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Doing PGCE in subject with unrelated degree - job prospects?

Discussion in 'NQTs and new teachers' started by AnnaBakerMusic, Jul 27, 2019.

  1. AnnaBakerMusic

    AnnaBakerMusic New commenter

    Hi all.

    I've noticed a lot of disparity between training providers regarding the qualifications needed to do a PGCE. Some require only that you have an A Level in the subject you wish to train in (and complete an SKE) and others want your degree to be 50% related to the subject you want to teach. That being said, the majority of jobs I have seen advertised state that they want the applicant to have a first degree in a relevant subject.

    For those of you who have trained in a subject you only had an A Level in and NOT a degree, have you struggled to find work?

  2. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    For teaching jobs?!?!?!?!
    What on earth kind of jobs are you looking at?

    Depending on the subject, for example physics/maths, many schools are happy to have someone who has a GCSE in it teaching the class.
    For music (looking at your username) schools can be more picky.
  3. AnnaBakerMusic

    AnnaBakerMusic New commenter

    Hello, sorry but I don’t know what you mean by ‘teaching jobs’? Am I misreading what you’re saying?

    What I meant was, if you were to train in a subject that isn’t your degree subject, would you struggle to find a teaching job in that subject after training?
  4. Bouncyb22

    Bouncyb22 New commenter

    As caterpillartobutterfly said it depends upon your subject. However most schools are in desperate need of teachers that that will take anyone who has trained in that subject.
    I personally don’t have a degree in the subject I teach and had no problems finding a job after my PGCE.
  5. AnnaBakerMusic

    AnnaBakerMusic New commenter

    Hello, what do you teach?
  6. cheesypop

    cheesypop Senior commenter

    When I interviewed for my PGCE, they said they were not sure about accepting me on the course because I had a dual honours degree (history and politics) and I was applying for a history PGCE. This was a good while ago, there were an awful lot of history teachers around and they could afford to be picky who they let on the course. I got on, but I did have to demonstrate that my politics modules did have a history component. So it could be that getting on to the PGCE could be an issue. A lot depends on the subject.

    In terms of jobs, once you’ve got a PGCE I think it can be the class of degree that can be an issue? I’ve worked with more than one set of SLT who (if they can choose) won’t shortlist anyone with a 2:2 or below. Again, it depends on subject.

    If you’ve got a music degree but train to teach maths they will probably bite your hand off - a maths teacher who can also run the orchestra!
  7. peter12171

    peter12171 Star commenter

    As others have said, it can depend on the subject and how important it is to find someone for it. I trained to teach history, having done a joint degree in history and music. Since qualifying, my posts have been teaching English, although the last time I studied English was when I did my O levels.

    It is worth remembering that the training qualifies someone to teach. They might have a specialism, but they can be employed to teach anything.
  8. Bouncyb22

    Bouncyb22 New commenter

    I teach Geography. In fact my PGCE provider accepted someone with a drama degree onto their Geography PGCE course this last year and that person managed to find a job!

    I actually disagree with @cheesypop about the idea that the class of a degree can make a difference. Many of the people I trained with had first class degrees but were rejected without interview due to their supporting/cover statement (for one girl I know it was an absolute mess!). However, I do believe that private schools are usually more fussy about degree type and result.
  9. blueskydreaming

    blueskydreaming Lead commenter

    Some state schools want to emulate private schools, so do care about degree class (although probably not that many). It was no coincidence that both myself and the other new starter at my NQT school had 1st class degrees - a certain member of SLT had decided that this was the way to go. He had also created this Charlie's Angels group of female HODs (creepy). We're English teachers though, so no messy cover letters :D

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