FAQs

Many of our applicants and future students ask similar questions when preparing to apply for or begin a PGCE at Leicester. Browse our frequently asked questions for our advice on some of the questions we are often asked.

Do I need to have school experience before I apply?

Although it is not compulsory to have school experience before you apply, we do recommend it, as it will give you an idea as to whether this career path is right for you and will aid you in our selection process.

I haven't had my DBS check, when does it need to be done by?

The enhanced DBS check will need to be completed before you start the course, so please ensure you leave enough time to get the results back. More information about this can be found on the Government's website.

If you attended a selection day later on in the year and your DBS check has not come back in time, you will need to speak to a member of the PGCE team.

I'm an international student, what do I need to be aware of when I apply?

You need to ensure your degree is the equivalent of a British undergraduate degree to the relevant level. You can find out more about this by consulting NARIC.

If you have been out of the UK for more than six months, please also be aware that your DBS check may take longer.

How can I find out more information about the PGCE?

If you'd like to find out more after browsing our course information, you can attend one of our Routes into Teaching events, where you will have the opportunity to hear more about the course and speak to the tutors who run it.

What grades will I need?

Most courses require a 2:1 in your undergraduate degree, however some STEM subjects will accept a 2:2 if you have significant in-school experience and other strongly recommending features in your application. You also need to have a Grade C (or equivalent) in GCSE English Language and GCSE Mathematics.

I graduated a few years ago, can I still apply?

Yes! We welcome a large number of mature students and career changers onto both the Primary and the Secondary PGCE courses.

I don't live in Leicester - can I apply for accommodation?

Yes, you can apply to live in one of the University of Leicester's halls of residence. Although a place may not be guaranteed, there are a number of private alternatives that can be found in the city if you cannot secure University accommodation.

What do I need to do once I have an offer?

Once you have an offer from us, you must complete your health forms and any other forms that we send you after the offer acceptance. You must also ensure your DBS is complete.

The Partnership team will also request information about where you live so that your place of residence can be taken into account when your placement schools are allocated.

What are the professional skills tests?

The numeracy and literacy skills tests are short tests aimed at determining if the student reaches the minimum required level of English and mathematics proficiency to be a teacher in the UK. You need to pass these before you start your course.

If you are offered a place on the course and haven't already passed these tests, your offer will have this as a condition. There is no limit to how many times you can take the tests, but if you do not pass them before the beginning of the course your offer will be withdrawn.

Where will I be studying and getting experience?

Your lectures, seminars and workshops will take place in the School of Education at the University. If you have chosen a School Direct route, some of your sessions may be with your School Direct lead school.

Your school placement will be in a school within our Partnership, which includes schools and colleges in Leicester and the surrounding counties, within an hour's journey from your home.

Should I take on a part-time job while I study?

We recommend against this. The PGCE is an intensive full-time course, and when you are on placement you are likely to be in school from 8.00am to 5.00pm, Monday to Friday.

How will I be assessed?

You will be assessed against the Teachers' Standards throughout the year, and these assessments demonstrate your qualification for QTS and the PGCE.

I have been asked for my student number - where can I find it?

You can find your student number at the top of your offer letter.

Will there be any social events?

There are primary and secondary social committees who organise annual balls for students, as well as other social events throughout the year. PGCE students also have full access to the University's Students' Union and all of their events.