Teacher Education
Start date(s)
September 2023
Study Mode
Full time (1 year)

Course overview

When you work with primary-age children you really can make a difference every day. It might be the moment when a child starts to recognise letters and sounds, or learns to fasten their shoes independently; it could be when they’re inspired by a science experiment and understand chemical reactions for the first time. In the primary classroom, children need motivating and engaging so that every day provides a new possibility to learn. There is nothing more rewarding than being the teacher leading that adventurous learning journey.

The 3-7 programme prepares you to specialise in teaching pupils within their first few years of schooling as well as a fundamental understanding of the primary curriculum. In this role, you will have school experiences in Early Years Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1.  You will become experienced in delivering the Early Years and Key Stage 1 Curricular, teaching the essential knowledge to enable children to become confident, independent thinkers and the skills needed to prepare them for the rest of their school years and beyond.

All our PGCE Primary courses lead to Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) and the award of a level 7 Postgraduate Certificate in Education.

About this course

Our PGCE Primary courses have been designed specifically to provide supported development of your teaching skills and a gradual introduction to your new profession.

Stage one – Introducing and Preparing (September to December)

University-based and School-based training

During the first stage, you will spend time at University where you will be introduced to the whole of the primary curriculum. You will gradually build knowledge and understanding of how pupils learn best and will have an opportunity to observe the planning and delivery of each subject when you go into school. University and School-based training are intrinsically linked so each week you will be able to review what you have learned at University and apply this in school. 

As stage 1 progresses, you will complete a longer period of time in school. Working alongside an experienced class teacher and mentor, you will have the opportunity to co-teach and co-plan lessons across the curriculum. You will begin teaching phonics and maths and will gain an understanding of how pupils learn through areas of provision. You’ll also spend time focusing on CPD activities that will enhance your teaching applications and make you more employable.

The curriculum is divided into two main areas:

Primary Professional Studies

You’ll learn strategies to tackle issues that you will face in your training placements. These strategies will help to develop your understanding of teaching and learning, the primary curriculum and educational policy. Key domains covered include behaviour management, pedagogy, curriculum, assessment and professional behaviours.

Subject knowledge and applied pedagogy

You will develop Early Years and Key Stage 1 curriculum knowledge and understanding in English, Mathematics and Science. You’ll also explore the broader curriculum and observe and reflect on best practice across the whole curriculum.

Stage two – Developing and Securing (January to March)

University-based and School-based training

Your University-based training will comprise the same elements as stage 1, but you’ll focus on building on the knowledge you’ve already developed to prepare for your next school-based training. There will be an opportunity to reflect on your experiences in the first stage and to set developmental targets throughout this stage both with University and School-based mentors. You will receive further training on the curriculum and planning and delivering sequences of learning. You will continue to receive training in Primary Professional Studies. 

During your second placement, you will continue to receive training and you will develop your teaching skills further, usually in a different school, teaching a contrasting age phase to your first placement. You'll continue to focus on English and Mathematics, alongside the wider curriculum. You will develop your understanding of how schools use assessment to map pupils' learning progress journey.

Stage three – Refining and Embedding (March to June)

University-based and School-based training

Having developed and applied your subject and curriculum knowledge, you’ll spend some time at University completing CPD activities that will prepare you for your Early teaching career. These activities will include responses to current priorities in primary education, support for your first employment, and optional enhancements to develop your professional profile.

You’ll usually stay in the same school as your stage 2 placement until the end of the programme, teaching another age phase. This will support you in putting everything you’ve learned into practice, you'll continue to observe but also teach all subjects and areas of provision in stage 3. You will begin to develop an understanding of the wider responsibilities across the school. You will continue to receive excellent mentoring and coaching in school.

Transition placement

After you’ve completed all three stages of your placements, you’ll complete a two-week transition placement in the same school. This placement will help you prepare for graduate employment as a teacher, as well as giving you the chance to explore any aspects of primary teaching that have particularly interested you. Past trainees have completed this placement in pupil referral units, nurseries, and special provision.

Qualified Teacher Status

During each stage of school-based training, you will be formatively assessed and your progress mapped against core competence statements. A summary judgment will be made at the end of each stage. This summary will provide you with further information about your areas of strength and targets to develop moving forwards. By the end of your training in school (stage 3) you will be expected to have met the Teachers’ Standards and a Summative Assessment will be made using the standards as a benchmark. When you meet the Teachers’ Standards you are then recommended for QTS.


You will study a variety of modules across your programme of study. The module details given below are subject to change and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

You will study a variety of modules across your programme of study. The module details given below are subject to change and are the latest example of the curriculum available on this course of study.

