Institute of Education


PGCE Post-Compulsory (full-time)

This page provides an overview of the full-time Post-Compulsory route. For more detailed information on the pathways available (English with Literacy & ESOL, Mathematics with Numeracy, and Generic - all other subject specialisms), see PGCE Post-Compulsory Pathways

This full-time programme will help students develop the generic skills needed to teach their own subject, or develop generic and specialist subject skills in either Mathematics (including Numeracy) or English (including Literacy and/or English for Speakers of Other Languages).

Programme Information

Through taught sessions and mentored teaching practice in the workplace you will learn about employment in the sector, how to plan lessons in your subject, how to teach, engage and assess learners, how to manage the learning environment, and how to understand and use theory and research to broaden and improve your professional knowledge and expertise in teaching.

Students undertake modules to the value of 120 credits or 135 credits (for English (including Literacy and English for Speakers of Other Languages) combined route only.

The programme consists of modules to the value of 120 credits (60 at Bachelor’s level and 60 at Master’s level) or, for those on the English (with Literacy & ESOL) combined route only, 135 credits (75 at Bachelor’s level and 60 at Master’s level).

Teaching and Learning

The programme is delivered via taught sessions, (including lectures, presentations, discussions, and classroom group tasks), and a practical teaching element based in a partner-provider organisation, usually a further education college. You are also required to read widely and to carry out written assignments in your own time. The programme is assessed through written assignments, module tasks and formal and informal observations of practical teaching skills.


All students on this programme will undertake a teaching practice placement and your development as a teacher will be assessed as part of the course. You will spend at least 120 hours, working with subject-specialist mentors who support you through your placement. We are fortunate to have a good choice of colleges and other providers, as well as some outstanding mentors in the field of post-compulsory teaching, with whom we work.

Key Information

Programme starts

September 2018

Modes and duration
Full time: 1 year
Tuition Fees (2018/19)
£9,250 (FT)
Application deadlines
All applicants
Open: 26 October 2017
Close: 31 August 2018
Early application is advised as programmes may close as soon as places are filled.

Note on fees: The tuition fees shown are for the year indicated above. Fees for subsequent years may increase or otherwise vary. Further information on fee status, fee increases and the fee schedule can be viewed on the UCL Current Students website.

Level: Post-Compulsory
Age range: 14+

The programme leads to an award of a PGCE (post-compulsory) at level 7 (Master’s level), with a possible exit route at level 6 (undergraduate/Bachelor’s degree level). Following successful completion of the programme, students may apply through the Educational and Training Foundation for the QTLS licence to practice in the sector. NB: QTLS is not part of the IOE programme.

Location: London, Bloomsbury

Entry requirements
First degree

A minimum of a lower second-class UK Bachelor’s degree or an overseas qualification of an equivalent standard. Applicants with extensive work experience will be considered on an individual basis.

A levels

Not required, but Level 3 qualifications normally required in your subject specialism.


Not required, but English and Mathematics at grades A or 7 - C or 5 is highly desirable.

School experience

No experience of teaching is required. However, any experience of education, particularly in post-compulsory sector settings such as Further Education colleges, independent learning providers, local authorities, prisons, community organisations, etc, whether in a teaching role or not, is desirable.

DBS and Occupational Health

If you are made an offer you will be required to successfully complete Occupational Health and Disclosure Barring Service (DBS) Enhanced Disclosure checks. These checks are required to ensure you meet the Department for Education’s requirements for physical and mental health to teach, as well as assessing your suitability for access to children and vulnerable adults. These checks will either be carried out by UCL at a cost of £125, or by the college that employs you. More details can be found on the Entry requirements page.

Skills tests

Not required.

English Language Requirements

If your education has not been conducted in the English language, you will be expected to demonstrate evidence of an adequate level of English proficiency.

The English language level for this programme is: Good

Further information can be found on our English language requirements page.

International students

Country-specific information, including details of when UCL representatives are visiting your part of the world, can be obtained from the International Students website.

International applicants can find out the equivalent qualification for their country by selecting from the list below.

Select your country:


In previous years government-funded bursaries have been available for students specialising in English (including ESOL and Literacy) or Mathematics with Numeracy. These will be available in 2018/19 but details have not yet been confirmed. Please see the Get Into Teaching website for more details.

For a comprehensive list of the funding opportunities available at UCL, including funding relevant to your nationality, please visit the UCL Scholarships and Funding website.


Graduates of this programme are currently working for a very diverse range of employers. They typically gain employment as lecturers, classroom teachers and/or managers in FE colleges, sixth form colleges, secondary schools, independent training providers, adult education services and prisons. The programme can also serve as route towards higher qualifications.


This course will help you gain employment in a wide range of educational settings in the post-compulsory sector, in other industrial and professional contexts, and also, increasingly, in schools. As well as learning improved subject-specialist knowledge and expertise in pedagogy and assessment, you will gain a wide range of highly transferable ‘people skills’ which are essential for teachers: including empathy, patience, listening, cultural awareness and sensitivity. Through your teaching practice placement, you will also gain awareness of aspects of workplace life and the norms of professional behavior, around respect for others, equality and diversity, health and safety, rights at work, line-management and appraisal, inspection and quality assurance procedures, etc.

Why study this programme at UCL?

The post-compulsory teacher education programmes at the UCL Institute of Education (IOE) are designed to meet the training needs and qualification requirements of people who are working or would like to work in the post-compulsory sector.

Our post-compulsory PGCE qualifications are recognised by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy and provide a basis for higher qualifications, such as Master’s degrees and professional doctorates.

Following their most recent OFSTED inspection in November 2013, our post-compulsory programmes were deemed outstanding and given a Grade 1 (the highest possible grade).


The programme leads to an award of a PGCE (post-compulsory) at level 7 (Master’s level), with a possible exit route at level 6 (undergraduate/Bachelor’s degree level). Following successful completion of the programme, students may apply through the Educational and Training Foundation for the QTLS licence to practice in the sector. NB: QTLS is not part of the IOE programme.

Department: Institute of Education

Application and next steps


Students are advised to apply as early as possible due to competition for places. Those applying for scholarship funding (particularly overseas applicants) should take note of application deadlines.

Application deadlines
All applicants
31 August 2018

Early application is advised as programmes may close as soon as places are filled.

For more information see our Applications page.

Apply now

Programme last modified on 14 November 2017 at 15:03 by UCL Student Recruitment Marketing.

Sami Choudhary

Sami Choudhary, PGCE Post-Compulsory (Mathematics with Numeracy), 2016

" I have one million good things to say about my experience at the IOE. I thoroughly enjoyed my time on the PGCE Post-Compulsory (Mathematics with Numeracy) and it has fully prepared me for my career in teaching. The staff were very supportive and I now miss the IOE immensely.

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