txiba
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Has anybody applied to do PGCE English, despite not doing English as the undergrad degree?

Would appreciate any points if this applies
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Englishteacher24
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Typically, applicants are expected to have completed a degree which is at least 50% linked to the subject they want to teach. When I trained, I didn't know anyone on my course who hadn't completed a related degree, so I am only giving theoretical advice.

It is very hard to teach English, even with an undergraduate degree - there's a lot that you need to know in terms of critical theory, wider reading, analysis, SPaG and this then needs to be tailored to different year groups and different exam boards. Some of the people on my course, even though they had completed a related degree (e.g. linguistics), struggled with teaching literature.

I'm unsure what your background is or how much reading you have done, but these are my top tips:

  • Read widely - you will need an understanding of literature over time, including different literary movements and the features of these.
  • Read literature aimed at different age groups - you will need to be prepared to make recommendations and encourage reading at all levels.
  • Read common texts taught at GCSE and A-Level (e.g. 'Macbeth' and 'An Inspector Calls').
  • Brush up on your SPaG.
  • Know your literary techniques.
  • Know your key contexts e.g. what was going on in the Elizabethan period, the Victorian period, the 1920s.
  • Practise analysis. Bear in mind that you need to teach this skill, so you need to be prepared to share your process.

Basically, you need to know a lot about literature and history and you need to be confident exploring ideas and making links between different things. While it is fine to search things up on the internet if you are unsure of something, you don't want to be doing this all the time. Subject knowledge is key.
Last edited by Englishteacher24; 1 year ago
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(Original post by txiba)
Has anybody applied to do PGCE English, despite not doing English as the undergrad degree?

Would appreciate any points if this applies
The Head of English at my high school had done this. I think what she did was do the final year modules of an English Lit degree via Open Uni or she transferred her credits from her previous degree and completed an English Lit degree via Open Uni in less than half the time, and then she applied for her PGCE.

As an aside, her original undergraduate degree was in Japanese, so it was completely unrelated to English Lit. :rambo:

P.S. If you're located in Scotland, you could do modules or a degree via Open Uni for completely free with the Part-Time Fee Grant. Even if you do full time, because it'd be distance learning, it'd still be considered 'part-time'.
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