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What should I apply for?

Discussion in 'Career clinic' started by veitchy10, Dec 16, 2015.

  1. veitchy10

    veitchy10 New commenter


    I am currently working as a Teaching Assistant in a Secondary school but eagerly searching to find my first teaching post. I have successfully completed both a degree in Events Management (BA) and PCET (PGCE) and should be gaining (fingers crossed) QTLS in April 2016. Unlike other PGCE's my subject specialism isn't on my PGCE. I taught BTEC Business whilst at my placement as part of my PCET course, as it was the closest subject area available for me to teach as organised by my university. However my interest for teaching does not only go as far as Business. I have a keen interest/desire to teach in a number of subject areas such as PE, Geography, Maths, Citizenship to name a few. But am I qualified to apply for a teaching post in these subject areas?

    Please help me as I don't want to waste my time applying for jobs I have no chance of being successful for.

  2. TheoGriff

    TheoGriff Star commenter


    Well in theory you could teach anything, as long as you can get QTS equivalence through your QTLS.

    This just means that you are a qualified teacher for teaching in a maintained school in England and Wales.

    But in practice, if you have no subject qualification and no subject experience, you will find it hard to be considered an appropriate candidate by a school.

    I am now going to say a few things that you will not like. There is, frankly, no way of saying these nicely. If you would rather not hear some very blunt comments then stop reading now. I have hidden the blunt bits in a spoiler so you can avoid them.

    Firstly, just because you are interested in teaching these extra subjects does not make you a suitable teacher of P.E., Geography, Maths or whatever. In particular P.E. has a very heavy load of H&S issues of which you must be aware. I am sorry, but I cannot imagine any Head thinking of appointing someone who might be interested in teaching another subject with no background in it. Not even Maths, where there is a lack of teachers overall.

    And secondly I am in despair that any College, University or whatever takes people on to an ITT course without the academic background to teach a subject in a school, if that's what your aim was on joining. They did not do you a good turn here.

    My only advice here is to ask your University Tutor what subject she or he feels are appropriate for you, which ones they have prepared you to teach, which ones, when they enrolled you on the course, they expected you to be a good candidate for on completion of your training.

    I'm sorry that I cannot be more encouraging here.

    Best wishes

  3. Middlemarch

    Middlemarch Star commenter

    I wouldn't employ someone with the qualifications you describe as a teacher of any of those subjects - I always want specialists.

    I'm curious - why did you do the incongruous (to teaching) degree in events management if you wanted to teach?
    DYNAMO67 likes this.
  4. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    You are unlikely to get a position in a secondary school, sorry. I had to look up what a PCET was. I was not that impressed with what I found really. It sounds wishy-washy at best. Events management is so, so specific that I simply don't envisage a post compulsory course where you are likely to be in demand. Unless you are very fortunate, and I am considering the fact that there is somewhat of a teacher shortage, I just don't see how you will earn a stable living in teaching...

    BTW. After doing a degree like events management, why have you not gone in to event management?
  5. veitchy10

    veitchy10 New commenter

    Firstly thank you for your honest responses, as this is my first post in a forum I was intrigued to see what sort of response that I would get.

    My decision to study Events Management was because I wanted to become an Events Manager. However similar to many other people's experiences at university, once I was enrolled on the course in my second year the course content changed dramatically compared to what I had signed up for. Rather than quitting I decided to see it out and get my degree. Whilst weighing up which direction that I wanted to go in life along the way. Which I decided that I wanted to teach. After consultation with the career advisers at my University I was pointed in the direction of the PCET course. I perhaps didn't explain myself well enough for this forum but I am very competent in most aspects of Business enough to show that I would be a suitable candidate for a teaching role, but due to lack of demand in my local area this was why I was looking at options in other subject areas, but I can see that this doesn't seem plausible from the responses so far. Though I do have a background in PE but not necessarily in a school context. I have coaching badges in numerous sports and have worked as a sports coach for over 3 years prior to going to university. I am currently re-sitting A-level Maths also.

    As I said previously I am very appreciative of the honesty in the responses as it gives me a real sense of my current situation. However if someone could offer less doom and gloom advice and a more practical solution of what I can do to pursue my career in teaching then I would be grateful. In no way am I dismissing what people are saying to me, but I have a real passion for teaching and I know it is something that I am more than capable of doing. I can't change the qualifications and experience I have gained so far, I can only work with them to keep me moving forwards.
  6. Flere-Imsaho

    Flere-Imsaho Star commenter

    Is the PCET only in post-compulsory education? It seems an odd choice of qualification if you were interested in teaching in schools. I'd get a job as a TA or similar but get a proper PGCE at the same time.
    DYNAMO67 likes this.
  7. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    Agree totally. I don't know why you didn't look at doing a Business Studies PGCE unless your course content wasn't good enough to get on. If that was the case then I am afraid that this speaks volumes. I feel sorry for you in the case that this course has seemingly taken your money and given you magic beans.

    Would it be worth looking to OU to do some more business modules that could develop your degree into a more useful one for teaching? I am probably not best placed to advise on this..

    PS.... PCET was really, really bad advice from your uni careers service.... Was it by chance on of their own courses? I would be complaining.
  8. MineField

    MineField New commenter

    Have you thought about working as a trainer instead? Many companies employ trainers who are specifically there to train their staff - a fair few jobs seem to come up in this sector on job sites. Someone I know does this, he's worked for various companies/government agencies over the years, and currently works for a group of colleges, and he trains the lecturers, not on what to lecture, but on the tools they use for doing their lecturing eg. the college group might bring in a new e-learning platform, so he would train them up on how to use it.

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