Manchester Metropolitan University
The Faculty of Education has a longstanding national reputation for providing high-calibre initial teacher training with over 20 Secondary specialisms available. We have a well established partnership with over 800 secondary schools and colleges across the North West region and beyond.
Our PGCE Social Science is aimed at trainees wishing to teach one or more of the social sciences (sociology, psychology, politics and law) in secondary schools and/or post-16 colleges. We also offer a PGCE Psychology.
Trainees will be given the opportunity to study and teach areas of the Social Sciences (Psychology, Sociology, Politics, Law, Health and Social Care, Citizenship and PSHE) at Key Stages 3, 4 and 5. Trainees may gain some experience of teaching the humanities (RE, Geography and History) subjects at Key Stage 3 and 4. Social Science subjects are exceptionally popular choices at GCSE, 'A' level, IB and BTEC levels.
This course is available via University led and School Direct routes. We also offer an Assessment-Only route to Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) aimed at experienced, but unqualified graduate teachers, wishing to complete a formal qualification.
Successful applicants will usually hold an undergraduate honours degree awarded by a UK university, or an equivalent higher education qualification. Social Science 2:2 or above is normally required, or equivalent in other social science disciplines such as: Sociology, Psychology, Criminology, Health, Politics, Youth and Social Work degrees and so on. At least 50% of your degree needs to be relevant to Social Science.
You will also need GCSEs at grade C/4 or above in English Language and Mathematics. However, applicants are able to apply with GCSEs pending for this course as we can offer MMU GCSE Equivalency tests. These will be at the discretion of the admissions tutor, and only offered if considered appropriate after interview.
All PGCE applicants will need to pass pre-entry Professional Skills Tests in Numeracy and Literacy. A Disclosure and Barring Service check and a DfE Fitness to Teach health form are required.
Practice Credit 1 – Induction Phase
This unit runs during the first five weeks of the 36 week PGCE Programme. It is associated with eight full days of placement in a school or college. Where opportunity allows, you may also attend the placement in subject groups (or in pairs) and will have a programme of activities planned by University tutors in consultation with the Subject Mentors in the departments used for the placement. Most of the sessions in this unit will be scene-setting around schools, the curriculum, KS3 strategy and current issues, with a focus on addressing current developments in subject teaching that can be explored in the induction placement.
Practice Credit 2 – Teaching Placement Block A – Formation of Personal Practice
This unit runs during the Autumn Term for approximately eight weeks of the 36 week PGCE Programme. It is associated with 32 full days placement in a school or college. You will be allocated to subject departments in schools and colleges. They will follow a common pattern of placement-based activities but their progress through the unit will be based on a) gradualism and b) professional experience, needs and competence.
Practice Credit 3 – Teaching Placement Block B – Development of Personal Practice
This unit runs during the spring and summer terms for approximately 10 weeks of the 36 week PGCE Programme. It is associated with approximately 45 full days placement in a school or college. You will be allocated to subject departments in schools and colleges. You will then follow a common pattern of placement-based activities but your progress through the unit will be based on a) gradualism and b) professional experience, needs and competence.
Practice Credit 4 – Enrichment Phase
The Enrichment Unit requires you to demonstrate evidence that you have met all QTS Standards. In this case, the unit will provide you with challenging and innovative collaborative opportunities, both within and beyond your subject area, and in a variety of alternative settings. Indicative Standards that you may focus on for innovative practice include:
- Reflecting on and improving your practice, and taking responsibility for identifying and meeting your developing professional needs.
- A developed creative and constructively critical approach towards innovation, being prepared to adapt your practice where benefits and improvements are identified.
This unit seeks to develop and support the ‘Reflective Professional’ with a focus on your development of critical and reflective thinking in a mixed subject group. It will allow you to identify professional concerns and consider issues outside your subject-based ‘comfort-zone’ of knowledge and experience. It aims to strengthen the pedagogic and philosophical links between Subject and Professional and ‘Programme’ elements.
Subject Pedagogy (Social Science)
This double-weighted unit seeks to develop your ability to reconceptualise your knowledge and understanding in the subject and to apply this to your planning, preparation and classroom teaching in an effective manner.
This unit is inextricably linked with the other units which run concurrently and enable the unit outcomes to be demonstrated in a range of complementary contexts. This unit is designed to extend your interest, knowledge and confidence in your subject, as a subject within the curriculum and to extend your development of an analytical and critical attitude towards the teaching and learning of your subject in classroom, group and individual contexts. This unit will develop your understanding of pupils’ response to teaching strategies, to help you to plan for a gradualist approach to teaching and the broadening context of your experiences.
There are two elements of assessment:
- Teaching, incorporating School Experience Files, that capture evidence of the range of your experiences. This element will be assessed by mentors and judged against the Teachers Standards for Qualified Teacher Status.
- Written assignments; this element builds on the teaching experience and integrates theory with practice and observation.
In addition there are several course completion requirements:
- The Record of Professional Development - a portfolio of evidence of your personal and professional development.
- Satisfactory attendance and professional engagement with the course requirements.
On succcessful completion you will achieve the standards for the University award of PGCE.
Assessments are an integral part of the learning process, helping you to enter your first appointment with confidence.
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