University of Wolverhampton

University of Wolverhampton

Secondary Education (Modern Foreign Languages)

Our Postgraduate Certificate in Education (PGCE) in Secondary Education provides a high standard of training for those preparing to take up a teaching post in the secondary school sector. The course complies with the statutory guidance from the National College for Teaching and Leadership for Initial Teacher Training courses.

Modern foreign languages are an exciting and relevant part of the school curriculum. Pupils learn skills in listening, speaking, reading, writing and translation, in a wide range of contexts drawing upon authentic foreign language materials and literary texts. As a trainee you will learn how to teach any combination of French, German and/or Spanish to pupils in the 11-16 age range within the secondary age phase, with additional primary and post-16 enhancements. You will learn how to develop skills, knowledge and understanding for teaching modern foreign languages through a combination of university-led and school-led training.

This course is designed to meet the NCTL Teaching Standards which assesses all trainees working towards Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).

This postgraduate qualification offers 60 Masters-level credits that can be used towards our Masters degrees in the field of education.

Entry requirements

You will have to possess a real interest and aptitude for modern foreign languages and an ability to think creatively about presenting the relevant language(s) and associated cultures to others. Candidates will be expected to teach a wide range of vocabulary, topics and grammatical structures in order to develop pupils’ linguistic competence and ability to express their ideas and opinions in speech and in writing. You will need to be confident in the use of authentic foreign language materials, in teaching pupils to translate into and out of the foreign language and in working with literary texts such as stories, songs, poems and letters. Above all, you will need a real commitment to the education of young people. Also you will need:

  • A first honours degree (a 2.2 degree or higher), or equivalent qualification.
  • GCSE grade 4 (previously grade C) or above in English and Mathematics or equivalent.
  • It is desirable that candidates would also have recently undertaken, or be in the process of arranging, suitable experience in a United Kingdom secondary school.
  • Applicants for initial teacher education (ITE) courses are required to have passed the professional skills tests before the start of the course. 
  • If you have been successful at interview and been given a conditional offer, you will need to complete a current enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check, a medical declaration clearance and a prohibition check prior to starting the course.

Language requirements

  • You will have confident command of at least one of French, German or Spanish, normally acquired through a sustained period of study or work abroad.
  • Native speakers of French, German or Spanish must have a very high level of written and spoken competence in English.
  • Applicants who have a joint degree in laguages and business e.g. French and Marketing, German and business or Spanish and tourism management, and who can demonstrate the above levels of linguistic competence in at least one foreign language are also welcome to apply.
  • Many of our trainees have a second language at a similar or lower level to their first foreign language. Whilst this is advantageous it is not essential.

Course modules

Over the one year course, you will undertake learning at University and other educational settings. You will spend 120 days divided between at least two different school placements across the 11-16 age range within the Secondary age phase.

Your University tutor team is available to assist you throughout your training, supporting development of reflection. Every effort is made to ensure that high-quality school placements are provided to you, facilitating learning through observing, co-teaching and being observed by experienced teachers in the classroom.

All course modules provide examples of good practice in pedagogy which you will reflect upon as you develop your own teaching style - you will be expected to actively participate in your own learning and development.

Teaching on the course comprises a variety of methodologies that will prepare you for life in the classroom including teacher-led discussions, pupil-led exploration, peer-group discovery, problem based learning, e-learning and the provision of individual targets.

You will be assessed in a variety of ways including written assignments; classroom based investigation and other school-based activities, and appraisal of practical teaching skills.

Typical activities may include:

  • Observation of teaching, before undertaking ‘sheltered’ teaching activities, for example teaching parts of lessons or small groups of pupils within a class
  • Progression to teaching single or short sequences of lessons
  • Further development through reflection on planned classroom activities
  • Development of teaching skills as you move to sustained sequences of lessons
  • Research that takes place in both University and school settings on selected aspects of your practice.


Qualification Study mode Start month Fee Course duration
PGCE Full-time September 2019 £ 9,250 per Academic year (Home) 1 Years

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Key information

Campus or study location: 
Walsall Campus
Course Enquiry Unit
Telephone number: 
01902 321000