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    (Original post by oxymoronic)
    I've had to do a 6000 word research project, 10 x 2000 word essays and around 20 different reflective tasks of around 500 words each to get 60 Masters credits.... the more and more I read about what other PGCE courses are like, the more and more I realise that I don't think where I am is overly efficient
    That workload is so ridiculous!! How do they honestly expect people to have time to plan quality lessons and work on the most important things i.e. teaching instead of doing a load of essays based on theory ffs!!!
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    I'm going to annoy some people here but I hope that perhaps some will agree with me, but seriously can some of you STOP COMPLAINING??

    Bloody hell we're going into a profession where you will be shaping the lives of hundreds if not thousands of children over the course of your career, and you're complaining that they want you to provide evidence that you are a competent teacher?!

    Listen to yourselves..."Oh GOD we have to write down a record of discussion when I speak to a parent on the phone boo hoo"....unless you lived in a dream world before you started your PGCE I'm quite sure we all heard about how hard it was going to be, so why is everyone surprised that we have loads of work and very little time to do things? Imagine how much we have had to learn in something like 9 or 10 months! It's cram packed into a short space of time and for that reason yes it's difficult but that's what we all signed up for, and I and certainly everyone else should realise it's the reward at the end that makes it worth it.

    A few things....

    Not sure who's saying that their University "doesn't do QTS evidence"....hmm you may want to ask about that because you need to provide evidence of meeting the standards otherwise your University is playing the system a bit.

    Mentors having ridiculously high standards? Yes. Good, so they should. I had one in my first placement who couldn't care less about my development and I really was awful at that point, but I didn't know because she didn't tell me or give me feedback or advice or support. I just skipped along thinking I was doing fine. Then on my second placement it all changed and I really developed.

    Masters Credits....don't apply for a course with Masters credits if you don't want to do the extra work. As someone said, Teaching may become a Masters-level profession soon so you may want those credits. Plus many places take them, I'm getting mine from Bristol Uni and doing my Masters next year during my NQT at Cambridge and there was no problem with the transfer.

    Essays...yes, it's what makes us better teachers. It's not all about what you do in the classroom you know.

    Complaining about doing essays and then not having time to come up with a creative lesson, then saying you'll just go out with your friends and 'wing it' for your University Tutor observation lesson? Well, time management and prioritisation may be an idea there. My social life has barely existed this year, but I've still had time to go out now and then for nights out and do sports, but it's just for one year and again, will be worth it in the end.

    Sorry for the mini-rant but seriously some of you need to get a grip and think about WHY you're doing the PGCE - yes it's hard work but shouldn't we expect that? I don't want my kids (in the future) to be taught by anyone who just drifted through a PGCE and into a teaching job, and I'm sure few other people would either
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    Question: Do you have to do essays for a maths PGCE? If so what on earth would it be on and how would it be of any relevance to maths? Is it training to write pupil reports or something? :/
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      (Original post by dobbs)

      Complaining about doing essays and then not having time to come up with a creative lesson, then saying you'll just go out with your friends and 'wing it' for your University Tutor observation lesson?
      You're being slightly unfair here. It wasn't the same person who brought up those two points.

      I think they have a right to complain and a little moan from time to time. It's a tough course and you need a release. I know I struggled massively with the theory side of my course because I much preferred the classroom side of things and some of the theory seemed miles from that. Of course people know how hard it will be but until you're on the course and doing it, you'll never know just how hard it is.

      It is a difficult course and it has been worth it for me, but as the title of the thread suggests, it's a place for people to moan and offload a little.
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      (Original post by blue_shift86)
      Question: Do you have to do essays for a maths PGCE? If so what on earth would it be on and how would it be of any relevance to maths? Is it training to write pupil reports or something? :/
      Yes. You will have both general essays (behaviour, inclusion, classroom management, structure of lessons, leadership, form tutoring, welfare, bullying, achievement, gifted and talented, using data, etc etc.) and subject specific essays which in maths could be something like discussing the variety of methods you could use to teach a certain unit, or how to structure a unit - what do pupils need to know before you can teach them something else? What innovative methods have been introduced in maths teaching? What is important and what is not important? When should pupils progress from simple equations to more complicated ones? How useful are wall displays in maths classrooms? How do you engage the pupils who really do not enjoy maths? Endless opportunities
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      (Original post by dobbs)
      Not sure who's saying that their University "doesn't do QTS evidence"....hmm you may want to ask about that because you need to provide evidence of meeting the standards otherwise your University is playing the system a bit.

