About the course
As a biology teacher, you will enhance pupils' understanding of themselves and the world around them to succeed in a range of important careers.
Our Postgraduate/Professional Graduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) is designed to prepare you in becoming a professional, competent and reflective secondary school teacher of science, with biology as a specialist subject. Your studies will focus on addressing the needs of pupils aged eleven to sixteen and beyond.
The quality of teacher training in secondary education was rated as 'Good' in the Ofsted report for Initial Teacher Education 2016. The report found that, "Scientists appreciate the enhancement groups where they further build on their knowledge by sharing each other's expertise. As a consequence, the trainees' and newly qualified teachers' enthusiasm and confidence in the subjects they teach motivate and inspire pupils to learn and make progress."
98% of students indicated that the programme prepared them for teaching learners across a range of abilities and 98% of students indicated that the programme helped them secure employment.
As part of your PGCE, you will have the opportunity to gain 60 Masters-level credits and gain Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).
We work in collaboration with professionals from specialist science organisations such as the Royal Society of Biology. We also partner with the adventure learning charity, Wide Horizons, who will support your training in the area of field work, conservation and ecology. Additionally, you will receive free resources and ideas on how to plan engaging lessons in plant biology from Science and Plants for Schools.
How school placements work
Our one-year programme comprises of two elements: 60 days of university-based teaching and 120 days of school-based experience. Your practical teaching experience is gained in two main schools. Here you will be allocated subject-specialist mentors who will offer dedicated feedback and guidance. During both placements, you will have the opportunity to develop your science and biology teaching with the support of a specialist teacher.
The course fees for 2019/2020 are as follows:
Disclosure Barring Service
Please note that it is not possible to pay for the DBS application fee from your student support and you should therefore make provision for this cost as part of your financial planning prior to the start of your programme.
The information above is dependent on your status as a home, EU/EEA or overseas student and further eligibility applies. Make sure you are aware of the level of support you are eligible for before you apply for teacher training.
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 - 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.
Financial support from the training provider
Bursaries and scholarships are available to trainees on a fee-based teacher training course in England that leads to the award of qualified teacher status. Availability is dependent on your highest relevant academic award and the subject in which you are training to teach.
To receive a bursery or scholarship, you must be entitled to support under the Student Finance England criteria. Residents of Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland will need to be entitled for support as set out by your country's student finance body (Student Finance Wales, Student Awards Agency Scotland or Student Finance NI). Both elements will be assessed by your teacher training provider.
If you have a degree from outside the UK, you should refer to the overseas degree equivalency table to see the bursary your degree may attract. You can also contact your training provider for clarification on your degree's equivalency and your eligibility for a bursary and student finance.
For more information, please visit our Teacher Training Bursaries page.
Applicants should have:
*A 2.2 or above in an honours degree in a relevant subject
Candidates must undergo a Disclosure and Barring Service check and an occupational health screening.
Students are required to obtain an enhanced disclosure certificate through the Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) prior to the start of their programme. If satisfactory clearance is not received during your registration, you may encounter problems in receiving some elements of your student funding.
Students must also complete an Occupational Health Check. To avoid any delay, it is important that you respond to all emails and correspondence sent to you concerning the DBS and Occupational Health processes.
About the training provider
University of Greenwich is committed to ensuring sustainability across all phases of teacher education and provides initial teacher education across the early years, primary, secondary and lifelong learning (further education) sectors. Located at the university's Avery Hill Campus, the university has been training teachers for over a century.
Ofsted rated the quality of Initial Teacher Training as ‘Outstanding’ for Primary Education (Ofsted Report 2016) and ‘Good’ Secondary, Further Education and Early Years Initial Teacher training sectors.
Our PGCE Primary Education programme has been voted in the Top 2 universities in London with 98% student satisfaction (NSS 2017) and Top 2 universities in London with 92% student satisfaction (NSS 2016).
Our expert staff are active researchers as well as being trained teachers. During the programme, you will be allocated a personal tutor who will support your studies. Your tutor will be on hand to offer both personal career and academic guidance. Individual support and designated workshops are tailored to meet the needs of each of our individual students in order to ensure high quality outcomes.
If you are studying for your PGCE Early Years Teacher Status, your tuition fees will be covered by a National College for Teaching and Leadership (NCTL) grant and your employer will receive up to £7,000 to cover your release. The Teachers’ Standards (Early Years) support the training, assessment and award of EYTS.
As part of your PGCE, you will have the opportunity to gain 60 Masters-level credits and gain Qualified Teacher Status.
Training with disabilities and other needs
The Student Wellbeing Service provides information, guidance and support to students with a disability, including physical and mental health difficulties, long-term medical conditions and specific learning difficulties. This service is open to individuals who work and study at the University of Greenwich, and to those who aspire to do so. We also support students from disadvantaged backgrounds and students who are carers.
Before you join the University, you can speak to the *AccessAbility Team about any concerns on entering higher education and adapting to university life. Once you're a student, we can provide further information and support, such as advice on assistive technology requirements and Disability Allowance Needs Assessors to help you access any financial help you may be entitled to.
Mark (Computer Science)
"I became an *AccessAbility Ambassador in order to reach out to people who had never dreamed of going to university and to help people with my disorders to achieve their dreams. After graduation, I hope to become a maths teahcer or IT entrepreneur."
Alan (Business Administration)
"Being an *AccessAbility Ambassador has provided me with an engaging means by which to reach out to others taking their first steps in to higher education. I started at the beginning of my second year studying and continued to work on a sustained project - in addition to many other related events - mentoring and supporting college students undertaking preparatory courses prior to their applications to university programmes, two or three days a week, for two years." Full profile
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.
Avery Hill, Bexley Road, Eltham, London SE9 2PQ
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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