Start date(s)
September 2024
Study Mode
Full-time (1 year)
Main Campus (Horsforth)

Course overview

Physics is one of the fundamental sciences that rely upon scientific methods to describe the natural world. Concepts taught in Physics apply continuously to people’s ordinary lives as well as extraordinary research, bridging the particularly small sub-atomic particles to the immensely vast Universe. Physicists are also trained in highly valued skills such as problem-solving, ability to reason clearly, team working and creativity.

Physics-trained students can find job opportunities in lucrative career sectors such as engineering, geophysics, medicine, business and finance, data analyst and project managers. This subject empowers students of all backgrounds to change their life.

Every child deserves to be taught by expert teachers who know not only their subject in detail but more importantly how to teach it. This is your chance to share your passion for your subject and inspire the next generation. We will also train you to be confident in teaching all three sciences thus including Biology and Chemistry to GCSE level. Our PGCE Science courses will give you the opportunity to deliver hands-on practical activities and in-depth explorations of the curriculum to best support your own teaching.

Our vision is to develop skilful and resilient teachers who are experts in science pedagogy, and 21st-century skills driven. We focus on subject-specific knowledge, up-to-date teaching practices which are based on the most recent research, and, most importantly, your specific needs as a trainee teacher.

On successful completion of this degree and having met the Teachers’ Standards, you will be recommended for Qualified Teacher Status (QTS). All our PGCE Secondary courses lead to the award of a level 7 Postgraduate Certificate in Education.

The Student Contract

About this course

Teaching secondary-age children is your chance to share your passion for your subject and inspire the next generation. Teaching children isn’t a one-size-fits-all approach. Every subject is different, which is why we make sure our support is centred on subject-specific knowledge, up-to-date teaching practices and, most importantly, your specific needs as a trainee teacher.

Our PGCE Secondary Science with Physics course prepares you to teach in the 11 – 16 age phase. It may be possible to gain experience of teaching post-16 during your PGCE and the qualification does not preclude you from teaching post-16 once employed. There are two stages to your PGCE Secondary Science with Physics course.

Stage A – Introduction to teaching (September to December)

University-based training

We use an innovative and supportive model of training which means that not only are you getting school experience from the very early weeks of the course, but that support and tuition from University and subject experts continue until you are a highly-confident new teacher. So, in Stage A, after a short two-week induction programme, you will start a school placement three days a week, which then extends to four days a week. Every Friday however you’ll return to University for subject knowledge and applied pedagogy (SKAP) sessions (see below) and support from your tutor and fellow trainees on the course. 

Professional Education Studies

Professional Education Studies is designed to give you an introduction and overview of important topics and issues which will inform your learning, practice and professional values. These sessions give theoretical insights and practical strategies to tackle issues that you will face in your school placements and in the early years of your professional teaching life.

Subject Knowledge and Applied Pedagogy (SKAP)

In these sessions, our subject teacher experts will give you a good understanding of what it means to teach your subject. You will study the school curriculum, and understand how other expert teachers have taught it successfully. You will also learn how to plan sequences of learning that address the needs of your pupils so that you can develop your practice and have a positive impact on their learning.

School-based training

Whilst you continue to benefit from one day a week of University tuition, you will also start your first school placement, which will last until the end of Stage A. Our School Partnerships team will source your placements for you, taking into account your passions, preferences and personal circumstances. You’ll be allocated a subject tutor, who will work with you to ensure you’re prepared and ready to go into school. This will give you the chance to put into practice what you’ve learned so far in a collaborative working environment. You’ll work closely with your subject mentor based in your school. Every Friday you will return to University to benefit from the support and expertise of your subject tutor, and your subject peer group.

Stage B – Developing your knowledge and preparing for your new career (January to June)

University-based training

Your University-based training will comprise the same elements as Stage A, but you’ll focus on building on the knowledge you’ve already developed to prepare for your next school-based training block. After an initial week at University, you will start your second placement in January. Every second Friday until Easter, you’ll return to University to continue SKAP tuition. These Friday sessions are a great opportunity to find out how different schools approach the issues you are facing in your teaching practice, share your experience with your fellow trainees, and continue to benefit from the expertise of your subject tutor.

