Thinking of Applying for the Primary PGCE course? Personal Statements, Interview Tips and What to Expect.

Thinking about applying for the Primary PGCE at the University? Or considering teaching as one of your Post-grad choices? Well, this blog is the right place for you.

I am currently on the Primary Early Years PGCE course, so I definitely understand the stress and the intensity of applying for a PGCE and the worries surrounding the interview part of the process. However, I am HERE to help (well, I’ll try to!)

What is a Primary PGCE degree and why study one at Worcester?

PGCE stands for Post Graduate Certificate in Education. It gives you the QTS (Qualified Teacher Status) to become a fully qualified teacher. I did my under graduate in Education Studies at University of Worcester, and doing the one year PGCE course will enable me to become a Primary school teacher.

The Primary PGCE is split into two pathways: Early Years pathway (Ages 3-7) / Later Years pathway (Ages 5-11) depending on what age of children you are interested in teaching.

The University is a GREAT place to study this course. They are very rigorous in choosing the best candidates that they believe will be great teachers, and the lecturers are all so kind and welcoming. The University run taster evenings for you to get more information.

First things first, let’s talk SKILLS TESTS! 

Oh no, the dreaded words.. skills tests!

AND, guess what? You will NOT have to do a skills test any longer for upcoming applications for the PGCE. The Government has removed the skills test, so no revising or studying all night for the numeracy and literacy tests is needed. (Tick) One thing off the list of stressful things to consider.

What is the application process like and how should I prepare for a PGCE interview?

Organise, organise and organise. That is the main thing I want to get across to you! It is so important that you take time and care when filling out the Primary PGCE application on UCAS.

Personal Statement

If you are already a student at Worcester you can make use of the workshops at the University! The Careers Department hold personal statement workshops and careers advice workshops. I found it very useful discussing my personal statement with those who have read through them thousands of times. It helps to make sure your grammar is correct and that you have written a successful statement about yourself and why you would make a great teacher.

Sell yourself! It is important to do so. Tell them about the time when you were a teaching assistant and made that one difference in a child’s life that you will always remember. Tell them about the time you led a team to victory in your local sports club. It all matters and it is all important. Demonstrate why YOU are motivated to be a part of the course and to be a great teacher! There is a useful section on the Teaching section of the University with some top tips too!

What questions do they ask at a PGCE Interview?

Rest your mind! The interview really is not as bad as you may think. The Education Department send you a very detailed email with everything you will need to prepare for your interview. Your interviews will be with people who all work on the course and the kind of content covered is all available on the UCAS Teacher Training Interview pages.

Everyone is very friendly and super supportive! Funny note: I turned up on the wrong day to my interview and still got onto the course. My PGCE interview was the following week and I turned up to the interviews the week before adamant I was in this slot to get interviewed, but hey here I am still on the course!

How should I prepare to start the course?

Attend the pre-induction day once you have been given a place on the course. It is a great way to meet people early on and to meet your lovely tutors. Most of all, enjoy whatever you are doing now before you start a busy crazy year! (Putting it lightly and nicely – it is full on but it’s so worth it!).

FINALLY, ENJOY IT! Your PGCE year will be the busiest year, but the most exciting year! You will make lots of great friends and you will learn so much ready to become the great teacher you dream to be!

The University have made a video about a day in the life of a Primary School Teacher to give you a feel for your life post PGCE:

Best wishes and good luck!!