The Secondary PGCE - 2016/17 entry

Welcome. We hope that you are looking to being involved in the 2016/17 PGCE at the University of Hull. You may be coming as:

  • A full-time student as part of the PGCE course,
  • A Schools Direct trainee coming to take part in some parts of the course,
  • A trainee in another SCITT doing your PGCE via the University of Hull.

This page offers some thoughts on what you need to be to prepare before you arrive in September. The tutor who interviewed you may have given you subject specific tasks (see also the links below) but there are also some more general things that you should look to do.

Timetable Primary Experience Skills Tests Technology Reading Equipment
English Geography History Mathematics Mod. Foreign Langs Science
Dates for 2016-17 (Preliminary at this stage)
Induction Day, Registration and Introduction Friday, 2nd September, 2015
  • from 9:30 - registration *
    • 09:30 - Biology, Chemistry, Physics only
    • 09:30 - Physics with Maths only
    • 09:45 - Mathematics only
    • 10:00 - MFL only
    • 10:15 - History only
    • 10:30 - Geography only
    • 10:45 - English only
    • 11:00 - Generic (Computer Science, Design and Technology, Music, Psychology, Physical Education and Religious Education) students only
  • 13:15 - introduction to the course

* prelimiary at this point.

Course starts: 2 weeks at the university 5th Septmber, 2016
Full week in school 19th September, 2016
Mon-Wed in university / Thur & Fri in school 26th September, 2016
First Teaching Practice (full-time) 14th November, 2016
[exact dates might vary from school to school]
Back to university 20th February, 2017
Mon-Wed in university / Thur & Fri in school 6th March, 2017
Second Teaching Practice (full-time) 27th March, 2017
[exact dates might vary from school to school]
Final days of course 26th-27th June, 2017
NOTE: all dates are prelimiary at this point.
Pattern of University Weeks [First 2 weeks]
AM Professional Studies Professional Studies Subject Method Subject Method Subject Method
PM Professional Studies Professional Studies Subject Method Subject Method Subject Method
Pattern of University Weeks [3/2 split]
AM Professional Studies Subject Method Subject Method School Placement School Placement
PM Linked Subject Method Subject Method   School Placement School Placement
Assignments and Assessed Work
  • You will have 4 pieces of academic work
    • An essay (or other) at level 6 (3rd year undergraduate) rooted in your method (subject studies) - due end Nov
    • A 5,000 essay at level 7 (masters level) on the subject, "how do teachers help pupils to learn? - due beg. Jan
    • A group presentation (at level 7) and a short research study (~3,000 words) rooted in pupil acheivement - due end Mar
    • An essay (or other) at level 7 rooted in your method (subject studies) - due mid May
  • You will also have to pass the QTS standards assessed via your teaching practice by your mentors in school and your university subject tutors. You will be formally assessed 4 times across the year which will contribue to your final grading, these will be:
    • about the end of Decemeber (about 4 weeks into your first teaching practice)
    • about the middle of February (at the end of your first teaching practice)
    • about the beginning of May (about 4 weeks into your second teaching practice)
    • about the end of June (at the end of your second teaching practice)
Local Authority Terms dates 2015/16 [Note: Your practice school may be different always check]
Hull City East Ridings Doncaster Calderdale
North Lincolnshire North-East Lincolnshire Lincolnshire North Yorkshire
Kirklees Leeds Bradford Wakefield

Experience in Schools

Part of the requirement of the course is that you spend five days (at least) in a primary school. Ideally this should be before the course starts. So contact the headteacher of a primary school local to you and ask if you can come in and spend some time in the school. This is best done in June or July of this year. If possible spend some time with all the children in the school but ask if you can particularly spend some time with the Year 6 children as these are the ones who will be coming into secondary school in September - as will you!

The skills test

All applicates MUST complete the skills tests before arriving at the university. You cannot start a PGCE or school direct training place unless you have passed both the numeracy and literacy on-line tests. You can find the practice literacy tests and the practice numeracy tests on line.


  • At what level are the tests set? The length of the tests and questions are appropriate for key skills level 2/3. They are set in the context of the professional role of a teacher use real data and information that teachers are likely to encounter,
  • What is the pass mark for the tests? The pass mark for each test is about 65%,
  • If I fail a test can I resit it? Yes. You are allowed to re-sit each test up to two times. If you fail three times, you must wait at least two years from the date of your third failed attempt before you can try again. In these circumstances, you will have to reapply for a place on the course from scratch,
  • How much do the tests cost? The first attempt at each subject is free of charge, but re-sits will cost.

Some support resources for practicing these skills

  • The DfE support site - link
  • Maths Tests - some support
    • GA Numerical You Tube Site - link
  • English Tests - some support

Practice Skills Books

There are many available online and from booksellers.  Many books are available electronically. The first has the advantage of combining numeracy and literacy

  • Tyreman, C. (2011). How to pass the QTS numeracy and literacy skills tests: essential practice for the qualified teacher status skills tests. London: Kogan Page. ISBN-13: 978-0-7494-6241-3
  • Patmore, M. (2012) Passing the numeracy skills test ( 5th edition). London: Sage ISBN-13: 978-0-8572-5883-0
  • Johnson, J. and Bond, B.. (2012) Passing the literacy skills test (3rd edition). London: Sage ISBN-13: 978-0-8572-5879-3


Before you come on the course it would help if you started to read about education and about learning. Some useful general books to look at are:

  • Sewell, K (Ed) [2008] 'Doing you PGCE at M level', Sage - available at Amazon
  • Cohen, L et al [2010] 'A guide to teaching practice', Routledge (5th edition) - availbale at Amazon
  • Kyriacou, C [2007], 'Essential Teaching Skills' (3rd edition), Nelson - available at Amazon
  • Bresler, L; Cooper D; Palmer, J (Eds) [2001] "Fifty Modern Thinkers on Education: From Piaget to the Present Day" Routledge - available at Amazon


We use a lot of technology on the course and are developing our use of this. For the year 2016/17 we would reccomend you have access to a device which can run APPs.


As you will be on teaching practice pretty soon into the practice it is good to have a survival kit of equipment for your teaching practice and university time. Teacher Education is a different thing to "normal" university life as it is a mix of the academic and the professional. It is not unlikely that the schools you are in will provide kit - but I would not assume this so below is a list of things which it is useful to have, your "Ray Mears" equivalent kit, this might include:

  • Pens in various colours for writing and marking, some schools dislike red pen but I would suggest getting a red, green and a few blue and black biros
  • A pack of HB pencils
  • 30 cm ruler
  • Pack of marker pens [various colours]
  • Pack of whiteboard pens in [various colours]
  • A4 punched pockets
  • A hole punch
  • Stapler
  • Pack of drawings pins
  • Pack of paper clips
  • Scissors
  • Coloured pencils
  • A4 ring binders [various sizes]
  • A4 folder dividers
  • Highlighter pens in [various colours
  • A4 coloured card or paper
  • Bluetack (or its cheaper equivalent)
  • Sellotape
  • Glue Stick
  • Calculator [though you probably have one on your 'phone']
  • Memory sticks

If you have one in your area then you can get the whole list for about £20 in Staples or Wilkinsons

If you have any questions about the course or other things then contact us at or on 01482 466698.
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