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Overwhelemed by the routes into teaching and a few other questions

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    I am just about to start my last module of my law degree with the OU which will be completed in 2017 (secured a 2:1 all core modules complete) . My plan is to become a primary school teacher starting a PGCE in September 2017 (if accepted)With so many routes into teaching available which I am just learning about, how do I know which is the right route for me? this might seem a stupid question but will I be expected to pay for the course upfront? I had financial assistance with the OU for the majority of my degree but had to pay for my last two modules. I have registered with the get into teaching website and have had a look on there. I need to redo my science GCSE which i am happy to do at the same time as my last module. is this advisable or is the equivalence test offered a better use of my time and energy? I am so confused and feeling out of the loop where I have been studying on my own for the last few years. If anyone has any helpful websites or information it would be greatly appreciated. thank you so much in advance!

    You will have access to some financial support for the PGCE. If you choose a route for which you need to pay a tuition fee, you will be eligible for a student loan. This year's trainees also receive a £3,000 bursary (reduced from £4,000 last year). This bursary is paid in 10 instalments after the course begins - you might receive this but it also could be reduced further or withdrawn altogether too. The government has not announced its funding decisions for 2017 yet.

    As for when tuition fees have to be paid, that is up to the course provider, so it's possible that you could be asked to pay the full amount upfront, but I should think that almost every course provider gives its students the option to pay in instalments. Though this might be two 50% instalments (which was the case with my university. The first instalment had to be paid before starting the course, the second in February) and that is still a lot of money.

    Generally speaking, SCITT/School Direct routes involve more training and work experience in school. This makes it suitable for those who feel comfortable being in the classroom from the outset and training/learning as they go along. Some School Direct routes involve one day of training per week and the rest of the time is spent in the classroom. University-based routes, on the other hand, tend to involve a lot more training outside of the classroom. People who are inexperienced may feel more comfortable with the slower build-up to being in the classroom that this route provides. There is a salaried School Direct route - trainees on these courses are employed by a school as unqualified teachers and don't have to pay any fees - but to be eligible for this, you need to have at least three years of work experience in any career.

    There is also Teach First. They have lots of information on their website about how their route works if that interests you.

    I hope this helps.

    (Original post by RaspberryPine)
    With so many routes into teaching available which I am just learning about, how do I know which is the right route for me?
    There aren't that many routes in. At least perhaps in name, but not in reality. It basically boils down to whether you go down a university led route or a school led.

    If you do the former, you spend a reasonable amount of time in the lecture theatre before doing a couple of placements where you practice what you have learned.

    The school led route sees you spending the bulk of your time in school with perhaps a few days in university through the year. SCITT, Schools Direct and Teach First are all variations on the school led approach and are all basically the same bar a few differences here and there.

    For me, school led makes more sense. In such a vocational profession as teaching, the more time you spend in the classroom the better. No amount of theory is going to prepare you for that difficult student.

    That said - get yourself a tonne of school experience. That will provide all the answers you seek.

    Good luck!

    There are university based route (you're in university learning for a few weeks before you start placements) or SCITTs (you start in your placement school in September and have 1 day per week learning at your provider). There's also School Direct which is a bit more intense and focuses on the low achieving areas in the country - you'll begin training in August.

    PGCEs can be funded by a student loan, and you may be eligible for additional maintenance loans. You can earn up to £3000 with a bursary for studying primary.

    You'll also need:
    - a minimum of 2w classroom experience.
    - to complete numeracy/literacy skills tests.
    • Thread Starter

    Brilliant information, thank you for taking the time to clarify things for me. Yes School lead training makes the most sense to me as I am eager to get into a classroom and teach. I have just spent the last 6 years part time earning my degree I want to spend the least time possible in a lecture hall and get out there!

    I have arranged a career consultation with the OU so hopefully that will helo put me in the right direction too!

    I studied a PGCE at Edge Hill University and got a bursary of £4000, and applied for my student finance to cover my tuition fees and grants so I could live. I'm sure you can do this if you've done a 3-year undergraduate course, as student finance offer 4-years funding.

    There is also School's Direct which a number of my friends have tried, I'm pretty sure (not 100%) in some instants you get paid, but it would be better if you were looking to learn by being on the job rather than being in a classroom learning theory 2 days a week!
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