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School Direct Training Programme (Primary salaried) PGCE

  • Level(s) of Study: Postgraduate taught / Professional
  • UCAS Code(s): 2G7J /
  • Start Date(s): September 2021
  • Duration: One year full-time
  • Study Mode(s): Full-time
  • Campus: Clifton Campus
  • Entry Requirements:
    More information


Primary teaching at Nottingham Trent University (NTU)

School Direct is a training route which allows you to work and study within a school of your choice while studying towards a postgraduate qualification (PGCE) degree and Qualified Teacher Status.

This is an innovative training route which allows you to choose the school, or group of schools, in which you train with an intention, but no absolute guarantee, that they will employ you once you successfully graduate. School Direct is run as a partnership between a lead school, other schools in their alliance and an accredited teacher training provider.

We have established successful partnerships with schools to offer both School Direct salaried and non-salaried courses for Primary and Secondary teaching:

  1. The School Direct Training Programme
    This is open to all graduates (including those who expect to complete their degree prior to the September start date). You will pay tuition fees and may be eligible for student loans, and a bursary or scholarship.
  2. The School Direct Training Programme (salaried)
    This is an employment-based route into teaching for high quality graduates with three or more years' career experience. You will pay tuition fees and be employed as an unqualified teacher by a school who will pay you a salary.

The salaried option of the School Direct programme is ideal if you wish to bring your career experience to the field of teaching. Career changers can bring valuable real-world skills and knowledge to the classroom to inspire the next generation.

From the beginning you will be working within a school, learning and training in the classroom while supported by qualified teachers and mentors. You will also spend time studying at the University as you progress towards gaining a postgraduate qualification in education (PGCE) and Qualified Teacher Status.

The salary you receive will be dependent on the school you apply to and the subject you wish to teach. However you will usually be paid as an unqualified teacher on point one or above of the unqualified teacher scale.

School Direct (salaried) places are offered by a school or group of schools in partnership with NTU. The schools involved have an excellent history of involvement in teacher training and a long history of supporting trainees to become confident and effective teachers.

View our full list of School Direct places and partners for 2021 entry here.

You can apply to more than one school with this programme. You apply directly through UCAS. Interview and selection will be conducted by both staff from Nottingham Institute of Education and from the school.

Primary Level 6 Teacher Apprenticeship

Our Teacher Apprenticeships are available to your employer if they wish to support your development and certification as a qualified teacher through this route. This is funded through the Apprenticeship Levy that your employer pays.

Apprentices experience the same course as our School Direct trainees, beginning with the pre-course induction in the summer preceding the course and continuing throughout your year of working as an unqualified teacher. During this time you will be reflecting on and developing your practice, supported by your study of learning and teaching. You are therefore part of our community of developing teachers, and as such you are supported by our experienced professional academics. In the Autumn term following the course, you will then undertake an End Point Assessment to determine whether you have successfully completed the apprenticeship.

The entry requirements are the same as those for School Direct, and applications are made through UCAS. If you are interested, do get in touch for more information, and do please encourage your employer to get in touch with us.

What you’ll study

The School Direct (salaried) course is a flexible approach to teacher training. The majority of your time will be spent in the school, training in the classroom and supported by experienced teachers and mentors. You will also spend time studying at the University.

At the University you will study for the same award as other postgraduate teacher trainees except that the delivery will have more emphasis on being trained within a school environment and will involve more staff from schools:

  • Postgraduate Certificate in Education (with 60 credit points at Masters level)
  • Professional Certificate in Education.

Successful completion of the course leads to Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) and a postgraduate qualification.

You will be a registered student with NTU and your qualification will be an NTU award. This means that NTU has responsibility for the quality of your training and you will benefit from the combined expertise of the University and lead placement school. The exact form of the delivery of the year will depend on the school to which you apply.

The structure of this Primary teaching degree is designed to meet the current and developing changes in primary schools in the United Kingdom. The module structure allows sufficient flexibility to address the planned governmental curricular changes, as well as reflect effective research based practice both nationally and internationally. It is vital that the entire primary curriculum is reflected across the course and is supported by a professional studies module and is closely linked to the professional placement. The course structure is designed to support trainees in the early stages of their career as well as providing a lasting support for their future careers.

The course is built around three modules which are closely mapped to the school-based training during the year.

Learning to be a teacher (60 credits)

This module aims to equip you with an understanding and experience of planning, setting high expectations and appropriate targets; monitoring and assessment; and teaching and behaviour management. The module encourages critical reflection through personal development and evaluating professional and research-based resources in order to develop your approach to teaching and learning.

