I got a Third Class honours degree, but I want to train as a teacher. Advice needed. Watch

DanielCurry14
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Hi there.

My situation is quite complicated.

I'm 25.

I graduated last summer with a Third Class honours degree in Applied Sports Psychology from Liverpool John Moores University. Last September (2013), I got a job as a Teaching Assistant at the school I was already a sports coach at. I am still currently a TA, and a sports coach.

I've been working in the school as a Sports Coach since January 2012. I've been working in the classroom since September 2013. I've been doing kids work three/four times a week for eight years. I am highly experienced with working with kids. My intention when applying for a Teaching Assistant post was, simply, to gain classroom experience so that I could apply for a PGCE/Schools Direct.

Unfortunately, the universities around here (Liverpool) are looking for 2:2 degrees and above, which is completely understandable. However, I've made the firm decision that a primary school classroom teacher is a vocation I am desperate to undertake, but I feel my degree is limiting me.

The reason I prefaced my questions with all of that is self-explanatory. I didn't perform well at uni, I understand that. But I'm 25 now, work three part-time jobs (the other job is as a 'dinner lady' in the same school), and I'm more mature than when I first went to uni back in 2009.

The questions I have are:

Am I completely stuck?
If I were to get onto a PGCE or a Schools Direct course, how would funding work?
Would I be able to ask the Student Loans Company?
Would my Third Class degree prevent me from getting full funding?
I obviously can't 'bump' my degree up, so what can I do?

Overall, what are my explicit and concrete options?

Thanks for reading,
Daniel.
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bownessie
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(Original post by DanielCurry14)
Hi there.

My situation is quite complicated.

I'm 25.

I graduated last summer with a Third Class honours degree in Applied Sports Psychology from Liverpool John Moores University. Last September (2013), I got a job as a Teaching Assistant at the school I was already a sports coach at. I am still currently a TA, and a sports coach.

I've been working in the school as a Sports Coach since January 2012. I've been working in the classroom since September 2013. I've been doing kids work three/four times a week for eight years. I am highly experienced with working with kids. My intention when applying for a Teaching Assistant post was, simply, to gain classroom experience so that I could apply for a PGCE/Schools Direct.

Unfortunately, the universities around here (Liverpool) are looking for 2:2 degrees and above, which is completely understandable. However, I've made the firm decision that a primary school classroom teacher is a vocation I am desperate to undertake, but I feel my degree is limiting me.

The reason I prefaced my questions with all of that is self-explanatory. I didn't perform well at uni, I understand that. But I'm 25 now, work three part-time jobs (the other job is as a 'dinner lady' in the same school), and I'm more mature than when I first went to uni back in 2009.

The questions I have are:

Am I completely stuck?
If I were to get onto a PGCE or a Schools Direct course, how would funding work?
Would I be able to ask the Student Loans Company?
Would my Third Class degree prevent me from getting full funding?
I obviously can't 'bump' my degree up, so what can I do?

Overall, what are my explicit and concrete options?

Thanks for reading,
Daniel.
I wouldn't worry about funding, that is just paid by the SLC for PGCEs. From what I've read, grades are irrelevant, so long as you get on a course.

If I were you, I would consider doing an Open University degree. You can transfer 180 of your credits from your undergraduate to an OU degree, so you'd only need to do 180 credits with them. It'd take you 1.5 years of study, but you could start in Feb and basically be ready to apply for a PGCE this time next year, with a (hopefully) 2.2< degree behind you.

That being said, you can get onto PGCEs with a third class (if you are willing to go to Edge Hill, they say you can take an equivalency test), but I would wonder if it would affect your career in the long run.
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DanielCurry14
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Wow, great reply. Thank you very much.

I will definitely look into the Open University route.

Also, I've asked around, and unlike other degrees, where you do your PGCE doesn't matter, so long as you have one.

I didn't realise Edge Hill would accept Thirds. Where did you find that information? Was it on their website?

Thanks again.
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Mr CS
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Definitely go the Open University route. Also, ensure the modules you take are related to Primary Education. There's nothing to stop you then doing your PGCE with the Open University as well.

Good luck.
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bownessie
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There you go! http://www.edgehill.ac.uk/study/coursesPGCEEntry
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Juichiro
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Worth highlighting the following:

Please note, this information is correct at the time of publishing. However, following recent changes in government guidelines on entry criteria for PGCE programmes, we are currently awaiting further clarification on this matter.
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bownessie
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(Original post by Juichiro)
Worth highlighting the following:

Please note, this information is correct at the time of publishing. However, following recent changes in government guidelines on entry criteria for PGCE programmes, we are currently awaiting further clarification on this matter.
Definitely, if I were in this guy's position, I'd just play it say and do some OU credits.
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Angelil
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You could also try to get on an assessment-only programme given your experience.
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Rmiah29
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Hi Daniel I'm in the same position as you! I was wondering have you had any luck with open university or edgehill?
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Domitella
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I'd call/email the institutions and check, it's the only way to get a firm answer. The websites can sometimes be quite non-specific, but they usually have a section on entry requirements. It may also depend on what subject you would teach. There's currently a critical lack of computing teachers, for example, so they may be more flexible in some cases.

