site Rosecourt Road, Croydon CR0 3BS -

Support and advice

For questions about this course you should contact the training provider using the contact details above.

Get support and advice about teaching

Register with Get into Teaching, the Department for Education’s free support and advice service, for personalised guidance from teaching experts. They can help you to prepare your application, book school experience, and access exclusive teaching events. You can also call them free on 0800 389 2500, or speak to an adviser using their online chat service, from 8am to 8pm, Monday to Friday.

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