School-based training

In January, you’ll start a second placement in a different school. This will give you the chance to deepen your knowledge of how students learn and extend your practice in supporting that learning, in a new context. In this placement, you will continue to be supported by your University subject tutor, your school mentor and a link tutor who liaises frequently between school and University. This placement from January until June gives you the chance to develop your practice in a school, and with pupils that you will get to know really well. This gives you a very good opportunity to make a positive impact on progress in that school.

During your second placement, you will be teaching more lessons and ensuring that you’re teaching classes from across the full age range for which you are training. At this point, you’ll become more of an independent practitioner.

Qualified Teacher Status

During each stage of school-based training, you will be formatively assessed and your progress mapped against core competence statements. A summary judgment will be made at the end of each stage. This summary will provide you with further information about your areas of strength and targets to develop moving forwards. By the end of your training in school (stage B) you will be expected to have met the Teachers’ Standards and a Summative Assessment will be made using the standards as a benchmark. When you meet the Teachers’ Standards you are then recommended for QTS.


We believe that the most effective path to becoming an outstanding teacher is a gradual one, filled with plenty of support and opportunities to put what you’ve learnt into practice in two stages. Our PGCE Secondary courses have been designed specifically to provide supported development of your teaching skills and a gradual introduction to your new profession.

Each stage consists of a University-based training block and a school-based training block.



A - September to December

Introduction to teaching


Three months of integrated training, in which you’ll spend three days a week, then four days a week in Stage A school. The other days will be spent learning with your peers, in order to support you in becoming a skilful teacher who is an expert in Science with Physics pedagogy.

B – January to June

Developing your knowledge and preparing you for your new career 


You’ll start a second placement in a different school for Stage B. Ongoing support from, and fortnightly training days at University will continue until the end of Stage B. This stage includes targeted support and training to help you secure your first teaching job, alongside the development of your teaching skills.

In this placement, you will continue to be supported by your University subject tutor, your school mentor and a link tutor who liaises frequently between school and University.

Learning and Teaching

At Leeds Trinity we aim to provide an excellent student experience and provide you with the tools and support to help you achieve your academic, personal and professional potential.

Our Learning, Teaching and Assessment Strategy delivers excellence by providing the framework for:

  • high quality teaching
  • an engaging and inclusive approach to learning, assessment and achievement
  • a clear structure through which you progress in your academic studies, your personal development and towards professional-level employment or further study.

We have a strong reputation for developing student employability, supporting your development towards graduate employment, with relevant skills embedded throughout your programme of study.

We endeavour to develop curiosity, confidence, courage, ambition and aspiration in all students through the key themes in our Learning and Teaching Strategy:

  • Student Involvement and Engagement
  • Inclusion
  • Integrated Programme and Assessment Experience
  • Digital Literacy and Skills
  • Employability and Enterprise

To help you achieve your potential we emphasise learning as a collaborative process, with a range of student-led and real-world activities. This approach ensures that you fully engage in shaping your own learning, developing your critical thinking and reflective skills so that you can identify your own strengths and weaknesses, and use the extensive learning support system we offer to shape your own development.

We believe the secret to great learning and teaching is simple: it is about creating an inclusive learning experience that allows all students to thrive through:

  • Personalised support
  • Expert lecturers
  • Strong connections with employers
  • An international outlook
  • Understanding how to use tools and technology to support learning and development


At the end of each placement your school mentor, who will have supported you throughout your time in school, will assess your practice, using evidence from the whole of your time in school, including observations, lesson plans and marked work.

You’ll complete a progress portfolio to collate evidence of your teaching practice. At the end of the course, we will use this evidence to show that you have met the Teachers’ Standards.

You’ll also complete two level 7 Master’s assignments to test your ability to be critically reflective and research-led in your approach to teaching.

