About the course
Our one-year Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) prepares you to teach the secondary school biology curriculum. You will learn how to teach all three sciences to GCSE and your specialism, Biology, Chemistry or Physics, up to AS/A level. You will explore various teaching methods in our laboratories, which mirror school science classrooms. You’ll consider how to plan lessons and manage activities. You'll learn how to reflect on your developing practice and how research can improve this. some of the topics you’ll explore include behaviour management, mental health and emotional wellbeing, teacher persona, and non-verbal communication (such as body language). You will conduct some of the experiments you might use on your placements such as exploring the properties of electromagnets, extracting DNA from a kiwi fruit, and investigating the reactions of alkaline metals.
You will also have guest sessions with alumni and experts from a variety of organisations. Past sessions include speakers from the National Space Centre, Royal Society of Chemistry, and Science and Plants for Schools (SAPS). You won’t simply learn teaching methods with us on campus though, you’ll spend at least 120 days on placements in a variety of schools
Upon receipt of a successful application we will call a candidate to interview. This is usually at Rivington and Blackrod High School. The interview process would consist of the following;
- tour of the school
- inspire task with a small group of students
- a formal interview with a panel
- on some occasions a subject knowledge test may be given
How school placements work
The Rivington School Direct is an alliance with a total of nine schools within Bolton. We work on an AB model where trainees will be placed in two contrasting schools. Placement A runs from September to December and Placement B from January to June. This provides the trainee with two different experiences and therefore expands the skills gained during the course.
When on placement in school the trainee will have a trained Subject Mentor who will support them through weekly meetings and observations. They will also have a Professional Mentor who is responsible for their professional development on a whole school level. Trainees will be given a varied timetable of different Key Stages and abilities and will build up the number of lessons they teach gradually throughout each placement.
The course fees for 2019/2020 are as follows:
You could be eligible for either:
- a scholarship of £28,000
- a bursary of £26,000
To qualify for a scholarship you’ll need a degree of 2:1 or above in Chemistry or a related subject. For a bursary you’ll need a 2:2 or above in any subject.
You can’t claim both a bursary and a scholarship - you can only claim one.
Find out how to apply for a scholarship. You don’t need to apply for a bursary - if you’re eligible, you’ll automatically start receiving it once you begin your course. Find out how you’ll be paid.
Financial support if you’re from outside the UK.
GCSEs grade C/4 or above in English Language and Mathematics, can apply with these pending. We offer MMU equivalency tests in English and Maths.
If degree outside UK will require academic IELTS. IELTS 7.0 with no less than 6.0 in any element.
CSE Grade 1/Scottish Standard Grades 1 -3/Irish Leaving Certificate D at Higher Level or C at Ordinary Level.
2:2 UK Honours degree (or international equivalent), which must support the National Curriculum subject knowledge requirements.
For exceptional candidates, those with substantial work experience in schools/relevant occupations, we consider applications with a 3rd class degree.
QTS Professional Skills tests
We are looking for individuals with a genuine passion for working with young people from a variety of backgrounds with varying abilities. Candidates will need to be determined, reflective and resilient and dedicated to the betterment of the young people in their care.
Candidates will be subject to a DBS check before being able to start the course.
About the training provider
We are an alliance of Bolton based schools, which are wide, varied and unique in terms of their characteristics. We run a bespoke programme of professional enhancement sessions that are an integral part of our programme, delivered by experts from across the alliance. Our alliance consists of highly skilled, supportive Professional and Subject Mentors and schools that provide a wealth of experience and opportunities. Our programme enables you to gain experience within two contrasting placement schools and follows an AB model.
We believe that every child gets one chance and that we can make a difference to the lives of young people. We aim to inspire the next generation of leaders of learning, to challenge, support and develop individuals and to create outstanding practitioners who will shape and inspire future generations. It is our priority to develop individuals who are highly employable within and beyond the alliance.
Training with disabilities and other needs
Rivington School Direct can offer support to trainees with disabilities or other specific needs. An assessment can be undertaken by Occupational Health or with Access 2 Work as appropriate and their recommendations for support /reasonable adjustments will be put in place wherever possible. Schools within the alliance currently provide support for employees with dyslexia through technology designed to support such conditions.
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.
Rivington Lane, Horwich, Bolton BL6 7RU
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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