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What support will I get as a trainee teacher?

Explore the support available to trainees on a PGCE course
© Coventry University. CC BY-NC 4.0

When choosing your PGCE, it’s important to consider the level of support you’ll get from your provider. It can vary considerably and will often depend on whether the course is school-led or university-led.

School-based mentors

During your school placements, you will often get support from a school-based mentor, who will usually be a subject-specialist or have considerable experience teaching a specific key stage. Your mentor will be your main contact to support you during your placement, they will provide guidance, support, ideas, lesson observations and oversee your pastoral support during your time at the school.

University academic team

Depending on the provider, you may have module leaders who will usually be experienced teachers and will deliver the academic content of the PGCE study. The module leaders may still be practising teachers, or may work at the university full-time.

Some providers will also offer personal tutors who will be your dedicated contact in the university and oversee your academic learning over the duration of your study.

It’s important to research the level of support a university will provide, and this will depend heavily whether the academic study is delivered face-to-face or remotely.

University support team

There may be additional team members at the university who support in the administrative and organisation of your course. They may assist with enrolling students onto the course, liaising with placement schools and organising access to relevant university systems and software.

University assessors

The PGCE provider will likely also assist in providing assessments of your teaching practice alongside the observations and monitoring that will take place by your school-based mentor and other teachers within the school.

Support at the National School of Education and Teaching

Here at the National School of Education and Teaching, we have an experienced and dedicated team of people to support our trainees through the PGCE. Su, Jo and Karla, who you met at the start of this two-week course, have designed the PGCE by drawing on their varied teaching experience and practice.

Our trainees will spend most of their time training in school. We assist applicants with organising their school placements, and ensure they are allocated a dedicated school-based mentor to support them over the duration of their training in school. The academic study of our course is delivered 100% online and each trainee teacher is provided with an online University tutor who acts as the main contact for students for any course queries and school-based training. All of our online university tutors are highly experienced teachers, and play a key role in the delivery of the course in order to monitor the progress and continually support students over the duration of their course.

Our course management team are a dedicated group of colleagues experienced in supporting teacher training. They assist our trainees in their application and enrolment onto the course, organising school placements, and on admission to the course, continue to oversee and manage the overall logistics of the PGCE, to ensure that students have a positive learning experience both in their school placements, and online PGCE study.

What do you think?

What level of support would you expect on a PGCE course? Which part would you consider as most important to your success?
© Coventry University. CC BY-NC 4.0
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Teacher Training: Choosing the Right PGCE for You

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