View full details in the curriculum handbook
The Independent Postgraduate Certificate in Education for Independent Schools and Academies has been developed in close consultation with the Headmasters’ and Headmistresses’ Conference (HMC). Since 2002 it has been offering teachers in the independent sector, who have not undergone a period of formal teacher training, the opportunity to participate in a structured programme of professional development. This course is for those teaching in Primary, Preparatory and Senior Schools, as well as all Academies.
If you would prefer to qualify with QTS and you teach in a school in England, please look at either our Primary, Prep or Secondary PGCE with QTS courses.
We also offer a Scottish PGCE leading to full registration. If you are teaching in Scotland, you may find it preferable to apply for this programme.
The course consists of an individualised programme of school-based training, combined with three three-day residentials where trainees will attend lectures, workshops, seminars and discussion groups led by experts in their field. The course encourages reflective practice, focusing on the subjects being taught, the craft of the classroom and the underpinning educational values of the teacher.
Why do this course rather than the government-sponsored QTS course?
- You do not have to be away from your school for 3 weeks doing a second school placement.
- You do not have to attend the 20 compulsory training days required by the government after September 2024.
- The government course requires the mentor to attend 20 hours of training.
- The 7 days you DO have attend in Buckingham will be in half term breaks.
- You do not have to do the maths and English skills tests required by the government’s course.
- Timetable compliance rules are less strict with this course than the government’s course.
- We offer personalised coaching to trainees on this course about their future career plans.
- If you want to, it is straightforward to get QTS after you have completed this course by taking the 12-week Assessment-only route.
The PGCE is a 37-week school-based course, during which time you will work under the guidance of a mentor and receive weekly tutorials to review progress and set targets. It is available in most subjects and to all age levels.
There are seven days of residential training and two days of online learning, supplemented by a weekly programme on the University’s online resources. You will be assigned a university tutor who visits once per term to assess your progress and guide your development. You will be supported and assessed by both your mentor and your tutor; there are three essays to write.
You need to be available to attend residential courses on 25-27 October 2023, 21-22 February 2024 (provisional), 29-30 May 2024.
For teachers undertaking their first year of teaching we highly recommend participation in our Ab Initio course as an addition to the PGCE. This will provide you with some basic knowledge and skills to start teaching.
Your subject specialism
Different school subjects demand different teaching methods and resources, so part of the course will be taught by a subject specialist. We can teach all school subjects including Art, Music, Design Technology, Food Technology, Business Studies & Economics, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Maths, Computing, English, Drama, Classics, Modern Languages, Arabic, Geography, History, Politics, Citizenship and PSHE, Religious Studies, Psychology and PE.