About the course
School Direct Distance provides trainees with a unique opportunity to combine school based learning with the academic rigour of the University of Exeter’s PGCE programme.
The school and University elements of this training are designed to be complementary and interconnected. Together they offer a balance of practice and theory so that trainees develop classroom skills alongside the knowledge and understanding that underpins these skills, supporting their development as an informed and reflective teacher.
Trainees complete the Master’s element of the programme through undertaking a series of online tasks and modules. They are allocated time (equivalent to one day a week) to undertake their personal study. Trainees complete a personalised subject based training plan, with subject specialists providing taught input at various points throughout the year.
Trainees are inducted into their lead school during the first week before joining other School Direct trainees at Uffculme School for the remainder of September. During this time trainees become part of a School Direct Distance cohort, participating in taught sessions and undertaking tasks aimed at familiarising them with both the Teachers’ Standards and the Exeter Model for ITE. Trainees also return to Uffculme School on the same day each week to complete their online learning. This model of training is a unique feature of our ITE programme and helps us to ensure that our Distance trainees feel supported and not isolated during their training year.
Whereas most course offer a 6 week contrasting placement, our 10 week placement provides the trainee with a fantastic opportunity to compare and contrast different approaches to all aspects of teaching and other wider areas of work that teachers are involved in.
Trainees return to their lead school to consolidate and extend their practice. It is during this period that many of our strong trainees enter an 'Extension & Enrichment' phase.
Whilst on placement trainees will have twelve contact hours a week of classroom-based work.
- SPECIALIST SUBJECT KNOWLEDGE AND PEDAGOGY MODULE
Masters level (30 credits) 6000 summative assignment (Autumn Term)
- EDUCATION AND PROFESSIONAL STUDIES (EPS) MODULE
Masters level (30 credits) 6000 summative assignment (Spring Term)
- PROFESSIONAL LEARNING MODULE
Trainees complete an Individual Development Portfolio (IDP) that contains evidence of achieving the Teachers' Standards.
Successful completion of all three modules leads to the award of Secondary PGCE with QTS.
All applications are screened initially by the University of Exeter Admissions department to check suitability for the programme. Suitable applicants will then be contacted by the West Country Teaching School Alliance and invited to attend an interview.
At interview applicants will have an opportunity to have a tour of the school and meet with the key individuals who will be involved in training them. As part of the interview process applicants will be ask to deliver a short activity to a group of students and will also undertake a formal interview. Interviews will be conducted by the School Direct programme lead and a subject specialist. In some instances a member of the University Graduate School of Education may also be invited to the interview.
How school placements work
Trainees following the School Direct route into teaching are able to express a preference as to which of our partner schools they would like to be based in. This provides trainees with the opportunity to train close to home. Whilst most of our trainees are placed at Uffculme School, the lead school within the alliance, we also offering placements in either our Exeter, Wellington or Taunton based schools. Our diverse and extensive partnership of schools ensures that we can tailor our placements to meet the needs of our trainees. This can also include offering trainees an enriched experience of post 16 teaching or an opportunity to teach in the independent sector.
Trainees spend the Autumn and Summer Terms in their lead school and have their contrasting placement during the Spring Term. In addition to this they will also have a one week cross phase placement. Trainees who are not based in an 11 - 18 setting for one of their placements will also be provided with a one week post 16 experience.
All placements, including cross phase and post 16 are organised for trainees.
The course fees for 2020/2021 are as follows:
You’ll get a bursary of £26,000 if you have a degree of 2:2 or above in any subject.
You don’t have to apply for a bursary - if you’re eligible, you’ll automatically start receiving it once you begin your course. Find out about eligibility and how you’ll be paid.
You may also be eligible for a loan while you study.
Find out about financial support if you’re from outside the UK.
A typical student will have obtained good GCSE grades in ‘double science’ or in each of the three separate science subjects. You will have a good ‘A’ level grade in biology and ideally in another science subject and a good degree (first or upper second class Honours) with at least 50% of the content related to biology. Equivalent or alternative qualifications are always considered. Where necessary you may be required to complete some subject enhancement before joining the course.
Passes at GCSE in English and Mathematics at Grade C/4 are required.
Full guidance: https://www.exeter.ac.uk/teachertraining/apply/entry/#h85omsgJsrcIycA4.99
We are looking for applicants who are passionate about teaching young people and who are driven by a desire to see every child succeed. Applicants should have a genuine love of their subject, they must be willing to learn and have the confidence to take risks. All trainees will need to possess resilience and above all they must be prepared to be reflective and learn from their experiences.
Our trainees need to demonstrate that they have the potential to become outstanding teachers who are committed to teaching and to developing their own careers.
In addition to the academic requirements listed, selection is based on performance at interview, a satisfactory fitness to teach assessment and a satisfactory DBS enhanced disclosure. Note: the DfE entry requirement to pass professional skills tests in literacy and numeracy has been removed for 2020/21 entry onwards. Instead PGCE trainees will be benchmarked during their training against a Government-defined set of fundamental mathematics and English skills.
Although not essential it would be an advantage to be able to reflect on any school-based experience or experience working with young people in another context at interview.
About the training provider
Our diverse partnership of schools & sixth form colleges across Devon and Somerset make us a great choice for Teacher Training in the South West.
- Outstanding schools and contrasting placements:
Most of our School Direct trainees are based at Uffculme School, which is regularly among the top performing non-selective state schools in the South West. Uffculme School has been judged Outstanding by Ofsted in every inspection since 2007, and in 2017 was ranked 11th nationally for Progress 8. Our diverse partnership of schools and sixth form colleges provide trainees with the opportunity to experience a variety of contexts, giving them the tools, skills and expertise they need to build highly successful careers.
- Outstanding partnerships:
The West Country Teaching School Alliance works in partnership with the University of Exeter, which is itself rated Outstanding as a Teacher Training provider. Trainees who successfully complete the course receive their PGCE qualification from the University.
We offer trainees a bespoke programme combining the expertise of classroom practitioners with academic theory. Trainees can choose either a school or university based programme. 72%of our 2018/19 trainees were rated as Outstanding.
- Outstanding employment opportunities:
Our reputation for delivering high quality teacher training has resulted in local schools seeking to appoint our trainees. In 2019, all of our trainees who sought employment secured a teaching post.
About the accredited body
The University of Exeter are leaders in Initial Teacher Education. They have been consistently graded as Outstanding in all areas by Ofsted and ranked 3rd amongst University providers of teacher training in the Good Teacher Training Guide 2017.
The School Direct programmes offered through the University are uniquely characterised by innovative research-led teaching informed by professional practice and academic excellence. University tutors work in partnership with schools to ensure that all trainees have a high quality teacher training experience.
Training with disabilities and other needs
As all of our programmes are accredited by the University of Exeter if you declared a disability, specific learning difficulty or mental health difficulties on your UCAS application form, the University’s AccessAbility team will contact you before the start of your course to ask you to complete a prospective student questionnaire.
Once registered with AccessAbility/Wellbeing Services the University will, where appropriate, draw up an Individual Learning Plan (ILP) to ensure that any required adjustments are made.
You can find out more about Individual Learning Plans here: Physical Health, Disability or Learning Difficulty: http://www.exeter.ac.uk/wellbeing/accessability/ Mental Health Condition: http://www.exeter.ac.uk/wellbeing/mental_health/
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.
Chapel Hill, Uffculme, Cullompton EX15 3AG
Support and advice
For questions about this course you should contact the training provider using the contact details above.
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