Entry Requirements

Leeds Trinity University is committed to recruiting students with talent and potential and who we feel will benefit greatly from their academic and non-academic experiences here. We treat every application on its own merits; we value highly the experience you illustrate in your personal statement.

The following information is designed to give you a general overview of the qualifications we accept. If you are taking qualifications that are not included below, please contact our Admissions Office who will be happy to advise you.

  • A good honours degree with a significant proportion in Physics. Please note that applicants with third-class honours degrees will be considered on an individual basis, and normally only if applicants have additional qualifications and/or significant relevant professional experience.
  • GCSE Grade 4 (or C or accepted equivalent) in English Language or English Literature and Mathematics. If you do not already have the appropriate GCSEs, or if you are unable to provide proof of your grades, please refer to the GCSE Equivalency information below.
  • The ability to read effectively and communicate clearly and accurately in spoken and written standard English.
  • Suitable personal and intellectual qualities required for teaching in secondary schools.
  • Applicants also need to demonstrate the commitment, attitudes and values appropriate to those of a secondary teacher and the potential to train as a teacher. Strong applicants often have experience in secondary schools, but this is not a requirement.

Applicants who require sponsorship for a student visa will also need to meet the English language requirements.

  • Minimum English Language entry requirements: IELTS Academic 6.0 (with no less than 5.5 in any component) or equivalent

You do not need to provide evidence of your English Language if any of the following conditions apply:

  • You're a UK national
  • You're a national from a majority English-speaking country as specified by the UKVI. For more information, visit the Student Visa Knowledge of English page on the UK government website. 
  • You've completed a degree either in the UK or in a majority English-speaking country as specified by the UKVI.

If your qualification isn't in English, we will require a translation.

For more information on meeting English language requirements and academic requirements by country, visit our International Applicants page.

Additional entry requirements

In addition to the above essential entry requirements, successful applicants also tend to have:

  • Advanced level qualifications (or equivalent) in Physics.
  • Experience of observing the teaching in a secondary school in this country.
  • You will also need to meet additional entry requirements set by the Department for Education (DfE) for selection. This includes the completion of a health check and a satisfactory Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check. For further information, please visit our Initial Teacher Training additional entry requirements page.

Interview information

If your initial application is successful, we will invite you to the next available Interview Day. For more information on the interview process, visit our PGCE Secondary Education interviews page.

GCSE Equivalency

If you do not already have the appropriate GCSEs, or if you are unable to provide proof of your grades, we can accept GCSE equivalency tests taken with A Star or Birmingham City University (BCU). Further details are emailed to applicants who accept offers with us.

Please get in touch for further advice on 0113 283 7123 or

Fees and finance


For information about our tuition fees please visit our Student Fees and Finance pages. 

How to apply

Apply through the Department for Education (Apply for teacher training - GOV.UK (

You will need to create an account to apply and when you apply you can make four choices and you should complete all sections of the application in full.

You can search for the course you want to apply for by searching by location or course provider and then by subject. Find postgraduate teacher training courses - GOV.UK (

There's no set deadline, but when the course is full it will show as having no vacancies on the  DfE Apply site.

Applicants who require a Student Route Visa

This programme is now closed to applicants who require a Student Route Visa for September 2024 entry. 

If you require a Student Route Visa in order to study in the UK, then you must apply to us by Monday 1 April 2024. You must also meet all the conditions of your offer and present all supporting documentation required for the visa application no later than Friday 31 May 2024. Part-time study is not available for international students on a Student Route Visa.

What happens next?

Updates on your application will be provided through your DfE application.

If you receive an offer 

You will receive information about the offer conditions and deadlines from our Admissions team.

Catholic Certificate in Religious Studies (CCRS)

Achieve an additional qualification alongside your PGCE with the Catholic Certificate in Religious Studies

Although the CCRS isn't compulsory, it is recognised across the Catholic school sector as a desirable qualification that can expand on both your expertise and your vocational focus. The course aims to ensure you have the basic knowledge, understanding and appreciation of the beliefs and principles of the Catholic Faith while providing a basis for further study.