University of Bristol

Secondary Education (Science, Physics)

The School of Education is an Ofsted 'Outstanding Provider' and offers a one year programme for graduates leading to the award of PGCE (Post-Graduate Certificate in Education).

Becoming and being a science teacher will enable you to inspire young people to value and enjoy science at school. Our PGCE Science programmes are modelled on science in schools: varied, multi-disciplinary, practical and thought-provoking. We will prepare you to teach science across the curriculum to GCSE level and your specialist subject to A-level. However we also want you to be critical practitioners who question the teaching of science, whether it be the practices, theories, classroom strategies or the nature of science itself.

A really important feature of the PGCE Science programmes is collaborative learning and teaching, and sessions at the University will provide the opportunity to work in specialist and mixed subject groups. You will be in a tutor group that meets regularly and we view the science tutor as someone who is accompanying you on your journey of learning to teach science. Our workshop sessions are practical and active in approach, giving you the chance to develop your subject and pedagogical knowledge. These workshops are based in our facilities in the School of Education and in “We The Curious” , an internationally renowned hands-on Science Centre in Bristol. Both venues have up-to-date school laboratories and excellent technical support.

Entry requirements

We encourage applications from those who have some physics background (perhaps A-level or experience gained in the workplace) and might need to do a subject knowledge enhancement (SKE) course prior to starting our PGCE. If we recognise that you have the attributes to make a competent and inspiring physics teacher then we will offer you a conditional place and refer you to a suitable SKE course.

Prior to admission to the programme, all students are required by the DfE to have:

  • at least GCSE or 'O' level at grade C or GCSE equivalent qualifications in English and Mathematics;
  • a degree (with a 2:2 or above) or an equivalent qualification in a subject relevant to the proposed main teaching subject.

All candidates must have passed the Literacy and Numeracy Skills Tests before starting the course.

Course modules

The PGCE Physics programme has a strong bias in favour of practical experience. Underpinning much of the work will be the development of concepts and pedagogy in key curriculum areas such as forces , energy, and electricity. Tackling the challenging areas of physics is a key component of the programme, along with thinking about how to help children engage with difficult topics. We are looking for student teachers who are enthusiastic and inspirational, with a desire to widen the appeal of physics.

We are aware that some physics applicants may have an interest in teaching maths. There is scope within the programme for linking up with our PGCE Maths colleagues to take part in school based projects and to examine some of the key issues involved in effective teaching and learning of maths.


Qualification Study mode Start month Fee Course duration
PGCE Full-time £ 9,250 per Academic year (Home) 1 Years

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Key information

Campus or study location: 
School of Education, University of Bristol
PGCE Office, School of Education
School of Education, University of Bristol, 35 Berkeley Square, Bristol, BS8 1JA
Telephone number: 
+44 (0) 117 331 4103