dasher103
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Is anyone applying for the PGDE 2020 'without' having secondary school classroom experience? I emailed one Uni and they said I didn't need to have experience at the time of application as long as I have a few days before the course starts. How do I approach this in my personal statement?
I live overseas and can probably get some experience next year (no more holidays left this year). I also have a couple years demonstrating in an undergrad class in my topic, have done some online tutoring. I'd like to get my application in asap.
Any thoughts welcome
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Elorajaneamos
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I haven't applied but I am all too aware of the struggle of not being able to get classroom experience. I've talked to quite a few unis as a result. On your personal statement you can say "I have lined up experience in..." or "I am planning to ... in a ... setting". I'm not too sure about the undergrad experience to be honest, I'd have thought that could only really be mentioned if you were applying for a PCET. I know when I volunteered in a college (I couldn't get any secondary experience) they said it wasn't really suitable. In regards to your online tutoring, what ages have you tutored? if its secondary school age you could maybe say you have experience working one to one and monitoring and evaluating students' progress in order to see where improvements can be made?
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Teacher2Bee
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I would focus your personal statement around the skills you have gained from your life and employment experience that would be useful towards teaching. You could also consider finding some after school clubs where you can work with children.
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SarcAndSpark
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(Original post by dasher103)
Is anyone applying for the PGDE 2020 'without' having secondary school classroom experience? I emailed one Uni and they said I didn't need to have experience at the time of application as long as I have a few days before the course starts. How do I approach this in my personal statement?
I live overseas and can probably get some experience next year (no more holidays left this year). I also have a couple years demonstrating in an undergrad class in my topic, have done some online tutoring. I'd like to get my application in asap.
Any thoughts welcome
If you're applying for a shortage subject, I doubt this will be much of an issue.

In your PS, I would focus on other skills you can bring to the job e.g. if you have experience presenting or communicating in your current job, this may be relevant.

Do you have any experience with the age group you want to teach? This can be voluntary e.g. coaching at a sports club, or work experience where you would regularly interact with young people. This is obviously great to mention.

I agree it would also be a good idea to explain you plan to gain some experience in schools and say when you expect to be able to do this.
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dasher103
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(Original post by Elorajaneamos)
I haven't applied but I am all too aware of the struggle of not being able to get classroom experience. I've talked to quite a few unis as a result. On your personal statement you can say "I have lined up experience in..." or "I am planning to ... in a ... setting". I'm not too sure about the undergrad experience to be honest, I'd have thought that could only really be mentioned if you were applying for a PCET. I know when I volunteered in a college (I couldn't get any secondary experience) they said it wasn't really suitable. In regards to your online tutoring, what ages have you tutored? if its secondary school age you could maybe say you have experience working one to one and monitoring and evaluating students' progress in order to see where improvements can be made?
Thanks Elorajaneamos, you've given me some ideas for the PS. The ages were 19-21 for in class demonstrating and anywhere from 25+ for online tutoring. The tutoring moreso involved assisting and guiding students in the right direction regarding course work rather than evaluating their progress. I have done this at undergrad level though i.e. co-supervising an undergrad thesis, monitoring progress, correcting the final write-up, assigning grade..
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dasher103
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(Original post by SarcAndSpark)
If you're applying for a shortage subject, I doubt this will be much of an issue.

In your PS, I would focus on other skills you can bring to the job e.g. if you have experience presenting or communicating in your current job, this may be relevant.

Do you have any experience with the age group you want to teach? This can be voluntary e.g. coaching at a sports club, or work experience where you would regularly interact with young people. This is obviously great to mention.

I agree it would also be a good idea to explain you plan to gain some experience in schools and say when you expect to be able to do this.
Hoping to apply for Geography, not sure if that is shortage or not. No experience for the age group but it's just timing, I won't have this before my application and I'm a bit worried it will look bad saying 'I plan to get this...'
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SarcAndSpark
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(Original post by dasher103)
Hoping to apply for Geography, not sure if that is shortage or not. No experience for the age group but it's just timing, I won't have this before my application and I'm a bit worried it will look bad saying 'I plan to get this...'
Geography is a shortage subject, which will work in your favour. It sounds like you have some teaching experience to draw on which will help.

When do you think the earliest you would be able to get some experience with secondary pupils will be? Teaching applications are done on a rolling basis, and most don't fill up that quickly.

I think it's fine to say in your PS "I plan to do x, y, z" and you'll probably get interviews, but at interview you're likely to be asked "why do you want to be a secondary teacher?" and you need to be able to come up with a response for this that is compelling. If you have no experience at all with the age group you want to teach, some admissions tutors may have doubts about you.

But equally since you're applying for a shortage subject and you have some teaching experience, it's honestly likely you will get a place anyway- it just may not be your first choice!
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dasher103
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(Original post by SarcAndSpark)
Geography is a shortage subject, which will work in your favour. It sounds like you have some teaching experience to draw on which will help.

When do you think the earliest you would be able to get some experience with secondary pupils will be? Teaching applications are done on a rolling basis, and most don't fill up that quickly.

I think it's fine to say in your PS "I plan to do x, y, z" and you'll probably get interviews, but at interview you're likely to be asked "why do you want to be a secondary teacher?" and you need to be able to come up with a response for this that is compelling. If you have no experience at all with the age group you want to teach, some admissions tutors may have doubts about you.

But equally since you're applying for a shortage subject and you have some teaching experience, it's honestly likely you will get a place anyway- it just may not be your first choice!
Definitely not this year as I have no more holidays from work. I've contacted a school that teaches geography through English so I'm just waiting to hear back. So I'm hoping my experience will get me through, I've got a PhD in the subject (well, environmental science) and have been working for about 10 years in the area.
To be honest, as long as it's anywhere in Scotland I'll be happy!
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SarcAndSpark
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(Original post by dasher103)
Definitely not this year as I have no more holidays from work. I've contacted a school that teaches geography through English so I'm just waiting to hear back. So I'm hoping my experience will get me through, I've got a PhD in the subject (well, environmental science) and have been working for about 10 years in the area.
To be honest, as long as it's anywhere in Scotland I'll be happy!
In Scotland, there is less of a shortage than the rest of the UK, and I think unis do better in hitting their recruitment quotas. Therefore, I do think you will need to have a relatively competitive application.

As I understand it from my PGCE tutors, whilst unis do like work experience and academic achievement, their key thing is trying to recruit people who will stay the distance. If you've spent no time in a school or working/ volunteering with this age group some admissions tutors might have questions about this.

Places won't be filled by December, though. If you could arrange some experience in January and apply in February, there would still be plenty of places available!
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