Hey there! Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    Hi

    Any advice would be appreciated. I'm currently holding offers to study for a Secondary French PGCE at both of these universities and I'm really struggling to choose between them.

    Manchester Uni - The one I thought I'd go to. Better reputation, more rigorous interview, the course seems more academic which is why I wanted to do a PGCE instead of School Direct for example, and the schools they are suggesting I could go to are ones I would definitely be happy at. The interview was quite formal, and the admin staff haven't been hugely helpful, but I've not actually met any of the French tutors, so I can't say what they're like.

    Manchester Met - Was originally my back up. Interview was a lot easier, and the atmosphere was very laid back. The tutors were absolutely lovely, but the course seemed a lot more practical and there is less continuity in the course. The overall reputation isn't as good, but I know it's regarded well for the PGCE. I couldn't work in the schools I could with UoM, and you're expected to travel further.

    Basically, I wanted to go to UoM, but since the PGCE is pretty heavy going, I'm worrying that maybe the more relaxed atmosphere would be more important. However, you're not there loads and the school situation with the first seems better.

    Any thoughts? Thanks!
    Offline

    18
    ReputationRep:
    Tough question. Both unis are good and respected in my experience.

    Public transport Manchester is excellent although can be very time consuming on some routes.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    Thanks for the response! Yes you're right - Manchester Uni were much more up for accommodating me in terms of location and travel arrangements. I'm from Manchester so I know the area well, but I keep getting conflicting advice.
    Offline

    18
    ReputationRep:
    Both courses will prepare you for employment. I would choose the one that you feel will be most supportive. With time being very precious I would be tempted by not having to travel so far for school placements.
    Offline

    6
    ReputationRep:
    I'm at MMU for my PGCE (UoM don't offer my subject - though I did do my MA there) at the moment, and spoke to some of the UoM trainees in other subjects on my last placement. While we didn't discuss the benefits/drawbacks of each other's provider, I have picked up on some of their reliefs and frustrations. Most of the UoM students complained about the admin side of it, which doesn't sound much but was frustrating when they had assignments to submit, needed to sign up to an event, or even in some cases get the actual details of their placements. However, they did seem more accommodating in terms of where they placed trainees, and in some cases let them know where their next placement would be far earlier than I was told (they found out well before Christmas, whereas MMU don't tell you until a week before it starts).

    I am, on the whole, enjoying MMU. Some aspects (like the placement notification policy) are annoying, but the tutors are extremely supportive and they do go out of their way to make sure you're doing OK. Regarding the placements themselves, they do seem to make more of an effort to place students closer to home for Block B than for Block A. Personally, I'm going from a 40-50 minutes each way drive on Block A, to a 15 minutes each way drive on Block B. For Block A placements, they seemed to struggle more with those that needed public transport than those of us who drive, but from what I understand, this is reasonably common everywhere.

    When it comes to placements, it's worth considering that from my experience with MMU, from talking to the UoM and Edge Hill trainees at my last school, that all universities are starting to feel the effects of the rise of Schools Direct/Teach First/SCITT etc. A lot of schools they previously depended on have now joined those initiatives and as such no longer take PGCE students.

    In your case, the only advice I can offer is go off your gut instinct. Where do you feel you'll get on better? Going by my experience on my MA, UoM is more 'rigid' in how it does things, while MMU is certainly more laid back. Personally, I like a more laid back style (which is one of the reasons I went for MMU over the two other providers I was offered a place with), but you might feel more comfortable in a more structured environment.



    While I'm enjoying it a lot (so far, beware the jealously listening gods, etc), the PGCE is a stressful and at times frustrating year. The last thing you need on top of getting your head around the paperwork, remembering kids names, implementing behavior policies and so on, is not feeling 'right' at uni. Go for whichever one will keep you happier/less of a living stress ball.
    Offline

    18
    ReputationRep:
    Can't speak for Manchester Uni although I was with a Man Uni person in my last school and he seemed to be finding it ok. Man Met is pretty chilled out but there is little difference between School Direct and the uni route. The only difference I can see is that if you do School Direct, you know where your placements will be well in advance of everyone else. That is it. As for Man Met - my tutor is awesome. Many of the lectures are good, but the Friday sessions tend to be more miss than hit for me. The Birley building is brand new and has fantastic resources and as a student you get subscriptions to loads of additional resources too.

    I would not choose a course based on academia. The last thing I needed at the end of placement 1 when I had loads of planning, marking and extra curricular things to do, was having to think about the essay due in at the beginning of January.

    For me, I reckon the only difference is prestige and even then, with 600 teachers coming out of Man Met each year, I don't think schools have a dim view of it. Many of the NQTs they will have hired in the past will be from Man Met so it won't make much difference.

    Go with your gut, but I genuinely don't think either are a bad pick. Which tutor did you like the best? That is probably the best way to choose as they will be the ones guiding you through the whole process.

    Good luck!
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    I believe that the placement structure is slightly different for both universities too. MMU have two placements A and B, whereas the placements at UoM follow an A-B-A structure. i.e. the student returns to their first placement. This is the information that I was given, however, I am unsure if it still applies (or if you still need it).
 
 
 
  • See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  • Poll
    What newspaper do you read/prefer?
  • See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  • The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

    Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

    Quick reply
    Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.