University of Bristol, School of Education

We maintain excellent networks with local schools and with many of our alumni – as a student teacher on our PGCE programme, you would join our wide education community.

Why study teacher training at the University of Bristol? We are proud of our reputation as a leading provider of Initial Teacher Education. In our most recent Ofsted Inspection, we were awarded ‘Outstanding Provider’ status, and our programme was ranked in the top 5 of the Good Teacher Training Guide 2017. More broadly, the QS World Rankings placed the School in the top 50 education departments in the world.

Our PGCE programme is informed by both professional practice and academic excellence, reflecting our status as a research-intensive Russell Group university. You will be taught by tutors who not only have considerable direct teaching experience, but are also leading experts in teacher education, in educational fields more broadly, and in education policy.

What to expect from our PGCE

Our secondary PGCE programme caters for approximately 200 student teachers, from a wide range of backgrounds and age groups. The programme enables you to teach 11 to 19-year-olds, and leads to Qualified Teacher Status. You can choose between the core PGCE and School Direct (non-salaried) routes. We work in partnership with a range of secondary schools, academies and further education colleges within Bristol and the surrounding area.

Our relationship with you as a teacher will continue once you have completed your PGCE. As part of the PGCE programme, you gain 60 credits points. You can use these to study with us for a full Master’s degree in support of your professional development.

What you will study

The programme lasts for at least 36 weeks, starting in mid-September, and comprises three major components:
  • curriculum and professional studies – your main subject specialism;
  • educational and professional studies;
  • school experience.

We offer the following subjects for secondary-level PGCE training:

  • English
  • Geography
  • History
  • Mathematics
  • Modern Foreign Languages (French, German, Italian and Spanish)
  • Music
  • Religious Education
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Physics

Be part of our teaching community

We maintain excellent networks with local schools and with many of our alumni – as a student teacher on our PGCE programme, you would join our wide education community.


‘I felt very well prepared when I started as a Newly Qualified Teacher (NQT). The PGCE programme covered a good number of practical skills as well as the wider pedagogy and academic perspectives. I had two school placements during the PGCE and was constantly supported by the University throughout. My subject tutors were incredible and even now I know that if I was really struggling, they are only an email away and would continue to support me.’

Geography PGCE Student Teacher, 2016-17


‘I was attracted to teaching by the opportunity to immerse myself in the subject I love, to pass on my enthusiasm for maths and to see that ‘lightbulb moment’ when my students understand a new concept for the first time. The Bristol PGCE programme more than lived up to my expectations. I felt very well prepared for my NQT and the PGCE has encouraged me to focus on how to improve lessons and be the best teacher I can be.’

Maths PGCE Student Teacher, 2017-18
How to apply

Apply through UCAS Teacher Training from October through to the end of August. Visit our website for more information about the programme, including the application process and entry requirements, or watch our video to find out what it’s like to train with us.