PGCE Secondary Education Science with BiologyMiddlesex University
Frequent Asked Questions
· What are the objectives of this course?
Therefore our PGCE Secondary Education Science with Biology course therefore begins with a stimulating mix of biology, chemistry and physics education. We then focus fully on biology, allowing you to specialise in the teaching of this diverse and engaging subject at Key Stage 4.
We have a range of specialist science and teaching facilities, providing you with a solid foundation on which to develop your skills and experience. During your studies, you also will undertake teaching placements in at least two secondary schools and have the chance to acquire skills in the application of new technologies in teaching and learning. Schools are carefully selected to suit each individual and expose them to a variety of imaginative and thought provoking learning strategies. Key experts from our partner schools are on hand to offer invaluable mentoring and support.
Entry onto this course requires an interview. We use the interview to find out more about you, to better understand your aspirations and interests, and to explore why you want to study with us. Prior to commencing the course, you must pass Department for Education professional skills tests in numeracy and literacy. You are advised to pass them wherever possible before your interview in order to give yourself the best possible chance of success. However if you haven't passed at the time of the interview and you receive an offer it will be conditional on passing the tests by a nominated date.
What you'll learn on the course
At the start of the course you will be shown how to audit your subject knowledge across the curriculum at KS3 and in biology at KS4 and beyond. You will develop an action plan to address gaps in subject knowledge and use a spreadsheet to record the development of knowledge during the course. You will need to provide evidence by the end of the course that you have developed the appropriate subject knowledge and pedagogy to meet the teaching standards.
The PGCE Secondary Science with Biology course will comprise a range of presentations, discussions and practical workshops where exemplar material can be selected from biology contexts. You will have many opportunities both individually and in groups to apply general principles to specific science learning opportunities in science and in biology. There will also be break out sessions where you will be working both in mixed groups and with other biology specialists. Outside specialists are also invited to deliver sessions that cover topics in teaching biology at KS4. The biology specialism will also be reflected in the required reading for the course.
School based training will reflect the pattern of centre based training. Your timetable will be a balance of Key Stages 3 and 4 with teaching across the science curriculum at KS3 but with a focus on biology at KS4. You will be matched with biology mentors and/or co mentors for KS4 teaching. Auditing and assessment of biology subject knowledge related to teaching standards will then be reflected in school reporting procedures.
The first School Experience is 13 weeks. The second School Experience is an extended, individual school experience where you build upon your experience in School Experience 1. You build up to a 60% teaching load across the placement, which is 17 weeks in total, across a six month period.
The major curriculum assignment will be an opportunity for you to demonstrate that you have read widely and developed a good understanding of best practice in teaching biology at KS4 and in assessing the progress of learners. This will be done through developing original teaching resources and creative ideas in order to revise an existing scheme of learning in the placement school. You will be required to analyse the planning of a sequence of lessons, showing how they drew on reading and study to develop effective teaching and assessment in biology and how the school context affected their decisions.
You will find this an intensive five days a week course, during which you will also have directed work to carry out during the Christmas and Easter holiday periods.