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    Hi,

    I have applied for Primary PGCE, but have been rejected by my first choice (without interview), and haven't heard from my second choice yet. Does anyone know whether the Primary PGCE with MFL specialism is less competitive than general primary? I have a degree in langauges and was originally going to apply for the languages specialism, but most of he unis that do it only seem to have a handful of places, so I decided to go for general primary to give myself a better chance of getting in.

    However after being rejected from my first choice (which was the uni I did my undergraduate in) I'm questionning this decision! If I am rejected by my second choice I think I may apply for the MFL specialism, but does anyone have any info on the competition for this vs. general primary?

    Thanks,

    Jen
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    The MFL places fill up much slower. For the last 2 years there have been MFL options available until June/July time and I don't think this year will be any different. I think this is just a reflection of the fact that less people are able or feel able to teach languages, so there is less demand for the places. The universities all have funding to train a specific amount of language teachers so they can't just give the spaces to the general primary strand meaning they just keep applications open for longer in the hope of attracting more good applicants.

    In terms of the interview, it seems that you generally are interviewed in exactly the same format as if you were applying for a general primary PGCE and then its up to you to add in discussion about languages in it. My interviewer knew I was applying for the MFL strand but didn't really know much about it (she was a headteacher of a partner school) so she didn't ask me any specific questions about why I wanted to teach languages, it was more that the questions she did ask were fairly open so I then replied in a way that affirmed why I was interested in languages specifically. At my interview there were around 30 people for a mixture of general, early years and MFL. There were 5 of us there for MFL and I was the only person who actually started the course so I think the actual acceptance rate/how they decide whether to give you an offer is no "easier" than on the general strand. My uni said that there were about 50 MFL applicants last year and there are 20 of us out of 110 on the course. They didn't fill all of their MFL quota places, they had 30 in total, so about 25% of their overall places, and there certainly aren't 25% of people able to speak another language well enough to teach it so it probably reflects the general application pattern for languages PGCEs.

    With the MFL strand, its probably half and half with whether it was someone's first choice or whether they applied somewhere else first, were rejected, then opted to do MFL. There are a lot of Scots, Irish and Northern Irish on the languages strand at my uni because the competition for PGCE places is so much more intense there as there are so few course providers in comparison to England. You can't apply do to primary languages there so initially, we all applied for the general course at home but I think most of us would have all gone for the languages strand at our current uni as our first choice if we'd applied in England originally. Its where I would have applied when I was considering doing an English application, so it worked out fine for me!
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    I think that the language strand is less competitive - I know that at my uni, there were still places for French and the Early Years strand in January, but no general places.
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    Thanks both for your replies, sounds like it's a good idea to give the MFL specialism a go if I am unsuccessful with my second choice. Interesting that the interview process is the same regardless though, would be good to hear if anyone else has experience of MFL interviews that are more focused on languages...

    Jen
 
 
 
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