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Postgraduate Secondary PGDE/PGCE 11-16 (with Post 16 enhancement OR 14-19) Programme Information

Course Overview

Postgraduate (Secondary Core PGDE, School Direct PGCE and School Direct PGDE) Trainees will work within the guidelines outlined in Section A unless otherwise stated below.

Profiles and trainee tracking:

Trainees complete a personal Trainee Profile (TP), as well as begin their Subject Knowledge Development Journal (SKD Journal) and the LJMU ITT Tracker at the start of the course.

SKD Journals are used to review and monitor existing knowledge and the development of new and established knowledge (and experience), whilst on the PGDE/PGCE course. The SKD Journal enables the trainee to track their development and set subject knowledge related targets.

The Weekly Meeting Record Form is completed each week during the placement experience, in each Phase, to identify actions to address areas for development. These areas for development are identified through trainees' interaction with the SKD Journal, LJMU ITT Tracker, lesson evaluations and other reflections; weekly meetings with school-based ITT Mentors on placement and tutorials with Personal/Liaison Tutors at LJMU. Trainees, in discussion with their mentors should be setting (and reviewing) at least two targets per week.

The LJMU ITT Tracker enables trainees’ to reflect upon their progress in relation to the Teachers’ Standards.. The LJMU ITT Tracker is used formatively by trainees and ITT Mentors to identify strengths and areas for development, informing weekly target setting in Phase Review Forms. The LJMU ITT Tracker must be updated, and discussed in weekly meetings with the ITT Mentor; it is used summatively to standardise judgements, against the minimum expectation benchmark descriptors, on completion of each Phase Review Form.

Auditing progress towards Qualified Teacher Status (QTS):

During the final period of placement experience trainees will, in addition to teaching, focus upon their preparation for a future career as a teacher. Trainees finalise their recommendation for QTS and begin to prepare for the Induction year through the presentation of the LJMU ITT Tracker with supporting evidence and a Career Entry and Development Profile (CEDP), which is Assessment AS2 of the 7118SBEC - Becoming a Professional Teacher module. At this point there should be an element of negotiation with the Home School to enable trainees to explore areas of teaching they have found particularly interesting and relevant to their needs, so they are more thoroughly prepared for job applications and interviews.

The Triangulation and Final Focus period, towards the end of Phase 3, also provides a key opportunity to address developmental needs and to ensure that trainees have gained the full range of experience required to meet all the requirements of the Teachers’ Standards. Where trainees have secured a teaching post by this time they may, with permission from their Home School and Personal/Liaison Tutor, visit their future place of employment for up to two days.

Primary and Post 16 experience:

To gain an understanding of continuity and progression in learning it is important that trainees gain knowledge of KS2 to KS3 transition and the Post 16 curriculum.

Home Schools are asked to provide trainees with a subject focused experience, which includes a visit to a feeder primary school (minimum 2 days1) to explore issues such as primary/secondary transition and to participate in the teaching of learners in Year 5 or 6. If trainees are unable to gain this experience during Phase 1 they will need to negotiate opportunities, with their Home School, by the end of Phase 3. The Primary experience can include transition activities undertaken in the Home School, as a part of the overall experience.Trainees should aim to accrue at least 5 days (equivalent) in the Primary sector (where necessary, pre-ITT experience can be included as part of the experience, in negotiation with the ITT Mentor and Personal Tutor).

The Secondary Programmes at LJMU are designated as 11-16 courses; however it is the intention that wherever possible trainees will have a ‘value added’ dimension through the inclusion of an appropriate Post-16 experience2 (minimum 1 day3). The opportunities to provide Post 16 experiences within the Home School or Alternate placement institutions vary. However, experience of Post-16 learning, teaching and assessment within a secondary school environment is important; trainees can gain valuable experience of teaching a wide variety of academic and vocational courses in the post-compulsory environment. Solo teaching at Post-16 is not a requirement of the programme: experience of observing, supporting learners and team teaching in a Post-16 environment is acceptable. Trainees, with the support of their Home School or Alternate Placement, must negotiate experience of A Level and/or Vocational qualifications relating to their subject area. This may include visits to other institutions.

1Typically in Phase 1 or the ‘Triangulation and Final Focus’ period at the end of Phase 3.

2Further Education (FE), Sixth Form College, University Technical College (UTC), Studio School, etc.

3At any appropriate point in Phase 1, 2 or 3.