      Mentors having ridiculously high standards? Yes. Good, so they should. I had one in my first placement who couldn't care less about my development and I really was awful at that point, but I didn't know because she didn't tell me or give me feedback or advice or support. I just skipped along thinking I was doing fine. Then on my second placement it all changed and I really developed.
      I said my university doesn't do it with the standard QTS file format that I've been hearing about. Our evidence is all documented online and through a standards tracking grid that is completed by tutors on placement where they effectively 'tick off' when we have met certain standards.

      My mentor does have high standards but this is not good when she does not communicate to me how I can meet them.
      I am the first final year student she's ever had and I don't really think she knows what to do with me. She isn't in the room half the time to see how I work, and she graded me as mostly 3s just before half term, when in my previous placement (where my mentor was also a University partnership tutor therefore knew her stuff) I was graded all 2s. I don't feel like any of the good stuff I do gets celebrated so my confidence is pretty much in shreds and I'm not looking forward to the next four weeks.
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      (Original post by dobbs)
      Masters Credits....don't apply for a course with Masters credits if you don't want to do the extra work. As someone said, Teaching may become a Masters-level profession soon so you may want those credits. Plus many places take them, I'm getting mine from Bristol Uni and doing my Masters next year during my NQT at Cambridge and there was no problem with the transfer
      Can I ask which course you'll be doing at Cambridge? When I contacted them they told me that they don't accept PGCE credits unless its from their own students. This is the same story I've heard from every university (most of the U of London ones who have a strong education background, plus Cambridge and a few others) I've contacted about transferring my Masters credits to one of their courses - they've all said that they'll happily take their own PGCE students but wouldn't consider credits from another university. From my investigations of where I can do my Masters and what I can use the credits for, it seems they will only be accepted if I stay at my current university, which I don't want to do for a number of reasons. The main one being that it isn't the same location as I'll be working.

      Therefore, I think I'm entitled to a wee bit of moaning if I've just spent half term sorting out a load of essays to get these Masters level credits when I know that I can't use them for the courses I actually want to do. I've got a place on a course at the Institute of Education for next year and as I said in another post, I'm desperate to continue with my education to a higher level - this is the reason I opted to do a PGCE that carries Masters level credits. However, if I can't actually use them to do a Master of Education course then it just makes the entire thing seem pointless. I'm glad you've managed to get a transfer for your credits as yes, that makes it all totally worthwhile, but if like me, you can't get a transfer then it does make people question the entire point of trying to make teaching a Masters level profession. The amount of work people have to do to get the credits seems totally different at each university too, which makes the actual credits incredibly questionable again and because this is the case that they're awarded so differently, I can completely understand why universities will only accept them from their own PGCE students.

      Listen to yourselves..."Oh GOD we have to write down a record of discussion when I speak to a parent on the phone boo hoo"....unless you lived in a dream world before you started your PGCE I'm quite sure we all heard about how hard it was going to be, so why is everyone surprised that we have loads of work and very little time to do things?
      That's clearly aimed at me, thanks.
      My point was that a lot of meeting the QTS standards seems to be about pointing out the absolute obvious to the bitter extreme meaning evidencing them is hard if you haven't spent the entire year with a notebook out and a QTS list going "oooh, I just spoke to Bob's mum, lets write that down and get her to sign that we've just spoken so I can use it as evidence" which is the sort of thing you're expected to provide to meet these standards, or at least, its the guidance we've been given for meeting them at my university although it doesn't seem like it is a universal thing across the entire country. I don't think through saying that I was at all saying "omg the PGCE is so hard - I thought they were just going to give me a bit of paper to say I could be a teacher!!!"

      Also, I feel that your position might be different to most people here in that you posted in April time that you'd managed to get a job. That is an immense pressure you've got taken off you there, whereas some people are still trying to find a job as well as doing everything else that you're doing and as you'll know, doing the application for a job takes around 4 hours, plus you've got to take the time to visit the school and go to the interview which in my case means by the time I've done all of that I've lost the best part of two days per job application made. I knew this would be an issue and started applying for jobs much earlier than other people in February. I still don't have one despite getting brilliant feedback from every interview I've had, which is adding an immense amount of pressure in the sense that if I don't have a job by the end of the course (ie: a month) I am homeless with absolutely no money and have no idea where I am going to go from there. I agree, this issue perhaps is making me more emotional right now as I am constantly worrying about this bit of life. If I had a job, I would know where I needed to move to and the money issue would only be a temporary thing. I'm not applying for jobs in the area I live now (which I know was my decision when I started the PGCE, but there are other life issues to factor in) meaning visiting schools is hard and my current placement school have been very very difficult about me taking time off to go to an interview.

