University-led postgraduate training

One option for achieving qualified teacher status (QTS) is to complete a postgraduate certificate in education (PGCE) at a university or college. They work with school partnerships to offer placements with at least two schools as part of your training.

University-led courses run both full-time and part-time, over one or two years. Your training will include spending time at the university or college you successfully apply to – working with other trainees and being taught by university staff.

You’ll also spend plenty of time in your placement schools – a minimum of 24 weeks. This will help you develop your practical teaching skills and ability to manage and plan classes effectively. These school-based elements of the course also play an important role in assessing your performance in the classroom and preparing you for your first job as a newly qualified teacher (NQT).

University-led courses account for just over half of the teacher training places in England, and are available across the country – so there are plenty of options when it comes to location.

You can search for courses on the UCAS Teacher Training website.

To find out more, you can speak to a Teaching Line adviser on Freephone 0800 389 2500.

More than 90% of newly qualified teachers rate their training highly

Earn up to


as a leading practitioner.

*Conditions apply

Watch this video for helpful tips on getting into teaching, from real trainees and experienced teachers. Transcript (PDF, 48KB)

I'd been out of education for nearly 20 years, and even though it was difficult, I thoroughly enjoyed my learning journey. 

Allison Kitchin, primary teacher

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Upcoming events

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  • Males into Primary Teaching conference

    21 April 2015 AT 14:00

    The Males into Primary Teaching conference is an unmissable event for male students who want a real insight into primary teaching as a career option and studying a teacher training course at university.

    Cheltenham Open
  • Teaching Information Event

    21 April 2015 AT 16:00

    This event is open to candidates interested in training to teach Primary or Secondary in local schools. There will be an opportunity to meet Headteachers and staff from our outstanding training provider Bromley Schools Collegiate to discuss the School Direct Training programmes. 

    Chislehurst Open
  • Train to Teach Sunderland

    21 April 2015 AT 17:00

    This event at the Sunderland Marriott offers an introduction to kick-starting your career in teaching and the chance to get your training questions answered.

    Sunderland Open
  • School Direct (Primary General) and Early Years Introductory Evening

    21 April 2015 AT 19:00

    A presentation about Bourton Meadow Academy and the Teacher Training Centre and an outline of the School Direct Training Programmes on offer for September 2015, including details on eligibility and funding arrangements

    Buckingham Open