Your learning will take place in the University, in local schools and in other educational contexts including museums, galleries and the outdoors. Your knowledge of primary schooling across the age range will be developed as will your ability to teach all the subjects in the primary curriculum. Your professional skills, including how to be an effective teacher, will be developed through a range of modules and school-based experiences.
In Year 1 you will be introduced to different ideas around teaching and learning, particularly in the core subjects of English, Mathematics and Science. You will explore not only how you learn, but also how children develop and learn throughout primary school.
In Year 2 your professional and curriculum knowledge will be further enhanced. You will have the chance to study a pathway module covering a range of diverse learning environments and primary pedagogical practices.
In the final year of the course you are given the opportunity to select a specialism. This could be an area that you wish to develop in your future teaching career. You will also produce a dissertation, an individual research project. This again allows you to develop greater knowledge and understanding in an area of your choice.
As our courses are reviewed regularly, the modules and/or specialist pathways you choose may differ from those detailed below.
In the first two terms you will be introduced to Phonics teaching in school through serial placements, one day a week for five weeks.
You will study three modules covering the core curriculum:
Thinking Mathematically and Being Mathematical, English in the Earlier Years, and Science in the Primary Curriculum. These will all prepare you for initial teaching responsibilities in your first extended period of school-based training, which occurs towards the end of the first academic year. This is also supported by a professional studies module: Developing Reflective Practice.
Theories of learning are introduced in the Child Development and Learning to Talk/Talking to Learn modules, which are further supported with serial days in school, which begin in the first term, to carry out observations and other field work.
Closely allied to this module is the Becoming a Researcher module which is designed to introduce students to academic literacies, the research, planning and writing skills required of undergraduates, as well as an introduction to education research and the developing of a more questioning, and critical, approach to academic texts.
Creativity and cross-curricular approaches are incorporated in the Exploring Learning module, including several educational visits and visitors as well as themed weeks of study.
Years 2 and 3
Year 2 further develops the themes of the core subjects, with a greater emphasis on the contents and requirements of the Primary National Curriculum. These core modules: Developing the Mathematics Curriculum, Science and Technology in the Primary Curriculum, and English in the Primary Curriculum also include a greater focus on teaching approaches.
The foundation subjects of art and music are further introduced in the Exploring Learning through the Arts module, whilst the Enquiring in the Humanities module introduces teaching and pedagogy in history, geography and RE.
The Becoming a Researching Teacher module allows you to further develop your understanding of educational research and prepares you for your final year dissertation module.
In Understanding the Inclusive Classroom you will study four different pathways, including outdoor learning and inclusion. This module includes short periods of school experience linked to the individual pathways.
The second year has a substantial paired teaching placement of eight weeks. This builds upon the first-year placement and allows you to continue to develop your teaching, planning and assessment skills.
Year 3 continues to develop your ability to teach the core curriculum as you study modules in Enhancing Mathematical Understanding and Pedagogy and Literature in the Primary School. The contexts for learning are further investigated in Exploring Learning through Buildings, People and Places and your professional skills are further enhanced through a module on Developing Outstanding Professional Practice.
You will select from a list of modules, specialising in one of the following areas: English, Mathematics, Science, SEN/Inclusion or Health and Well Being.
Students who opt for the Health and Well Being pathway have the opportunity to follow a PE and School Sport Specialism on some Wednesday afternoons when students are based on campus. This is an extra cost of £30 and you will leave with various National Governing Body Teacher Awards such as Mini Tennis or Football Teacher Award Certificates.
The focus on research in education is chiefly developed through the double honours Dissertation module of between 8,000 to 10,000 words, based on a subject of your choice.
The final school experience is an individual placement of eight weeks duration, which occurs in the summer of the third year.
Please note: Students will be expected to fund their travel costs to and from placements.
The short Serial Days placements, the week-long Pathway placements and the block placements of several weeks and longer in primary schools in Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Berkshire and other neighbouring counties are spread out over the three year UG course. The placements are arranged by the university for each student in schools that are able to offer placements. We try to ensure that you are located within a reasonable distance from your term-time address and this is dependent on your mode of transport. The cost of travel to and from your placement is self funded.
We are always keen to explore ways in which you broaden your experience of education and development.
All students have the option of attending a 3 day residential trip to explore learning outside the classroom, outdoor tasks and adventurous activities. This takes place in South Wales at an accredited Outdoor Education Residential Centre. This is an optional experience and the extra cost including all kit, tuition, board and meals is £150 which is exceptional value.
In the past we have visited The Gambia developing long standing relationships with schools and colleges and we are actively exploring international opportunities in other parts of the world, aiming to be responsive to students' needs and interests. Students on the Primary Teacher Education course are very welcome to apply for places on these trips.
Please note: the cost of an optional field trip is not included in your course fee, and a separate fee will apply. The approximate cost for the Gambia trip in 2018 is £1100.
Free language courses for students - the Open Module
Free language courses are available to full-time undergraduate and postgraduate students on many of our courses, and can be taken as a credit on some courses.
Please note that the free language courses are not available if you are:
- studying at a Brookes partner college
- studying on any of our teacher education courses or postgraduate education courses.
You get the equivalent of one study day per week (this will not be timetabled on the same day each week). Lectures can take place between 9am - 5pm on all other days of the week. Placement in schools will require full time attendance and a commitment to professional values and practice.
A central component of the course will be your experience in school, supported by teacher-tutors, school-based mentors and university tutors. This element will feature in each stage of the programme. During these placements you will be required to take increasing levels of responsibility for teaching and class management in carefully selected partner schools.
We do not expect students to purchase any compulsory course books, as they are all available in the library. If students wish to purchase additional books to supplement their reading this is by their own discretion. Travel to and from your placement is self funded.
On rare occasions we may need to make changes to our course programmes after they have been published
on the website. For more information, please visit our
Changes to programmes