      Right now, I would love nothing more than to be in your situation where I could focus on the teaching with the security of knowing that I have a job lined up for September and I can do the Masters course I want to do as well at the same time. You're one of the lucky ones in that you can literally just concentrate on getting through this PGCE and have been in that position for a long time. Not everyone else is in the same position which does make it incredibly stressful, meaning yes, I think sometimes people do have the right to moan and this is one of them. Does it mean we're awful teachers and were expecting to get through the PGCE without people noticing? No. Does it mean that we need to "get a grip and stop living in a dream world"? No. Does it mean that we're just being human? Yes.... and I'm okay with that. However, I am glad that everything in your PGCE life appears to have gone to plan and you don't feel the need to have a moan every now and again
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      (Original post by dobbs)
      rant
      I think you're being a little harsh. I would have loved to have had this thread during my ITT year, and if I hadn't been able to moan and let off steam to my friends I would have cracked!
      I think it's good to have a place where you can talk with other trainees and receive support and advice. You've posted in here before so you know it's not a "sunshine and flowers" thread. You could start one of those yourself maybe, about what people enjoy about the job and what people's ambitions are? Maybe that would balance out the forum a bit.

      I doubt that the majority of the people posting in here are just "drifting" through the PGCE. It's impossible to do that anyway, as you rightly pointed out.

      Your point about mentors...well I, like hannydee also had 2 mentors (HoD and 2nd in dept) with extremely high standards, which reflecting back, probably did make me a much better teacher, but during the year was incredibly frustrating because I often felt like I had *no* good points and that I wasn't capable. As teachers you'd think people would know that setting seemingly unreachable goals and offering little advice as to how to get there is pretty bad practice. When I asked how I could improve my classroom management my mentor was like "I...just do it" :dong: She told me some stories about how difficult her NQT year was which made me feel better but didn't help me...but anyway, I'm trying to move on from that year now :p:
      Luckily my training provider got involved and we managed to break down the massive targets into small, manageable chunks.
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      (Original post by hannydee)
      I said my university doesn't do it with the standard QTS file format that I've been hearing about. Our evidence is all documented online and through a standards tracking grid that is completed by tutors on placement where they effectively 'tick off' when we have met certain standards.
      Oh fair enough, it sounded like you were saying you didn't do making a QTS evidence file, which if you're doing an online file, is still a QTS file


      (Original post by oxymoronic)
      Can I ask which course you'll be doing at Cambridge?
      Yes, I'm doing the Part Time MEd, it's through a partnership with the school I'm going to be working at and a number of other schools (about 8 I think) in the east of England, so everyone on the course will be current teachers. It should take 2 years but my school have told me that in the past people who already have the 60 credits from a Masters will be able to transfer those to Cambridge and therefore complete it in one year. If you get a job in a partnership school (google Cambridge SUPER Partnership) you may be offered a place

      (Original post by oxymoronic)
      My point was that a lot of meeting the QTS standards seems to be about pointing out the absolute obvious to the bitter extreme
      Yes, and it should be, because if it wasn't then there would be people who could just drift through - I'm not at all saying anyone on here are like that but there are current teachers who I (and others) have observed and we sincerely wonder how they ever got QTS, especially with how picky they are about evidence.


      (Original post by oxymoronic)
      Also, I feel that your position might be different to most people here in that you posted in April time that you'd managed to get a job.
      True, it is a massive pressure off my shoulders I'll happily admit that but between writing an extra essay as part of this Masters application and trying to find somewhere to live in Cambridge (which is a 3hr drive away from Bristol where I currently live)...and I don't get time off school for going to house-hunt, although still not as pressurised as still finding a job, I am still having a challenging time.


      (Original post by Becca)
      I think you're being a little harsh. I would have loved to have had this thread during my ITT year, and if I hadn't been able to moan and let off steam to my friends I would have cracked!
      I wasn't complaining about people complaining, as you point out I've used this thread before, but it was just a long list of posts of what seemed like petty moaning about things that should be expected in a PGCE course. Oh well, what do I know eh!
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      (Original post by dobbs)
      I wasn't complaining about people complaining, as you point out I've used this thread before, but it was just a long list of posts of what seemed like petty moaning about things that should be expected in a PGCE course. Oh well, what do I know eh!
      My facebook feed is filled with people moaning about exams atm...it's an expected part of degrees/A-levels, but people still complain :p:


      (btw posting with you is like old times :moon: )
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      (Original post by modgepodge)
      I don't think this is a standard thing. I really hope not, Brookes have not mentioned a QTS file ever and my placement finishes in 4 weeks! We just have to get our mentor at the school to agree we've met a standard, sign it off etc. Dunno about evidence as such, I think lesson observations and discussions form that.

