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I think I'm failing my course

Discussion in 'Trainee and student teachers' started by Maddie274, Sep 14, 2017.

  1. Maddie274

    Maddie274 New commenter

    Hi all. Not sure if I'm posting this in the right place, sorry if not.

    I'm currently studying primary education at York St John and I'm about to go into my 3rd year.

    I did really badly with my grades last year, coming out with a 3rd overall...so obviously I'm doubting whether there's even any point in my applying for teaching jobs.

    I have a few questions for anybody that might be able to help, anyone that has experience with this course, getting low grades or just anyone that has any opinions to offer.

    First, what are the chances of me bumping my grade up to a more 'acceptable' grade in my 3rd year? I'm not sure how the overall degrees are figured out, e.g. do they average out all your scores from 2nd and 3rd year? I have no clue. So say I work really hard in my 3rd year, is there still a chance of a 2:1 overall?

    Secondly, what are the chances of employment, do you think? Has anyone got any experience with being employed when they've achieved lower degrees? Im just worried because I'll be applying for jobs this winter, and surely employers will be looking at the 3rd I got last year and will automatically think, 'nope.'

    Also, I'm beginning to doubt teaching is for me. But I love being in a school. I'm thinking about TA/HLTA roles. Opinions?

    Sorry that this is all a ramble. I'm having a crisis!

  2. Stiltskin

    Stiltskin Star commenter

    Looking at what is on the University website, you have a very good chance of bumping it up. Assuming you were right at the bottom of a 3rd (40): if you average 55 in your final year you should scrape a 2:2 which is acceptable, average 70 and you'll get a 2:1

    Try your best this year. Do what you'd tell your children to do. Look at why they got that mark. What could you do better next time? What do you need to know.understand. If you need help, then look for it. Try talking to your Academic Services team.

    Applying for jobs, yes you're not going to look as good on paper as someone who has a 1st. Which may reduce the number of invitations to interviews, but you'll still get some. Once you're there it's going to be how you come across at interview. The person with a 1st isn't going to be necessarily be the best teacher.

    Most of all don't worry. Everyone struggles at certain points, and it's what you do at those times that helps define you. Have confidence in yourself and you'll come through it having learnt something of value. Good luck!
    pepper5 likes this.
  3. blueskydreaming

    blueskydreaming Lead commenter

    Well, why do you have to put the grade you received last year on your job applications? If you just have a browse on TES for jobs, you'll see that teaching jobs always ask you to fill in an application form, and it always focuses on your teaching experience not qualifications. So, think really hard about whatever placements you've done, and think about your strengths and weaknesses in the classroom, for example have you particularly enjoyed or done well working with SEN kids, or reception year group, etc. Mention things you've been involved in during placements, anything extra curricular, anything special you can offer (a musical instrument, sport, skill). Try to apply to schools that match your interests, e.g. a school with a high EAL percentage if you like working with these kids, a Catholic school if you're from a faith background... Really try to sell yourself in your application. You'll be offered a job based on your interview and the lesson you teach on the day, and I very much doubt they'll even ask what degree classification you're expecting. Once you're offered a job it will be dependent on you getting QTS, not a particular degree classification, and they won't need to see your degree certificate because confirmation of your QTS is available online.

    If you're not 100% sure then perhaps apply for maternity cover roles, or just tell yourself you'll complete the NQT year then reevaluate.
    pepper5 and Stiltskin like this.
  4. Maddie274

    Maddie274 New commenter

    Thank you so much, this is exactly what I needed to hear. I'm just stressing because I start my 3rd year next week and there's nothing I can do until I get that first assignment. I know what I need to do...but it's a case of will it work and will I boost up that grade. Don't know until you try, I guess.

    Thanks again :D
  5. Maddie274

    Maddie274 New commenter

    Is this true? Surely they must care a bit as it shows how much I can apply myself academically? I don't know. Hope you're right haha, thank you!
  6. blueskydreaming

    blueskydreaming Lead commenter

    Once you have your degree you would put the classification on applications, but I don't see the point of stating your 1st and 2nd year grades when you haven't completed the degree yet.

    Applying yourself academically has nothing to do with teaching really.
  7. rolls

    rolls Occasional commenter

    Your grades from last year will contribute to your final grade so it is not about whether you need to declare them or not. If you work very hard then you can still push your grades up as year two grades usually count for 30% or less of your final grade. You are correct in thinking you may find it had to get a teaching job if you get a third.
    I presume you are doing a degree with QTS. If you are now thinking that teaching is not for you one option would be to take the 240 credits you have so far and start a one year Education top up degree without QTS. I presume that York St John has one of these as they have a foundation degree but if not then there are certainly courses in places such as Leeds and Bradford where you could complete your degree.
    Starting a one year top up degree without QTS would allow you to concentrate on your grades (there are even 18 months part time options to give you an even better chance although you could not get a maintenance loan for these). It would at least ensure you had a good chance to get a good degree classification.
    Alternatively if you want to still go into teaching but don't feel you can pull things around in a year then Bradford College and possibly other HE providers in the area have a two year top up degree with QTS. This would again give you a fresh start in terms of grades and would give you longer to make a success of your studies and teaching.
    However, if you want to look at either of these options you need to act immediately as most education courses have already started. You could always apply now, take a year out and defer to 2018.
  8. Aperture94

    Aperture94 New commenter

    I studied photography at University and there was a girl on our course who, in her second year, got a really low 2:2 (she had a lot of personal issues at the time and wanted to defer the year, but it was too late). She graduated the following year with a 2:1. At my old university, the second year counted for 40%, and the last year counted for 60%.
    sabrinakat likes this.

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