The postgraduate community is a vibrant and welcoming community, comprising around one fifth of the University’s student population across our three sites in Kent.

Professor Susan Millns, Dean of the Graduate College

How do you want to study?


18 months


TEF Silver


Our PGCE Primary Flexible course is ideal if you are not able to commit to a full-time or fixed part-time route into teaching, or if you wish to have some recognition taken of existing experience as a teacher or lecturer.

One of the key benefits of the course is that you can tailor your studies around your existing commitments. With much of your study undertake independently through online learning, you choose when to engage with your studies. All students are supported with academic work by a range of experienced tutors. 

Our PGCE Primary Flexible course is designed to fit around your requirements. It can take between 18 months and three years, depending on individual circumstances and experience, and has been designed to enable you to meet the standards for Qualified Teacher Status. It also provides the opportunity to gain 60 Master's level credits.

Entry requirements

A good honours degree (2:2 or above), English, maths and science at GCSE (Grade C or above) or equivalent. Successful completion of the Occupational Health Clearance and a satisfactory Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check. You will also need to be committed to becoming the best teacher you can be.

If English is not your first language you require an IELTS overall score of 6.0 with no element below 5.5 for most standard undergraduate and postgraduate courses. There are some exceptions and if the IELTS requirement differs it will be specified on the course page.

Hons Degree

All about the course

During this course you will study three core modules. 

  • Curriculum and Pedagogy
  • Contemporary Issues in Education
  • Researching Teaching and Learning.

They are completed in a different order for the Flexi course CiE, RTL, C&P. 

All learning on the course is designed to complement professional practice and the academic study will be informed by and inform practice.

You will complete your module work online, and receive tutor support when you need it.

You will complete three school placements of varying lengths dependent on your previous and existing experience. Placement 1 - 20 days; Placement 2 - 40 days; and Placement 3 - 60 days. Placements 1 and 2 can be done on a part-time basis of three or four consecutive days a week, but placement 3 MUST be done on a full-time basis.

There is the possibility of gaining exemption from placement 1, if certain criteria are met, including evidence from previous teaching experience if you have worked as an Unqualified Teacher. 

You are obliged to attend a minimum of 12 core teaching days at our Canterbury Campus. These cover the core and foundation subjects, are taught by subject specialists and are very highly evaluated.

On completing this course, you will be able to enter the teaching profession with confidence in a range of national and international settings. You may also go on to complete a Master's degree or enter into other education-related professions.

How you’ll learn

You will be taught through a combination of online materials, face-to-face seminars, group and individual tutorials (these can be face-to-face or via Skype/Facetime/telephone/email) as well as receiving support in school whilst you are on placement.

The face-to-face seminars are held in Canterbury on Fridays and Saturdays throughout the year. These offer the opportunity to network with your colleagues and have access to your tutors who are subject specialists. These days are fun, informative and designed to provide a theoretical underpinning to your learning. They also offer ideas and suggestions for activities to try out when on school placement and time to answer any queries or concerns you might have.

From the very start of the course you are allocated a personal tutor who will support you throughout your PGCE. They will provide you with pastoral, academic and school experience support. The development of this strong relationship is a key aspect of your time on the course.

You will also have other subject tutors who will offer guidance both for academic work and school placements. You are welcome to contact tutors and arrange tutorials (either face-to-face or virtual) whenever you feel it would be useful.

At the start of your course, you will choose the duration of your PGCE. You can choose between 18, 24 or 36 months and follow either a 3-7 or 5-11 route. There is some flexibility in your choice of time scales and if you feel you want to choose a different duration, you may have the opportunity to do this subject to agreement of the programme director.

Feedback is provided online. Tutors are available to you if you need further guidance. As you will progress on the course at your own rate, it is difficult to determine how many hours of study a week are required. An example of the hours of study required if you choose to complete the course in 18 months would be approximately two days of study a week. Most students complete the course within 18 months, but you have the option to extend to a maximum of three years, if you wish. 

Upon completion of the PGCE Primary Flexible course, you will receive either the Postgraduate Certificate in Education Primary or the Professional Graduate Certificate in Education Primary. If you complete 40 or more Master's level credits you will be eligible for the Postgraduate Certificate in Education Primary. If you pass all module but gain fewer than 40 Master's level credits, you will receive the Professional Graduate Certificate in Education Primary.

You will need to pass all assessed components of the course in order to receive the relevant academic award and the recommendation for the award of Qualified Teacher Status.

How you’ll be assessed

You will be assessed in two main ways via academic assignments and assessment of your teaching.

You will submit an assignment for each of the three academic modules, and there is the opportunity to gain 20 Master's level credits for each of these. You will need to complete and pass three placement modules.

Professional practice will be formally assessed at the end of each professional placement, of which there are three. Each must be successfully passed in order to progress through the course. At the end of your final placement you will be awarded your final grading against each of the Teachers’ Standards.

Your future career

The PGCE Primary Flexible route will result in you being recommended for Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) which can help you progress if you are already employed in an education setting. You also have the opportunity to continue within higher education and progress onto a Master's degree. 


2021/22 tuition fees for this course

  UK Overseas
Full-time N/A N/A
Part-time £9,250 N/A

Important Information on Tuition Fees

Tuition fees for all courses are payable on an annual basis, except where stated. The tuition fee of £9,250 relates to 2021/22 only. Please read the 2021/22 Tuition Fee Statement for further information regarding year on year fee increases. Students studying FULL PGCE courses may be eligible to apply to Student Finance for a Tuition Fee Loan and Maintenance Loan. You can find out more on our fees and funding web pages.

Students may self-fund their course or a sponsor may fund or part-fund. Bursaries, scholarships and fee discounts may also be available.

Further information

Loans and other funding

With or without a bursary or scholarship, you could receive a tuition fee loan and maintenance loan to help fund your teacher training year. Alternatively, you could earn a salary while you train.

Visit GOV.UK and use the student finance calculator to estimate student loans and extra funding that may be available, e.g. if you’re disabled or have children.

Apply now


18 months