Learning to teach (20 credits)

This module will help you become a teacher who exercises responsibility: for your pupils as individuals and as members of groups within and beyond the school community; and for productive interaction both with professional colleagues including teaching and support staff in school, staff from external agencies and with other adults, including parents and carers.

Learning to teach a subject (40 credits)

Through this module you will develop your understanding of the key concepts relating to education across the range of the subjects taught in the primary school context.

You will reflect upon recent educational research and develop an understanding of what might be considered ‘best practice’ in schools. You will be challenged to develop your professional identity as a critically reflective teacher able to interrogate professional practices and values. This module
is designed to support you in engaging in an independent, professional enquiry; and developing a focus for your own research and in-depth study. It will also support you in becoming an active contributor to the knowledge base of teaching and learning as a research-informed practitioner.

Further information on what you'll study

Professional accreditation

We are accredited by the UK Government's Department for Education as a provider of Initial Teacher Training courses. Successful completion of the course leads to Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). This means you can be employed as a Newly Qualified Teacher (NQT) in a school to complete your induction year.

Don’t just take our word for it, hear from our students themselves

Student Profiles

Tom Clarke

Secondary Computer Science with ICT

I have benefited from NTU's links with schools by having two contrasting placements.

Staff Profiles

Nick Page

Senior Lecturer

School of Social Sciences

Nick Page lectures on ICT in the Primary PGCE and BA courses in Nottingham Institute of Education.

Paul Waring-Thomas

Principal Lecturer

School of Social Sciences

Paul Waring-Thomas is a Principal Lecturer in Nottingham Institute of Education in the School of Social Sciences.

Careers and employability

You will be employed as an unqualified teacher while training. The salary you receive will be dependent on the school you apply to and the subject you wish to teach. However you will usually be paid as a unqualified teacher on point one or above of the unqualified teacher scale.

It is expected that you will continue to work at the school or group of schools in which you trained, after you gain your teaching qualification. However there is no absolute guarantee of employment once you finish.

You will gain a Qualified Teaching Status if you successfully complete the course and therefore can apply to other schools as a Newly Qualified Teacher in the event that you are not employed by your training school.

You will work within the school or group of schools to which you applied. You may also be expected to spend time in a range of other key stages, or schools to observe best practice and expand your practical experience.

Entry requirements

You will need:
  • A UK honours degree or equivalent, at a minimum 2:2;
  • GCSE English, Mathematics and Science at minimum grade C or equivalent, We accept the GCSE equivalency taken via or Applicants with pending qualifications will be considered.; and
  • At least three years’ of work experience. This can be in any career and does not need to be obtained from an educational setting. Some schools may accept less than three years, depending on the nature and relevance of the experience.

Other requirements:

  • An interview with both the training school and NTU is part of the selection process; and
  • There is no longer a requirement to complete Department for Education Professional Skills Tests; and
  • Disclosure and Barring Service and Prohibition Order checks and a satisfactory health check passed prior to enrolling; and
  • Two references - one academic and one vocational.

NTU may admit a student with advanced standing beyond the beginning of a course, through an assessment of that student's prior learning, whether it is certificated or uncertificated. Our Recognition of Prior Learning and Credit Transfer Policy outlines the process and options available to these prospective students, such as recognising experiential learning or transferring to a similar course at another institution, otherwise known as credit transfer.

All prospective students who wish to apply via Recognition of Prior Learning should initially contact the central Admissions and Enquiries Team who will be able to support you through the process.

Fees and funding

Course fee

CourseHome (UK students)
School Direct Training Programme (salaried)£3,000*

Please note these fees are for 2021 entry and may be subject to change.

As a School Direct (salaried) trainee, you may not be entitled to the same financial support as trainees on other postgraduate teacher training courses. However, you will be paid a salary (determined by the school you train with).

* School Direct (salaried) students are responsible for £3,000 tuition fee. A further £3,000 is payable by the employing school.

How to apply

Applications to this teaching degree are made through UCAS Teacher Training (UTT). To apply, click the Apply online button at the top of the page.

You can search for courses on the UCAS Teacher Training and apply using a two-tier process. Apply 1 allows you to choose three teacher training courses. If you are unsuccessful in Apply 1, you can choose to apply for alternative courses during Apply 2.

When completing your application, do consider the particular features of the school, federation or alliance to which you are applying and make sure your personal statement recognises these.

Please read our notes on the University's commitment to delivering the educational services advertised.