Directed Study:

At certain times, notably during schools’ Half Terms and the University-based training weeks between the Phases (see the programme calendar), there may be days where there are no formal timetabled teaching sessions. Trainees are expected to use this time to review their placement experience and documentation and to work on assignments (formative and summative) prior to submitting them.  Primary/Post-16 visits can take place during some of these periods. There are number of days following the formal end date of the Postgraduate Secondary programmes for extended placements, such as where a trainee has been absent during their placement and where progress has been unsatisfactory or requiring improvement.


Assessment on the Postgraduate Secondary Initial Teacher Education (ITE) courses is continuous (i.e. there is no single end-of-course examination), with module and teaching assessments spread over the year at intervals appropriate to the phases of training. Trainees must complete all programme assessment tasks, maintain records and manage evidence. Details of assessment requirements are provided in the trainee course handbook. All trainees must pass the module 7118SBEC - Becoming a Professional Teacher, and pass their placement experience at Triangulation, in order to be recommended for QTS. Please note that LJMU confers the PGDE/PGCE qualification and recommend trainees for QTS, which is conferred by the Department for Education.

Formative assessment, by both school-based and university-based staff, is an important element of the Postgraduate Secondary courses. This includes formal lesson observation, analysis and feedback, which support on-going evaluation, review and target setting by the trainee. The QTS Training and Development File contains a record of this work, along with trainees' Placement Experience File(s) (planning, resources and records) and self-evaluate progress with the LJMU ITT Tracker (where they also audit evidence that they are meeting the Teachers’ Standards) as part of their evidence of professional development (PPD). Trainees are NOT required to collate a separate QTS file/portfolio, and are discouraged from doing so, as part of LJMU’s commitment to reducing teacher workload.

Trainees’ files, which include supporting evidence identified in the LJMU ITT Tracker audits, must be available for on-going monitoring by university-based staff (Personal/Liaison Tutors or Subject Tutors) and school-based staff (ITT Mentors and Professional Mentors) and External Examiners during and at the end of the course.

A key element of school-based assessment of a trainee’s teaching and assessment are the Phase Review Forms. Five Review Forms are completed during placement experience, by the School-based Tutor (ITT Mentor) in conjunction with the trainee and Professional Mentor; and signed by the Liaison Tutor attached to the placement institution. At the end of Phase 1 (Orientation), ITT Mentors (subject) will complete a short report commenting on attendance, professional standards and attitudes. The next four Review Forms comment on progress in relation to the Teachers’ Standards and are completed at the ‘Interim’ and ‘Final’ stages of Phase 2 and Phase 3. These Phase Review forms will be completed with reference to the minimum expectation benchmark descriptors in the LJMU ITT Tracker when making judgements about trainees’ progress across the Teachers’ Standards.

Trainees must be given copies of their Review Forms for their QTS Training and Development File. Trainees are expected to upload Phase Review Forms onto the Abyasa system (the University placement tracking database – accessible at http://abyasa.ljmu.ac.uk/ - username and password required) at the published deadline. Where there are issues relating to meeting these deadlines, the trainee’s Liaison Tutor must be informed.

NB: In order for trainees to be recommended for QTS (PASS the placement experience) at the programme Board of Examiners, documentary evidence in the form of the Phase Review Forms from partner establishments MUST be completed and uploaded to Abyasa by the published dates.

Trainees are responsible for uploading the Phase Review Forms to the Abyasa system, with copies (a) placed in the QTS Training and Development File and (b) forwarded to their Liason/Personal Tutor prior to their Tutorials following the completion of the form. Trainees must to be aware of their responsibility to ensure that Phase Review Forms are completed and uploaded at the published deadline. These are essential assessment documents, required for trainees to progress within and between the Phases of training.

It is crucial that Phase Review Forms are completed and submitted/uploaded, in good time, to enable data on trainee progress to be analysed, for the identification and support of trainees who are experiencing difficulties or require an requiring Additional Support, through the Additional Support Framework (see Section A of the website).

