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Subject Knowledge Enhancement (SKE) in Biology, Chemistry or Physics Certificate of Attendance

  • Level(s) of Study: Postgraduate taught / Short course; Non-credit
  • Start Date(s): May 2023
  • Duration: 8 weeks full-time
  • Study Mode(s): Full-time
  • Campus: Clifton Campus
  • Entry Requirements:
    More information


Our Subject Knowledge Enhancement (SKE) course will develop your scientific knowledge to enable you to undertake a PGCE or School Direct Training Programme and train for a career in secondary Science teaching.

SKE courses are available for all three science specialisms and are intended to support you before you begin an initial teacher training (ITT) course which would lead to Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). The condition of entry is an offer of a place on an ITT course.

OptionSKE Science with BiologySKE Science with ChemistrySKE Science with Physics
11 - 16 curriculumYesYesYes

What you’ll study

This 200 hour 11 - 16 SKE course, delivered over eight weeks, is designed to help you develop broad science subject knowledge and prepare you to teach Biology, Chemistry and Physics effectively up to GCSE level. Four weeks will be delivered entirely online to allow a flexible approach and the remaining four weeks will comprise of three full days face to face delivery with follow-up online activities.

Future teachers of Science need to be familiar with subject knowledge across the three disciplines in order to teach to secondary pupils. This Subject Enhancement (SKE) course has been designed with the aim of helping students develop a deeper understanding of the KS3 and 4 curriculum with an opportunity to explore aspects of KS5 in subject specialisms. To prepare students for the ITT training year we will explore disciplinary and substantive knowledge within all three sciences, as well as exploring key pedagogical skills such as the use of practicals, modelling, maths and technology to deliver lessons.

The curriculum is broadly based on the national programmes for study for KS3 and KS4, enabling you to teach the 11 - 16 curriculum with confidence.

How you’re taught

The SKE in Biology, Chemistry or Physics Course runs from 22 May 2023 to 14 July 2023.

During face to face teaching attendance at the University is Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday 9.30 am to 4.30 pm. During the face to face teaching weeks Thursday and Friday are not spent on campus however there will be directed online study set for these days.

During the four fully online weeks of the course, materials will be provided which can be completed flexibly by the student (approx. 25 hours per week engagement expected).

Staff Profiles

Philippa Baker

Senior Lecturer

School of Social Sciences

Philippa Baker

Ruth Richards (Dr )

Senior Lecturer

School of Social Sciences

Ruth Richards (Dr )

Careers and employability

This course is designed for graduates with a degree in a subject other than Biology, Chemistry or Physics who wish to train as secondary Science teachers. You must already hold an offer of a place on either a School Direct or PGCE course to be accepted on a SKE course.

Trainees that continue and successfully complete either a PGCE or School Direct course which leads to a recommendation for Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) are ideally placed to pursue a career as a teacher in a secondary school or college.

The SKE courses are taken ahead of ITT during which school or college experience is central to the course and short time will be spent in schools during the year. Students on the ITT year are formally observed by their subject mentor.

Campus and facilities

Entry requirements

Entry to our SKE courses is available to those who hold the offer of a place on a postgraduate initial teacher training course, and for whom the provider offering that place has made completion of a SKE course a condition of their offer.

Fees and funding

SKE courses are funded by the Department for Education (DfE). Those eligible for the course will receive a tax free bursary of £175 per week for the duration of the course (subject to confirmation by DfE).

How to apply

If an ITT provider makes completion of a SKE course a condition of their offer of a place on an ITT course, then you should contact us directly at so that we can provide you with further information and secure your place on your course.

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