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Missing A Level for IoE - advice please!

Discussion in 'Thinking of teaching' started by Boosid, Sep 14, 2011.

  1. I'm applying for the PGCE Primary this year. My first choice institution is IoE and my second is Goldsmiths. Although the appeal of both of these places is practically equal I met a few PGCE students during my work experience who all agreed that IoE was the best place to train (their words, not mine and interestingly they were from both Goldsmiths and IoE too!). I am natuarlly drawn to Goldsmiths because I come from a creative background and feel my skills and personality will lend themselves well to studying there. However, the employability factor is massive for me and gauging from my work experience where all IoE PGCE students had jobs first, it seems that is the best place to go.
    For those reasons I have decided to put IoE as my first choice however I notice that they require 3 A Levels, which I do not have. I have straight A's in all my GCSEs, and went on to get 4AS levels. I then dropped two because I was auditioning for dance school and was training pretty intensively. My two A Levels are in History and French and they are good grades, so I hope it comes across that I am academically capable but just had different priorities at that point in my life.
    Will I be instantly written off for not having the required 3 A levels? Should I miss the IoE off my application and go straight for Goldsmiths? Or shall I give it a go and hope that my other experience and qualifications backed up by my personal statement show them that Iam still a good candidate for the course?
    You advice would be hugely appreciated... I have been running round in circles about this and will continue to do so until the GTTR opens!!

  2. What is your degree in, and class, and from which uni? This counts more than A levels.
  3. Ah yes. My degree is a 2:1 in Musical Theatre validated by City University and accredited by the Council for Dance Education and Training. Obviously this wasn't an academic course but it is from one of the best places to train. I decided to give up dancing about 2 years ago (I am getting old!) I then went on to gain more classroom experience in my holiday while working in a managerial role in an office.

    Without going in to too much detail on here, I feel I have stacks of relevant experience and skills which I have gone into great detail in on my personal statement and could abck up in an interview but, but I am mostly concerned about this missing A Level stoppping me from even getting a look in and not being invited for an interview.

    I am really looking for someone that knows. Who has perhaps gone to IoE without the right grades and either been accepted/turned down in spite of/because of those qualifications. If the 3 a levels is written in stone then I will leave IoE off my application and go straight for Goldsmiths.
  4. Hi there!

    I don't precisely know the answer BUT I was in a similar position last year. I have 2 A-Levels as well and was considering IOE as a possibility. I e-mailed them to enquire whether it was worth my time or if there would be any chance of an interview with 'just' 2 A-Levels. They took about a month to reply by which point I had finished my application and had applied elsewhere. I decided that it wasn't worth the risk (since I could only apply to two places). I also felt that if it took them that long to reply I didn't want to go somewhere like that. (I do realise, however, that if I had really wanted to go to the IOE I would've called and asked).

    So, I guess, what I'm saying is either call them and ask or decide whether it's really where you want to go. I've just started at LSBU and I'm really happy with there so far (still only the first week!) I chose them because I liked the sound of the course and its prospects. It sounds like you really like the sound of Goldsmiths so maybe look into them a bit more?

    Again, I can only offer my opinion because I decided to not apply to the IOE. Good luck whatever happens!!
  5. Hey rumblejungle,

    Thank you so much for such a brilliant response. You mentioned that it took them a month to reply, what did they say when they did? I have been mulling this over for ages but I think you are right and I should bite the bullet and give admissions a call. Funny, not once did that occur to me and something that would be "ok" to do.

    Great to hear that you are happy at LSBU. That is probably third on my list actually so great to hear a good report.
  6. I've tried to look for the e-mail but I obviously deleted it (I can get ratty about 'lateness'!!) But I'm fairly certain I remember it basically said have a go and apply, which wasn't particularly helpful for me or you! I saw myself as having decent experience in schools but still didn't want to take the risk. Obviously by the time I read their e-mail I'd moved on anyway!

    I do think you should call if you are serious about it though. Hassle them! It's the only way, sometimes!

    Good luck with your application whatever you decide. It's an exciting time!
  7. Kartoshka

    Kartoshka Established commenter

    Definitely ring and ask... but personally I'd be more worried about your degree subject, as for Primary they're quite keen that you have a degree in an NC subject. So when you ring, I'd ask about that too.
  8. I agree. While your degree is kind of related to Music and Drama, which are NC subjects, the fact it is not academic as you describe it will raise questions. What training providers look for in your degree, esp for Primary PGCE, is its relevance to primary teaching, and an indication of your academic ability. The latter is opften overlooked but is a vital part of PGCE, as you will be following a course of academic study at Graduate (H) or Postgraduate (M) level, and they need to ensure you have the necessary intellectual ability and equipment to do so successfully. While lack of experience can largely be overcome through school placements, there isn't much they can do if a student lacks certain level of academic ability.
    To help with your application, analyse your modules and point out those that are directly relevant to primary teaching, and indicate the academic content of your course.
  9. I also looked at the IoE PGCE and decided to call them, unfortunately they confirmed that I needed 3 A' levels to be considered for their course. It may be worth ringing to double check though.

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