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PGCE Advice Needed!

Discussion in 'Thinking of teaching' started by James_1987, Apr 16, 2011.

  1. I had a few questions about PGCE applications and wondered if anyone could help me out. I have an undergraduate degree in Philosophy and an MA in Art Theory and I'm wanting to apply for an Art and Design PGCE next year. I haven't got any classroom experience behind me at the moment, but I'm pretty sure teaching is for me, based on my own experiences as a student and listening to my mum and my grandparents who have all been in teaching. Although I haven't got a degree in practical Art and Design, I studied it at A-Level and got a really good grade in the end, and I'm keeping up the practical work in my own time. I'm looking to get as much classroom experience in Art lessons as I can over the next few months.

    I wanted to ask about how picky universities are about the relevance of your degree to the PGCE subject you want to study. I have a decent knowledge of Art from my A-level and my MA, but I don't have the practical degree to show it. I also wanted to ask about the best way to find classroom experience in specific subjects such as Art, as I'm not sure where to begin!

    Thanks!
     
  2. I can't speak for all universities, but I can tell you that on my English PGCE (which you'd think would be a fairly strict specialty) there were three people with a degree in something other than English - a law degree, an economics degree and...something else, I can't remember.
    So, in sum, it depends. Apply, go for it, see what happens.
    But I would definitely say, get some experience. A week or two volunteering at a school, experience in youth organisations, that sort of thing. Your degree might not be an issue, but they are big on experience.
     
  3. As GLM says... definitely get some classroom experience. I think if your personal statement for UCAS will be really hard to write, and you won't have examples to draw on in your interview. Also will help you know more that teaching is for you - seeing the classroom from a teachers perspective is so different from when you were a pupil, and art gcse and a level may have changed loads, even though you didn't do it long ago.
    Good luck, and definitely go for it. Just a thought... art courses could end up being cut even more by the government next year. Would you want to teach RE? Might be a back up to think about in case there are places for that, as you have a philosophy degree.
     
  4. Sparkle's right - RE is a safer option to go for, as with the English bac. the humanities subjects will be 'busier' and more jobs will be available.
    Sparkle's also right about classroom experience - believe me. You can be as knowledgable as you like vicariously, but universities can get pretty sniffy about experience. I got turned down first time round due to lack of experience, even though I'd done two weeks in a school, been a music instructor for 4 years, taught an English catch-up class and A-level revision classes.
    Experience. Get it.
     

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