As far as I knew, you *couldn't* do a PGCE with a 3rd - they even try to discourage people with a 2:2 by not giving them bursaries. Although that may just be because I've not seen institutions who do accept them.

One thing I would correct from above - where you get your PGCE does make a difference, but it's often different institutions which are highly-regarded than would be for a degree. So IOE, Roehampton and Manchester Met are some of the most well regarded ones, rather than, say, Oxford or Cambridge. It probably doesn't make as much difference as it does for an undergraduate degree, but there is a difference and teachers have views about the local courses.
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LJTravers
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I have a Third-class degree (in maths) and managed to get on to the maths PGCE at UEA.

Definitely don't give up - look in to School Direct and other ITT courses.

I looked in to OU courses and felt it was a lot of money to spend and more time until I could get on to the PGCE. However, you need to do what will work for you.

The fact that you have been so involved in teaching and coaching will definitely work in your favour.

x
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charl0tte90
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(Original post by LJTravers)
I have a Third-class degree (in maths) and managed to get on to the maths PGCE at UEA.

Definitely don't give up - look in to School Direct and other ITT courses.

I looked in to OU courses and felt it was a lot of money to spend and more time until I could get on to the PGCE. However, you need to do what will work for you.

The fact that you have been so involved in teaching and coaching will definitely work in your favour.

x
It's different with maths - there is a shortage of maths teachers which is why they are throwing massive bursaries at graduates to do PGCE Maths. As long as you have at least a B in Maths at A-Level, as well as a degree, they will usually take you on the course (according to the DfE website anyway). I suppose it depends on the course, how many people have applied and how you do at interview.

I've noticed that some universities (such as Chester) are now offering a PGCE Primary PE Specialist course. If you ring them up/e-mail them and show your dedication to sports and primary education, ask them if they would accept you with a Third?
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LJTravers
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(Original post by charl0tte90)
It's different with maths - there is a shortage of maths teachers which is why they are throwing massive bursaries at graduates to do PGCE Maths. As long as you have at least a B in Maths at A-Level, as well as a degree, they will usually take you on the course (according to the DfE website anyway). I suppose it depends on the course, how many people have applied and how you do at interview.

I've noticed that some universities (such as Chester) are now offering a PGCE Primary PE Specialist course. If you ring them up/e-mail them and show your dedication to sports and primary education, ask them if they would accept you with a Third?
I would like to think I got on the course because they saw potential for an outstanding teacher, not just because they're desperate.

There were around 200 interviews, with only 19 of us getting on (and there were 24 spaces in total).

To the OP - keep searching and don't think you're any less capable of being an excellent teacher just because of your degree class.

Call up course providers and try to speak to the course tutor if possible. It'll give you the opportunity to discuss things in more depth and you can get more out of a conversation than just an email.

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zoelaylee
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(Original post by charl0tte90)
It's different with maths - there is a shortage of maths teachers which is why they are throwing massive bursaries at graduates to do PGCE Maths. As long as you have at least a B in Maths at A-Level, as well as a degree, they will usually take you on the course (according to the DfE website anyway). I suppose it depends on the course, how many people have applied and how you do at interview.

I've noticed that some universities (such as Chester) are now offering a PGCE Primary PE Specialist course. If you ring them up/e-mail them and show your dedication to sports and primary education, ask them if they would accept you with a Third?
Would I be accepted on a PGCE Maths course if I have a maths at a-level but a 2:1 degree which is unrelated to Maths? Also would experience teaching in a classroom help?
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bownessie
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(Original post by zoelaylee)
Would I be accepted on a PGCE Maths course if I have a maths at a-level but a 2:1 degree which is unrelated to Maths? Also would experience teaching in a classroom help?
There are conversion courses, I'd have a look at them. What course did you do?
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gemmam
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(Original post by zoelaylee)
Would I be accepted on a PGCE Maths course if I have a maths at a-level but a 2:1 degree which is unrelated to Maths? Also would experience teaching in a classroom help?
I know on an FE PGCE you can do a subject unrelated to your degree as your specialism if you've got an A-Level in it; not sure if its different for secondary PGCEs.
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Robyn7592
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York st john accept 3rd class with relevant experience
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laura.a.c265
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(Original post by Robyn7592)
York st john accept 3rd class with relevant experience
Isn't that just for the PT route?


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kaykay88
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Hi Daniel,

I was doing some PGCE P.E courses reserech and found your post. I was wondering if you've got into any courses? any tips for me?


regards,

Kay
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His4fam1986
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Hi ya, my brother has had the same issues?! Did you manage to find anything?
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