Our PGCE Primary courses are one-year, full-time programmes structured in three stages to gradually build the knowledge and experience you’ll need to become a confident, resilient teacher. Each stage consists of carefully aligned and interwoven University-based training and School-based training. Training delivered at the University relates directly to opportunities to learn how the curriculum is being taught in school. All the curriculum is delivered by expert colleagues employed by the University and experienced mentors working in our school partnerships.


1 - September to December

School A
Introducing and Preparing

A guided and supported induction to classroom practice and the primary curriculum

You will have:

- A six week initial period of integrated University-based training and school experience days

- Eight-week school-based training experience with additional curriculum training at University

2 - January to March

School B
Developing and Securing

Broadening your experience, planning, assessing and reviewing sequences of learning and reflective practice

You will have:

- Continued training at University

- A second eight weeks school-based training and continued subject and professional studies tuition

3 - March to June

School B
Refining and Embedding

Curriculum enhancement and evaluation, with eventual transition to the Early Career Framework

You will have:

- Final eight weeks school-based training and a two-week transitional placement

- Support with employment and transition into your first teaching role and the Early Career Framework

Learning and Teaching

At Leeds Trinity we aim to provide an excellent student experience and provide you with the tools and support to help you achieve your academic, personal and professional potential.

Our Learning, Teaching and Assessment Strategy delivers excellence by providing the framework for:

  • high quality teaching
  • an engaging and inclusive approach to learning, assessment and achievement
  • a clear structure through which you progress in your academic studies, your personal development and towards professional-level employment or further study.

We have a strong reputation for developing student employability, supporting your development towards graduate employment, with relevant skills embedded throughout your programme of study.

We endeavour to develop curiosity, confidence, courage, ambition and aspiration in all students through the key themes in our Learning and Teaching Strategy:

  • Student Involvement and Engagement
  • Inclusion
  • Integrated Programme and Assessment Experience
  • Digital Literacy and Skills
  • Employability and Enterprise

To help you achieve your potential we emphasise learning as a collaborative process, with a range of student-led and real-world activities. This approach ensures that you fully engage in shaping your own learning, developing your critical thinking and reflective skills so that you can identify your own strengths and weaknesses, and use the extensive learning support system we offer to shape your own development.

We believe the secret to great learning and teaching is simple: it is about creating an inclusive learning experience that allows all students to thrive through:

  • Personalised support
  • Expert lecturers
  • Strong connections with employers
  • An international outlook
  • Understanding how to use tools and technology to support learning and development


You’ll be assessed on your subject knowledge in English (including phonics), Mathematics and other subject areas through directed tasks.

Assessments in school are formative and build across the year. They provide you with a clear understanding of where your strengths lie and areas for development.

You’ll also complete two level 7 Master’s assignments to test your ability to be critically reflective and research-led in your approach to teaching.

Entry Requirements

Leeds Trinity University is committed to recruiting students with talent and potential and who we feel will benefit greatly from their academic and non-academic experiences here. We treat every application on its own merits; we value highly the experience you illustrate in your personal statement.

The following information is designed to give you a general overview of the qualifications we accept. If you are taking qualifications that are not included below, please contact our Admissions Office who will be happy to advise you.

  • An honours degree
  • GCSE Grade C (or 4, or accepted equivalent) English, Mathematics and Science. Suitable personal and intellectual qualities required for teaching in school. If you do not already have the appropriate GCSEs, or if you are unable to provide proof of your grades, please refer to the GCSE Equivalency information below.
  • The commitment, attitudes and values appropriate to those of a primary teacher
  • The ability to read effectively and communicate clearly and accurately in spoken and written standard English.

Strong applicants also have experience in primary schools.

GCSE Equivalency

If you do not already have the appropriate GCSEs, or if you are unable to provide proof of your grades, we can accept GCSE equivalency tests taken with A Star or Birmingham City University (BCU) Further details are emailed to applicants who accept offers with us.

Fees and finance


For information about our tuition fees please visit our Student Fees and Finance pages. 

How to apply

Apply through the Department for Education (Apply for teacher training - GOV.UK (

You will need to create an account to apply and when you apply you can make four choices and you should complete all sections of the application in full.

You can search for the course you want to apply for by searching by location or course provider and then by subject. Find postgraduate teacher training courses - GOV.UK (

There's no set deadline, but when the course is full it will show as having no vacancies on the  DfE Apply site.

What happens next?

Updates on your application will be provided through your DfE application.

If you receive an offer 

You will receive information about the offer conditions and deadlines from our Admissions team.

Catholic Certificate in Religious Studies (CCRS)

Achieve an additional qualification alongside your PGCE with the Catholic Certificate in Religious Studies

Although the CCRS isn't compulsory, it is a key qualification and pre-requisite for teachers who are looking to work in the Catholic school sector. The course aims to ensure you have the basic knowledge, understanding and appreciation of the beliefs and principles of the Catholic Faith while providing a basis for further study.