AL PGCE Update January 2016

With Success Comes Challenge- Without Challenge No Learning

Current Trends

Both Year 1 and Year 2 cohorts have experienced a lot of success with their first assignments. Year 1 students did a fab job with their micro-teaching demonstrating exceptional and diverse teaching strategies. Year 2 students finished Action Learning Sets with topics that have led to very interesting action research projects. Year 2 students achieved 100% pass on their first written assignment and their action research proposals.

Year 2 students across the group feel supported by the PGCE program and shared their appreciation for different learning opportunities. In Reading we have begun Mindfulness Training with Joe Holloway. A couple of students have recently been hired by AL in Banbury to cover some variable hours. We also just hosted Wroxton College Teaching Interns visiting from the states in Banbury as a bit of an exchange. We have maintained 100% retention of students with over 50% of them pursuing Masters Level work.

Year 1 students also feel supported by the program and have often shared that they are learning new strategies each week to implement in their own teaching practice. They have begun mindfulness training with Allistair Woodstock in Oxford. They have had an 80% success rate on the first assignment with the other 20% needing a referral for a variety of reasons. From our first year rosters we have declined in enrollment: 2 have deferred in Reading; 1 was withdrawn from Oxford; 2 have deferred from Oxford. Reasons for these shifts vary and in all but one case the students expressed that they had been supported and encouraged to stick with the program but felt that their personal hurdles were too much of an obstacle right now.

What does highly qualified instructor/teacher mean and how are we supporting our staff to achieve this level?

Opportunities for Support

Consider your department members- given the recent Insted and results along with where we are with implementing the Learning Philosophy (Brain, Motivation and Emotion) what supports do you need to achieve excellence? How might the PGCE Teacher Training Team support this work? Please do share your ideas on this padlet and feel free to reach out directly to Mara Simmons- information is below.


  • Mara Simmons, Program Manager
  • Emily Jenkins, PGCE Lecturer
  • Papiha Whitehouse, Program Administrator