About the course
Ark Teacher Training gives you a firm and solid foundation in how to teach biology. Over the year you will have regular training sessions which are focused on how to be a great teacher of biology. During these sessions, we will cover a range of teaching approaches and methods to inspire and motivate pupils.
We will also cover how to teach children the analytical and mathematical skills that are critical to Biology, whilst covering approaches to ensure that pupils have a solid grasp of core concepts across all three sciences.
Across our network, our Biology teachers also have the chance to share resources and ideas between their own school and other partnership schools. They come together in subject-specific hub days, and work with our Network Lead for Science to improve the Science provision for KS3, GCSE and A-level across the network. By collaborating like this, all our Biology teachers have great support, and are equipped with the tools to enable our pupils to receive the best possible education.
Once you've checked that you're eligible, you can either submit your application directly through the UCAS portal or use our ‘Apply Now’ form, which is available on our website. We will then assess your application and let you know whether or not you meet our programme criteria. Applicants who meet our criteria will be sent two online tests to complete: a situational judgement assessment and a subject knowledge test.
Successful applicants after this stage will proceed to the final school-based assessment. Our team will use the information we have about you to match you to one of our training schools, and this final stage will take place there. It will involve you teaching a short lesson as well as a final interview with senior staff and subject lead. We’ll let you know the outcome shortly after this date, and will ask you to complete your UCAS form if not already so we can finalise our decision through the UCAS portal.
How school placements work
Your training school will be matched to your particular profile as a candidate, while taking into account your commuting distance and funding/subject preferences (and availability on our programme).
The training programme is 100% school-based, but you will come out of school to spend a half day every week in a session with your Ark tutor and other trainees from the network.
You’ll also obtain experience in different schools throughout the year; you’ll have a contrasting school placement lasting 2 weeks, in a school very different to your own, and which you will have significant input into choosing (for example, it might be a PRU, an independent school, etc). You’ll also get to participate in a series of visits to a range of educational settings.
Your funding options for teacher training can feel complicated...but don't panic! We've tried to simplify your options on our website, so read our salaries/bursaries information pages before you make a decision on which route might work for you.
For bursaries, the Department for Education sets all regulations on the amount you may be entitled to.
For salaries, your training school will decide what salary to pay you as a trainee (usually point 1 on the unqualified teacher scale) and let you know when doing your pre-employment checks.
Regardless of what you are paid (or not paid) in your training year, you will go straight onto the qualified teacher payscale in your second (ie. NQT) year, which is significantly higher (and regional) than the training scale.
Financial support isn’t available for this course because it comes with a salary.
If you choose a course without a salary, you may be eligible for financial support while you study, including bursaries, scholarships and loans.
Click here for a full overview of our qualification requirements.
- If you studied overseas, consult NARIC before applying.
- Certain entry requirements for teacher training are set by the government and all applicants must comply.
- Others are specific to a training provider, and we have listed ours below.
Ark Teacher Training requirements:
- a 2:2 degree or higher
- good A-levels (B+ in 2 or more)
- either your degree or an A-level in the subject you wish to train in (for subject knowledge purposes / your readiness to start!)
Our applicants have a huge variety of experience between them, all of which can be used in the classroom.
However, there are some qualities we know all successful trainees have, regardless of their background or experience; we look for these at assessment:
- Alignment with Ark’s values and ethos
- Some experience with young people (doesn't have to be in a school)
- Great communication skills
- Resilience (teaching is hard!)
- Curiosity and eagerness to learn
- Self-awareness and keenness to hear/act on feedback (you'll receive a lot on our programme, every week!)
There's a lot to think about when you make the decision to train as a teacher: it's an intensive year, but on Ark Teacher Training you'll be well-supported and have plenty of time with your fellow trainees for moral support every week.
If you have questions about areas not covered in this search tool so far, our website covers a lot of specific information on our programme. Check out our 'Frequently Asked Questions' if you can't find what you're looking for!
About the training provider
Ark Teacher Training is an Outstanding two-year programme that allows graduates and career changers to become highly-effective, inspiring teachers, learning from some of the best educators in the profession.
We work in low income areas with a history of academic underachievement, striving for the best outcomes for all our pupils, regardless of their background. According to the Department for Education, Ark makes the biggest difference in transforming the lives of disadvantaged students out of all the major school groups.
- Classroom teaching: from day one, you’ll be in the classroom so you can have an impact straight away. Your tutor and coach will support you to build up your independent teaching time during the year.
- School orientation experience: before your course starts, spend time in your school meeting your new colleagues and interacting with pupils so you can hit the ground running in September.
- Summer School: all new trainees come together over two weeks in August for an introduction to the programme, our schools and the principles of great teaching. You’ll also cover the essential elements of behaviour management, ready for day one.
- Weekly coaching and co-planning: every week you'll be observed by your in-school coach, so they can offer you both positive feedback and bite-sized improvement targets.
- Your trained coach will help you to create effective lessons, developing your planning skills and giving you the opportunity to ask detailed subject -knowledge questions.
- Weekly training: leave school behind for in-person training sessions with your tutors/peers.
About the accredited body
As well as Newly Qualified Teacher status, you will also finish the year having obtained a PGCE, which is an internationally recognised qualification and carries 60 Masters-level credits.
- Ark Teacher Training is the accrediting provider of your QTS.
- Goldsmiths University is the accrediting provider of your PGCE.
Training with disabilities and other needs
We want to make sure that our training programme is open to everybody, so if you have a disability we will make every reasonable adjustment to accommodate you throughout the recruitment process, as well as during the training programme if you are offered a place.
Please provide us with details if you would like us to make any adjustments for you on the assessment day. This will in no way affect the outcome of your application.
Whenever we build new schools, we ensure they have wheelchair access to classrooms. However, when an existing school joins the network, we have to work with the existing buildings and these can sometimes have limited accessibility.
While your PGCE qualification is accredited by Goldsmiths, University of London, you won’t have to go there to attend lectures or seminars; the majority of your training sessions will take place in one of our schools or at Ark's central office. However, you will still have access to the online journals, library facilities and student support services provided by Goldsmiths.
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:
Training programme code:
Choose a training location
You’ll also need to choose a training location – select the relevant location name on the application form.
Ark Teacher Training - Birmingham
Ark Teacher Training - London
Ark Teacher Training - Portsmouth
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.
If you have feedback or have had a problem using Find postgraduate teacher training you can contact us by email.
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