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Manchester Primary PGCE - no maximum capacity??

Discussion in 'Thinking of teaching' started by anon331, Jan 20, 2011.

  1. I was told today that Manchester has no maximum capacity for Primary PGCE students. So as long as you meet their requirements and get through their interview, you have a place, they don't get full. I find this difficult to believe, but maybe that's just that they're strict? I don't know. Does anyone know whether this is true or not?

  2. I was told today that Manchester has no maximum capacity for Primary PGCE students. So as long as you meet their requirements and get through their interview, you have a place, they don't get full. I find this difficult to believe, but maybe that's just that they're strict? I don't know. Does anyone know whether this is true or not?

  3. Jammy-Dodger

    Jammy-Dodger New commenter

    I was on that course last year, and unless things have changed dramatically, that's not true I'm afraid. They take as many as they want from the first round of interviews (I was on the first round, luckily, and had my place by December) and just keep going until they're full, so the later you apply the less chance you've got.
    I know one girl from the course who was on the last round of interviews and they wanted her but had no space; she kept phoning and eventually someone changed their mind about doing the course so she got on.
  4. It was a friend who applied for it last year but had to pull out of interview that told me that. I didn't think that it was right, didn't see how it could be! My application was sent 2 days ago, so hopefully I'll hear soon..ish!
  5. Jammy-Dodger

    Jammy-Dodger New commenter

    Good luck. It's a tough course but most of us from last year have got jobs, so they must be doing something right!
  6. I'm expecting a pretty tough course wherever I go really. Well, hopefully go! I know it's going to be a mental year!

    I've already spoken to Colin Mills who I think is one of the tutors there and he's been quite positive about my experience, qualifications etc. so fingers crossed I'll get an interview! Can you give me any tips or advice on their interviews? I don't really know what to expect, seems to vary so much from place to place!
  7. Jammy-Dodger

    Jammy-Dodger New commenter

    Aw, Colin's lovely. I seem to remember that my interview wasn't really what I expected; I thought I'd get lots of questions about my work history and reasons for becoming a teacher etc, but they didn't really ask much about that. They showed us a film clip at the start of the day of a teacher in the classroom, and during the interview they asked me about the techniques used etc, and asked about how my experience in school related to that. There was a task which involved being given a number of objects and thinking of different lessons you could teach with them (obviously they want it as cross-curricular as possible).
    The written tests were ok - English was fine but that's my strong subject (just make sure you've revised sentence structure - adverbs, adjectives etc as I know that caught a few people out). Maths I found much harder but you do only need 40% to get in, and I think there's a slight leeway on that if needed. I'd revise ratios and percentages and equivalent fractions - can't remember now what else was there! It was definitely harder than any of the maths we did on the course.
    Others on my course were asked far more about themselves rather than teaching methods, so they obviously don't have any set questions to ask. I think they're more interested in your delivery and the way you present yourself.
  8. He does seem really nice, he's put up with so many emails from me and replied to every one of them giving me all the information and advice I need! It's actually communicating with him that has pushed Manchester up to my first choice now.

    What are the tests like? I did the skills tests on the TDA website to see whether I could pass them and did really well in all of them. I think it helps that I'm currently teaching English, in Thailand, so things like sentence structures, tenses, adverbs, adjectives etc. are all fairly fresh in my memory. And I just generally really enjoy English anyway! Maths has always been a strong subject for me so I should be fine on that. The only thing that I would be slightly concerned about is Science. I was good at Science at school and did Biology and Chemistry to AS Level so I know that I can do Science and I should know everything about the Primary Science curriculum, but just concerned that on the spot I wouldn't be able to remember smaller details of things. From what I've seen, not everyone gives a Science test anyway.

    The issue with me is that I'm in Thailand and will be up until August as I'm teaching here, so I can't just hop back for an interview. Colin has said that they could make a special case for me and arrange a video conferencing type interview via Skype or something similar. I can't find any other person who has had this, so I think I am a very special case. But it means that I don't really know what to expect at interview as obviously there are things like group discussions, presentations etc. which would be a lot harder to do. I'm also worried that they're going to spring a Government initiative or strategy or issues in education on me at the last minute and expect me to have an opinion on it! There are strategies/issues that I do know about, but I can't know everything, so might not know what they decide to ask me about, if they do! I already get a couple of Education emails but have signed up for a couple more, so hopefully if I just keep reading newsletters and updates I'll be ok with anything they might spring on me!

    I just want to know now! I've got so long to wait to hear about whether I have an interview or not and then a wait for the interview and then another wait to know if I have a place or not!

    Thank you for putting up with all my questions and taking the time to reply, I appreciate it!
  9. Hi carolineg86
    Looks like you have some really good experience, you should be fine at the interview,
    I am also looking to apply in Manchester, just out of curiosity which one did you apply for Manchester met or the other one?
  10. Ooh, which one are you applying to and for what course? I've applied for The University of Manchester, not Manchester Met.
  11. Jammy-Dodger

    Jammy-Dodger New commenter

    Sounds like you'll be absolutely fine! I have a feeling the tests on the day were harder than the skills tests, although it possibly may have just felt that way as I hadn't done any maths for years. I didn't really manage much revision as coincidentally I was travelling around Thailand and Laos when I got called for interview and only got back a couple of days before. But if you're strong on it anyway then you'll be ok - I'm not and I managed!
    Don't worry about science - you don't have to pass that one to get on the course. It's just so they can see where to place you in terms of support if you do get on. Anyway, if you've studied to AS level you won't have a problem.
    I didn't get asked anything really about government initiatives or anything like that - if you knew everything already there'd be no point in you doing the course! I really wouldn't worry about that. I had to prepare a short presentation - something about problems facing a primary teacher. I think I waffled a bit about having to teach to a strictly prescribed curriculum rather than having freedom to incorporate the pupils' interests etc. Nothing too taxing anyway! We didn't have any group interviews or discussions.
    Sounds like you've got everything you need and would have a really good chance, so really don't worry too much! They're looking for personality, enthusiasm and potential rather than the finished product.
  12. Just want to say thanks for taking the time to reply so often, you've been really helpful. You're a diamond!

    My application has now officially been sent to Manchester so hopefully I'll hear back soon, the waiting might just kill me!!

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