The PGCE Drama is a professional training which is delivered jointly between academic staff at Central and teachers in partnership schools to meet the requirements of the Teachers’ Standards (DfE, 2012). The course is structured to provide opportunities to integrate theoretical concerns with practical work, and to apply your subject knowledge and skills to classroom contexts.
The PGCE Drama is inspected regularly by the Office for Standards in Education (Ofsted) on behalf of The National College for Teaching and Leadership (part of the Department for Education), which is responsible for all such courses in England and Wales and was recently judged to be ‘Good with outstanding features’ (April, 2010).
Ofsted reported that the key strengths are:
- outstanding recruitment and selection procedures to identify trainees whose commitment to the teaching profession is matched by high suitability for the course with potential to become at least good teachers
- the exceptional ability of trainees as highly reflective learners in responding to feedback from all trainers
- very good coherence between training at the centre and that on school placements, leading to at least good progress for trainees
- modelling of best practice by experts at the centre and in the partnership so trainees know how to adapt their work to support learning of different student groups
- outstanding achievement of trainees in preparing to teach in a culturally diverse society
- outstanding work of leaders in anticipating and responding to local and national initiatives, particularly in drama and media studies pedagogy.
During Term One students are introduced to a range of educational and drama-specific strategies and will engage with a range of issues in contemporary education and learn from a variety of subject specialists in areas such as Special Educational Needs and behaviour management. Students will go on to apply this understanding while on placement at two different kinds of school or college over the duration of the course. Placements are likely to be based in inner London, allowing access to a diverse range of pupils, as well as the rich cultural context of the capital.
This course provides trainee teachers with professional training in the context of Central and its associated partner schools. By the end of the course, successful trainee teachers will have acquired the skills, knowledge and understanding needed to start an effective teaching career. These will provide the basis on which they will build in future years and in particular during the Newly Qualified Teacher (NQT) year. At the end of the induction year (NQT year), students will need to have met the Teachers’ Standards (2012), in order to become a fully qualified teacher. At the same time, trainee teachers will be helped to develop their capacity for independent and professional judgment.
During placements students will be supported by an experienced drama teacher, acting as mentor and working closely with your Central-based link tutor. At the end of the year, successful trainee teachers are expected to be capable, confident and well-informed new practitioners, who will be able to profit from subsequent experience and reflect intelligently on their daily practice and the context in which they work, in order to provide the children and young people with whom they work the high quality learning experiences to which they are all entitled.
On successful completion of the course students gain Qualified Teacher Status. The course has two possible exit routes: either a Professional Certificate of Education or a Postgraduate Certificate of Education. The latter qualification includes 60 master’s level credits which can also be automatically transferred onto Central’s MA Applied Theatre (Drama in the Community and Drama Education) course.