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PGCE: Applying from abroad.

Discussion in 'Thinking of teaching' started by judyhelena, Apr 18, 2011.

  1. Hi everyone, I am really in need of advice and information!
    I am currently teaching English in South Korea. I hope to apply for the PGCE intake in 2012.
    My contract in Korea is coming to and end and I will go home to Ireland for one month. However I hope to come back to Korea for another year. The problem is that as far as I know I will have to travel to the UK for interviews. I also need to do the maths equivalency test so that means another trip back to the UK. It is very hard to get time off work in Korea.
    How hard is it to even get a PGCE interview?
    Am I right in thinking that interviews are held in January?
    When are equivalency tests held?
    Can anyone give me a list of colleges that provide equivalency tests? I know that UEL and London Southbank do.
    Is there anything I can do to avoid two trips to the UK and still apply?
    I have emailed a few colleges but I havn't got much of a response.
    Any help is greatly appreciated.

  2. I hadthis problem as I was teaching in Thailand. Honestly, it's next to impossible. You will have to come back for interviews but you probably will only get a couple of weeks notice, which makes flights very expensive. They might not necessarily be in January, could be February, could be after it really depends. The tests are done on your interview day I don't know who does and doesn't do them but I think it's the majority of them. So you would only need to do 1 trip to the UK. Do you have 5-10 days experience in a UK classroom? If not, you won't be accepted even though your experience in SK is far better!! Annoying I know, so if you're coming back for a month soon, arrange to do at least 5 days in a school helping or observing and put that into your application with dates if possible.

    Good luck!
  3. I applied from abroad and was accepted on to a PGCE course. I am in my NQT year now. There was a candidate from Korea who applied on my course too

    You should know well in advance when your interview date is. You will need to book the holiday. Tell the school when you sign the contract you will need to return to the UK and why. They will probably be understanding. My advice is to actually take any exams you are missing in an international school abroad. Buy an online course and study, go to the international school for the exams. I took IGCSE science in Thailand. Can you take the IGCSE in maths this year with a bit of cramming? Aren't the exams in May / June. There must be an international school in Korea. If you return soon take the exam at home. Give it a bash. You never know you might get the required grade.

    Exeter university are the only provider which do telephone interviews as far as I know. I know this as I wrote a reference for a teacher who worked for me abroad who did the course.

    Use your experience teaching in Korea wisely and angle for a job with the age range you intend to do a PGCE with in the UK.
  4. Visit the Cambridge or edexcel websites. You do not need school exp for all providers. I did not have any. Your efl exp will help.

  5. EVERY provider I contacted said that I would have to have 5 days experience in a UK primary school, regardless of having over 6 months EFL experience.

    I would suggest contacting those that you're interested in and speaking to them. I know that Manchester were willing to let me do an interview via Skype, but they were in the minority, everyone else said no. You will find it much more difficult without any UK/National Curriculum experience
  6. Kartoshka

    Kartoshka Established commenter

    I too had no UK experience when applying for a PGCE, but had been teaching abroad for two years. I was offered a place on condition that I spend 10 days in a UK primary school before starting the course. I would say that most providers do require UK experience before you start the course, so think about when you could fit this in and possibly try and contact some schools to enquire about doing it with them - if you can draw attention to the fact that you know this is a weak area for you (as they will see it) and tell them your plans to change that, it will look good :)

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