      I don't envy that folder, it sounds like a nightmare.

      Also, your M level credits sound like a b****. To get mine (40 of them) I had to write 2 x 3000 word essays, one of which was on anything we liked.
      We get 60 m credits but had to write 3 6000 word essays (2 of which were marked to M level)

      Anyone thinking of carrying on the Masters part of the course over the next 2 years? Part of me is tempted, but I don't know if i have the stamina for MORE stress!!

      Reading a bit more of the recent posts on here there seems to be a bit of an internal rant going on! I totally understand why demonstrating our ability to meet QTS is relevant, however SHOWING on a piece of paper/ through stupid comments and lesson evaluations isn't helpful. Surely if we took part in parents evening we meet that standard (could be verified by mentor)- writing down on X date i spoke to Y7 parents etc etc is not really conducive to our precious little time management!!

      Anyway that's all I shall say on the matter as i have spent a whole half-term completing Tracking sheets and evaluations and CEDP entry profiles and marking essays and planning lessons - so will end now to do some more marking and planning
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      (Original post by Becca)
      My facebook feed is filled with people moaning about exams atm...it's an expected part of degrees/A-levels, but people still complain :p:


      (btw posting with you is like old times :moon: )
      Yeah true, also last night I had just returned from a very tiring residential fieldtrip in Devon all weekend, so think I was a little on edge when I posted that, oh well haha. Oh no negative rep :rolleyes:

      I have decided I want to move to a Scandinavian country later in life, but do not speak any of those languages
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      so OP you think is better to do MA first because it will prepare us for PGCE?
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      (Original post by dobbs)
      Yeah true, also last night I had just returned from a very tiring residential fieldtrip in Devon all weekend, so think I was a little on edge when I posted that, oh well haha. Oh no negative rep :rolleyes:

      I have decided I want to move to a Scandinavian country later in life, but do not speak any of those languages
      You can learn! I couldn't speak Norwegian before I moved here, and now I have a job in a school (not a teacher yet, but they told me that once I get my qualification validated they'll gradually move me over from assistant to teacher ) Also, Norwegian pronunciation is very like geordie sometimes!

      (Original post by Golly-Gosh)
      so OP you think is better to do MA first because it will prepare us for PGCE?
      Tbh, and someone may disagree with me here, but I don't think any kind of "normal" academic course will prepare you for what a PGCE/other ITT route is like...
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      (Original post by Kidders)
      Now into my 3rd month of the secondary PGCE course and i can honestly say i have never looked forward to Xmas quite as much as i currently am! This has been the hardest few months i have ever experienced. Such a massive amount of work to be done all the time. Lesson plans still taking me hours and I'm never more than a day ahead of myself! Assignment due in 2 weeks and not even beyond the introduction. Getting home at 5pm every night due to the distance of my placement school and leaving at 7:20am every morning. Weekends written off and relationship with my partner suffering!


      Anyone else feel this way too?

      Also a little reminder to all those wanting to apply for next year; this is CERTAINLY not an option for you if you're doing it just to put off finding a job! HUGE step up from undergrad degree!! (i think the MA students are a little better prepared)

      Rant over.
      Wel...you've got a 40 year teaching career to get used to it...
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      Hats off to you for doing such a wonderful job!

      Best of luck!
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      i accepted a pgce place to start in september but after reading this i'm a bit scared now!
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      (Original post by tufc)
      Wel...you've got a 40 year teaching career to get used to it...
      Firstly i'm not planning on teaching for 40 years and secondly after the first few years it will get a lot easier!!
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      (Original post by dobbs)
      Oh fair enough, it sounded like you were saying you didn't do making a QTS evidence file, which if you're doing an online file, is still a QTS file

      I don't have to do a QTS evidence file on paper or online. It has never been mentioned at my uni, Oxford Brookes.

      We have a standards grid - our teacher we work with just signs us off when they agree we've met a standard. Don't see the benefit of having to "prove" that I've met with parents or whatever, my teacher is in the SMT of the school, she's not going to put her reputation on the line by just signing off someone rubbish is she?
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        (Original post by modgepodge)
        I don't have to do a QTS evidence file on paper or online. It has never been mentioned at my uni, Oxford Brookes.

        We have a standards grid - our teacher we work with just signs us off when they agree we've met a standard. Don't see the benefit of having to "prove" that I've met with parents or whatever, my teacher is in the SMT of the school, she's not going to put her reputation on the line by just signing off someone rubbish is she?
        Because when you do something like APP you have to evidence why you've levelled children at certain levels. It's all good practice.
       
       
       
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