Programme Guides

Key Contacts

Role Name Telephone/Email
Director of the School of Education Dr Cheryl Bolton t. 0151 231 5391
e. C.L.Bolton@ljmu.ac.uk
Head of Initial Teacher Education Jan Rowe t. 0151 231 5310
e. J.E.Rowe@ljmu.ac.uk
Head of Secondary Post Graduate Programmes Dr Camilla Cole t. 0151 904 1825
e. C.J.Cole@ljmu.ac.uk
ITT Partnership Lead Dr Andrea Mallaburn t. 0151 231 5380
e. A.Mallaburn@ljmu.ac.uk
Programme Leader School Direct (Salaried) Dr Lorna Pout t. 0151 231 5250
e. L.M.Pout@ljmu.ac.uk
LJMU Tutors for School Direct at Knutsford Matt McLain
Sue Hatfield
LJMU Tutor for School Direct at Turton Dr Lorna Pout e: L.M.Pout@ljmu.ac.uk
Partnership Manager Karen Davies t. 0151 231 5320
e. K.Davies@ljmu.ac.uk
Work-related Learning Unit Sam Heffernan t. 0151 231 4620
f. 0151 729 0136
e. edn-wbl@ljmu.ac.uk

Key Dates

Placement Experience Dates

The Initial Teacher Education (ITE) experience at LJMU involves approximately 125 placement days (school-based) in two educational establishments, 55 university-based training days and 13 directed study days.

The placement experience uses the Home School model (diagram below), with trainees usually placed in a partner ‘Home School’ for the duration of their training (September to June) and experience an addition ‘Alternate Placement’ at a mid-point in the course, in order to experience and reflect on a different educational context.

The placement experience is arranged in three Phases, to support trainees as they begin to teach and take on an increasing teaching load. These phases are:

Key dates for LJMU PGCE Secondary Programme
  • Phase 1: Orientation and Beginning Teaching and Learning.
  • Phase 2: Consolidating and Developing Teaching and Learning
  • Phase 3: Extending Teaching and Learning leading to Qualifying to Teach

The alternate placement is undertaken in the latter part of Phase 2 (Phase 2b). At the end of Phase 3 there is a ‘Triangulation and Final Focus’ period, where trainees will negotiate a reduced or alternative timetable to enable them to:

  • Focus on areas of personal and professional interest or where there have been limited opportunities to gather evidence for the Teachers’ Standards (e.g. SEN, EAL, Primary, Post 16, etc.) within Home School or Alternate placement context;
  • Focus on gathering evidence for the Teachers’ Standards, where opportunities have been limited or missed in the Home School or Alternate placement;
  • Negotiate and arrange up to a maximum of 5 days enrichment outside of the home school (signed-off by the ITT Mentor and Professional Mentor), which might include:
    • An alternative education context or;
    • A subject appropriate industrial or cultural placement.

Note: all activities in the ‘Triangulation and Final Focus’ period must:

  • Related to the Teachers’ Standards – particularly those where the evidence is limited or experience/performance of the trainee could be improved
  • Formally planned and agreed with the trainee’s ITT Mentor before the May Half Term (Whitsuntide);
  • Approved by the Professional Mentor in the Home School;
  • Discussed with the trainees’ Personal Tutor / Liaison Tutor, as appropriate, in a tutorial context prior to commencement.

Key Dates

There are key documents that need to be uploaded to Abyasa, the LJMU placement management system (http://abyasa.ljmu.ac.uk/) and also emailed to your personal tutor to monitor trainee progress. All placement experience documentation can be found at www.itt-placement.com.

Phase Completed by ITT Mentor for: Uploaded by Trainee by:
Phase 1 Thursday 15th October 2020 Friday 16th October 2020
Phase 2 Interim Thursday 17th December 2020 Friday 18th December 2020
Phase 2 Alt/Final Thursday 11th February 2021 Friday 12th February 2021
Phase 3 Interim Friday 30th April 2021 Tuesday 4th May 2021
Phase 3 Final Friday 25th June 2021 Friday 25th June 2021

Programme Calendar

Term Dates

The LJMU ITT programmes calendars are based on the Liverpool Local Authority school calendar:

Liverpool LA calendar: https://liverpool.gov.uk/schools-and-learning/term-dates/

With regard to term times, trainees must ensure that:

  1. Travel arrangements are made to ensure full attendance at University (typically 09:00 to 15:00) and on placement (typically 08:00 to 16:00).
  2. The specific dates for mid and inter-term breaks for their placement schools (i.e. Half Terms, Christmas and Spring Break) are checked, before booking holidays or other personal activities (e.g. medical appointments, etc.).
  3. They avoid, or accept the risk of, booking holidays in the weeks immediately after the official end of their course (e.g. to make up for periods of absence during the course or in case additional days on placement are required in order to meet the Teachers’ Standards).

Placement Overview

Phase 2b Placement Guidance 2020-21

End of Section B