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Post Compulsory Education Courses: Frequently Asked Questions

This page answers the most common queries that we receive regarding post compulsory teaching courses. Including PGCE PCE (FT), Cert Ed/Post Grad (PT), MA PPLE (PT) and BA PCE (PT).

What is the difference between a Certificate in Education (CertEd) and a Professional Graduate Certificate (ProfGradEd)?

Our partner colleges across the region offer a Part-Time In-Service two year route for applicants. Applicants to these courses have paid teaching hours already in place. On this route applicants without degree qualifications above 2:2 can study the CertEd gaining 60 credits at level 4 and 60 credits at level 5. Those taking the ProfGradEd gain 60 credits at level 5 and 60 credits at level 6. This allows the university to offer a differentiated route reflecting the wide range of vocational qualifications applicants may hold which are relevant for teaching in Post Compulsory Education (PCE) settings. 

Our Full-Time PGCE Post Compulsory Education/PGCE Teachers of English/Literacy is pre-service for those without paid teaching and with suitable qualifications. Students gain 60 credits at level 6 and 60 at Master’s level 7.

Entry Requirements

What qualifcations do I need?

For the full-time PGCE routes you need to have achieved a standard equivalent to a grade 4 (previously grade C) in GCSE English and Maths. If you hold something other than GCSEs please contact our Admissions Team at admissions@wlv.ac.uk for clarification on whether your qualifications will be acceptable for Initial teacher Training (ITT). You will also need to have achieved a UK-recognised Honours degree, or equivalent preferably at 2:1 or above in the subject area you wish to teach.

For the part time in-service routes please see our Partner Colleges page here.

For our BA Post Compulsory Education and MA Professional Practice and Lifelong Education courses, please follow the links and see course pages.

What kind of experience do I need?

For the full-time PGCE routes we ask that you do visit a further education setting so that you can understand how your subject specialist teaching will fit into the curriculum offered in PCE and the Qualifications and Credit Framework (QCF). You should reflect on this and your experience in the setting during the interview if you are shortlisted.

For the part time in-service routes please contact your . 

For our BA Post Compulsory Education and MA Professional Practice and Lifelong Education courses, please follow the links and see the entry requirments on their course pages.

Applications and Admissions

How can I apply?

For the full-time PGCE routes submit your application through a University of Wolverhampton direct application link via our website.

For the part time in-service routes please use the link on our partner college's page. 

For our BA Post Compulsory Education and MA Professional Practice and Lifelong Education courses, please follow the links and apply via their course pages.

What should I make sure I cover in my application?

For the full-time PGCE routes tell us about any relevant experience you have in PCE settings where you have done some teaching. This could have been either formal or informal in nature. Discuss what you see as your personal philosophy of education, why it is important to you and why is PCE as a sector important. Could you explain how your pedagogy might reflect that? Avoid sweeping generalisations and write so that we can see something of your personality and how you think. Please remember to proofread carefully, attention to detail about the standard of your written English is an important skill for a teacher and we need to see that yours is of a high quality.

All of the above applies for the application to the part time in-service routes. Please contact your chosen partner college for further advice and guidance. 

For our BA Post Compulsory Education and MA Professional Practice and Lifelong Education courses, please follow the links and see course pages.

How will I find out whether I have got an interview or not?

For the full-time PGCE routes the University of Wolverhampton Admissions team will inform you if you have an interview or if your application has been unsuccessful. We will be interviewing from November to August and your application can still be under consideration during this time.

For the part time in-service Cert Ed and PGCE PCE routes our partner colleges will be in touch with you.

For BA PCE/MA Education and MA PPLE the University of Wolverhampton Admissions team will inform you if you have an interview or if your application has been unsuccessful.

What will the interview include?

For the full-time PGCE routes during your interview you will be asked to give a short presentation about why you want to teach your subject specialism in PCE. Details will be sent if you are shortlisted for interview.

A panel interview will follow and you should try to tailor answers to reflect:

  • Your commitment to teaching in PCE and what you understand about the role of a teacher in PCE.
  • How you can be effective in personal, intellectual and wider communication skills.
  • Your positive attitude towards post-14 students.
  • Why you are enthusiastic about your subject and teaching it in PCE.
  • Can you explain any wider educational issues relevant to the PCE sector currently?
  • You can be clear and accurate in spoken English.

There will be a short written task for you to complete.

For the part time in-service Cert Ed and PGCE PCE routes our partner colleges will be in touch with you. Alternatively please contact the named contact on our partner college page.

Do I need to bring anything to the interview?

For the full-time PGCE routes please bring your presentation, formal identification e.g. driving license or a passport, and a pen.

For the part time in-service Cert Ed and ProfGradEd PCE routes our partner colleges will be in touch with you. Alternatively please contact the named contact on our partner college page.

Placements

How will my teaching placement work?

On the full time PGCE route you will be placed in an appropriate placement across the course between October and May. This will generally be for two days a week. There are also two block placements in January and May.

Prospects and Employment

How employable are PCE teaching graduates?

The University of Wolverhampton creates graduates that are digitally literate, knowledgeable and enterprising with a global outlook on life. The departments’ extensive partnership profile with local colleges and organisations means that we have a high rate of employability. 94% of Institute of Education graduates were employed or in further study six months after graduating.

What are my progression opportunities for further study with the University beyond the course?

If you have completed a Certificate in Education route at level 4/5 your credits can be put towards a BA (Hons). For those completing the PGCE route at level 5/6 or 6/7 you will have accumulated credits towards an MA, dependant on your source of MA funding. (Links to BA PCE, MA Education and MA PPLE here.)

Finance

All course prices are displayed on individual course pages. In some cases tuition fee loans may be available. Find out more - https://www.wlv.ac.uk/study-here/money-matters/.

DBS and Occupational Health

Will I need a new DBS check?

Once you have received either a conditional or unconditional offer for the course you will be sent information about how to complete your DBS Disclosure Application Form and return it. All of our PGCE PCE applicants will be required to have a new DBS check. This information is sent out from May for our September intake. However, if you are registered for the update service you will not be required to have another one (https://www.gov.uk/dbs-update-service). 

Will I need to have my Occupational Health assessed?

Once you have received ean offer for the course you will be sent information about completing and online Occupational health form to return. This information is sent out from mid-May for our September intake.

I have a question which has not been answered:

Our teaching staff are on hand at Open Days\Evenings to answer your questions and you can also see our excellent facilities.