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PGCE or not. Having major doubts

Discussion in 'Modern foreign languages' started by JimEd70s, Jul 13, 2015.

  1. Doubts are looming. Having received no funding for a PhD (1st choice) and now have a PGCE as an option. However, after school visits earlier this year and with much negative feedback from teachers leaving the profession I have doubts. Doubts about the level at which I would teach (low and repetitive), doubts about being stuck in the UK and doubts about low pay. I also wish to move abroad. PGCE will limit this option.

    However, in my early 40s, it is proving impossible to change in any other direction. Too experience / old for entry level job in other professions. I'm trapped by what some might see as a good option and others not.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Caity52

    Caity52 New commenter

    I would say if you have doubts as grave as these you should not do it. I find teaching very rewarding and fulfilling but it was not my second choice career and I was always sure I wanted to do it. I think if you go into it disillusioned you are likely to find it a trial. That won't be good for either you or the children you work with.
     
  3. Vladimir

    Vladimir Senior commenter

    Just offering another point of view for a little balance here, but teaching was never my first choice of career and I ended up applying on a whim to a PGCE course about five days before the course started. I think I saw an advert in the paper offering vacant spots on the course and went for a looksy. They snapped me up! Well, why wouldn't they? It's wonderful ME after all! Admittedly, I was indifferent to begin with as I had never considered a career in teaching, but I found an unexpected interest in it from the outset, right from the initial compulsory week in a primary school, so it worked out for me.

    Having a PGCE didn't limit my options for foreign residence. I took my certificate and ran as far and as fast as I could and never looked back. Well, hardly ever. Bit o' G&S there. I can honestly say that doing the PGCE was the best career move I have ever made because it set me up as a teacher in an environment where most didn't have the first clue what they were doing and other fulfilling avenues opened up to me that otherwise would not have done.

    Having said that, the PGCE year was also a very difficult one because on top of learning to teach a subject that is not particularly liked by most pupils, you have to learn to deal with the rabble and some classes are full of evil, little toerags whose mission seems to be to disrupt. You have to try and teach across that. That is a taste of things to come for the rest of your career unless you happen to land in an amazing school.

    I agree with Caity52 in that you seem very negative already, so it might not be the right choice for you. On the other hand, if you can stay the course, the qualification is worth having if it suits the direction you are planning to go in. Remember that you also have to do an NQT year to get fully qualified now, on top of your PGCE year.

    If you are thinking of going to a country like Australia you might find your PGCE readily accepted there. Did you say on another thread that you were interested in social sciences? Why, then, aren't you looking into a PGCE in Humanities? Just wondered.

    Teaching MFL in the UK might not be what you think it's going to be. Can you sing? Can you dance? Are you 'creative'? Are you willing to embrace educational quackery as pedagogy? Just opening a can there as a finale. Enjoy the worms! They're big, fat and juicy!
     

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