idril93
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I finished uni last summer (English) and I'd like to follow an academic career in the future. However, I'm aware of the fierce competition in the academia and the job insecurity. So, I'd like to gain a teaching qualification as something to fall back on if things don't work out. I have received two offers from an Oxbridge uni and a Scottish one.

Here's where the matter gets complicated for me. Though I'm entitled to a bursary, the English uni says they want the fees to be paid upfront? So, I would need to get a loan and count on the bursary to pay it back. The Scottish government covers my fees. In both cases, though, I have expenses anyway and one year loss of income (I'm in my mix twenties so I want to start making money soon). So, ideally, I was wondering if it'd be better to work straight away as a teacher for one or two years to gain a qualification* while make money and then go on for a MA/PhD.

(*It's important to me I gain a recognised teaching qualification to be able to teach abroad in case things go to hell with Brexit.)

Which route would be the best for me? PGCE/PGDE are great to gradually introduce me to the British system but I'll miss a whole year of employment. School Direct looks great but I saw they expect you to have years of existing employment and, living in Scotland, I don't know how I could make it to interviews in England. Any info and ideas would be welcome.
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SarcAndSpark
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(Original post by idril93)
I finished uni last summer (English) and I'd like to follow an academic career in the future. However, I'm aware of the fierce competition in the academia and the job insecurity. So, I'd like to gain a teaching qualification as something to fall back on if things don't work out. I have received two offers from an Oxbridge uni and a Scottish one.

Here's where the matter gets complicated for me. Though I'm entitled to a bursary, the English uni says they want the fees to be paid upfront? So, I would need to get a loan and count on the bursary to pay it back. The Scottish government covers my fees. In both cases, though, I have expenses anyway and one year loss of income (I'm in my mix twenties so I want to start making money soon). So, ideally, I was wondering if it'd be better to work straight away as a teacher for one or two years to gain a qualification* while make money and then go on for a MA/PhD.

(*It's important to me I gain a recognised teaching qualification to be able to teach abroad in case things go to hell with Brexit.)

Which route would be the best for me? PGCE/PGDE are great to gradually introduce me to the British system but I'll miss a whole year of employment. School Direct looks great but I saw they expect you to have years of existing employment and, living in Scotland, I don't know how I could make it to interviews in England. Any info and ideas would be welcome.
Honestly, taking a student loan for your fees is not that bad- you only pay it back once you're earning over £25,000 and if you're working abroad, you won't be chased for repayments. One loan of ~£9000 will be paid off pretty quickly. Don't forget the bursary is tax free, so it's equivalent to a larger salary- I was able to save a fair chunk of my bursary, but I was doing biology so got a big one!

There are paid routes into teaching- you've already discussed schools direct. There's also Teach First in England- but that has very mixed reviews and you are very much thrown in at the deep end.

Honestly, if you want a PGCE, I would just go for it now and take the hit of the one year training. It's a more supportive route into teaching than the salaried options.

Working in the UK as an unqualified teacher is also possible- but it's not a route I'd recommend. You're much better off learning how to teach through the PGCE first.
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idril93
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(Original post by SarcAndSpark)
Honestly, taking a student loan for your fees is not that bad- you only pay it back once you're earning over £25,000 and if you're working abroad, you won't be chased for repayments. One loan of ~£9000 will be paid off pretty quickly. Don't forget the bursary is tax free, so it's equivalent to a larger salary- I was able to save a fair chunk of my bursary, but I was doing biology so got a big one!

There are paid routes into teaching- you've already discussed schools direct. There's also Teach First in England- but that has very mixed reviews and you are very much thrown in at the deep end.

Honestly, if you want a PGCE, I would just go for it now and take the hit of the one year training. It's a more supportive route into teaching than the salaried options.

Working in the UK as an unqualified teacher is also possible- but it's not a route I'd recommend. You're much better off learning how to teach through the PGCE first.
Thanks for the reply. Yeah the sciences get very generous bursaries. Sadly, I can only get 12,000, of which the 9,250 would ideally go to repayment of the loan. I was thinking of using the bursary to repay because, if I do a MA in the future, then I'll also need a loan for that too. I need to call the Student Finance to see if I'd be eligible for a second loan.
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SarcAndSpark
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(Original post by idril93)
Thanks for the reply. Yeah the sciences get very generous bursaries. Sadly, I can only get 12,000, of which the 9,250 would ideally go to repayment of the loan. I was thinking of using the bursary to repay because, if I do a MA in the future, then I'll also need a loan for that too. I need to call the Student Finance to see if I'd be eligible for a second loan.
As I understand it, having paid back a loan or not doesn't affect your eligibility for student finance. You could do a masters and then get a PGCE loan, as ITT courses are exempt from the same/equivalent qualifications rule, but not the other way around.

I'd also bear in mind that following brexit you may not have any entitlement to student finance anyway.

Because of this, I don't think there would be any benefit to immediately repaying your teaching loan.
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idril93
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(Original post by SarcAndSpark)
As I understand it, having paid back a loan or not doesn't affect your eligibility for student finance. You could do a masters and then get a PGCE loan, as ITT courses are exempt from the same/equivalent qualifications rule, but not the other way around.

I'd also bear in mind that following brexit you may not have any entitlement to student finance anyway.

Because of this, I don't think there would be any benefit to immediately repaying your teaching loan.
I have received pre-settled status, so I can access funding until 2024. But I'll gain setlled status this year, so my rights to get funding will be extended for a longer time.
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SarcAndSpark
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(Original post by idril93)
I have received pre-settled status, so I can access funding until 2024. But I'll gain setlled status this year, so my rights to get funding will be extended for a longer time.
Ok, well in that case, IMO you are better off doing the masters first, and then currently you'd still be able to get a PGCE loan afterwards as ITT courses are exempt from the "equivalent qualification" rule at the moment.

If you did a PGCE first AFIAK, you might not be able to get the masters loan afterwards- either way paying back the loan straight away wouldn't make a difference as to whether you could get another loan or not. The rule is about not getting two loans for the same level of study.

Hope that makes sense!
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idril93
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(Original post by SarcAndSpark)
Ok, well in that case, IMO you are better off doing the masters first, and then currently you'd still be able to get a PGCE loan afterwards as ITT courses are exempt from the "equivalent qualification" rule at the moment.

If you did a PGCE first AFIAK, you might not be able to get the masters loan afterwards- either way paying back the loan straight away wouldn't make a difference as to whether you could get another loan or not. The rule is about not getting two loans for the same level of study.

Hope that makes sense!
I get it - thanks for the information!
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