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As a biology teacher, you will be responsible for introducing students to all manner of significant processes, from the human body to the natural world. You will help your students develop their skills in the accurate use of scientific language, formulae and equations, and show them how to use practical techniques for scientific enquiry and investigation. They will learn how scientific discoveries make an impact on people’s lives, society and the environment. You will teach them the capacity to be scientifically literate citizens and prepare the foundations for some students to go on to pursue a career in science and technologies.

Course outline

What qualifications will I gain? Where will I train?
  • A PGCE (Post Graduate Certificate in Education) in secondary Biology (11-16 - with post 16 enhancement).
  • Qualified Teacher Status (QTS).
  • 60 credits towards a Master’s degree.

Sheffield, Rotherham, Barnsley or Derbyshire.

How long is the programme?      When does it start?
One year September 
University partner     UCAS code

How will I learn?

Our programme is intended to meet your own individual needs on your journey to QTS and meets the Teachers’ Standards. You will learn through:

  • Seminars, online learning, assessment tasks, classroom debates and directed tasks at Sheffield Hallam University.
  • Hands-on experience through school placements in the local area.
  • A dedicated mentor who will provide support and guidance throughout your training. 
  • Collaboration with other students and teaching colleagues.
  • Independent study.
  • Subject specific practical work.
  • Researched-informed practice.
What will I learn?

You will develop your subject knowledge and professional experience, enabling you to teach at key stages 3, 4 and 5 (age range 11-18). The modules on the course cover key aspects of your professional pedagogical development, as well as your school-based training. You are expected to consolidate your development, both in university and in schools, by researching appropriate material and accessing wider resources.


Your school placement will consist of a minimum of 120 days in at least two secondary schools to gain practical classroom experience. Placements are usually undertaken at partner schools with STTA with the first one starting in September and your second placement starting in January.

You will have your own mentor in each school, who will meet with you regularly and provide support and advice. They will also assess your teaching in school.

Biology student

How am I assessed?

Your performance will be assessed throughout the year by a range of strategies ranging from observations of your teaching, reviews, target setting, action plans and formal academic assessment tasks. 

We will also track your progress throughout the year and provide support and guidance to ensure that you are
on-track to successfully complete your training.

Future careers

After successful completion of this course, you will be a qualified teacher. By becoming a teacher, you’re joining a profession that offers a huge variety of career opportunities. 

There are lots of opportunities to progress into a number of leadership or management roles, such as:

  • Subject/phase lead
  • Lead practitioner working as a mentor, coach, trainer or facilitator
  • A pastoral role
  • Teaching and learning responsibility
  • Head of department
  • Headteacher
  • Deputy head

As well as excellent career opportunities, teaching offers a competitive salary, job security and job satisfaction.


Silverdale School, Bents Crescent, Sheffield, S11 9QH 0114 235 7980